The Big Bang Theory Slot Game Review
If you have never heard of Pinwright’s Progress you have a lot of company. Most people have never heard of this 10-episode BBC television show from 1947 but it is one of the mostdistinctive television shows in history. It was by all accounts the first situation comedy (or “sitcom” for short) ever produced for and broadcast on television anywhere in the world.Film researchers have also concluded that no footage from the shows exists any more. Videotape was not invented until 1951 and so the show, if it was recorded at all, would only have beenpreserved on film. However, to date only a few still photographs are known to exist.
The Big Bang Theory premiered on the American television network CBS 60 years later. Within a few years the show became one of the top-rated scripted television shows of the early21st century, spawning merchandise deals and pop culture references. The legacy of The Big Bang Theory is all but assured given its success and the variety of recording mediaavailable to preserve its episodes, including DvDs and online archives. And yet, if you have never watched The Big Bang Theory you would be at a loss for all the cute references to theshow you’ll find in the slot machine game based on it. It would be something if, in 100 years, researchers only had a slot machine by which to remember and analyze the impact of The Big BangTheory, which holds a less notable position in the annals of television history than the all but forgotten Pinwright’s Progress.
Playing a slot game based on a television show is supposed to be a nostalgic experience. The game designers and the show developers are obviously counting on the familiarity of gamers with theirshows to build loyalty for the slot games. For that reason you will almost certainly never see a slot machine based on Pinwright’s Progress (the main character of which was the owner ofLondon’s “smallest multidepartment store” and who had a passionate rivalry with another store owner). But the slot game must still be appealing to players, even players who have never watched theshow. In fact, thousands of slot machine games based on silly concepts like leaping animals, hillbilly animals, and completely unique fantasy ideas have built up loyal followings.
What gives broad appeal to a game like The Big Bang Theory is not the clips from the show so much as the bonus features of the gaming experience. Slot players want to experiencesomething new even if they are enjoying a personal connection with a favored television show or movie. In 2014 Aristocrat Leisure Limited announced the Big Bang Theory slot game to anenthusiastic gambling community. At least two versions of the game now exist.
The big game runs on Aristocrat’s Helix Slant cabinet and is packed with 10 bonus features, three mechanical wheels, and 4 video slot displays. The show’s science and engineering-geek characterswould love all the bells and whistles, which slot gamers most certainly do. The three-reel game is housed in a Behemoth cabinet and features 15 pay lines. Both games focus on the main starsof the show.
Rules of The Big Bang Theory Slot Game on the Helix Cabinet
The Big Bang Theory Helix cabinet slot game boasts 200 pay lines but instead of crowding them all onto one display they are divided across four video screens. Each screen has 5 reels and 50 paylines. The four games play concurrently and any of the can trigger a bonus round. Also, players can control how many pay lines are active.
You can bet up to 5 times that per pay line, for a total bet of $10.00. While this may not appeal to high rollers it’s good news for people who like to stay in the game for a long time but arenot disciplined enough to keep their bets low.
The game’s logo as the Wild symbol, substituting for all other symbols except the Scatter. The Wild can appear on any of the four gaming screens and it may be a normal sized tile or stacked.
The five high value symbols are pictures of the stars from the first three seasons are:
- Johnny Galecki (Leonard Hofstadter)
- Jim Parsons (Sheldon Cooper)
- Kaley Cuoco (Penny)
- Simon Helberg (Howard Wolowitz)
- Kunal Nayyar (Raj Koothrappali)
The stars can appear on normal-sized tiles or supersized tiles spanning multiple reels.
To add to the game’s character-driven theme Jim Parsons provides commentary via sound bites from episodes and brief clips from the episodes are played as well. Occasional random prizes areawarded by the characters, too. Howard may go scooting across the screen to drop some credits on you or Penny may spread the job with multipliers flying out to all four screens.
The low value symbols in the game include:
- Chinese takeout food
- Soft Kitties
The kitties may require some explaining. This is one of those recurring themes in the show that would puzzle future historians if they only had the slot machine to judge by because the kittiesare symbols. In the show Sheldon is only openly affectionate toward cats and usually only when he is depressed. To cheer him up other characters on the show may have to sing the “Soft Kitty”song, a nursery rhyme he grew up with.
Chinese takeout food is another point where show buffs are in the know but everyone else is clueless. In many episodes the gang all get together in Sheldon and Leonard’s apartment to eat dinnertogether. It is sometimes pizza but more often Chinese food. The white takeout boxes are ubiquitous to the show’s culture.
Rules of The Big Bang Theory Slot Game on the Behemoth Cabinet
The Behemoth cabinet Big Bang Theory slot game uses 3 reels, 3 rows, and 15 pay lines and a virtual reel displayed on a main view screen above the playing reels area. This is a dollar slotmachine.
