(Topic ID: 218746)

What will be the next big innovation in Pinball?


By TractorDoc

1 year ago



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  • 80 posts
  • 55 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 1 year ago by MEuRaH
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    #1 1 year ago

    Pinball machines have come a long way from the chimes and electromechanical era. Sound, ramps, multi-ball, multiple flippers, toys/gadgets, ball locks, magnets, DMDs, LEDs, subways, cannons, programmable music. . . so many great features that can add to and make the game more enjoyable.

    Is there room for any more improvement? What could be the next big thing to enhance the game?

    Cameras strategically placed in/around the playfield is an idea -- this way you can record/review a good ball or game similar to video games.

    Complete code, properly working toys, etc. are always nice. . .

    Other thoughts/ideas on the next big thing in pinball?

    #2 1 year ago

    Not going out of business..

    j/k

    1. Maybe with some sensors, a self-playing demo mode?
    2. Less moving parts, but still the same functionality?
    3. 3-D holograms on the pf? Something like in Star Wars(the chess game) where you swack it with a ball and it gets hit.

    14
    #3 1 year ago

    Hopefully a programmable service menu and online leaderboards / online play via a smartphone app. Pretty shocked this hasn’t happened yet seeing how cheap WiFi / Bluetooth dongles are.

    #4 1 year ago

    Couple ideas:

    Subway. Something that adds more of a random element, for example ball hit into scoop, subway could take ball to one of a few different exits.

    Continually moving metal piece that opens / closes a ramp shot. Think Shadow diverter but different in that it’s continually moving back and forth during certain times in the game.

    User controlled ability to stop a ball on a ramp during a certain mode / multiball, then restart/release when ready.

    #5 1 year ago

    See through lcd’s.

    For example the lower playfield on acdc, but the glas of the mini playfield is a lcd screen, which can be used when not playing the miniplayfield, or small grafix, maybe explosions on it, while playing it.

    23
    #6 1 year ago

    Self cleaning playfield.

    LTG : )

    #7 1 year ago

    Licenses that are not outdated

    #8 1 year ago

    A pin where you can put your own CD or music into it to listen to while you’re playing.

    #9 1 year ago
    Quoted from s1500:

    1. Maybe with some sensors, a self-playing demo mode?

    Alvin G & Co. already did that 27 years ago.

    #10 1 year ago

    I think the trend is nore lcd integration in gameplay on the playfield. Lcds getting cheaper and smaller and already being used on the pf in games like the hobbit and dialed in off the top of my head...and dare I say Alien and ft.

    I like the idea of screens in the playfield, see through lcds as someone mentioned earlier would be great too.

    As we have more competitors to stern out there now, I think cheap tech like lcd screens will start becoming more common.

    That or a new high tech pin gulp :p

    #11 1 year ago
    Quoted from MattElder:

    Alvin G & Co. already did that 27 years ago.

    Yeah that's still an impressive & ingenious switch system!

    10
    #12 1 year ago

    Inserts or rollovers that not only change color, but also text.

    Screenshot_20180609-012247 (resized).png
    #13 1 year ago

    - Multiple physical games via swappable upper playfield modules
    - dynamic and interactive lower playfield artwork via an LCD playfield surface
    - 'endless' ball trough (capable of holding more balls than one would ever need in a pinball game)
    - Network connectivity
    - Player profiles and team play
    - Digital leveling

    Hmmm....wait, I think there's a game that already has all this.

    #14 1 year ago

    mindcontrol

    is this you again garry??? nice try, i am not telling you my great ideas unless you hire/pay me!!!

    12
    #15 1 year ago

    Pinball mortgage with 20% down. At today's NIB prices this should almost be a thing.

    #16 1 year ago
    Quoted from charles4400:

    see through lcds as someone mentioned earlier would be great too. :p

    Williams patented this for their slots almost ten years ago. Mechanical reels behind a "transmissive lcd" screen. It's bad ass. Slot tech is way ahead of pinball tech.

