15 Arcade And Casino Facts You Never Would Have Guessed

Posted Jun 02, by Val Liarikos [+]

One of Saturn’s moons closely resembles the Death Star and Pac-Man.

Discovered in 1789, Mimas is the twentieth-largest of Saturn’s 62 moons. It is also the smallest known astronomical body that is thought to be have a round shape due to self-gravitation. Other than that, Mimas is largely unremarkable...unless you are a nerd! From the right angle, anyone who is familiar with the Star Wars films will immediately notice an uncanny resemblance to a certain weaponized space station! This unusual comparison is due to the fact that its surface is marred by an enormous indentation called the Herschel Crater that looks just like the Death Star’s superlaser!

Another geeky reference can be seen when looking at a map of daytime surface temperatures on Mimas. As with most normal celestial bodies, scientists expected that Mimas would exhibit a temperature reading much like that of Earth - warmer temperatures near the moon’s equator in the early afternoon that taper off as you move away from the center of the moon. However, this was not the case. For some reason the hottest temperatures were registered in the morning along the moon’s edge, in a pattern that looks just like Pac-Man, from the famous arcade game! Scientists expect that Mimas’s irregular heat pattern was likely caused by the impact which created the Herschel Crater many years ago. 
(source)


There are no clocks in Las Vegas gaming casinos.

There are no clocks in Las Vegas gambling casinos. It increases the sense of freedom, a disconnect from reality and thus, increases the dollars spent gambling.

Some other tricks casinos use:
1) There are no windows, so people don't know if it's day or night outside.
2) They design casinos to be like mazes so you can't find your way out.
3) They give free alcohol to the gamblers so they continue to gamble.

Citizens of Monaco are forbidden to enter the gaming rooms at the casino.

They check passports at the door to ensure it. The Monte Carlo Casino is extremely famous and located in Monaco. The James Bond film ‘Casino Royale’ was set there. The casino hosted the European Poker Tour grand finals for seven seasons.

The casino is owned mostly by the Monaco government and was opened to keep the House of Grimaldi from bankruptcy. I was there once when I was 16 and got turned away. It was a sad day.

(Source)


The Harmon Hotel in Las Vegas will need to be demolished before a single guest checks in!

The Harmon Hotel is part of an 8.2 billion dollar hotel project in Las Vegas. In the last couple of years, Las Vegas has been working on CityCenter, a 76 acre project right on The Strip. It sits adjacent to Monte Carlo and Bellagio hotels and will encompass condos, shopping centers, hotels, and a casino.

It’s the largest privately funded construction project in the history of the U.S. The Harmon Hotel was supposed to hold 400 rooms, 207 condos, salons, restaurants, and more. It was to define a new era of sustainable luxury, but its contractors are being accused of falsifying 62 reports and incorrectly installing reinforcement bars on 15 of the floors. Now, the hotel will be demolished in 2012 before ever opening its doors.

(Source)


Japan’s pachinko machines make over $2.2 trillion annually!

The popular slot machine-esque games are found in special gaming hubs throughout Japan and although gambling is illegal there, the pachinko machines don’t count as the winners only receive prizes like food, drink, or electronics.

Experts estimate that the revenue from the pachinko machines are four times the yearly revenue from regular, legal casino gambling worldwide! There are approximately 1.8 million machines in Japan and has gotten such a fanbase due to its videogame-like nature.

Many report that pachinko feels like any average videogame with the added bonus that you can win money! Many of the machines feature animated characters to motivate players to play longer and harder.

Unfortunately for the companies that produce pachinko machines, many believe that its popularity is starting to die down due to costly maintenance/regulations, the payoff being limited, and fans annoyed at spending almost $22,000 a year on the system.  

(Source)


The numbers on a roulette wheel add up to 666.

In most versions of the game, there are 37 pockets numbered 0-36, however in America we have an extra pocket labeled "00." Sinful or not, it's definitely one devil of a good way to gamble away a lot of money really fast!