The game’s logo is the Wild symbol and it appears as a 3-row tall superstack. The Wild symbol substitutes for all other symbols except the Scatter Bonus symbol. Some of the Wild symbols mayappear with a multiplier.
The Scatter Bonus symbol is a Bazinga! icon. When three Baznginga! symbols appear anywhere on the screen the bonus game is triggered. The player is directed to look up to the larger screenwhere the virtual wheel begins spinning. The player wins a cash prize ranging from $25 up to $5000.
The three top stars of the show, Johnny Galecki, Jim Parsons, and Kaley Cuoco appear as superstack symbols like the Wild. Simon Helberg and Kunnal Nayyar both have small symbols.
The low value symbols include a Soft Kitty, a Game Controller, and a stack of Star Trek The Next Generation comic books.
How to Play both Versions of The Big Bang Theory Slot Game
The Behemoth cabinet game is very simple. When the bonus game is triggered the player reaches up to swipe the larger video screen to activate the wheel.
The Helix Slant cabinet game is much more complicated. There are three areas where game action occurs.
- The four game screens handle the basic action. The 200 pay lines are divided evenly between them all so technically it’s like playing four slot games at once. You could play only one set ofreels and your return would be equivalent to one fourth the return of playing all four screens.
- The area where game action occurs is the virtual “in front” of the playing reels. Various characters may cross in front of the panels and award prizes. Howard rides his scooter across and thebattle bot M.O.N.T.E. comes out to sweeten the game with random prizes. Sheldon usually makes a comment as part of the voice over to draw your attention to what is happening.
- The third area is above the four screens. This is where the bonus games are played out on three mechanical reels. Two of the reels are set up for the Atomic bonus game. You spin one of thetwo reels and they award any of a cash prize, an Atomic Prize, or a Bazinga bonus. With the Bazinga bonus the large wheel at the top of the game spins and you can win credits, one of fivecharacter-themed bonus games, or a progressive jackpot.
The character-themed bonus games all begin with a video clip from the show. The clips feature the character for whom the bonus round is named.
The Penny Friendship Paradigm game
This game fills a slot screen with pictures of Penny and one of the guys or Soft Kitty symbols. You are then awarded a number of free spins and you collect prizes. As the game progressesyour prize level increases gradually and Penny Friendship Paradigm Scatter symbols pay a prize.
The Large Hofstadter Collision game
This is a basic Free Spins game with a Multiplier. However, you can pick the combination of spins and multipliers you want from four options. The theoretical return to player is about thesame for each.
Koothrappali’s Scavenger Vortex game
This is based on a motif from the show. Raj sometimes brings the gang together to play a game. This is a pick game where you may win one prize or all prizes. You choose between puzzlepieces and other people’s dirty laundry.
Howard’s Mystic Warlords of Ka’a game
This is another variation on the pick game bonus. You begin by choosing a Hero Card to decide what multiplier will be applied to the prizes you win in the second part of the game. Theheroes are: The Amazing Rajesh, The Wolowizard, Sheldor the Conqueror, Princess Penelope, and Leonard the Brave. In the second part of the game you are prompted to make several picks fromeight cards. Your Hero multiplier is applied to cash prizes but some of the cards may enhance your multiplier.
The Cooper Roommate Agreement game
This is a “432 ways to win” slot game with its own set of playing reels. The reels are laid out like columns in a magazine. The pay lines are separated by blocks of text but pictures of thecharacters, computers, and various objects from the show appear throughout the columns. Sheldon is the Wild symbol. You win a number of free spins for this game.
The Electron Progressive game
This is not exactly a progressive jackpot prize. It’s a pick game that either awards you a random cash prize or the local progressive prize.
These are two very different games and it is surprising that the same company would release two competing slot games based on the same theme. Other television shows have inspired two or more slotmachine games but they are usually separated by a few years in development, and sometimes a different company develops the slot game. We have also seen one company develop a game for land-basedcasinos and another company develop a game for online casinos, both operating under separate licenses for the same franchise.
There are references to a third slot machine game based on the Big Bang Theory that we were not able to review.
Both of these games are playable. The 3-reel game in the Behemoth cabinet stands up well in comparison to traditional 3-reel slots but fans of the show may prefer the Helix cabinet version ifonly because it is more geeky in nature. The Behemoth game is designed for higher rollers and the Helix game is designed for more conservative gamblers.
Both games only use main characters from early seasons. This seems to leave room for development of more sophisticated games in the future, depending on the success of these games. Whether othercharacters from the show (such as Howard’s wife Bernadette or Sheldon’s girlfriend Amy) will ever be added to these or future games remains to be seen. These five stars are the highest billed andhighest paid among the show’s ensemble cast.
Aristocrat is pushing the Helix cabinet version of the game more aggressively. You’ll find more reviews and references to it on video channels but there are a few reviews and videos of the 3-reelgame in the Behemoth cabinet. Players should enjoy either game but the Helix cabinet is the one that may ensure the success of this slot machine franchise for years to come.