For a long while, I was fascinated by casino video games. Maybe since I was too young to actually play at a casino, I figured casino video games would simulate the casino experience without losing loads of money in the process. It’s a shame that nowadays casinos are inundated with digital slots and video poker machines, with maybe a blackjack and craps table here and there. It’s just not the same.
During my teenage years, I was playing one of these casino games, back when I had just gotten the fancy new Game Boy Advance. Though, it was a Game Boy Color game…
Probably the best quality picture I could find. If my box wasn’t crushed to hell, I’d just scan mine in.
Hoyle Casino is a game sponsored by the Hoyle game company, which primarily is a playing card company, though these days they’ve also branched out to publishing digital games based on TV shows like Ice Road Truckers. This game is also unique because it was one of the few games Sierra published for the GBC, with the others being sister title Hoyle Card Games and a version of 3D Ultra Pinball: Thrillride. Hoyle Casino came to other systems, but today I’m looking at the portable release.
Pulsar Interactive worked on this, and they were mostly known for Game Boy games like Barbie Fashion Pack, as well as assisting in Quest for Glory V and Blood & Magic, as well as IBM’s Manage This!, which is not a video game but they were more than proud to feature it on their website.
I figured I played this a bunch because of the aforementioned fascination with casino games. Plus since it was on a portable and this was before everybody had smartphones, it was a great time waster when you had nothing to do, which was fairly common in my high school years.
Now, my gold standard for casino games is Nintendo’s Vegas Stakes – both the original SNES version and it’s Game Boy counterpart – so let’s see if Hoyle Casino is good enough to dethrone the king of casino video games.
Hoyle Casino is a proud sponsor of VICE. I’m more of a MisterCard person, personally.
We’re introduced to this screen where you create your character, complete with portrait. It’s merely cosmetic, but I decide to go for the classy gentleman portrait for this one.
This game boasts “hundreds of game variations.” I’m not seeing hundreds, here.
Hoyle Casino has seven base games in it: Blackjack, Slot Machines, Craps, Roulette, Pai-Gow Poker, Video Poker and just “Poker.” Considering Hoyle is best known for playing cards, I’m not surprised how much poker games are in that.
As I select the Poker option, suddenly I am given a deluge of various choices.
More poker than you need. Not like these variants matter considering everybody just plays Texas Hold’em these days…
Holy crap, that’s a lot of poker games. They got most of the common ones, including Seven Card Stud that I remember playing in Vegas Stakes, as well as the now-iconic Texas Hold ‘Em, the one type of Poker everyone knows because it was on TV for a long while.