April 2024 Insider Connected Events 6 Quests+ Avengers Infinity Quest Tournament + Constructive Criticism for March Machine Mania

By Todd Russell Mar28,2024

Spring is here, connected-pinball style!

April 2024 quests and seasonal events were posted at the Stern Pinball official website 3/28/2024. This article covers the details of those events, as well as provide some gameplay tips for obtaining the badges, share links to prior Insider Connected tournaments and cover a short review of the March 2024 events. Everything Stern IC players need to know is shared in this article, so bookmark for easy reference.

Also, at the end a brief review of last month’s event: March Machine Mania. TL;DR: it wasn’t that exciting unless you live in one of the three states that won the weekly competitions — and had great players flipping Batman ’66 into trillions. In all honesty, Batman ’66 was the competition, because it’s not widely available Insider Connected.

All six quests (official link: https://insider.sternpinball.com/insider/events/8395/quests) are denoted with the year, which suggests these might be repeatable yearly badges, meaning they could possibly be earned every calendar year.

Quests

  • 4/1 – 4/7: Play the Fool 2024 – All/any Spike 2 Machines – Play 5 games
  • 4/4 – 4/7: National Burrito Day 2024 – DEADPOOL – Score 500 million cumulative
  • 4/1 – 4/7: B Kind 2 Spider 2024 – VENOM – Score 500 million cumulative

Seasonal Events

The most challenging of the three will be Gummy Gares, with the 200+ million score, but this is still a fairly easy score on a higher scoring pin like Star Wars

  • April 6-14: Wired To Play (National Robotics Week) – FOO FIGHTERS, STAR WARS or MANDALORIAN – play 1 game of any of the three to earn badge
  • April 1-29: April Buds (April Showers Bring May Flowers) – Any Spike 2 Machine – Multiplayer Score 100 million combined in any one game
  • Friday April 26: Gummy Gares – Any Spike 2 Machine – Score 200+ million in one game

Avengers: Infinity Quest Monthly Tournament

It’s been awhile since anything was done for Avengers, so makes sense that this month is having an AIQ tournament. Here’s the details:

Leaderboard official link:
https://insider.sternpinball.com/insider/events/8387/leaderboards/gvd-VNUcZ-Acxz?game=AIQ

Prior Stern Insider Connected quests history by month (since they started doing monthly quests):

Since October 2023, Stern has offered quests to earn virtual badges on a monthly frequency. Here’s a historical record of our coverage. NOTE: prior to October 2023, there were other quests in 2023, like a Foo Fighters quest that spanned multiple months for a tour, but there weren’t month-specific quests. There were also some months where there were global tournaments only.

Good luck everybody in March 2024 sharing the love of pinball!

Review: March Machine Mania a Learning Experience for Stern IC

In retrospect, must admit that wasn’t a big fan of the March Machine Mania tournament. Appreciate that Stern conceived this event but said it on the stream recently: this event was busted – on multiple levels.

The details weren’t well thought out to begin with, then Jaws had scoring issues (quickly patched), and then Batman ’66 with the well known trillion scoring (this isn’t new, folks, I heard about this years ago!).

The states that did best were because really amazing players registered trillion+ scores on Batman ’66.

It was a Wack-A-Mole event: big scores put up, big scores removed, people online venting at Stern because they removed the scores (or don’t remove them), people complaining about the event because of the lack of transparency for individual scores and so on. It’s supposed to be about getting more people to play, not complain, but welcome to the internet in 2024.

I hope if Stern does this March Machine Mania in 2025 they will come out with max scores for each machine accepted in the event, show individual participation (how each player contributes, by machine and score) or they just don’t ever do this event again. All my excitement for this event and cheering on my state eroded in confidence by week #2 — because it all was poorly conceived and executed.

The event is actually a disincentive for players in the states to play, because they bring down the state/team average of their state with players working over Batman ’66. How does that make sense?

I love that Stern *tried* something, the effort to do something is there, but this just comes off like not enough thought was put into how everything would really, truly work. Also, perhaps more importantly, because other companies aren’t doing anything like this right now,. I think most players will look at this and say it’s one of the more lame IC events put out so far because they didn’t know individually how their games mattered (yes, the rules are there, but the transparency on an individual player basis was not).

That said, we don’t want Stern to stop innovating and trying things, but hopefully if they do something like this again, they put more thought into the execution next time. They have to finish this one up, but it’s a learning lesson for IC Events going forward, no doubt.

Your turn to comment and reflect on March Machine Mania and/or the new April 2024 events.

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