If you play vpinmame boards and then try some from the Pro Pinball series (like Big Race USA, the newest one, I think), you'll notice a few major differences.
1) Balls can SPIN! ...ooo..aaa...
2) Balls have a reflective (even dirty) surface
3) Rendering is better, metal looks like metal, plastic shines, lights GLOW, etc.
4) Flashers have a nice star-filter effect, making them look brighter.
5) During Multiball, balls get a NICE motion-blur effect (or at least they seem to!)
And that's just the beginning, so there's really a lot of room for improvement, indeed.
Keep in mind however, that the Visual Pinball project is provided for FREE. I imagine the amount of work getting features like the ones listed above would require the author to start charging for it...
...but I'd sure as hell pay for it.
X> I would just like either shading or allow ramps to contain images (so most would
> have images of a peice of metal).
> Trouble is that 90% looks 100%amazing... then there are perfect grey ramps that
> look out of place
> > Howdy,
> > Whilest the Visual Pinball rendering engine is a marvel to behold. I think
> > possibilities for improvement cannot be ignored. Imagine integrating full
> > ray tracing algorithms into it. Plastic actually looking like plastic, semi
> > transparencies, chrome railings, and even bump mapping.
> > Would be nice wouldn't it. Is POV RAY renderer open source ? Throw that into
> > the works.
> > Maybe I'm just dreaming.
> > Seeya.