Al Murray`s Golden Game

Published: 12/03/2013

Known far and wide for his stand-up persona and quick repartee, British comedian Alastair James Belshaw Hay “Al” Murray is the creator of one of the U.K.’s most endearingly irritating and funny characters, the “Pub Landlord.” As a mock-xenophobic but stereotypical public house licensee, Murray has become the perfect subject of a complete line-up of U.K. fruit machines, installed in pubs that he would certainly embrace as quintessentially “British enough” for patrons’ enjoyment.

In 2012, slot manufacturer JPM gave their interactive division the task of converting the popular machines for play on the Internet. The result has been a number of Al Murray the Pub Landlord specials, not the least of which being “Al Murray’s Golden Game.” It has all the features one might look for in a 3-reel, 5-payline pub fruit machine, including reel holds, great bonus games and sound effects that feature the Pub Landlord himself.

In fact, JPM Interactive’s Managing Director Andrew Davies has said that Al Murray’s Golden Game is “much more than the standard offering of a themed game endorsed by a celebrity. Through the use of sound bites and catchphrases recorded by the comedian himself, our game designers have created a player experience which feels like an encounter with Al Murray himself.”

To have a spin on Al Murray’s Golden Game, the player must first select an amount to wager, ranging from 25p to £10, before pressing the “Start” button. The reels will spin and come to rest, sometimes allow reels to be held in place for a re-spin. When that is possible, the “Hold” buttons below each reel will light up and automatically hold the best two reels. The player can, however, cancel the hold and start a new game or change the reels held.

Any winning combination will trigger the post-play bonus. The screen will display the game board with a number appearing on the reel at the centre and offering a “Hi-Lo Gamble.” The player may wager all the winnings on whether the next number on the reel will be higher or lower than the one displayed, or else skip the gamble and collect the amount won.

If the player chooses to gamble and is successful, the winnings may be gambled again up to ten times. Each win is indicated on the Cash Ladder appearing on the left. Otherwise the player may choose Collect at anytime.

Note that some of the numbers on the reel are marked “Epic.” Anytime one of them appears on a winning gamble, a scatter on the bonus panels is offered. Pressing “Stop” will award one of six prizes: “Lucky7,” where a spin on a 7 is a guaranteed non-losing spin; “No Lose” for a guaranteed non-losing spin; “Beer,” to collect one of three beers needed to access the Beer Money feature; “Extra Life,” to continue the game when a gamble is lost, the game continues; “Boost” for a random climb up the Cash Ladder; and “Swap Number” to get a better number on the Hi-Lo gamble reel.

Should the player collect all three beers, the Beer Money feature will be activated. The multipliers surrounding the Hi-Lo reel will light up. Pressing Stop will cause the arrow to stop on a multiplier and the award given is a multiplication of the current stake. This value is then unlit and the prize is added to the game winnings. Press Stop again to have another go and continue winning multipliers until the arrow lands on an unlit one or else all are claimed for a chance of a Beer Money repeater.

Another bonus feature on Al Murray’s Golden Game is the “Trail Gamble Ladder.” Some of the symbols on the reels of the main game are over-printed with golden beer kegs. Each keg will trigger 1, 2 or 3 steps up the seven-step ladder on the right side of the main slot screen. The ladder will randomly display “Trail Held” so that more kegs can be collected on the next spin; otherwise the trail returns to zero. Any win on a payline will zero the ladder, too.

If more than eight trail steps are collected, the game will switch to the upper game board and play out with the Hi-Lo Gamble just as if a win had occurred. The only difference is that the Cash Ladder used is the one that looks like a chalk board on the right with lower values. One other extra that can help attain the eight steps needed is a random “Bonus” awarded anytime the fourth step of the ladder is reached. The Bonus can be a free re-spin, doubling of the steps on the trail, doubling the value of the kegs on the reels, a random “Boost” in the number of steps, etc.

Although there are no wild symbols, scatter symbols or nudges, nor a progressive bonus, Al Murray’s Golden Game is plenty of fun, even when the Pub Landlord says, “All right Squire, you’ve had enough.”

Published on: 12/03/2013

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