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Players Software
Paul van der Meer
Gambling: Games
ZX Spectrum 48K

Other Links

Marcus Berkmann
Chris Bourne

Okay, so there have been one or two fruit machine games on the Speccy. Eight billion, in fact. Surely no new game can add anything new to this well-worn genre? But Dizzy Dice ain't no lemon - in fact it's a peach. Though it wouldn't win any prizes for style or originality, it really hits the jackpot on playability.

You start with ten points, using up one for every game. As the fruit, bells, wheels and BAR signs rotate through the four windows, you can win from 2 to 200 points. You can usually hold the symbols about half the time - though never after a win, where you simply gamble or collect. This feature is rather more complicated than on real machines. You can choose one of five symbols, each of which pays out a different amount. Then the wheel spins, and if your symbol is picked out, you win some more points. It's much more of a gamble than on the real thing, so this is recommended only for small wins. Fortunately two or four point wins spin along fairly regularly, so you can gamble on these while bunging the big wins in the bank.

If you're not on a winning streak, you'll find certain symbols lighting up at the bottom of the screen as they appear in the windows. They'll only light up in a preset order, but when you have all six, lights start flashing and you can play the Dice Game. Now the fun really starts. This is a sort of Play Your Cards Right with an ordinary die (or the computer equivalent). The Speccy chooses a random number between 1 and 6, and it's your job to guess whether the next throw will be higher, lower or the same. If you bet correctly, you double the points at stake, up to a maximum 200. If not, you lose your stake. Alternatively you can cop out at any point and take the money. You'll bet, though, won't you? Yeah, course you will.

It's not exactly the most ambitious game I've ever seen, but that didn't stop me from battering away at it when I should've been doing something else (We noticed! Ed). I doubt it's got real staying power, but even so Dizzy Dice is a really fruity number at the price. And it's got to be the best one-armed bandit game around. BAR none! (Groan. Ed).