|You know every now and then you
get a game that makes you question the sanity of the programmers and developers who worked
on the project. Now, were all used to 3DO at times coming up with some shakey ideas
(Ultimate 8 Ball, Army Men), but Vegas Games 2000 takes the cake for a game that needs not
to have been.
When you walk into the virtual casino you start out with 5 grand burning a hole in your pocket and like the good gambler you are you proceed to the tables. Forget about the slot machines and video poker. Theyre dull and boring. We want poker or blackjack. My strategy consisted of hitting the baccarat table first (not understanding a ounce of how the game is played) to bulk up on cash. Id usually try to top out at 10 grand, which brings up the first drawback to this game. The AI seems to let you win more often than you should, especially when youre slapping down 5K tokens after awhile. It doesnt reward you for your skill at any particular game; winning is as easy as pushing the X button over and over and over until you win the cash. And although the game boasts over 21 games, many of them are alternate versions of poker, video poker, blackjack, and slots. Add in craps, baccarat and roulette, and you've basically got six truly unique games. Unless you're into the finer points of gambling rules, that's not a lot to keep you busy.
After awhile I wandered over to the blackjack table via a poorly put together menu system. Here the AI again failed to perform. I was able to get blackjack (21 on the first two cards youre dealt) three times in a row. I dont think that happens in Vegas, and if it did the casino would fire the dealer. While youre at the tables you can hear other gamblers around you, but after hearing the same dealer say, "Another winner!" for the fiftieth time you're clamoring your way back to the options menu to turn down the atmosphere audio.
Oh, and if youre thinking that theres any 3D in this game or opponents you can see, you know your classic high-roller types cowboys, men dressed in suits going Bond-style with the girlsyoull be sorely disappointed. This is a straight forward gambling game, kind of like pulling up solitaire on your computer. It would have been nice to have a little more ambiance, something visual to immerse you in the Vegas world.
Even if youre a gambler, this game will disappoint on a grand scale. Theres no surge of adrenaline. Id imagine itd be hard to convey the thrill and horror of winning or losing thousands of dollars when it's not real money. All it takes is a push of the reset button to be square with the bank again. Thats the inherent problem with a game like this: it just really isnt the same thing. Yes, its easy to program the software to follow a certain set of rules when playing poker or blackjack, but without investing the time to surround your player with the feel of Vegas, it's boring. If anything, Vegas Games 2000 will appeal to a small niche group of people out there.