I just stumbled across this. I too find that the sponsor apparel upgrades can make the game almost too easy... I took a break from playing them for a long time, just got tired of using good balls to play coin matches, winning coins that I could no longer spend for anything other than playing more coin matches and burning up more hits on good balls.
It is a game, it is a game designed to also make money. I came across this a long time ago but will share it again here...the technology industry has long known and used such tactics in their games (brain hacking) particularly those designed for the mobile player, but the same approach can also be seen in the desktop PC version. The fact that so many try to maintain their CDP, and continue to spend credits on better balls, clashes, turf wars, competitions (being able to make HIO far easier than you would in real life can suck you in), shooting absurdly low scores, etc. all show that their model is working and you will keep coming back. We continue to "feed the beast" we also lament.
If we didn't like it, we would stop playing. The fact that we haven't suggests maybe we should not blame WGT, they are up front with us. We know they want to make money. Either adapt or adjust how you play the game so you can do it spending as little as possible or play in an addictive manner spending as much as you like but it seems fruitless to complain. It is not like this is a secret.
Yes the game has nuances and flaws, but it has evolved like anything else. This is just my take on it, others will disagree or agree but I don't think any of this is a real mystery.