The ferrari for kia pricing comment. Do I think pinball could be streamlined (both in development and production) to keep costs down while keeping features up? sure!
Could you design a table virtually, then transfer that over to the real thing (see wrath of olympus)
Could you... spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on robots that pick and place every playfield component and install them to reduce labor cost? absolutely
Could you have every part made in China for 1/3 the price? Sure, but be ready to fly over there and watch them like a hawk
Here's the thing.. Pinball is a VERY small volume product comparable to other industries. Even if you're the king of the industry (Stern) producing about 15,000 machines per year, that's really not a lot of product (especially one that requires game designers/mech engineers/programmers/artists/testers/production fixture engineers to develop two new titles every year). All that development time for 7,500 units. Who would want to do all that up front work and money when they've never designed or built a pinball in their life? The comment "pinball is easy" is very JPOP sounding. Remember early on when he would criticize all the homebrew games (that were finished and had code) about not having the detail to paint their vent grills? Yet his glass had to be custom cut for his custom cabinet, which also barely cleared the shooter rod? June 30th, 2019 can't come soon enough. I don't want to see them fail, but they are going to realize very quickly what they are up against. All I gotta say is they better have someone in charge that pushes for as many off the shelf components as possible.