Edit: Moving the long winded story to this post so the opening post can be clearer for people new to the thread.
The Shadow is an incredible game, with a great classic theme, that is unfortunately saddled with a license-choked translite, and overly strong ties to the mediocre movie. Regardless of what you even think of Baldwin, it's not Lamont Cranston pinball, it's the damn Shadow, why in the world is he stuck in the background while that mug is up front?
Unfortunately I've yet to see a Shadow alternate translite I liked, or that wasn't low quality (just my opinion). I really wanted to take a stab at doing a design that would do the game itself justice. I've thought about it for months, and finally just committed myself to the time it would take (quite a bit it turns out!). I had the following goals in mind as I set out to design it:
1) Ditch the supporting cast, and get The Shadow up front and center. I want the guy with the scarf and cape and guns, forget anyone else.
2) Move away from the movie, and more towards the comic books and pulp novel covers. Art deco, noir, pulp comic book style. Like I said, it really is a classic theme, and The Shadow is a great character, just needs to focus on his roots a bit more.
3) Make the translite feel like it better matched the playfield style. The Shadow with the buildings rising into the distance. The blues and purples and saturated colors. The long red scarf. No overwrought 3D shiney logo, something flat like the comics.
4) I knew I had to redesign the speaker panel too, or it would never work. Had to be a full package, instruction/free play cards too.
5) The quality had to be solid. Original 300 dpi artwork, no corny blown-up, pixelated photoshops of movie posters or anything that was grabbed from a Google image search. Real backlight film, so it won't wash out when backlit. Sadly also needed to leave Bally logo off, don't want Rick from Planetary feeling like I'm stepping on his toes.
I feel like I hit my goals pretty well. Everyone has different taste, I'm really hoping some people dig it and want it on their machine, but if you don't that's cool too, and thanks for looking!
Now that the design is finished I feel like I can reveal it, sorry it's taken so long for the people who've asked me about it! I like to tweak details for a while before I'm happy with things and ready to share. The next step is to order a test print on the backlight film, make sure the quality is there, and that all my measurements are correct etc.
To solve making the speaker panel holes I've had a template laser cut out of aluminum. It will allow consistent, precise cuts for the speaker and DMD holes. The plan is to layer a sheet of mylar over the print to give it the DMD 'window' like the original. (Edit: Scratch that plan, going full OEM style printing on the back of PETG with a white ink backing layer!)
Once I have that I'll post photos. I'm confident it will come out well, this isn't the first time I've done something like this and if there's something not right I'll fix it before production. My day job is as a creative director, I've got an eye for detail and a bit of an obsessive streak to boot. Plus I want this on my own Shadow, so it better come out nice!
Ask anyone I just sent my Tommy prop mods to (a side project that piggybacked on the laser cutting for this!) I'm prompt and responsive.