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I was doing some tests last year at this time for a slot game I have planned (as part of a larger casino/gambling game). In a couple of days I came up with a little non-interactive sim that I could use to create an authentic slot machine and perform some extended testing. About a week ago I was thinking about doing a little programming again and I thought it'd be kinda neat to turn it into an interactive mini-game. So this is the result of a few days of hacking around with my test sim.

The sim uses authentic 19-stop reels taken from a 1940's Mills slot machine (I forget exactly which one at this point, without researching again). It also uses authentic payout multipliers keyed to these particular reels. The only thing that's estimated and adjusted to my own preference is the jackpot. I've set it to start at $150 and max at out at $2,000. It gets fed $10 each time the player loses and will pay out whenever 3 Bars are hit (in addition to the 20 times whatever the player's current bet is). Another difference from authentic machines is that you can vary your bet here; the originals were designed to take a single coin type of 5, 10, or 25 cents.

The graphics for the slot machine itself look like Antic 5, but they are in fact in Antic 4. The reason being is that Antic 4 is the target mode for the final games, but I needed to steal some graphics that I could quickly adapt. So I decided to use the fruit from Pac-Man. Since they use square pixels, the height of every pixel gets doubled in Antic 4. I actually was using Pac himself, ghosts, keys, and other symbols at one point, which was kind of fun and interesting. But as I worked on making things authentic internally, I decided to use the fruit and other items that would make it look a little more authentic. I still think it would be neat to have some "themed" machines, though, and I plan to have a few available in the final casino game I'm working on. I also will be using much better graphics in the real casino games (a lot of which have already been designed). The graphics used here are basic and were just enough to get the job done during testing.

 

post-6369-0-96276700-1483048749_thumb.png

 

It's programmed in Turbo-BASIC XL and has been compiled and linked, although it does use some data files too. It's on a DOS 2.5 autobooting disk. I plan to optimize the code over the next few days (or weeks depending on time available) and release another version. It's really just a hack and a lot of things can be consolidated and put into procedures to make the code smaller.

The following joystick commands are active when playing the Slot Machine (except when the reels are spinning):

<Up> - Raise Bet
<Down> - Lower Bet
<Button> - Spin Reels
<Left> or
<Right> - View Payouts Chart


From the Payout Chart, just hit the <Button> to return to the Slot Machine.

Betting ranges from $10 - $90 and 3 Bars gets whatever's in the JackPot. Only the middle line is played (although I may add more lines to this mini-game as an option later -- which is what I have planned for the full casino games).

Colors are adjusted for both NTSC and PAL.

post-6369-0-50451700-1483048755_thumb.png post-6369-0-71461900-1483048761_thumb.png

 

 

Edited by MrFish
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Took some time to optimize the code yesterday. It wasn't as bad as I imagined. The total size savings on the executable only ended up being about 50 bytes -- mostly thanks to the basicParser being so efficient at optimizing things itself. Still, it'll be easier to maintain and update in the future, now that things have been better organized. I may update the graphics for this mini-game at some point.

 

I've labeled this version 1.0 to avoid confusion with the first release, which has no version number.

 

[Edit: Forgot to change the year. :P ]

 

post-6369-0-71934200-1483570529_thumb.png

 

 

 

BTW, here's a teaser of what some of the graphics will look like for the full game I'm working on:

 

post-6369-0-19762300-1483568013_thumb.png

Edited by MrFish
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Nice, like the colors. 2 suggestions:

 

1. Any possible way to have the payout chart show up on both side of the slot screen?

2. Some music for a win ;)

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Nice, like the colors.

 

Thanks for the comments and suggestions.

 

 

2 suggestions:

 

1. Any possible way to have the payout chart show up on both side of the slot screen?

 

Anything is possible. ;) I think it'd be a task though.

 

Currently, the game screen is rendered in two character modes (Antic 4 & 2) and uses one separate character set for each.

The upper set (Antic 4) is completely used up. The lower set (Antic 2) is only using about 1/5th (or less) of it's characters.

 

The upper portion of the screen has more space on the sides than the lower portion, and of course the graphics would be more suited up there.

But it adds a lot of complications (at least for the scope of this project) in order to get around using the single character set, which has no free characters left.

 

That leaves using the lower part of the screen for consideration.

The problem fitting the payout chart on the lower part of the screen -- with the current configuration, when the stats are present --

is that there's not much room available, unless the stats were shuffled around a bit and used less white (blue) space.

With that in mind, I still think it'd be tight, as there's quite a bit of information on the stats page.

Surely the graphics would have to be scaled as well and I'm not sure how good it would end up looking.

 

One thing that might be possible would be to swap in the payout chart for the stats.

In that case, the stats would go away temporarily and then you'd see the payouts down below.

That would be more feasible, and I think a reasonable improvement over the current method.

 

I'll look into scaling the graphics to fit down there and see how it might work out.

 

 

2. Some music for a win ;)

 

I was going for the pure man and machine gambling experience here. Where only sheer will can keep you forging ahead. :D

It's kind of like the original 2600 gaming experience/ambience. You know, no sounds except the primitive effects, and few of them.

