- The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle and Friends: A small DeLorean can be seen parked behind the WABAC Machine.
- America's Most Haunted:
- The Beatles: The Stern Insider Connected achievement for maxing out every song mode in a single game is called "Top of the Pops".
- In Big Bang Bar, the logo for "Extra Ball" includes the stylized "X" from The X-Files.
- On the backglass for Breakshot, a small Godzilla can be seen hiding in the ferns on top of the pinball machine.
- The plunger for Bugs Bunny's Birthday Ball is a cannon with a sign reading "Roger Sharpe fired this cannon."
- The Champion Pub:
- Almost everything about Armando Santiago is a reference to Inigo Montoya from The Princess Bride.
- The name of Russian Patrotsky Yirbitov, as well as one of the random comments during a fight, reference the then-recent incident where Mike Tyson bit off Evander Holyfield's ear during a match.
- Cirqus Voltaire:
- The three judges hold up scorecards for the player's bonus. Some of the judges are tributes to other works, such as Rincewind the Wizard, Tommy, and Judy.
- Underneath the left and right slingshot switches are the words "Pop" and "Duke", a reference to designer John Popadiuk and his father.
- Near the right inlane is a cat pushing a dynamite plunger with "Joos TNT" on it, a reference to Williams' engineer John Joos Jr.
- In Creature from the Black Lagoon, the Pac-Man tune plays after scoring the "Snack Attack" hurry-up bonus.
- There are two Shout Outs to Mortal Kombat:
- In the game's video mode, when beating up the peeping tom, pressing both flipper buttons for the final blow decapitates him, and the announcer yells, "FATALITY!"
- The player has the option to choke the snack bar attendant, after yelling, "COME HERE!" The words "Choking Fatality" appears on the display.
- There are two Shout Outs to Mortal Kombat:
- Cue Ball Wizard is one big Shout-Out to Eight Ball Deluxe, from the "urban cowboy playing pool" theme, the Shooter with the white cowboy hat, and the reuse of iconic callouts:Shooter: "Quit talkin' and start chalkin'."
- Dialed In! alludes to several older Williams and Bally machines, including several also designed by Pat Lawlor:
- Two disasters include "Earthshaker!" and "Whirlwind".
- EMP Strikes and certain multiball modes activate magnets underneath the playfield that can propel balls randomly, much like "The Power" from The Addams Family.
- Crazy Bob, a character that appeared in several Williams and Bally games (including Johnny Mnemonic, Junk Yard, The Champion Pub, and Lawlor's own Road Show and Safe Cracker), reappears here with his own set of modes.
- The laser layout bears a striking resemblance to Lawlor's unreleased Pinball 2000 machine Wizard Blocks. The Quantum Theater also implements a video display in which the ball can destroy objects.
- Fire! (1987) is based on the Great Chicago Fire of 1871, and as such is considered a sideways tribute to the city of Chicago.
- Fish Tales's flyer begins describing the Video Mode with "Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water..."
- FunHouse: Rudy's Nightmare: The logo for "Hot Dog Combat" uses a font that heavily resembles the one used for early Mortal Kombat games. Fittingly, the display animations for the mode emulate a 2D fighting game.
- In The Getaway: High Speed II, places listed on the Burn Rubber bonus map include Hill Valley, Smallville, Otisburg, and Bedford Falls.
- An Easter Egg in Sega Pinball's GoldenEye has Bond get chased by a T-Rex from Jurassic Park (Data East).
- Heist!: Liz's side job is titled "Hack the Planet," referencing the name of a Show Within a Show in Hackers.
- Getting the top Power Down score in Johnny Mnemonic shows an animation of the MCP Cone spinning and saying "You are the master of Power Down!"
- Junk Yard:
- Jurassic Park (Stern) alludes to several esteemed pinball players in the default high score list, including Jim Belsito (JPB), Paul Madison (PEM), and Neil Shatz (NES). (The latter, renowned for his ability to getting to the very top of the high score list, is fittingly made the default for the Grand Champion high score.)
- The default high score table in Kirby's Pinball Land contains the names of mobile suits from Mobile Suit Gundam 0083: Stardust Memory: ZEPHYRA (Zephyranthes), PHYSALI (Physalis), DENDROB (Dendrobium), and GERBERA (Gerbera Tetra). They are also all genuses of flowers (except Gerbera tetra, which is a species name).
- Lexy Lightspeed - Escape from Earth: Lookie is specifically identified as a sasquatch, echoing Bigfoot's prominent role in Dennis Nordman's earlier game White Water.
- The Lord of the Rings has one that borders on Easter Egg territory - getting "Big Points" from an elf gift while 2x Scoring is running prompts the game to say "The prize is doubled!", alluding to Indiana Jones: The Pinball Adventure using the exact same quote when lighting a doubled jackpot. Programmer Keith Johnson confirms it as intentional here.
- Medieval Madness:
Peasant Leader: THEY TOOK OUR SHRUBBERY!
- One of the princesses is a pastiche of Eliza Doolittle from My Fair Lady. "The rahyn in Spahyn... oh, just save me!"
- One of the random lines from the peasants references Monty Python and the Holy Grail:
- An Easter Egg in Monopoly displays "ALL YOUR BASE ARE BELONG TO US" (a meme which was current when the game was made in late 2001).
- One of the potential quotes that plays upon starting Drac Attack in Monster Bash is "I am Count Dracula, and you're not!"
- Stern Pinball's Mustang:
- The feed to the right inlane features a whirlpool layout almost identical to that of Creature from the Black Lagoon.
- One of the competitors in the race modes greatly resembles Charlie Chan.
