Vegas Games 2000
How many people don't have enough money to really have fun in a casino? Who really wants to play all the games and see if they can win? Who really doesn’t want to tip the blackjack dealer or the boys in the pit? Who doesn’t see exciting graphics as a must? Does every argument you have really get interesting with the phrase "Want to bet?" If you answered yes to these questions then Vegas Games 2000 (VG2K) is the game for you!
Put the disk in your Playstation and let the gambling commence! Having gone to Las Vegas (lost wages as those funny people say on the plane on your way in -- always a knee slapper!) every year for the last 13, I think I’m eminently qualified to speak on the subject of gambling (or equally termed "losing money").
You start VG2K with $5000 and a digitized picture of Bob "Your Las Vegas vacation virtually free" Stupak's Tower of Babble in the background. If this was real money then that would be a nice return on investment for your hard earned 39.95 but alas it is fictional cash. Choose your game (Blackjack, Slots, Roulette, Poker, Video Poker and Baccarat with lots of variations on the slots and poker) and off you go. Don’t expect a fancy interface where you walk around a casino, see interesting women (or men if you prefer), and hear conversation such as "Please allow myself to introduce myself." This is a barebones menu style, you simply select a game from a list. My favorite was Craps. If you haven’t played craps then you haven’t gambled. 3DO packs in 21 gaming choices but to my mind they could have left most of them off if they got craps right. Did they succeed? Kinda. Want to learn how to play? No help from the actual game (although the manual does teach the basics), if you already know then you can make your way through and make any bet you could in a real casino. In craps that means almost a million different bets.Which bets are the good ones and which ones dumb? Who cares! It's fictional money! Pretend you bet enough and earned a "comp" at your house, all the luxuries of home! My only real problems with craps in VG2K were that I could roll the dice without actually having a bet and that there wasn't any way to work on a strategy where I would pick the same bets every roll. This made it pretty dull and repetitive with the Playstation controller.
Like slots and video poker? VG2K has lots of machines with various rules and payouts that you can choose from. 3DO did a very good job of supplying this type of gambling.
Poker was the game that surprised me the most. You can play against computer opponents who are darn good Poker players. Stud Poker (I can’t even type this without giggling), Draw, and Texas Hold 'Em are just a few of the options here. The gameplay moved at a good pace and would be a nice place for anyone to brush up on their game. Don’t even think of actually playing in Vegas with just this as practice though, the people there will eat you alive!
Blackjack is the most popular table game in the world. VG2K gives you all you need to learn to hit on a 16 against a dealer up card of 10. Again, the printed manual gives some hints but the program itself is happy to watch you make dumb choices!
I think it would have been nice to have a goal for players, eventually even when you win a few hundred thousand fake dollars it would be nice to know that you'd get a cool game ending screen if you really got on a hot streak!
The graphics in this game are very basic and I was totally underwhelmed by them. The Playstation has been out for a long time and these would have been right at home when the system launched all those years ago. That being said, the video poker and slot machines were competent.
Hey, any gambling is good gambling as far as I'm concerned. VG2K provides lots of games, options, and a thick manual which teaches players the basic rules -- for that it should be commended. Those of you old enough and close enough to a gambling addict might remember the "Craps Academy" and "Blackjack Academy" games you could play on the Amiga. This doesn’t pretend to offer that type of instruction or gameplay and it sure makes me wish someone did!