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Best of Pam Droog

Gaming Guru

 

Joe's Yard Games Is the Perfect Summertime Slot

19 June 2005

Where I live everybody more or less keeps to themselves. It's peaceful but not exactly neighborly. Occasionally I wish I had a neighbor who likes to fire up the barbecue and invite everyone on the block over for some summertime fun and games. (I guess I could be the one to do that but I haven't yet.) So when I saw Joe's Yard Games video slot by IGT I knew I had to play. I figured that's probably about as close as I'll get to hanging out with the neighbors anytime soon!

Let's face it, shirtless, cigar-smoking Joe looks like a big fat slob. But he's dreamed up some clever competitions for his backyard contests and has everything one needs for a suburban Sunday afternoon, including these symbols: a cooler, badminton racket and shuttlecock, Frisbee, lawn mower, lawn chair, croquet, horseshoes, pink flamingo and a shish kebob. The wild symbol is a doghouse, the scene of some funny business when it comes up: sometimes a long, long dachshund exits (that's double points). Another time a pink poodle strolls by and gets the wiener dog's attention. Occasionally a tiny terrier comes out and performs a few flips.

The slot has two bonus rounds. The Balloon Toss Bonus starts when three Balloon Toss symbols land in any position on reels 2, 3 and 4. A lineup of contestants appears -- a boy, a girl, and a monkey (no explanation given) -- and water ballons start to fly. Well, not just water balloons, sometimes a bathroom sink is tossed. If a character catches the balloon, you win bonus credits. If the balloon breaks over a character's head, that character is out of the game. If someone catches the sink no credits are awarded. The round ends when balloons pop over all three characters.

The Back Yard Bonus starts when three, four or five Back Yard Bonus symbols land consecutively on a played line. Joe himself says, "Welcome to my back yard!" You select a contestant for whatever event will be held: a pogo-thon, big-splash, tire press, pie-eating and horseshoe contest. I could choose from a kid, a mom, a dog, a deep sea diver (again, no explanation given), a lady and a man. I picked the dog for the pogo-thon (a pogo stick made out of an umbrella). I advanced to the next event and kept advancing as my character's score was not the lowest.

Next I picked the kid, who juggled a bowling ball and bowling pins. Then I picked the lady who pitched horseshoes under her raised leg. I picked the kid again and this time he jumped on a trampoline to the edge of a swimming pool whereupon he fell in and a giant purple octopus appeared. Finally I picked the lady for the pie-eating contest at which she promptly fell asleep with her face in the pie. Equally zany is that the audience is composed of a snowman, a dinosaur and a penguin. What a neighborhood! Of course, all these antics can add up to big bonus points. The round ends when the chosen contestant has the lowest score in an event without tying, or after five events, when Joe says, "You sure are one heck of an athlete!"

If you're betting the max and five Joe's Yard Games symbols appear on a played line, you win the Top Reel Award, up to 300,000 credits.

With slots like Joe's Yard Games, who needs neighbors? You can have all the fun you want, and maybe win some money, without feeling like it's your turn to host the next block party.

Until next time, enjoy Life Among The Slots!