I have been chatting via Facebook with the designer of Shaq Attaq (very nice guy).... Jon Norris. He ok'd me to post what he sent me regarding the process of designing & some of the politics that go with being involved.
Mr Norris says...
"Shaq Attaq was drastically changed late in the games development cycle when the marketing department demanded that we change the playfield art. I had a feature grid on the playfield like Surf N Safari, where completing shots filled in to trigger/qualify features. I still have the drawing of that original version. Also, marketing insisted on the "Coach" and wouldn't allow me to add a game setting to totally eliminate him. I had to settle on reduced nag speech instead. Finally, the original backglass art had an awesome Shaq shattering a backboard, but it was rejected by the licensor. The "Giant Shaq" art was rushed and incomplete. Take a look at the cheerleader’s arms. Despite these issues, the game was a commercial success."
"Here is a picture of the armless cheerleader"
"I live in Las Vegas, working for a Slot machine Company. I will be going to Pinball Expo when I finish my pinball game, but probably in 2017 since it will take me a couple of years to make and program the game."