27 November, 2013

Farsight, with clockwork regularity,

When I start despairing that I don't have any interesting new entry to the blog, Farsight comes along to help. By now it has become customary to have two new tables every month or so. This time we have two quite different games. Eldorado 

has an incredibly chaotic table, where the ball is practically invisible most of the time. Add to this an excessive speed and the easiness with which the ball drains and you have a most unplayable game.

On the other hand, Cue Ball Wizard

is a very pleasant game. It has some unique features like an oscillating captive ball and a captive cue-ball. The latter can hit two targets which are unreachable otherwise. The flippers can be raised at an angle that suffices to stop even a fast ball and thus greatly facilitates the game. If only Farsight had a more visible ball …


  1. Oh I'm glad I still have a couple bucks left on my internet card.. Love cue ball wizard!!
    I was just thinking about the difference between the old Pro pinballs for PC and Classic Mac, and it occured to me somebody could have ported them to intel in a week's wortth of work. Want to know what the difference between the PC and Mac ones was? A 600K application. That's it. The game files are absolutely identical. I know. When I first wanted to play them on the Mac, I only had the PC CDs, so I downloaded the Mac application updates from Empire, when you still could, and presto! I now had a Mac version. So why has NOBODY retooled that 600K application for intel? Or, for that matter, OSX PPC before that? Even unofficially. It would have takenless than a week to recompile. Shows how few people played pinball before iDevices..

  2. I recently signed up for Steam, which is another DLC service, as they've got, now, Mac compatible access. Firstly, I noticed that Pinball Arcade is already offering Season 3 there, as a Pro Pack. Previously, I bought the Season 2 Pro pack off of the Apple App store for $49 (P.S. remember what I said about the versions we have working in uograde? Doesn't in Mavericks ;-( .. still OK in Lion tho).
    Steam, however, sells the Mac - Season 3 Pro Pack, with the new first table, for $39. I don't think there's a lot of really big advantages to pro, a lot of small ones though, like removing that pesky "go pro" banner, and better pinballs, better table orientation. For me that's about it. Perhaps better ball physics would be a great option, although I don't know if that'sw one of the options. One thing I did discover though is , and I don't know if it's activated by purchasing the "pro" addition, but if you set the anti-alias mode to maximum (8x) the graphics are stunning .. that's in the initial "options screen
    Thats it 4 bow... Cheers!

  3. OK, looks like Steam for Mac *advertises* Pinball Arcade's Season 3 pack, but doesn't sell it, for Mac. Bum steer, as they say.. Ah well. If Farsight remains true to form, they'll have an update available on the Mac App store by about Christmas.. That's how they deal with new tables on the Mac.. you have to download an entirely new copy of the game.
    Unlike, say, Zen Pinball 2. The new tables that just showed up as available are really a blast too, IMHO...

  4. OK, wrong again. Steam for Mac certainly DOES have Pinball Arcade. I;ve been playing the free version iof "Fish Tales" all evening. It's better than the best of the Visual Pinball versions too, which is the first time I've been vble to say that!
    So, looks like there's been a Steam OSX version for 3 days already (Since December 16th). I find it interesting that the physics are so much better on the Steam one. I would have thought they were the would have had to been the same (the Apple store and Steam versions) but no, they are not. The Steam PA definitely plays smoother and more accurate. The App store version has definitely more power in the graphics department, however. I attempted to set the anti-alialing in the main options dialog to 8x, same as I have on my App Store version, as this absolutely gives the most stunning graphics. The Apple one handled it with ease, not affecting the gameplay whatsoever. The Steam version, though, became absolutely unplayable at this setting. I was able to have a slow swig off of my coffee cup and set it back down carefully, in the time it took for the ball to reach the flippers after launch ;-). The movement of the ball, and the flippers, was very very smooth, but just slow. Exactly what you would expect, on a table with superior physics, if something were slowing down the actual gameplay After resetting the anti-aliasing to 2x all went back to playable again, but it shows that there's a real difference in how graphics is handled in the Steam version. It also proves my initial impression that the Steam tables have superior physics..
    Also, Apple , at this date, still haven't approved the latest PA update with Season 3 and the first table, "Fish Tales", whereas Steam has it already. So my initial impressions are that if you don't have either version, you're better off on OSX to go with Steam. Other than it's graphics handling, it's bested Apple in every area...
    I don't know if I want to buy the "Fish tales" table on Steam though, but bnecause of the physics, I just might...

  5. I'm writing a "Steam vs Apple" review on my pinball blog, with screenshots also. You might be interested..
    It's not done just yet. Give me a few hours ;-)