This is a thought that’s been brewing in my head but came to the forefront upon the release of the 3DS game Pokémon Sun and Moon. The Pokémon games are known among its fans for being quick on the data-mining. They data-mined the demo and discovered all of the new Pokémon. They then data-mined the game, and the day after it came out, all of the hidden mechanics were discovered, as well as exact numerical values for almost everything in the game.
As an example, the data-miners discovered that Raikou, Entei, and Suicune get new Hidden Abilities, Inner Focus, even though 1) Raikou, Entei, and Suicune are currently not available in Pokémon Sun and Moon, and 2) They have never been released in a way that allows use of their Hidden Abilities. In other words, there is no way anyone who plays the games normally would know these Hidden Abilities exist.
So that led me to wonder: How come I don’t see the same level of data-mining effort for pinball? I’m seeing people always wondering how many points A is worth, or what triggers B, or what the odds are that the random award will give you C. Surely it should be comparatively easy to data-mine a pinball game and determine everything hidden, since the code is a lot smaller and not encrypted the way a Pokémon game is, but currently, everyone except Farsight Studios is figuring everything out by trial and error. Surely, there must be at least one person out there examining the code for pinball machines and reporting what they discover.