    #17 1 year ago

    auto leveling playfield and legs to go up down like they do on truck campers
    2nd playfield on the opposite side and it flips over like those billiard/hockey tables
    thinner cabinets or maybe just thinner back boxes
    easier way to move like the newer portable table saws with wheels attached on the back and flip out handles
    no wires just transmitters and receivers could possible link with other similar machines making it dual playing
    more built in cameras for dual playing etc
    more active screen playing like Cirqus Voltaire

    #18 1 year ago

    open source game code....

    #19 1 year ago
    Quoted from TractorDoc:

    Is there room for any more improvement? What could be the next big thing to enhance the game?

    Excellent questions.

    I expect real innovations, let's say an innovation jump, in the context of three IT-enabled paradigms:

    1. Co-creation (tapping and combining creativity of many individuals over the net),
    2. Artificial intelligence (supporting the development process with the laws of physics and electronics as well as a plethora of game rules),
    3. 3D printing (producing new parts aligned with off-the-shelf components).

    Pinball production will be revolutionized by dedicated crews, designing, specifying, testing, perfecting and only then manufacturing a pinball machine with marginal manual labor, costing only a fraction of today's NIBs (less than $1,000).

    Thus, in ten years from now, no more complaints about a range of deficiencies of new pinballs - what a shame

    16
    #20 1 year ago

    Triple spinning disks that spin in opposite directions from each other.

    #21 1 year ago
    Quoted from solarvalue:

    - Multiple physical games via swappable upper playfield modules
    - dynamic and interactive lower playfield artwork via an LCD playfield surface
    - 'endless' ball trough (capable of holding more balls than one would ever need in a pinball game)
    - Network connectivity
    - Player profiles and team play
    - Digital leveling
    Hmmm....wait, I think there's a game that already has all this.

    There is, and there's one in my basement and I play it everyday

    #22 1 year ago

    I agree with a few of the guys above . I think Bluetooth and WiFi need to be added . The features of it would be great ! Play buddies online , high score charts with current updates , automatic code updates , etc . I also love the camera intergration On dialed in , it is a really fun add on that would work well in other games .

    #23 1 year ago
    Quoted from LTG:

    Self cleaning playfield.
    LTG : )

    Yess!!

    #24 1 year ago
    Quoted from KurtWehrli:

    Pinball production will be revolutionized by dedicated crews, designing, specifying, testing, perfecting and only then manufacturing a pinball machine with marginal manual labor, costing only a fraction of today's NIBs (less than $1,000).

    Dream on.......

    #25 1 year ago
    Quoted from poppapin:

    Dream on.......

    When I was 14, back in 1968, sitting in the math lessons of an unpleasant professor, we were dreaming of a small machine on the knees, to figure out these damned logarithms, instead consulting tables in books, and sometimes we were so crazy to dream of a device, to store cheating aids for exams.

    Seven years later, I bought my very first calculator, from Texas Instruments, for about $500, basically with basic calculating operations and - great - trigonometry.

    And a smartphone, to call without any wires, just unthinkable.

    Do you see the point?

    #26 1 year ago
    Quoted from SilverBallz:

    Triple spinning disks that spin in opposite directions from each other.

    Haha. Good one.

    Self-leveling pf would be cool, and likely doable.

    ...Imagine wires that exit the cabinet at the lower corners by the legs, run down the back of the legs, out of sight, to connect to small wires connected to hydrolic feet at the base of the legs. These wires communicate the hydrolic feet to fixed leveling sensors fastened to various points, or even at one point under the center of the pf. On the menu screen, just pick the degrees at which you wish to play, and BAM, it makes the adjustment.
    That would be great.

    #27 1 year ago

    Gosh,20 years ago? There was an article about Innovation in Pinball with a few proto pics...maybe someone has this,
    but the playfield had a "sensing grid" below the art.
    The ball tracking by this method was to eliminate many switches, making the game more reliable, less maintenance.

