Modern Slot Game Designs

Say what you will about slot games, be they your type of game or not, the current versions are pretty damn impressive. It really wasn’t that long ago that your average slot game had about as much complexity as a modern calculator. In fact, scratch that, I’ve seen some pretty cool phone based calculator applications. Let me just put it another way; modern online slot games are dripping with amazing artwork, immersive soundtracks, and often pretty diabolically smart design choices.

Now, if we haven’t chatted before, let me fill you in; things that are designed well tickle my brain. I can get pretty deeply involved in analysing something that has been cleverly created. I mean, I can get equally as annoyed by things that are stupidly designed, but in this case I thought I might give a little praise.

It is due; after all, I feel slot game artists and designers don’t get nearly enough praise.

Keep Spinning

We can beat around the bush all we want, but slot games are created with one base concept in mind; that the player keep spinning the reels for as long as possible. Yes, casinos make the bulk of their money on slot games, and the statistic of that income is directly determined by how many spins the average player takes in a minute. Or you can also say; slot games really want you to spin as many times as possible in a minute. They do need to pay the rent.

When slot game designers are creating games, each is faced with the task of trying to keep players spinning, in as interesting and non-invasive a way as possible. And the ways designers have come up with are pretty ingenious. You can’t, after all, pop up a message each time the player stops, with a message that reads “please spin again, we need to pay the electricity bill.”

Interactive Soundtracks

One of my favourite ways designers have come up with to keep player’s spinning is a interactive soundtrack. Very simply, the soundtrack keeps playing, and progressing, as long as the reels are spinning. I absolutely love the idea, and very often spin the reels just to be charmed by the pleasant music. I do this in free mode, just so we’re clear about that.

Interactive music of this nature is just about as subtle and pleasant an approach one can take to encouraging players to keep spinning. I don’t know who came up with the concept, but I commend them. Whoever that person is, I’m presenting them with my ingenious design award. The first I’ve ever given, so that person is surely swooning with delight.

Interactive Game Design

Some games have taken the concept further, and designed to game itself to respond to being spun repeatedly. The general effect is that the game will expand gradually, as the reels are spun, becoming more open and inviting. Upon the spinning coming to a halt, the reels again shrink back into themselves. Another fascinating and brilliant design, and winner of my second ingenious design award.

There are only a few games I’ve seen use this technique, and I can only imagine it’s because the design is not easy to pull off effectively. It must take some amount of effort and development time to create such an intricate and immersive effect.

Artwork And Animation

You don’t need me to tell you that modern slot game artwork is becoming extremely detailed and impressive. With mobile phones and tablets having high definition screens, the logic thing to do is take advantage of that resolution potential. And, to an astonishing degree, slot game designers have risen to the challenge. Some slot games leave me speechless, so detailed is their artwork, and I can only imagine the amount of time and effort that went into each individual image. And if that wasn’t enough, many of these images are even animated.

No, animation is not the madly complicated job it once was, requiring that the image be redrawn 12 times every second.

It’s 12 times, not 24, that’s a misconception. Every second image is identical. And often even less than 12, given that many key images are reused, or only part of an image redrawn. This has been useless animation knowledge with Marc. Thank you.

Either way, that slot games feature animation is thoroughly impressive, and players are, of course, encouraged to see as many of the animations as possible. This done by triggering symbol matches that result in the animations being played. Not worthy of a third award, but still an award for effort.

Appreciate The Effort

If you’re still thinking that slot games aren’t really your thing, I encourage you to enter free mode and give a few of the top rated slot games a few spins. I really mean it. No matter who you are, I think the obvious effort that goes into slot games is worth a look. Or, I suppose, it’s also possible it’s just me that gives out artificial ingenious design awards. In which case, return to your previous pursuits, heathens.

Marc Armstrong - Signature

Twitter | Facebook | Instagram