For gamers who enjoy the classic board game Monopoly and love high stakes gambling, Monopoly Casino: Vegas Edition might be the perfect blend. Oddly, though, since the properties in the Monopoly board game are based on the streets in Atlantic City, perhaps a better title would have been the Atlantic City Edition.
This expansive casino simulation delivers dozens of table games, slot machines, and electronic games in a package full of cute characters, symbols, and game pieces from the world-famous board game. It's a feast for those who love dice, cards, magic numbers, or one-armed bandits. The presentation even includes some very good simulations of games like Pai Gow Poker and Sic Bo, which became popular in American casinos in the late 1990s.
The enjoyable games provide a superb opportunity to practice and hone skills before making a run to a real casino. The point and click interface is fairly easy to understand but not always cooperative. Occasionally, a small bar marked "continue" must be clicked on in order to keep playing, which breaks up the rhythm of the game, especially if you can't find the bar or forget to click on it.
While it's not real money, the concept of setting table limits and establishing a bankroll is a solid feature that adds realism. The ability to choose from multiple variations (more than 245 in all) of each type of game gives both casual and expert gamers a huge playing field and ensures a suspension of boredom that so often accompanies games of this nature.
The detailed graphics for every game create an authentic casino experience for the virtual gambler. From the felt on the craps table to the spinning dials on the slots, casino fans will really appreciate the real-life ambience. The only noticeable problem is the slow and clunky animation for payouts in table games like blackjack, poker, and craps, which minutely disrupts the game's rhythm. Determining if you've won on multiple bets in games like craps or roulette can be difficult since a small "w" is placed on winning chips, which can be hard to spot especially if the chips are adjacent to or on top of others.
Sound effects create a good ambience but the background music is annoying. The spinning of dials, shuffling of cards, and the clattering roulette wheel add authenticity with realistic samples. The music is loud and not particularly representative of real-life Las Vegas casinos. The big band soundtrack should have been reserved for the New Orleans edition.
Even without the Rich Uncle logo on the box, the game would still be worth utilizing as a casino-style primer, and the Monopoly tie-in simply adds to the enjoyment.
Graphics: A few minor flaws don't seriously diminish the realism.
Sound: Good ambient sound effects are offset by a poor music selection.
Enjoyment: The realistic casino action is enhanced by the huge array of games and variations.
Replay Value: Literally hundreds of variations and a good selection of games will keep the virtual gambler busy for a very long time.
People who downloaded Monopoly Casino: Vegas Edition have also downloaded:
Monopoly (1999), Activision Casino, Monopoly Tycoon, Monopoly Star Wars, Monopoly, Game of Life, Monopoly Deluxe, Clue: Murder at Boddy Mansion
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