Date: 7th March, 2021

Stern Pinball has announced the hiring of Mark Penacho as their new Senior Systems Engineer.

Mark Penacho, Stern Pinball’s new Senior Systems Engineer

Mark has a long career in developing software for coin-op and home gaming system.

He wrote the software for five Bally/Williams pinballs from five different game designers, starting with Earthshaker! and continuing with Elvira and the Party Monsters, Rollergames, Hurricane and finally Fish Tales.

Mark's credit on the playfield of Fish Tales
Mark’s credit on the playfield of Fish Tales

From the pinball division, Mark moved to Midway’s video games section where he helped create the hit Mortal Kombat series of five titles and the NBA Jam title in which his avatar appears as a secret character.

Mark's hidden NBA Jam character avatar
Mark’s hidden NBA Jam character avatar

Mark was part of the Mortal Kombat team which went on to form the games development company Studio Gigante which created the titles Tao Feng: Fist of the Lotus and WWE Wrestlemania 21 before closing in 2005.

Since then, Mark has developed software for high speed trading system before his appointment at Stern Pinball. His network and low-latency connectivity skills would appear to be a good fit at Stern as the company looks to launch its internet connectivity offer for features such as online software updates, remote diagnostics and networked gameplay.

Here’s the press release from Stern Pinball announcing Mark’s appointment:

CHICAGO, IL – March 5, 2021 – Stern Pinball, Inc. is pleased to announce the appointment of Mark Penacho as Senior Systems Engineer. Mark brings diverse and expert level software engineering experience in systems, video, and pinball games to Stern Pinball.

Mark’s early portfolio of games includes hit pinball titles such as EarthshakerElvira and the Party MonstersHurricane, and Fish Tales.  He went on to program the video game NHL Open Ice and throughout his tenure at Williams Electronics he made significant contributions to system software, tools and display technology.  He was co-founder and lead programmer at Studio Gigante, where he gained valuable experience in Xbox console game development.  Over the course of the last 11 years, Mark has worked on the design of software and technology for high speed trading systems.

“Mark is an incredibly talented software engineer with strong leadership skills. His expertise with network programming, low latency design, and connectivity will fit in very well with our current development endeavors. We are very excited to add his talents to our studio as we grow and continue to produce the most fun and revolutionary pinball machines in the world,” said George Gomez, EVP and Chief Creative Officer.

About Stern Pinball, Inc.

Stern Pinball, Inc. is a global lifestyle brand based on the iconic and outrageously fun modern American game of pinball.  Headquartered minutes from Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport in the heart of North America, the company creates, designs, engineers, manufactures, markets, and distributes a full line of technologically advanced terrestrial and digital pinball games, parts, accessories, and merchandise.  Stern Pinball serves digital, consumer, commercial, and corporate markets around the globe.

Recent Stern Pinball titles include Led Zeppelin, Avengers: Infinity Quest, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Stranger Things, Elvira’s House of Horrors, Jurassic Park, Black Knight: Sword of Rage, The Munsters, The Beatles, Deadpool, Iron Maiden, Guardians of the Galaxy, Star Wars, Aerosmith, Ghostbusters, KISS, Metallica, Game of Thrones, The Walking Dead, Star Trek, AC/DC, Batman, and Spider-Man.  A broad range of players enjoy Stern Pinball’s games from professional pinball players who compete in high-stakes competitions around the globe to novice players who are discovering the allure of the silver ball for the first time.  To join the fun and learn more, please visit

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