Who, you ask? If you've ever played a modern pinball machine, Mr. Kordek was the inventor.
Not only was Mr. Kordek’s two-flipper game less expensive to produce; it also gave players greater control. For someone concentrating on keeping a chrome-plated ball from dropping into the “drain,” two flippers, one for each hand, were better than six.
“It really was revolutionary, and pretty much everyone else followed suit,” David Silverman, executive director of the National Pinball Museum in Baltimore, said in an interview. “And it’s stayed the standard for 60 years.”
Roger Sharpe, author of “Pinball!” (1977), a history of the industry, agreed.
“But not only did Steve choose to put two flippers down at the bottom of the playfield,” Mr. Sharpe said, “even more importantly he provided direct-current power to those flippers, meaning that a ball skillfully flipped from the bottom of the playfield could actually get to the top, and anywhere in between, with some semblance of accuracy.” Previous games had mostly used less powerful alternating current.