Operators Ball Saver Yes or No?


If your goal is to make money, and you find this makes you more money, then go for it. People don’t have to play your games if they don’t like it.

Personally speaking, if I played a location game that had the ball save turned off I’d walk away from it after game one and never play there again.

It would feel like a ridiculously cheap tactic that I’d have no interest in supporting. But numbers are numbers, if it works who cares what I think?


It’s ok, we expected some traditionalist backlash.
Ultimately it was outweighed by casuals.
There are just too many free games(replays,matches,specials) and long game times that bring the avg too high.


Why not just eliminate matches, replays and specials then? Those don’t effect the way a game plays in an obvious way to casual players, and it doesn’t punish folks for losing the ball right off the plunge.


We actually did that long ago , only high scores award credits. In Wisconsin it is technicaly illegal to award free games on machines with non fixed(percentaged) replay scores. The only thing we haven’t tested yet is pindemption, JJP games are just too expensive. Stern also has it but no one at Stern seems to know much about it :confused:


Wait, so if you’ve done that already why even bring that up as a point for you to justify no ball save? :thinking:


I guess you Misunderstood, we removed most free games long before the no ball saver testing. Replays award extra ball
One extra ball max per game
Credit awarded for GC only

With no ball saver most people enjoyed the lower door price and didn’t miss the ball saver.


Ditch the pinball and pick up a few Jurassic Park Arcades from Josh. If your goal is actually to maximize profit and not just troll for harsh reactions from a pinball forum spending time humming and hawing about ball save settings then there’s a pretty clear course of action to take.


Apparently you didn’t read this thread, we have many of josh’s games along with many other types as well and they do great, but there is something to be said about Pinball giving away too much when it really dosent need to. I know im not the only operator alone in this school of thought. Call me a troll if you will but in the end we will see who gets the last laugh.
We are just an operator who is trying to not give up on Pinball even if it means some changes and sacrifices.


Remove the flippers entirely! #bringbackbagatelle


Lol maybe, we actually have a few redemption games like that, image


Props to you for doing the work of data gathering. I’m glad the audits are available for operators to see the results of changes they make. Correlation does not equal causation though, the results you observe may not have been caused by the change you think caused it. Data analysis can be a complex field.


We are very confident in our testing, as many factors as possible were taken into account. Location rev vs previous year, test game percentage of overall revenue etc, most of our pin games are still run this way.


I don’t operate games, but as someone who regularly shovels quarters into games on location, I’ll give you one guess as to my reaction to those with ball saves set up harsher than factory. You might have better luck with the strategy in a place where you are the sole operator in the area? But more likely I suspect you’d lose the coin drop from all but the most hardcore players, and even those will jump ship to locations that aren’t trying to squeeze them as hard.

IMO you’d probably do better to extend the ball save period and and $.25 to the cost per game to compensate, rather than make often already brutal to newbie games even harsher, and perform what to experienced players is a rather transparent cash grab with no upside to the customer.


We are by no means the only op in the area, im sorry but hard core players don’t make up a significant number of the player bace period. Most in my area are understanding, we offer newer working properly set up games, and that demands a premium. Higher door prices drive away casuals more than not having a ball saver.
Please remember alot of this is driven by the type of locations we have, locations with large crowds in short periods of time.


You are on the right track with this option, IMHO. I have my pins set up fairly hard physically to keep my competitive pinheads challenged (and not playing tons of games on a single buy in) I limit extra balls to one per game, score&GC replays award one credit, and I keep match replays set a hair below factory settings. I keep the factory 3 plays for $2 on all my modern pins, and (I know most OPs will say I’m nuts for this) keep all my “old” B/W pins set to $.50 to $.75 a game. Casual/nostalgia players already think that pinball is nothing more than luck and good reflexes, if you allow them to keep playing after they fail, or “get screwed” they are more likely to grab another drink “helping your location” and pop another $.50 to a dollar (helping you) into a machine.
I can’t tell you how many times I get complaints about Twilight Zone and Addams Family “stealing” their balls after missing one shot and draining and not getting another ball to play.
The bottom line is you are the guy shelling out the cash for these games. It’s a balancing act, you need to keep any hard core players you might have happy, while keeping new/novice/casual players happy, and your location making money on bar sales.
Good luck man, and thanks for helping to keeping pinball alive and in the wild,


Thanks man, we really don’t have many bars, and in my experience its hard to get them to collate the drink sales with pinball, some get it some don’t. Your settings make great sense for the bar setting. Very similar to ours, we just run classics at .75 min actually any game with mechanical action has this minimum including vids. the location can opt for more traditional settings if we get a higher percentage.