Famous mathematician Voltaire became rich by gaming a math flaw in French lottery

Voltaire was quite wealthy. You might assume that his riches came from the sale of his many writing pieces. You would be wrong. Voltaire won the French lottery, and let’s just say he didn’t do it honestly.

Voltaire teamed up with a statistician at the time named Charles Marie de la Condamine. Together, they recognized a flaw in the lottery. It ran from 1728-1730 and was meant to raise money for the French government. However, Voltaire and Condamine noticed that the government was offering a sum of prize money that was far greater than what they would make by selling all the lottery tickets.

To increase their odds, Voltaire and Condamine bought a number of tickets and won the lottery. Voltaire’s share was 1 million francs. He was set for the rest of his life and free to write and observe as he pleased.

(Source)


The Acclaim, Activision and Accolade video game companies chose their names to be before Atari in phone books!

Accolade was a gaming company founded in 1984 by Alan Miller and Bob Whitehead, the same people who had previously started up the gaming company Activision.

Activision was the world’s first ever third party game developer. Miller and Whitehead chose the name Activision, because it came before Atari alphabetically and likewise they chose Accolade, because it came before Activision alphabetically.

Each was to make a statement of superiority over the rest; the whole “you want to be at the top of the list in the phonebook” idea. Later some other ex-Activision employees started up their own gaming company, Acclaim, named for, you guessed it: it being alphabetically ahead of Accolade.

Then, another group of ex-Activision employees said “hey, we can do it too!” and they started up Absolute Entertainment, which became the ultimate alphabetically first gaming company. So, the real question to ask is whose controller is bigger and better?

(Source)


Plants vs. Zombies was originally called Lawn of the Dead until George Romero put a stop to it.

PopCap is one of the best known names in casual PC and mobile game development. They’ve produced titles like Peggle, Insaniquarium, and the Bejeweled series. Today, Bejeweled and Plants vs. Zombies are both some of the biggest games in the world of casual gaming- behind Angry Birds, of course. 

“Lawn of the Dead,” as it was originally called, was titled as an obvious reference to George Romero’s famous Dawn of the Dead. Romero wasn’t too pleased with the reference, and so it was renamed Plants vs. Zombies. What’s funny is that Romero couldn’t quite escape the “Lawn of the Dead” name’s usage, because as many World of Warcraft players know, the Plants vs. Zombies questline in World of Warcraft is called Lawn of the Dead. 

World of Warcraft has had a good relationship with various PopCap games, including two promoted addons for PopCap games (Bejeweled 2 and Peggle). The purpose of promoting those games as addons was for players to be able to kill time while waiting in a queue without having to switch screens by playing a PopCap game in the World of Warcraft window. 

So yes, they put a game in a game so people could game while they game. Other retitled PopCap games include Bejeweled, originally titled Diamond Mine, and Peggle, originally titled Pego. 

(Source)


\"\" Left-handed people might have an advantage in playing video games.

At least, Gamestop seems to think so. They cite research from the journal Neuropsychology that claims lefties outperform righties in tasks that involve handling a lot of information and stimuli. This would include driving while talking, flying a plane, and, more importantly, playing video games!

The research has shown that data that is usually only processed by the left hemisphere of the brain of right-handed people is processed by both hemispheres in lefties. Anatomically, the connection between the two hemispheres is larger and better for left-handed people, which makes them process data more quickly.

You can see more of this explained here.


\"\" It is against the law to buy, sell, or import Mortal Kombat in Australia.

Instead of choosing to give the video game its strictest rating of R18 , the Australian Classification Board chose to ban all sales of the title outright. They take this law pretty seriously too - if an Australian chose to disregard this regulation and purchase the game anyway, they would risk paying a fine of $110,000 in Australian Dollars!

There are even more strange facts about Mortal Kombat. For example: Did you know that Mortal Kombat was responsible for the ESRB ratings system? Senator Joe Lieberman started congressional hearings on violent video games as a response to Mortal Kombat, pressuring the gaming industry to make a ratings system similar to the ones used by the film industry.


