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Pinball / Aerosmith

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The Premium model.

Aerosmith is a pinball machine released in early 2017 by Stern Pinball. It was designed by John Borg, with software by a team including Lonnie D. Ropp and artwork by "Dirty Donny" Gillies. Notably, it also features voice work from Brendon Small as the living jack-in-the-box "Jacky".

The game is themed around the famous rock group of the same name – specifically, it's touted as "reflect[ing] the high-energy and excitement that accompanies the experience of a live Aerosmith concert." As the band plays on, the player must get through nine modes based on their songs, including "Rats in the Cellar", "Dude Looks Like a Lady", "Sweet Emotion", "Walk This Way", "Last Child", "Same Old Song and Dance", and "Back in the Saddle". The other two are multiball modes tied to prominent mechanical features on the playfield. First, locking balls in the toy box on the playfield (through an airborne kicker) eventually starts Toy Box Multiball, based on "Toys in the Attic" – the player can delay the mode in order to increase the number of balls from three up to six. Second, "Love in an Elevator" is associated with a molded elevator that varies between the game's versions – in the basic Pro version, it's simply a fancy scoop, while the Premium and Limited editions upgrade it to a larger model on an exclusive upper playfield. Making progress in all of these modes is required for Medley Multiball, and completing them lights the way to the potentially lucrative Final Tour.

This game provides examples of:

  • Anti-Frustration Features:
    • The mechanics behind Toy Box Multiball (wherein a player can delay the mode in order to add more balls, up to 6) could potentially lead to a second player "stealing" excess balls by choosing to play it with the minimum of 3. The game combats this by refusing to send the excess balls back into play during the ball save period, meaning that the second player will end up with just 3 balls soon enough. By the same token, it will also send as many balls as needed for the first player's multiball, even if they're not physically in the toy box.
    • Medley Multiball provides another opportunity to complete any unfinished song modes in order to access the Wizard Mode.
  • Ash Face: Jacky gets one after a bomb explodes at the end of the Match Sequence.
  • Bait-and-Switch: Making shots during "Dude Looks Like a Lady" shows silhouettes of various dancing women... that are soon revealed as awkward, unattractive men (including a mime).
  • Deadly Euphemism: "Rats in the Cellar" depicts an exterminator company named "Permanent Vacation". (It doubles as a Mythology Gag, being the name of one of the band's albums.)
  • Elevator Going Down: Implied during (what else?) "Love in an Elevator", which opens with an animation of an attractive woman getting onto an elevator with Steven Tyler.
  • Incendiary Exponent: The Super Pops animation depicts Joey Kramer drumming to the point where he ends up wreathed in flames.
  • Instrument of Murder: Making a Super Feature-boosted shot shows one of the band members firing his guitar like a gun.
  • Living Toys: Jacky is a sentient jack-in-the-box.
  • Match Sequence: Jacky digs through his toy box, throwing various "toys" (false match numbers) out, until finding a bomb that explodes in his face, leaving the real match number in its place.
  • Mythology Gag: "Rats in the Cellar" opens with a shot of an exterminator van labelled "Permanent Vacation", the name of one of the band's albums.
  • Outside Ride: "Last Child" depicts the band performing on top of their tour van as it's moving.
  • Score Multiplier:
    • A 2x playfield multiplier is either a Mystery award (on the Pro version) or accessed by hitting every target on the upper playfield and making a loop shot (on the higher-tier versions).
    • Spelling A-E-R-O-S-M-I-T-H creates a shot multiplier for the next shot the player makes. It lasts until the ball is drained.
  • Skill Shot:
    • The "Hidden Skill Shot" (softly plunging into a lock) gives points and a Smart Missile.
    • The "Super Skill Shot" requires holding the left flipper, plunging soft enough to get the ball to the right flipper, and shooting whatever shot lights. It awards points and 2 Smart Missiles.
  • Smart Bomb: Version 1.06 added "Smart Missiles", which automatically collect the leftmost lit shot when used.
  • Spelling Bonus: A-E-R-O-S-M-I-T-H lights a shot multiplier and a Mystery award.
  • Take That, Audience!: Jacky provides a few quips mocking the player.
    "EXTRA BALL! You'll need it..."
  • Wizard Mode:
    • "Medley Multiball" is a mini-Wizard Mode, accessed by getting at least one award in every mode. After receiving a hefty bonus for every completed song, the player is given the opportunity to complete any incomplete ones by shooting their associated area (i.e. shooting the elevator three times for "Love in an Elevator"). Completing them all lights the Super Jackpot, which will end the mode and drain every ball in play. This helps light the actual Wizard Mode, detailed below. (If the player completed every mode beforehand, they get an even heftier "Perfect Bonus" and still get to play the mode and collect the Super Jackpot.)
    • The actual Wizard Mode is "Final Tour", a frenzy mode where the goal is to get through 24 cities by making various shots (grouped in sets of eight). Finishing them all lights the 100 million point Super Jackpot, which ends the mode upon collection.
  • World Tour: "Final Tour" is themed around the band traveling around the world on a concert tour.