Trends in Online Casino Slots Bonus GamesBy: Joe Valentino, Friday July 16th 2010
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Bonus games in online slots are incorporated so as to allow players to earn extra credits without making any investment. Traditionally, every time the bonus game is triggered the same game is played again and again. This can get quite boring after a while, especially because most bonus games are constructed very simply. Players have to choose from objects displayed to win bonus credits. Online gaming software developers have tried to be innovative in the design of bonus games so as to prevent players from getting bored.
One of the techniques employed by the software developers is to include two different bonus games in the online slot. Each bonus game is triggered by different combinations of symbols and is also different in nature. An example of this can be seen in the recently released slot game Magic Multiplier. The Curtain Feature is triggered when the Curtain symbol appears in reels 2, 3 and 4 at the same time. In this bonus game the player chooses one of the Curtain symbols which opens to reveal bonus credits. The second bonus game is called Cups Feature. This is triggered when the Cup symbol appears in reels 3, 4 and 5 at the same time. In this bonus game a ball is hidden beneath one of the cups and if the player guesses correctly then he wins bonus points.
A more common technique is to allow players to choose from a number of bonus games once the triggering mechanism takes place. The bonus games are so balanced that none offer an advantage over others, but their different natures make the game play more interesting. Another Microgaming slot Queen of the Jungle incorporates this concept. When the bonus game is triggered players can choose from Monkey Gift, Monkey Chop and Monkey Fetch. In Monkey Gift the player has to choose from nine gifts, in Monkey Chop the player keeps breaking coconuts and winning rewards and in Monkey Fetch three fruits are fetched to make a cocktail that offers rewards.
Though both the techniques described above alleviate the boredom of playing the same bonus game to some extent, they do not do so completely. This can be done only if the player plays a different bonus game each time. This concept was introduced in i-slots by Rival Gaming. The different bonus games form a series of the same story or process. The software remembers the bonus game last played and automatically takes players to the subsequent one next time. The simplest i-slot is Hole in Won, which is based on golf. In the bonus games the player is taken in turn to nine different holes of a mini golf course. Each hole is structured differently and requires different techniques to get the ball in the hole. Players are awarded credits based in part on the number of strokes taken. After player completes the entire nine-hole golf course he starts with the first hole again. Bank Heist is an i-slot that is more complex in structure. It is set in the context of a bank robbery. Each bonus game represents an event in the robbery and the outcome of the bonus game decides whether the robbers get caught or move on to the next stage.
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