    But what I like, is much like a loop shot with a line of rollovers, the embedded sensors could pick up more subtle distances,
    resulting in more feedback. ie BOP, make the ramp, and if one doesnt..."Abort"...really hit or miss...but multiple results could occur
    by speed or distance.

    Add in OLED switches. playfeld holograms maybe, and i think one last area will be 3D printed animatronics.
    Red and Ted would seem a bit archaic with a full 3D printed faces, covered in Silicone..You could hit the bash object
    in different places, and at different speeds for different results, as sensors will be printed in the toy, along with all its movement.
    Smack him in the eye, and he winces, taunts, and gets a black eye dent, that heals...unless you hit again...so an update to all that we hit.
    Ramps, targets, and other sensors could now gain from this as well.

    Add a few well controlled accelerator magnets, and now you hit an accelerator 3 times fast then a target, and your ball speed is registered, displayed
    and points given. So tighter points on accuracy and speed.

    Ive approached Stern staff several times, about running a contest with user ideas put forth on a forum.
    Winner(s) see their ideas in production, Stern gets a Pile of new ideas from young and old, and the winner gets a free game.

    Much like this thread....our collective imaginations are very valuable, IMO.

    #28 1 year ago
    Quoted from TractorDoc:

    Cameras strategically placed in/around the playfield is an idea -- this way you can record/review a good ball or game similar to video games.

    I remember hearing some buzz a year or two ago that JJP was playing with the idea of a subterranean playfield, like black hole, only visible on the LCD display via cameras while the ball was down there. Don’t know if anything ever materialized out of that design. Sounds like it would be difficult to play.

    #29 1 year ago
    Quoted from Colsond3:

    I remember hearing some buzz a year or two ago that JJP was playing with the idea of a subterranean playfield, like black hole, only visible on the LCD display via cameras while the ball was down there.

    That is the only way I would want a camera in a pin. The idea of a player cam is terrible.

    #30 1 year ago
    Quoted from KurtWehrli:

    When I was 14, back in 1968, sitting in the math lessons of an unpleasant professor, we were dreaming of a small machine on the knees, to figure out these damned logarithms, instead consulting tables in books, and sometimes we were so crazy to dream of a device, to store cheating aids for exams.
    Seven years later, I bought my very first calculator, from Texas Instruments, for about $500, basically with basic calculating operations and - great - trigonometry.
    And a smartphone, to call without any wires, just unthinkable.
    Do you see the point?

    1K for a NIB? Do you see my point? There is Zizzle!!

    #31 1 year ago
    Quoted from KurtWehrli:

    And a smartphone, to call without any wires, just unthinkable.

    Do you see the point?

    It doesn't work that way with pinball. Technology might make them more reliable, better sounds and lighting, but it can't do what you are asking. To much parts and labor and too few sales. If they were making a million of each pin like they do with phones they may be able to cut the prices in half, but not $1000. Technology sure hasn't made a $5000 Suburban 4x4 and never will.

    #32 1 year ago
    Quoted from John_I:

    That is the only way I would want a camera in a pin. The idea of a player cam is terrible.

    Like DI selfies...

    #33 1 year ago

    Wishing for cabinets that don't come apart at the corners, More complete code game at ship time and not years between updates, Maybe non dimpling playfeilds with inserts that don't ghost. Shown and promised features actually come with the game after you pay for it.

    #34 1 year ago

    Self leveling pf with pitch adjustment.

    #35 1 year ago

    Lower prices

    #36 1 year ago

    I think JJP had a nice idea adding a camera to some games, I just don’t feel they have exploited its full potential yet, the wanted posters in POTC is a fun idea.

    Taking that tech further could add some cool elements to future pins, being able to put yourself, friends and family into lcd animations could be amusing.

