Gaming expo like kid in candy store
John Grochowski email@example.com October 17, 2012 4:24PM
From 10 a.m.-10 p.m
Oct. 19 at Horseshoe Casino in Hammond, Ind., any Total Rewards member who donates $5 to the American Cancer Society will receive $5 in free play. It’s part of Caesar’s Entertainment’s Breast Cancer Awareness initiative that runs throughout October. Visit chicagohorseshoe.com.
Updated: October 18, 2012 12:19AM
Each year at the Global Gaming Expo in Las Vegas, I roam from booth to booth to look at the major slot machine manufacturers and the coming attractions that will draw us to their games over the next year.
There are hundreds, perhaps thousands of new games when all gamemakers are taken into account. I get a good look at perhaps 75 games and their bonus events during the show’s three-day run. Let’s just take a look at a few highlights, with a few more next week.
◆ At the WMS Gaming booth, a ride down the chocolate river — sometimes bumpy, sometimes smooth with special effects through the Sensory Immersion motion chair — made Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory a game I’ll be seeking out on casino floors.
Two new Wizard of Oz games — Haunted Forest and Emerald City — along with Monopoly Prime Real Estate, showed what the new Gamefield XD cabinet with high resolution graphics can do.
One game I absolutely loved that will appeal to longtime video slot players was Monopoly Legends. The “legends” involved are classic WMS video slots. In bonus events, you could find yourself taken to Goldfish, Jackpot Party, Zeus or Reel ’Em In. A spinning wheel tells you just what game you’ll be playing at bonus time.
◆ OK, I’m not exactly of prime video games-playing age. Still, it was shocking to find just how out of practice with a joystick I am on my first attempt at flying a bat through a cave, trying to collect bonuses in IGT’s skill-based Blood Life video slot. I’d play it again, but for those who prefer chance to skill on the slots, you can choose a free-spin bonus instead.
The game I think my wife would really love is IGT’s CSI. It’s available in Las Vegas, Miami and New York versions, just like the TV show. One bonus event takes you to a crime scene, and you pick out items in the room to reveal either bonus awards or evidence. If you can collect three pieces of evidence before a stopper ends the round, you also get a free spins bonus.
IGT’s Wyland game is gorgeous, using artwork by the famed marine life artist. At bonus time, I liked the Paint With Wyland event. Presented with a line drawing of sea turtles, I dragged my finger across the screen to fill in the colors and collect bonus credits. That’s finger-painting I can get on board with.
John Grochowski is a local free-lance writer. Look for him on Facebook (http://tinyurl.com/7lzdt44); Twitter (@GrochowskiJ) and at casinoanswerman.com.