yes, agreed. nudging is the key. also, I got the machine with white rubbers (very bouncy) and for this pin (The Shadow) they create a type of gameplay I totally dont like. I put STANDARD (not silicone) black rubbers and now things are so much better. With white rubbers the game was very random, with black now you can:
1. control the ball much better with the flippers (I changed from red to black rubber on flippers too)
2. nudging on the pin of the outlanes saves much more balls. With white rubbers you can nudge correctly but the ball kept bouncing all around and back to the outlanes.
Anyway I found a simple idea: I put some toothpicks between the posts and the rubber: it only narrowed slightly the outlanes by a couple of mm, but that helps a bit. Set like this, my Shadow rocks!!! It's now a difficult game, but not punishing in an extreme, silly, random way. You constantly need to use soft nudging, slap save, bounce pass, especially dead catch, stay away from outlanes and so on.. but it's all up to the player's skills With skilled play you can consistently achieve good results, no need to wait for pure luck around the outlanes, as it seems I needed before. Much much less frustration, and way more fun.
The game is still very hard, and once very experienced I can remove memory between balls for many adjustments, and go from 5 to 3 balls. It will be the perfect machine for expert players: great rewards for the skilled, failures for the unskilled.