Slot Machine Apps Disappoint

Think before you click.

About a month or two ago, I wrote an article cutting at the copycats massacring the mobile maker community’s credibility. I stated that it takes true effort to make an idea into something of quality, as opposed to a copy of a tried-and-true concept. However, what I forgot to mention was that the same amount of effort is required to make an idea worth pursuing in the first place.

Enter: the Slot Machine genre.

The premise of this genre is simple enough, almost too simple; Pull the lever, wait for the slots to line up, and win big, hopefully. Given that it takes only a little effort to make a game of this genre, dozens of these games plague both Google Play and the iTunes store, dozens of them being little more than different appearances of the same application. These in particular are the epitome of the things I was railing against in my article: an idea that has been done to death by hundreds of lazy people to the point where it’s become a cliche. In fact, the very concept of a slot machine can be considered obsolete: it’s a luck-based game where the player has no control over whether they win or lose at all. The numbers of the currency are just numbers: they have no meaning outside of making a user feel good about themselves.

Outside of new additions such as easier ways to win and make people feel good about themselves, the only differences in the slot machines are different appearances, anything from christmas themes to oriental themes to even the use of TV shows like House of Cards as themes for slots.

And in spite of the banality of this genre, several games of this variety still exist, judging from the number of ads that I’ve been harassed with recently. While I’ve already discussed two reasons why these games are still proliferating like low-quality imitations of rabbits, there’s one in particular I’d like to examine: the numbers.

In games of all kinds, numbers play a big part. Whether it’s calculating how effective an attack is in an RPG or measuring how well you performed, numbers are omnipresent in games. In life, too, there’s all sorts of numbers to worry about, from grades to credit scores to bank account numbers. In today’s society, numbers have become more important than ever, and that’s what makes slot machines so appealing – the instant gratification of being able to press a button and make a number go higher.

And it’s that easy, instant appeal of being able to make a profit from minimal effort that encourages entrepreneurs to endlessly spit out casino game copies. Remember: when you hit that “Download” button, you’re helping support the creator, even if you’re not paying a single penny or even a single second of your time, and by downloading games like these you’re supporting unoriginality and laziness over thought and effort. Remember to think before you support – this applies to all aspects of life, not just mobile gaming.