A lot of discussion is being made at the moment over the issue of slot machines and branding, and how games are more and more often using tie ins with popular brands such as blockbuster movies and television shows, bands, or other popular culture items to make them more popular. They are in fact compared more often to video games than to the one armed bandits of yesteryear, which demonstrates just how far the technology has come since days of old.
Those who have been playing slot machine games since the days before they moved online will certainly recall how things have changed, and in many ways that change is still ongoing. With the advent of the online slot games, which allow you to experience a whole new world of interactivity and are very different from what we have seen in the past. Now, in order to keep up with them and still hold some appeal for players, the land based game developers are also having to pull out all the stops, adding in features such as seats that vibrate or special machines with extra physical features to add excitement.
“From a technological standpoint, on a slot machine, it’s pretty insane,” says Bill Wadleigh, a game designer who recently helped in the making of a NASCAR game, which incorporates a wheel design to tap in to the car theme. “Insane in a good way.” When you play the special bonus round on his new machine, you are actually taking part in a simulated NASCAR race as a driver, choosing to drive as either Dale Earnhardt Jr., Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson or Kevin Harvick and setting the direction on the circuit in which your driver should head in order to set up the bonuses that you are going to receive.
“We’re out to find something that’s compelling to a player,” Wadleigh said. “And not just compelling once, but a repeatable event that has a lot of different variety in it.” Considering that there are more than eight hundred and fifty thousand slot machines in the US alone, it is clear that variety is key to standing out from the crowd.