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A pinball mode is a subset of rules with special scoring rules. A single machine may run one or more modes at any one time depending on machine-specific rules. Modes control general illumination, scoring, display and, in some cases, playfield behavior. Completion of a mode may either start another mode, end a mode, award points or cause other machine behavioirs.

Common Modes

Hurry Up Hurry Up modes usually require a player to complete a specific shot or sequence of shots in a specific timeframe.

Multiball Multiball modes introduce additional pinballs onto the playfield for the player to use simultaneously. In modern machines, a total of 3 balls is the most common form of mutiball.

Combos Combo modes require a player to hit a certain series of shots in order to complete the mode. For example: Midway Dr. Who (1988) contains a combo mode that requires a player to hit three different ramp shots in a specific order.