Arnold Schwartzenegger and Sylvester Stallone were blatantly traced for numerous 80s and 90s videogames!

When artwork in video games seems to look too realistic to be actually drawn by the artist, then it actually might be too realistic, as many vintage games have stolen images from movies, album covers, paintings and even other games. The subjects here aren't simply inspired designs or characters and this happened pretty often in the 1980s and 1990s. Crunch time would leave game producers in a pinch and without a character outline. So, they’d tell their illustrators to get creative from Schwartzenegger and Stallone movies, and they’d end up exact replicas basically.

Maybe, they didn’t tell their illustrators that and they just blatantly used their images to sell their video games. Either way, it happened all too often in those two decades. Had the original artists ever seen what the illustrators had done, they would have been up a creek without a paddle. There would be litigations and lawsuits happening everywhere and the gaming industry would have been hit hard.

(Source)


Goldeneye had 9 developers. 8 of them had NEVER worked on a videogame before!

GoldenEye 007 is a first-person shooter video game developed by rare and based on- you guessed it-the 1995 James Bond film GoldenEye. It was exclusively released for the Nintendo 64 video game console on 25 August 1997. The player is given the role of British Secret Intelligence Service agent James Bond, but also includes a split-screen multiplayer mode in which 2-4 players can compete in different types of deathmatch games.

It has become a huge hit with gaming and James Bond fans alike. However, despite being so successful, the game was developed by an inexperienced team; eight of its nine developers had never previously worked on video games. David Doak (one of the developers) commented in 2004; “Looking back, there are things I’d be wary of attempting now, but as none of the people working on the code, graphics, and game design had worked on the game before, there was this joyful naivete.”

(Source)


Korea has a law against teens under 16 playing video games after midnight!

South Korea has one of the largest and richest online gaming cultures in the world. They say that 8% of 9-39 year olds are addicted to the Internet. 

In South Korea, Internet cafes are popular with gamers, and estimates put the addiction rate for kids between the ages of 9-12 is 14%.

The government has become increasingly worried and is trying to find ways to curb the addiction problem. They are heavily involved in giving workshops and treatment for those with gaming addictions.

A law called the “shutdown law” or the “Cinderella law” was created by the Ministry of Gender Equality and Family. The law blocks online gaming sites at midnight for kids 16 and under, and it's caused many people to get angry.

First of all, kids can easily create gaming accounts with their parents’ information to continue playing past midnight. Secondly, not all gaming sites are blocked. Thirdly, parents feel they should have the ability to monitor their children’s gaming and that it is not the place of the government to restrict it.

The law is being questioned and the courts will end up deciding its validity.

(Source)


Mortal Kombat for the NES had no blood in it.

If you watch enough G4TV, this should be no surprise to you. During the purple reign of the SNES, Nintendo of America maintained a strict censorship policy that limited the amount of violence in the games on its systems. 

Then, like now, Nintendo was aiming to market a family console. When the notoriously gory Mortal Kombat began sweeping the gaming world, Nintendo refused to allow the level of violence that the game had on their system. 

The blood and finishing moves were toned down, so that when players were hit, cut, or stabbed, they would just sweat profusely. Check out a comparison image between versions here.

Gamers really hated the censorship. The Sega Genesis version, wasn't censored and gamers flocked to it. That version outsold the SNES one by a ratio of 3 to 1! This made Nintendo reverse course and allow the developers to put in anything they wanted for the sequel.

If you know much of Mortal Kombat, you might be wondering why after the first game, Nintendo started allowing the violence. Well until that point, video games weren’t rated in the same way. 

Mortal Kombat’s success was the trigger for the creation of the modern video game rating system in the US, and so Nintendo felt its censorship in that department was no longer needed. 

As a result, Mortal Kombat II on the SNES outsold the ports on other systems. If there’s nothing else to take away from this, it’s that thanks to gratuitous violence, we now have a safe and reliable way of knowing which games are appropriate for different age groups. 

(Source)


Join the Conversation