Thursday, May 3, 2012

Mirrorball Slots brings fairy-tale gambling to Facebook

British studio Plumbee broke out of stealth mode back in March with $2.8 million in funding and the announcement of its first Facebook game: Mirrorball Slots. The team’s fairy-tale themed slot machine title is now freely available to all on the social network, and showed up as the No. 14 fastest-growing Facebook game by DAU earlier this week. But is it any more interesting than the numerous unimaginative, uninspired slot machine sims already available on Facebook?

Mirrorball Slots, like its numerous competitors, assumes that players know how to play a slot machine with multiple pay lines, and provides no tutorial whatsoever. Players may bet on up to 25 different pay lines at once, with their maximum bet increasing as they level up. Various combinations of symbols net different amounts of winnings, and “wild” cards may be substituted for any symbol. It’s possible for multiple lines to pay out at once, and particularly huge wins prompt a “share” dialog where players are invited to brag about their good fortune on their Timeline.

“Bonus Wilds” vary in functionality depending on the machine players are currently using — on the Three Bears-themed machine, they increase the winnings multiplier; on the Rapunzel-themed machine, they “stick” in place until the player wins something; on the Snow White-themed machine they can trigger a bonus round.

Alongside these symbols, there are also “Scatter” markings that allow players to trigger a “free spins” mode, the exact form of which again varies according to the machine players are using. The player is initially provided with ten free spins of the reels, and certain symbols provide particular bonuses. On the Three Bears-themed machine, collecting “Goldilocks” symbols in sufficient quantities turns the three different “bear” symbols into wild cards; on the Rapunzel machine, collecting bonus wilds allow a prince to climb a tower, earning bonus spins and increasing winnings in the process; on the Snow White machine, players simply get triple winnings for a brief period.

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