Monday, October 03, 2016

Hoyle Casino Series for Mac, Windows

Note:  This review was originally posted to my Epinions account.

I found out about this game from a friend. He was playing Texas Hold ‘Em and I was complaining that he folded too easily. I decided to give it a try. Each player can make their own profile. There’s a face maker you can use to make a picture that resembles you or you can use one of several pictures that the computer already has. The face maker also has the ability to randomly generate faces, but these tend to be bizarre. Since I wasn’t planning on using my friend’s computer forever, I just used one of the faces the computer had.

The computer set me up with $5,000 in credit so that I could play any of the games in the casino. (Hoyle Casino 2004 is more than just Texas Hold ‘Em, but I’ll get to that later.) I was able to try the Texas Hold ‘Em and show him how I played it. I ended up losing a little money, but as I said, I wasn’t playing for keeps so it didn’t really matter. It’s not like it was real money anyway.

I tried a few of the other games and decided to get this game for myself. I didn’t really bother with the face maker. It was way too complicated and I didn’t like any of the random faces. I found a face that sort of kind of looked similar to me and used that. For a while, I stuck to roulette and Texas Hold ‘Em because those were the two games that I was most familiar with. I occasionally tried the slots, but didn’t do to well. I went back to Texas Hold ‘Em. Eventually, I decided to try some of the other games. There are a lot of different forms of poker in Hoyle Casino 2004 as well as a lot of different slot machines and other games. There’s keno, craps, black jack, Baccarat, and many other games that I hadn’t heard of before. It even has horse racing.

Most people that I know that have a game like this seem to stick to one or two games. (My friend and I aren’t exceptions.) If you’re get bored easily, but don’t really want to bother learning the rules to a new game, Hoyle Casino 2004 has a tutorial for each game. What you take away from this depends on how easily you learn. The instructions may not always be clear, especially for a game you’ve never even heard of before. Keno and craps were totally alien to me and thus difficult to really understand. I know how to bet and everything, but I still don’t understand how craps really works.

If you get bored of just playing poker game after poker game and want more of a challenge, you can play tournaments. Most of the poker games have tournaments that last several rounds. You and several competitors play 14 hands. The three best move on to play 28 hands. From there, two advance to play as many hands as are necessary for there to be one person left. If you think that the poker tournaments are too long, then you’re in luck. You do have the option to save the tournament whenever a dialogue box comes up. Just leave the game and it’s automatically saved. Most of the other games have tournaments. Roulette is set up with one round and isn’t really as satisfying or challenging as the Texas Hold ‘Em tournament is.

If and when you do decide to leave, you get shown an advertisement for other games. It’s brief, but annoying. I find it to be kind of cheap. I think it’s a lot better to integrate the ads into the game so that they’re not as noticeable.

Ultimately, I find myself usually going back to Roulette or Texas Hold ‘Em. This isn’t to say that the program is bad. I think it could be enjoyable for just about anyone who likes to play, but doesn’t like having to constantly drop money on gambling.

I’d give this four stars.

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