Slots 2000

Slot Players get more and much more as they look ahead to the new millennium. If you anticipate the latest innovations and trends, you are in for a 2000 slots indulgence treat.

I believe the biggest challenge and changes in any casino will be placing creative visual and audio bonus video slots on the casino floor to entice slot players of all ages.

Video or 'branded' slots were at the forefront as new 2000 and beyond models were unveiled at the recent World Gaming Congress in Las Vegas.

There is and will be a unique variety of video slots with familiar names from our youth, much of which can be found on late-night cable and internet auction sites. If you want to predict the games of the future -- check out Nick at Night, Sci-Fi, FX or any of the thousand channels available now.

I Dream of Jeannie, Addams Family, Three Stooges, American Bandstand, Star Trek, Pink Panther ----pop culture sells and will continue to capture our imagination and become a factor in our choice of slots play 2000.

Board games are big too; Yahtzee, just introduced; Monopoly and Jeopardy.

As I muse about other possibilities----Clue, Scrabble, Trivial Pursuit, Snakes and Ladders come to mind, but these are probably already on the drawing board.

Slot-makers don't let dust settle on any new idea and the leader of the pack -- IGT allows their designers a free rein for their fertile techie minds, I'm sure.

Just when you think slot manufacturers are running out of 'brand' names, there's more.

A few years back, bonus video slots were introduced with crude animation that did not hold the interest of the 'Double Diamond, Red, White & Blue Seven' crowd. In fact, my first book advised staying away from these slots that did not produce the higher payouts of reliable 3-reelers. Whoa, mama, what a change!

Our innovative Aussie friends brought in the first bonus video slots and at the same time, Internet frenzy was on the rise. Everyone was jumping on board allowing surfers a bounty of graphics, symbols and pictures never experienced.

It was only natural this 'feast for the eyes and ears' would greet you at your favorite form of entertainment-----your local casino. Add to that mix, the increasing number of gamblers of all ages and many more casino openings; video slots were destined to be a hit.

More features plus for 2000. How about two or three bonus screens, a game within a game, play up to 200 coins? Introduction of second, third versions of previous video slots; e.g., Empire, Times Pay, Double Diamond--always something new added. Multiplied bonuses, free spins abound, frequent payouts, linking animated graphics in a bank of machines -- check out your neighbor's slot for jumping creatures. Sensory overload is on board for Y2K slots.

Can virtual slots be far behind? I would stand in line to shake the hand of the King of Rock 'n Roll and have him sing 'Love Me Tender' or 'Blue Hawaii' while I attempt to line up those 'Elvis' symbols. Elvis definitely lives!

Just think, in the virtual world, you can gawk, stand beside, speak to and

shovel up those dollars with Dick Clark, Curly, Larry, Moe, Jeannie inside her bottle, or pay a visit to the Addams family.

Can I submit my suggestions now? I vote for Tom Jones, Rod Stewart and Neil Diamond as the first nominees for the Virtual Slot Hall of Fame. Are you listening IGT?

Some future trends are not always welcomed by the majority of slot players. The idea of cashless, coinless slots is on the table and I say ' no way'. I want to be able to move about the slot carousels with a bucket o' coins in hand. I'll take the dirty hands any day -- just let me play while holding real money.

Also, don't take away all the basic slots -- leave some of those DDiamonds, RWB's on the floor for us to play. Middle-aged and Middle America wants these oldies but goodies to be ever-present at their local casinos.

Without a doubt, there will always be casino gambling controversy no matter what the date.

I don't usually show any pity for slot manufacturers, however, after placing these 'names from the past'; the gaming police have followed. I refer to recent developments pertaining to the possible ban of 'children-oriented' cartoons e.g., South Park, Three Stooges, Betty Boop, etc. at some Nevada casinos.

I am puzzled: why are children in the casino in the first place and are these graphics any different from those that can be found in video arcades they frequent and play for money?

Speaking of controls, what about the proposed ban on internet gaming?

I am frequently asked by visitors where they can play their favorite video slots on-line. The answer is nowhere and not yet, however 2000 should provide some answers.

Meanwhile, on-line slot software designers are progressing rapidly utilizing sights and sounds par excellence.

Keep in mind that wager management never goes out of style in 2000 and beyond. Play the new and newer bonus video slots cautiously at first. You should definitely play all pay lines whether 5 or 9 but 1 or 2 coins per/line. I would avoid more than 9 paylines and stick with nickels only until you build that bonus jackpot. Casinos are experimenting with dollar bonus video slots with 5 paylines--high-roller gambling at that rate.

Of course, don't leave home without your slot club cards. Casinos will be very generous with comps in 2000 and tracking methods have gone high-tech.

It's a smart casino management decision; with more competition and more promotions rewarding slot players around the world.

In conclusion, there is exciting news for slot players beyond 2000. More choices, more bonuses, more screens, more graphics, more wild symbols, more money, more fun and a whole lot more entertainment. I wish you more good luck and much more winnings in 2000.