Casino Scene

2013-10-31T14:28:00Z Casino SceneJohn G. Brokopp Times Correspondent
October 31, 2013 2:28 pm  • 

Not too many casino-goers pay attention to the manufacturers of the slot machines they play. IGT, Bally, WMS, and Konami are just some of the companies that make the games, but if you’re a player all you really care is enjoying the way a game plays and how much money you can win.

Chances are that if you visit casinos with any regularity you’ll know the name Aristocrat. The games the company makes have been staples on casino floors nationwide for well over a decade now. In recent years, Aristocrat’s Buffalo and Timber Wolf are two of the most popular slots in the world.

You can expect even more from Aristocrat now that the legendary game developer Joe Kaminkow is on board as Senior Vice President of Game Development, an appointment he accepted earlier this year.

Kaminkow, who forged his creative reputation by developing coin-operated games for Sega Pinball, previously worked for IGT. He developed such slot machine stalwarts as “The Addams Family”, “The Munsters”, “I Dream of Jeannie”, and ultimately the iconic titles Wheel of Fortune, Sex and the City, and Ghostbusters.

He has much to build upon at Aristocrat, which last month during the Global Gaming Expo in Las Vegas unveiled more than 200 new game titles featuring mechanics and franchises that serve notice to the gaming industry that the company is in the game for keeps.

One of the most anticipated titles from Aristocrat, and soon to be available at a casino near you, is “The Walking Dead” slot game. It is based on AMC’s Emmy Award-winning TV show which has done more to bring the undead to life in American homes than any horror franchise in history.

Images and video clips from the show are revealed in HD video and sound when you sit down to play The Walking Dead. Combine that visual experience with the sensations created by Aristocrat’s surround sound IChair and you have the makings of a cult classic.

Just what is in store for players of The Walking Dead? How about Six-Reel Expanded Wheel Power with splatter wilds, dynamic split symbols, and guaranteed horde wins. There’s also a Monster Wheel with exploding segments and a Wild Walker Mode that’s guaranteed to jolt your senses.

The game also features progressives, cash bonuses, and a life-changing top award starting at $500,000.

Aristocrat hasn’t forgotten its landmark Buffalo, twice named the Best Game in the Goldman Sachs Slot Managers Survey. The company has unleashed the all new Buffalo Stampede, which features progressive jackpots, higher multipliers, and new high-paying game features.

Now with Joe Kaminkow’s creative talent to tap, look for Aristocrat to continue its rise to stardom in the slot industry.


AMERISTAR: A dedicated baccarat room on the casino’s fourth level boasts 12 games that feature a minimum bet of $10 all the way up to a max of $10,000. The game selection includes the no commission EZ Baccarat plus several hand-held games. While you’re there, don’t forget to visit the Noodle Bar, open daily Noon to 1:30 a.m. The Asian cuisine is punctuated by authentic Pacific Rim dishes.

BLUE CHIP: The Game, Blue Chip’s high energy sports bar, is the place to be for all Chicago Bears football games. Guests receive one entry when they dine in or have a beverage to be eligible for drawings for hats at the end of each quarter and a jersey at the end of the game. Sunday game day specials include$2 Miller Lite 22 oz. drafts, $2 hot dogs, $3 Chicago dogs, $3 Chips & Salsa, and $3 Buffalo wings.

FOUR WINDS: There’s a $7,500 Blackjack tournament held at Four Winds the first Tuesday of every month. The buy-in is $60 (no entry fee) and all monies go into the total prize pool. Based on a full tournament, the top finishers will share more than $7,500 in cash. Registration begins at 5:00 p.m. EST. It’s an opportunity for lovers of the game to experience tournament play, a rarity in this market. Stop by the Blackjack pit for full details.

HORSESHOE: If you’re up to the challenge at Benny’s Pub & Eatery, the meal is on the house plus you’ll receive a complimentary Benny’s t-shirt. The catch is you must devour a 2-pound Benny’s Double Inferno Burger topped with four slices of Pepper Jack Cheese, fried jalapenos, and Benny’s hot sauce in 30 minutes or less. Did I mention a heaping order of all-in cheese fries as well? Come up short and the tab is $29.99.

MAJESTIC STAR: The exciting Heartland Poker Tour returns to the Gary property for a 16-day run November 22 through December 9. A record 3,735 players participated in last August’s tour stop at the Majestic Star. The Main Event was won by 53-year-old Bob Chow, a professional player who hails from Schaumberg. Il. He took home $171,534. The final table was viewed by a world-wide television audience.

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