Sunday, October 5, 2014

Batman slot machine

Pachinko parlors are ubiquitous in Japan. They're the one thing you're nearly guaranteed to see near a large train station. These extremely loud places have quite a variety of machines, blending traditional pachinko with slot functions, video, interactive elements, and so on. Previously I've written about the intersection of pachinko machines are pop culture.

The machines I've seen advertised have mostly featured crossovers with Japanese properties like Kamen Rider, Evangelion, pro wrestling, AKB 48, etc. Recently I saw a poster for something that caught my eye - a Batman machine. It's not surprising that out of the thousands of candidates for Western licensed properties, Batman was chosen. There are a good number of fans in Japan, which has a 50-year-plus history of producing some really interesting Batman goods.

Here's a look at a poster with Batman and a bunch of other machines:
 More after the jump:

 And one just for the Batman machine:

A clue that the machine features the cowled one along with plenty of villains.
Next up, the machine itself:
This is a straight up slot machine, with no pachinko functions. Like just about every other slot machine these days, everything's animated. Above the spinning slot portion is the video you can watch while playing. I think there are some interactive elements as you go along.

Quite a lot goes into developing one of these, from the console itself to the gameplay, animation, etc. This machine costs 20 yen per go. That doesn't sound like much, but it sure does go!

The video is a story that slowly progresses as you play.

Finally, here's a look at the glossy instruction booklet you get at the pachinko/slot parlor:

Game play instructions, which you might need since these games are becoming more and more complex.

Here's a nice look at the characters in the game.
Some years back, I saw a Star Wars themed machine, which was interesting too. But these newer machines are really something else - certainly worth a look, but you might want to bring ear plugs, because you literally have to yell to talk to someone next to you.

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