As a musician who has studied music business, I am aware there are certain guidelines as to what can actually be copyrighted in a song (e.g. you can copyright a melody and lyrics but not a chord progression or a bass line).
I am wondering, to what extent does a pinball machine's copyright..extend?
I assume obvious things such as artwork, sound clips, dot animations, licensed themes, the actual code of ROM files.. But is the actual layout protected? If the layout is protected, how exact is it or rather how much variation would there have to be for a second machine to not be infringing?
For example: If I were to build a machine using P-Roc or some other platform, and the layout was identical to Centaur only that it was flipped on the vertical axis, thereby putting the shooter lane on the left side, queen's chamber on the right, etc, and of course the art and sound would be different but the rule-set was the same but programmed on a different system, maybe even different point values.. I am infringing on Bally's copyright of Centaur?