Remember visiting the page of one of the smaller manufacturers and they had made a promo video where it was mentioned in passing that it is remarkable how little key components of gameplay have changed in the past 30+ years: the style of gameplay, the lock-3-balls-in-a-row-and-you-get-multiball aspect, the familiar spot targets/drop targets/bumpers/ramps/flipper configuration etc. Technology in general has modernized considerably but the tech used in making these machines has changed comparatively little (although of course, this doesn’t make the hobby any less enjoyable), even though there have been some notable developments e.g. high resolution screens/lighting and more.
Had a few ideas and was curious to know the opinions of the forum; please bear in mind the caveat here that I’m much less familiar with the technological side of pinball than many of you so if these ideas are ridiculous please be easy on me
For instance, consider the standard rollover target. Of course the rollover target combined with the coding aspects indicates to the machine where the ball is on the playfield and whether the ball has completed an orbit or ramp completely. If you take a standard optical computer mouse (not an old trackball mouse), and you flip it over, there will be the optical/laser indicating movement of the mouse as you move it across the mousepad. Tech exists wherein anything that ‘breaks’ the beam will be detected. Would it be possible (practically, and financially) to implement this kind of tech on a pinball playfield…? For example, a rollover target in an inlane or orbit shot- the ball would break the beam negating the need for a rollover. Is that possible.
Going a step further, given that various aspects of scoring and gameplay are based on detection of where the ball is on the playfield at any given time, there have been advances in motion detection technology. What if this were implemented somehow in the game, perhaps rollovers and possibly other mechs would not have to be present?
Thoughts on if any of this is doable?