Awesome ideas all ready! I'm in for the long haul providing support and willing this to the finish!
Most excellent beginnings- love the smoke mod and the general idea.
The theme got me thinking... will the mansion have a destroyed look to it with rooms inside and maybe a open roof so you can watch the abduction occur? Just thinking it would be super cool if it could somehow work to see in the mansion and have the ball actually interact in a tiny space.... like Maybe two rooms your ball could enter each just a few- 20 sq inches or something- but when the ball got in, by a mech other than flippers and that you don't control- it went crazy bouncing off the padded walls. Maybe sling like mechs in a room to bounce ball around like super crazy for a few secs and a random like switch that triggers most of the time you get the ball in the mansion. Thinking what MM would be like if you could see in the castle and the ball went crazy in there then jumped out!
Anyhow. Wish I was helping- such a cool thing you have created. Your team! We all want to be Amigos!!!