At MGC I was talking to some folks about my custom games and was asked if there was a thread on pinside, so figure I should at least start one for the machine I am working on now. A lot of the content of the first few posts I will make are edited version of what was on the pinballcontrollers.com forum, so at first it will look like I am making rapid progress on this game, when in reality, not so much.
Lets start with some background. After moving my first custom game “the Kugler family” to a larger full color display (it started with regular DMD, then color the same resolution and then to large screen full 24 bit color), I decided to start a new project. My brother kept pushing on doing a gambling theme. While at first I was lukewarm to the idea, after I came up with some cool ideas for toys, I became more interested and decided to give it a try.
The game was at expo in 2014, but believe it or not, not a single game was played on it before bringing it to expo. I had not put the playfield into the cabinet until about 3AM Thursday morning of expo. So late in the day on Thursday after I fixed some issues with it, it was played for the first time. I was actually quite pleased with how it played as far as the number of shots, the feel of the shots, etc. but I was not happy with how the rules for the different casino games came together. After expo I was pretty burned out and did nothing on either game for months. Then I got back to work on adding artwork and some playfield changes (needed to do a new version of the playfield to get the inserts where I waned them to go with the art) for the Kugler’s and Casino sat idle and I did not even bring it to expo this past fall, since I had done nothing on it. But, a week or two ago, when I drove past the Westin, it struck me that expo is just six months away, and if Casino was going to make an appearance, it was time to get back to work on it.
The game is running with a resolution of 450x900 (my other machine is running 96x192), which is then doubled when pushed to the LCD. So the LCD is running at HD resolution. The actual screen size that is visible is 13”x6.5” so it still fits into a standard height speaker panel and between standard size speakers. The game does not use a dot look, since the dots become just way too small and really just seems to darken the screen. The game is currently running on a low end pentium processor, which appears to have no issue providing the necessary loop rate, even with the high resolution.
The color support comes from using the pyprocgameHD version that MOcean and I have been working on for a while. Our work on that evolved from the standard 16 shade dmd to an 8 bit, 256 indexed color approach and then to full 24bit color. To be honest Michael did more of the heavy lifting than I did.
The game features the five most popular games you will find in a casino (slots, craps, poker, blackjack and roulette) and then also has a set of 8 modes to capture other things that often occur in a trip to Las Vegas (bachelor party, all you can eat buffet, drunk and can’t find my room, etc). The original rules had all five of the casino games active at the same time, well, sort of, but I now have some playfield changes and rule changes to reduce that so it is not so confusing to the player as to what is going on. So while you still may be building towards multiple games at a time, the play of those gambling games is more clear. I’ll do posts on each of the casino games to explain how they are being implemented.
I should comment, that I did a lot of work on this machine before I was aware of High Roller Casino despite knowing over a dozen guys with anywhere from 10 to 50+ machines, I had never seen or played one. From the couple of times played it at expo, there is not a lot of similarity, although both have a Roulette wheel, but as I told Keith Johnson, I think mine better (I’ll explain who it works in a later post).
Here are a couple of photos of the playfield and cabinet. The first is after I finished routing (by hand) and then the inserts and the cabinet with playfield at expo.
This is the playfield after being routed by hand using a 30 year old hand router, using templates for the square and triangle inserts and Forstner bits for the round ones.
Here it is with the inserts added.
and here is the machine at expo, funny thing is you can see the Kuglers machine, which was much, much further along in the background, without cabinet art (which it did have this past year at expo, this is from 2014), yet Casino has art . . . .
I'll do some other posts shortly that will cover the features, rules and toys of a couple of the casino games.
Happy to answer any questions.