Inventor of pinball gaming dies aged 100

Inventor of pinball gaming dies aged 100

By Rob Crossley

February 27th 2012 at 10:09AM

Creator of the two-flipper table leaves treasured legacy

Steve Kordek, the pinball machine pioneer whose creations had fuelled the coin-op industry for decades, has died aged 100.

Chicago-born Kordek is widely believed to have designed the iconic two-flipper pinball machine. He passed away on February 19th.

He had designed more than one hundred different pinball board layouts for a range of manufacturers, according to a report in Time. He is also said to be the inventor of multi-ball play and pop-up targets on the tables.

The concept of using flippers to repel a ball up an angled table arrived in 1947 with a game called Humpty Dumpty. However, the flippers were weak and so six were employed on each table.

One year later, Kordek unveiled a pinball machine that used just two flippers, both provided with direct-current power. He demoed the concept at a 1948 Chicago trade show and a new pinball industry was born.

Kordek’s design can still be found in most pinball tables available today.

[Image: Find a grave]