    And if your adding interactivity with a camera/visually why not do the audio too with voice commands that can effect gameplay, for example earn a multiball with the ability to bank it, until you need it, when the time is right activate it with a specific voice command.

    Quoted from GorillaBiscuits:

    Hopefully a programmable service menu and online leaderboards / online play via a smartphone app. Pretty shocked this hasn’t happened yet seeing how cheap WiFi / Bluetooth dongles are.

    And this should have so happened by now!

    #37 1 year ago
    Quoted from NorCalRealtor:

    Slot tech is way ahead of pinball tech.

    They have more development money to play with.

    And a bigger need to keep the players interested.

    LTG : )

    #38 1 year ago

    The biggest innovation in 2017-18 apparently is TNA - a back to basics game everybody loves.

    Innovation is highly overrated in pinball and usually just mucks things up.

    #39 1 year ago
    Quoted from LTG:

    They have more development money to play with.
    And a bigger need to keep the players interested.
    LTG : )

    As a slot player myself I’d agree with you Lloyd except for the fact that I’m not paying $10k for the actual slot machine

    For $10k I’d hope there is plenty of incentive to keep innovating and keeping us buyers interested

    Btw, the new Animal House slot is a blast! So is Anchorman

    #40 1 year ago

    Removal of most switches and instead use high frame rate cameras tracking the balls.

    #41 1 year ago

    wifi it into the home stereo. Maybe that's already been done (should have with all the band themes out there).

    #42 1 year ago

    Load your own music into the game for that one game only. Then it reverts back to the original. Hey I wouldn't mind hearing Slayers' version of "Somewhere over the Rainbow" while playing Wizard of Oz.

    #43 1 year ago

    Liquid balls.

    LTG : )

    #44 1 year ago

    Foldable legs. Unbox it, fold legs out and done. Then when moving it, just lift- press the release and fold the legs and load it up.

    #45 1 year ago
    Quoted from LTG:

    Liquid balls.
    LTG : )

    That'll be in the 6th Terminator reboot pinball game.

    #46 1 year ago
    Quoted from LTG:

    Liquid balls.

    Those would be much too easy to drain. . .

    #47 1 year ago

    While cutting grass this afternoon I thought about voice activation. . . "Hey Pinball, Start Game."
    You could ask the machine to do all sorts of things for you like look stuff up on the web, set timers/reminders, etc. I suppose you could just use one of those Googlie home things as a topper. . .

    #48 1 year ago
    Quoted from TractorDoc:

    While cutting grass this afternoon I thought about voice activation. . . "Hey Pinball, Start Game."
    You could ask the machine to do all sorts of things for you like look stuff up on the web, set timers/reminders, etc. I suppose you could just use one of those Googlie home things as a topper. . .

    Until it starts talking back to you like Siri, and Alexa.

    Hey alexa your a terrible pinball player...
    A fun little instigation indeed.

    #49 1 year ago

    How about a pinball accessory.
    I would love to see an affordable pinball machine rotisserie/storage device so at the press of a button your chosen full machine will arrive in your games room for you to play while the others are safely kept in storage.
    Taking up less floor space in your living area and allowing larger collections.
    Like the modern car park designs that stow your car away.

    #50 1 year ago
    Quoted from TractorDoc:

    While cutting grass this afternoon I thought about voice activation. . . "Hey Pinball, Start Game."
    You could ask the machine to do all sorts of things for you like look stuff up on the web, set timers/reminders, etc. I suppose you could just use one of those Googlie home things as a topper. . .

    I came up with the idea about a year ago while brainstorming features and rules for a custom build/re-theme this thread just reminded me and I thought I’d mention it as an extension of JJPs camera “innovation”.

    It would have to work within the theme (it felt like a perfect fit for the theme I was considering) of the game and actually have an effect on gameplay so it is physically interactive and becomes an extension of the physical interaction the player has through the flipper buttons otherwise it would be pointless.

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