Tuesday 10 November 2015

Vegas Slots (Microvision review)

Developer: Milton Bradley
Publisher: Milton Bradley
Released: 1979

Vegas Slots is a gambling game that was released exclusively in North America.

It consists of three modes, the first being Slot Machine. This is a one player game where you start off with 99 points and repeatedly spin until you either max out (999 points) or go broke. Points are earned by matching three icons together or getting a certain combination; an example is the 'I' icons as if you spin one in the first position you gain two points. Each time you lose one point is deducted from your total; however, it's far too easy as the pay-outs are frequent and the only reason to keep playing is to max out your earnings. You can change the settings to act like a real slot machine (less chance of winning) but this swings wildly the other way and is almost impossible! No strategy is involved in winning as you can't hold any reels and simply pressing one button to spin gets dull quickly. The spinning animation looks great though and still manages to impress. Double Dare is a two player game where you race to see who can reach 100 points by spinning certain combinations. As soon as you press TAKE or spin an 'I' you bank your total; however, pull two 'I' icons in a spin and you lose the entire amount you earned during that go. It has a nice risk-reward element and there's a bit more strategy involved. Finally, there's a two player mode called Take It or Leave It where you start at zero and the winner is the first to 200 points. The objective is to score either pairs or triples but as you spin only the left and right reels rotate meaning the centre is covered; once they stop your pay-out is displayed and you can either cash-in or press PULL again to gamble for a pair or triple. The tense thing about the latter is that if an 'I' appears in the centre you lose all your money for that turn. Again, it's a fun mode but I couldn't help but wonder why a one player option wasn't included as it's perfectly suited.

Vegas Slots isn't particularly interesting in solo mode due to its unengaging gameplay and lack of skill that's required to succeed. However, if you have a friend to play with it can definitely keep you entertained for a short while as the other two modes present a bit more challenge and risk that are essential to these type of games.

Random trivia: The other two Microvision games released in 1979 were Mindbuster and Star Trek: Phaser Strike.

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