 

Seriously, though, I wasn't planning to use music for this game (it is planned for the full game).

When I do get to the point of creating some music for the full game, I may test it out in this game first.

So it is possible in the distant future.

Edited by MrFish

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For the payout chart maybe have a key that allows the user to switch between the stats and payout.

 

Sometimes I won when I didnt understand what I actually 'hit' and sometimes I didnt win when I thought I should :)

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For the payout chart maybe have a key that allows the user to switch between the stats and payout.

 

I'd just use the <LEFT> & <RIGHT> on the joystick to switch back and forth.

 

 

Sometimes I won when I didnt understand what I actually 'hit' and sometimes I didnt win when I thought I should :)

 

It's not difficult in the current scheme. You can easily go back and forth at any point (except when the reels are spinning).

 

But I will look into the idea I mentioned.

Edited by MrFish

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@MrFish: could the last version of this game be considered as the final (more or less) version or is it still a work in progress? Thanks.

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It's a release version -- though just pieced together from some code used for testing ideas.

 

You can put it in your yearly collection if you want, as I think that's why you're asking.

 

I still want to add a few things to it, but it'll be some time before that happens.

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Nice little fun game, really nice, got the three BAR's about 20mins in :)

 

There seems to be a logic where two cherries in the same line are often seen, is this the case or is it totally random..?

Edited by Mclaneinc
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Nice little fun game, really nice, got the three BAR's about 20mins in :)

 

Yes, it becomes nicer when you hit. ;)

 

 

There seems to be a logic where two cherries are often seen, is this the case of is it totally random..?

 

The logic becomes totally obvious when you can have a look at the three reels; there are NO cherries on the third reel. It's all about giving the player enough back to keep him/her playing.

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Here's some code that has the tables for the reels.

 

The cherries are zeroes. So, notice the 3rd reel, and notice the frequency on the 1st and 2nd reels.

 

post-6369-0-99997300-1506276278.png

Edited by MrFish

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... there are NO cherries on the third reel.

 

Actually, you can figure this out from the payout chart too; there is no payout for three cherries.

 

There's also no payout for three bells; bells are "5" on the tables I posted.

Edited by MrFish

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There's also no payout for three bells; bells are "5" on the tables I posted.

 

I mistyped there; I meant to type "apples" instead of bells.

 

Here's a little reference I just made up for myself, which is easier than looking at numbers and tables.

 

post-6369-0-07783400-1506300825_thumb.png

 

[Edit: Also, I made a mistake in my first post when I said the reels had "19 stops". The arrays go from 0 to 19, so I should have said "20 stops".]

Edited by MrFish
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Are you using equal weighting for all the stops? Commercial machines use variable weightings - so the blank spaces above and below the jackpot symbols show up more often than you'd expect...

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Are you using equal weighting for all the stops? Commercial machines use variable weightings - so the blank spaces above and below the jackpot symbols show up more often than you'd expect...

 

Maybe you didn't read the opening post in the thread? This is modeled after a 1940's era Mills mechanical slot machine.

 

Definitely a commercial machine, but from a time when things were a bit more simple -- yet advanced for the time.

 

Kind of like how things are on Atari 8-bit computers.

Edited by MrFish
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From the strips you can obtain the odds fairly easily.

 

The odds are as follows (some rounded).

 

post-6369-0-91884500-1506356793.png

 

So, in answer to your initial question: yes, 2 cherries will come up quite frequently.

Edited by MrFish

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Maybe you didn't read the opening post in the thread? This is modeled after a 1940's era Mills mechanical slot machine.

 

Definitely a commercial machine, but from a time when things were a bit more simple -- yet advanced for the time.

 

Kind of like how things are on Atari 8-bit computers.

 

Thanks - I think I read the opening post when this thread began, but it got pushed out of my mind.

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I'm not overly fond of a lot of modern slot machines, but one thing I do like is being able to play multiple lines and diagonals; I plan to use them in the future.

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Here's some code that has the tables for the reels.

 

The cherries are zeroes. So, notice the 3rd reel, and notice the frequency on the 1st and 2nd reels.

 

attachicon.gifreels.png

That's pretty much how modern commercial slot machines are implemented here. The reels are weighted by distribution of symbols and each reel stop is selected by a rng.

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That's pretty much how modern commercial slot machines are implemented here. The reels are weighted by distribution of symbols and each reel stop is selected by a rng.

 

Things really haven't changed since the beginning then.

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Not too much. Games are just slightly more complicated now, more lines, more reels, inner reels, larger reel strips and multi features..etc

 

I used to work in the industry once upon a time. Glad I'm no longer doing it :)

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Not too much. Games are just slightly more complicated now, more lines, more reels, inner reels, larger reel strips and multi features..etc

 

Most of which don't interest me much, which is why I like the older machines.

 

 

I used to work in the industry once upon a time. Glad I'm no longer doing it :)

 

I used to work in the gambling industry years ago, and happily keep it as part of my past too.

 

I think the Atari can use some quality games from the realm, though.

Edited by MrFish

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