Stern’s Led Zeppelin Machine Blends Music and Pinball

by Lauren Sisselman

Pinball-300x157 Stern's Led Zeppelin Machine Blends Music and PinballRock and roll and pinball are two peas in a pod. When pinball hit its stride in the 1970s, companies pined to create machines based off of popular musicians of the time — KISS and Elton John both have machines from that era. But one band has always stood out among the rest, and Stern Pinball has brought them to pinball life — Led Zeppelin.

Stern has released this impressive machine in three styles: Pro, Premium, and Limited Edition. Designed by legendary pinball playfield designer Steve Ritchie, each model proudly boasts a custom-molded Hindenburg Zeppelin toy — an icon that even casual fans will instantly recognize. The game also boasts some other recognizable imagery from the Led Zeppelin stratosphere.

When lit, the Zeppelin toy scores speed locks on the player’s musical journey to Zeppelin multiball.  A custom Swan Song Records trademark Icarus sculpted leaper toy takes flight when smashed by the chaotic pinball.   A 3-bank of drop targets, 3 custom steel ramps, and 3 flippers keep the pinball action rolling.

All three models feature a Swan Song Records Icarus sculpted leaper toy, 3-banks of drop targets, 3 steel ramps, and 3 flippers. The Premium and LE models each come with an interactive Electric Magic™ toy, which rises dramatically from the playfield. If you hit the optical spinner enough, the magnet will capture the ball. This toy also doubles as a bash toy, which also locks or launches a ball. Even more impressive is the game’s soundtrack. All three models feature classic Led Zeppelin songs, including;

  • Good Times Bad Timesled2520Zeppelin-300x150 Stern's Led Zeppelin Machine Blends Music and Pinball
  • Whole Lotta Love
  • The Song Remains the Same
  • Rock and Roll
  • Trampled Under Foot
  • Ramble On
  • Kashmir
  • Immigrant Song
  • Black Dog
  • Communication Breakdown
This is one of the more complex and difficult machines I’ve played lately. I’m lucky enough to have an LE on hand, and it truly makes a difference. The light show mixed with the music pairs perfectly with the chaotic nature of the pinball on the playfield. The third flipper lands just outside where the ramp takes the ball, causing your right hand to react accordingly. The Icarus bash toy is fantastic, but I absolutely love the intricate ramps on this machine. They add a layer to this machine that can only be experienced while playing.
The video LCD screen can be a little distracting while playing, but it’s still cool to see what videos Stern has included in the game. While Stern machines are typically easy to score high points on, Ritchie has made sure players earn their points. Players will be enchanted and delighted by this game, and the difficulty can be overlooked.
ledzeppelin-2-e1618001549666-200x300 Stern's Led Zeppelin Machine Blends Music and PinballIf you’re looking to collect this machine as an investment, you certainly will make a profit with the Limited Edition model. As the name implies, Stern is only releasing 500 of these — and once Stern locks Led Zeppelin back into the vault it’s anyone’s guess when Stern will re-release it. You can currently still find LE Led Zeppelin’s on eBay for $12K, $3K more than what Stern was asking for, so there is already a demand for this machine. If you do buy one, hang on to it for at least a year before re-selling it. You will absolutely make your money back and then some.
I have seen other limited edition machines command $10K higher than their original asking point once the game is out of print. Pinball has started to become one of those niche hobbies that more and more people jumped into during the ongoing global pandemic, and I don’t see this bubble bursting anytime soon.
Led Zeppelin starts at $6,199, and can be purchased from an authorized Stern dealer near you!

Are you a concert poster collect? You might have thousands of dollars hanging on your walls!

Concert-Poster-Footer-Option-3 Stern's Led Zeppelin Machine Blends Music and Pinball

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1 comment

Taneleer Tivan April 17, 2021 - 5:25 pm

Daaaaaaaaaang, pretty sweet. What were my favorite pinball machines? Fish Tales was up there, Funhouse, Star Trek TNG, Terminator (though it was always broken), Cyclone….

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