Today, the pinball wizards at Stern Pinball announced a new machine based on Netflix’s hit series Stranger Things. That’s pretty meta, given the show’s reverence for 1980s nostalgia, but the machine seems to bring a lot of modern ideas to the table. Honestly, it looks pretty awesome.
The Stranger Things machine comes in three versions — Pro, Premium, and Limited Edition — and they all look to be packed with cool Stranger Things art and references.
The Premium and Limited Edition versions of the machine might be worth seeking out on their own, though, because they apparently have a built-in video projector that can display images and animations directly on the pinball board. (I’m imagining those projections look like the characters in Dejarik, the holochess game Chewbacca and R2-D2 famously play in Star Wars: A New Hope.)
The Premium and Limited Editions also have a screen in the center of the board that can turn into a ramp revealing the gaping maw of the Demogorgon. I am pretty bad at pinball, but I might need to start practicing so that I can someday have a showdown with Stranger Things’ famous monster.
Members of the pinball community have been clamoring for a Stranger Things pinball machine, with one person going so far as to build their own virtual version that’s in the top 30 downloads of the virtual pinball table-sharing site VPinball. And we even found a rumor blog about the Stranger Things machine — This Week In Pinball shared insider info about it last week (example: the Upside Down apparently activates on the board at random!).
If you want to buy one of these yourself, though, you can’t just order it from Stern Pinball’s website and have it shipped to your house — you’ll have to buy from an authorized dealer or distributor. (You can search for one here.) And the Stranger Things machine probably won’t be cheap — on one dealer’s website, the cheapest version of the Jurassic Park machine cost an eye-watering $5,799, so assuming the Stranger Things machine is even in that ballpark, it will probably be pretty spendy.
But perhaps the machine will make it to your local arcade someday, and if it does, it looks to be a fun way to take a pinball-themed trip to the Upside Down.