- The black Cobra Mustang convertible on the right orbit (with the PINGAME Vanity License Plate) belongs to Jim Schelberg, publisher of Pingame Journal magazine.
- Police Force's bumpers depict a tortoise and a hare dodging ricocheting bullets.
- In Red & Ted's Road Show, the "Rubber Nose" souvenir is a caricature of Roger Sharpe, the pinball player who overturned New York City's ban on pinball machines.
- Revenge from Mars: "Martian Aerobics" is a homage to Space Invaders.
- Rick and Morty:
- One of the fake Mystery options is "Deploy Robocop". Another, "13 Balls", alludes to Apollo 13's 13-ball multiball.
- The alternate dimension that turns every light on the playfield white is named "TW-z0n3".
- One of the random catch phrases Rick says after completing the left target bank pulls double duty, alluding to a callout from Swords Of Fury while also referencing its status as an in-joke at Spooky Pinball."Lionman! ...or, whatever."
- Rush (2022): The "Time Machine" insert text on the playfield◊ is written in a font mimicking the Back to the Future logo.
- Scared Stiff:
- One of the faces on the Stiff-O-Meter is "Smarkey", Elvira's Real Life husband and manager Mark.
- On the bottom center of the backglass is a box of "Lil' Luna Green Cheese" cookies; the girl on the box is Elvira's (then) two-year-old daughter, Sadie (nicknamed "Luna").
- One of the characters in Sharkey's Shootout, a Spiritual Successor to Eight Ball Deluxe, is a cowboy named Tex.
- Word of God is that Sandman's center bank of three targets in Spider-Man (Stern) is a tribute to Attack from Mars.
- Stranger Things has two references to Brian Eddy's older game Attack from Mars:
- The extra ball animation depicts the Demogorgon getting clocked by a pinball in the same manner as the equivalent animation from Attack from Mars.
- Likewise, "Total Isolation" takes after "Total Annihilation" in both name, qualifications (completing all the lights on the ramps and orbits), and rules.
- The sides of the backbox for Data East Pinball's Tales from the Crypt depict The Crypt Keeper dressed as a barber with a sharp razor, as a homage to Sweeney Todd."Shave and a Haircut, Two Pints!"
- Tee'd Off sometimes opens with a reference to The Honeymooners:Gunther: "He addresses the ball."
Golfer: "Hello, ball!"
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (Stern) has two episodes named "See You on the Other Side, Ray" and "The Wrath of Krang".
- Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines combines this with Mythology Gag in "Final Battle", where the player faces off against the T-X Terminator. At the end of the fight, designer Steve Ritchie uses his Shao Khan voice to deliver the final instruction:"FINISH HER!"
- Theatre of Magic: The padlocks on the sides of the cabinet are from the "Joos Lock Company", a reference to longtime Williams' mechanical engineer Joe Joos Jr.*
- Data East's Time Machine is about a time-travelling car that goes to the fifties. 'nuff said.
- Total Nuclear Annihilation:
- When the player receives a Mystery Award, one of the random options that flashes by is "Lionman!!!", a meme derived from the late-'80s Williams game Swords Of Fury that had become an in-joke at Spooky Pinball. Likewise, a poster for what appears to be a movie titled Lionman!!! can be seen on the backglass.
- The backglass features several barrels of toxic waste, one of which is labeled Parts from Terry; this alludes to Scott Danesi's job at Pinball Life, a parts shop owned by his longtime friend Terry.
- After destroying every reactor and finishing the game, the display asks Bowen Kerins is that you? Bowen Kerins is a professional-level pinball player and tutorial creator.
- The backbox topper◊ included with 2.0 mimics the equivalent topper◊ for High Speed, including a similar red pattern and a variant on the phrase "Hot Action Pinball."
- Weird Al's Museum of Natural Hilarity:
- Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory:
- One of the potential achievements (tied to adding time to a mode) is "Time Enough at Last".
- The Candy Kodes provide several:
- Their execution and name are directly inspired by the Kombat Kodes from Mortal Kombat 3, which could be input prior to a match and altered gameplay in various ways. Several of that game's Kodes also work here (albeit only producing messages instead of actually affecting gameplay). In addition, the method of activating the screen in the first placenote also references the series.
- Many of them produce referential messages:"Abunai!"
"Screws fall out all the time, the worlds an imperfect place."note
"There is no knowledge that is not power."
"The successful warrior is the average man, with laser-like focus."
"An unexamined life is not worth living."
"Never let the fear of striking out keep you from playing the game."
"You miss 100% of the shots you don't take."
"Success is not final, failure is not fatal: It is the courage to continue that counts."
"A bunch of savages in this town."
"What we're showing may not be your reality, but it's ours."
"It's more fun to compete."note
- Another gives a direct shout-out to Buffalo Pinball, who (among other things) streamed the games reveal in April 2019; its code (014753) references their Twitch streams highest concurrent viewer count (14,753, reached during the aforementioned reveal).
- A very similar code gives a shout-out to the Chicago Pinball League.
- Pat Lawlor's Whirlwind and its spinning disc on the playfield alludes to Bally's classic Fireball, which was also renown for having a spinning disc called the "Whirlwind Spinner" in the middle of the playfield.
- WHO dunnit (1995):
- The Deadly Bath opening when a female character is murdered comes straight out of Psycho, complete with "Psycho" Strings.
- Successfully capturing a killer will cause the Hardboiled Detective to quip, "Got to jail! Do not pass go and do not collect two hundred dollars!"
- WWF Royal Rumble's Attract Mode will promote the fake pinball machine Deathball 2000 if the option is enabled, a reference to this◊ Weekly World News article.
Shout Out / Pinball