Every year, I try to keep tabs on what cool new slot machines have come out since the last time I was in Vegas, so on my next trip, I can give them a try. I love the new style video slot machines that have been rolled out in recent years. The ones that appeal to me the most are based on popular culture–especially favorite TV shows and movies, like Lord of the Rings. 2011-2012 introduced several new machines that appealed to me. On my most recent trip, I tried six new machines. Three I loved. . .and three I didn’t.
Three Slots I Loved. . .
Let’s face it, slot machines don’t exactly have the best odds in the casino. So if you’re going to have fun on a slot machine it better be fun even if you’re losing. The following three machines fit that criteria:
This was my favorite new machine by far. It’s a bank of progressives with the overhead LCD screen and surround-sound chairs. Dark Knight is based on the 2nd (and arguably best) movie of the Batman trilogy starring Christian Bale, the one featuring Heath Ledger as the Joker.
I got more bonus rounds on this game than anything else I played, including twice making it to the Battle for Gotham City (see video below). But even without that, I loved the clips from the movie, the graphics, the sound quality, and the game quality itself. The beauty of progressives in a bank of machines is that even if you’re not winning or hitting bonus rounds, someone else is bound to be, and you can enjoy what pops up on the LCD screen vicariously. This was a winner for me.
This is a standalone machine where you can play up to four games at a time: One is Doug, Two is Stu, Three is Phil, and Four is Alan. The first time I played, I just played one character (Doug) and to be honest, it wasn’t much fun. For maximum fun, it definitely pays to play all four games on this machine.
Even when you’re not hitting bonus rounds, you’re still treated to great video and audio clips from the movie, as well as the catchy theme music that plays almost constantly. However, I did hit almost every bonus round on this machine. Stu’s bonus involves multiple images of the bloody tooth Stu lost (yuck) and features the song Stu made up while they were trying to find Doug. The one I hit most often was the “Pick a Photo” bonus. Best bonus of them all? Sadistically, it was the Stun Gun bonus. I really racked up the points by repeatedly zapping Alan with the stun gun. It felt cathartic, too. I hate that character.
This was one of my favorite movies growing up. Who doesn’t giggle at the idea of the Stay-Puft marshmallow man being a symbol of evil? I actually did not win on this game, nor did I get many bonus rounds. If you can say you had fun even without hitting bonus rounds, it’s a good game.
The game quality is solid. Even when you’re not hitting bonuses, you’ll be treated to images (like Slimer and the demon dog) and voiceovers of the film’s characters appearing on screen. The movie clips and audio had me laughing and remembering some of the best scenes from this classic film. . .like when Bill Murray tested Rick Moranis’s psychic abilities using “negative reinforcement” and zapped him even when he was right. This slot machine made me nostalgic for the movie. I may have to rent it soon.
. . .And Three I Didn’t
While I’m not a rabid Michael Jackson fan, I do like some of his music. I’ve seen videos of the bonus rounds on this machine, and I think it would be a really fun game–if you actually hit the bonus rounds. Which I didn’t. Not once. I’m sorry, but the game has very little going for it if you don’t reach a bonus round. It just wasn’t fun.
This was the biggest disappointment for me. I’m a huge fan of mysteries, I love trying to solve them, and I LOVED the game Clue when I was a kid. Who didn’t love figuring out that it was Col. Mustard in the Library with the Candlestick? I also loved the movie that came out back in the ’80s starring Tim Curry, Martin Mull, et al. So I totally expected to love this game.
I might as well have lit a $20 bill on fire. I didn’t even get any small hits to make my money last longer, let alone make it to a bonus round. It was like playing the board game and never having an opportunity to guess whodunnit! If the only way to enjoy the machine is to hit a bonus round, the game doesn’t succeed with me. I also think they made a mistake basing the machine on the game rather than the movie. Some classic movie clips would have gone a long way toward making this game more enjoyable.
Okay, so this one wasn’t new. But I don’t make it a habit to play progressives at $3 a spin. Too rich for my blood. Still, with a jackpot at almost $15 million, I couldn’t pass on trying my luck.
Apparently, the Fates do not want me to be a multimillionaire. I sort of expected that. What made me not love this game was that I didn’t even get any small hits to keep me playing. My $20 bill was gone in a minute or less. No wonder it was at almost $15 million. It sure didn’t get there because people were winning.
Overall, after I subtracted my wins from my losses, I only lost $79 gambling for the entire trip, which was very good for me. (Normally I spend/lose about $300.) Even though I walked away with less money than I arrived with, I felt pretty good about the amount of time I got on the machines, and the overall entertainment value.
What machines am I looking forward to trying on my next trip? Lord of the Rings 3 – Return of the King (how the HELL did I miss the release of the Two Towers???), KISS (one of my favorite rock bands growing up), CSI, Star Wars Trilogy, and Spiderman. Looks like it’s going to be a good year for us slot machine lovin’ geeks.
What are your favorite new slot machines from the past year, and which ones are you looking forward to in the coming year?