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GF! Archival Version Copyright 1995-2004

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by 3D0

Ups: If you like casino games, this has casino games.

Downs: Concept seems undeveloped; gets old fast; boring visuals.

System Reqs:
Sony PlayStation

shot_1-01.jpg (5667 bytes)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, we’re 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.

shot_4-01.jpg (5841 bytes)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. They’re 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. I’d 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 you’re slapping down 5K tokens after awhile. It doesn’t 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.

shot_2-01.jpg (5775 bytes)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 you’re dealt) three times in a row. I don’t think that happens in Vegas, and if it did the casino would fire the dealer. While you’re 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.

shot_3-01.jpg (5793 bytes)Oh, and if you’re thinking that there’s 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 girls—you’ll 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 you’re a gambler, this game will disappoint on a grand scale. There’s no surge of adrenaline. I’d imagine it’d 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. That’s the inherent problem with a game like this: it just really isn’t the same thing. Yes, it’s 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.

--Matt Baldwin