Review of Naked Gun Slots
Movie makers must have sensed in the late 1980s that the trends of the wacky, colorful decade would not continue too far into the ’90s, and the viewing audience’s appetite for silly slapstick would soon come to an end. Thankfully, the decade squeezed one more campy comedy into the video store in 1988 called The Naked Gun: From the Files of Police Squad! It was based on the failed ABC sitcom, Police Squad! that had bombed a few years before, so it was definitely a risky venture on the part of the producers.
At the time, people either loved this movie or hated it, and I think the same will be true for the slot. If you didn’t like the comedy then, there’s no way that this game will appeal to you since it’s filled with jokes and imagery straight from the film. And make no mistake – the comedy is just like the original source material: very punny.
However, if immature jokes and toilet humor are your cup of tea, continue on with this review and find out what’s in store. As my loyal readers are surely aware, I love puns – especially bad ones, so you know for sure that I owned Naked Gun on VHS. Let’s start the investigation!
Just because this is a game based on a gritty cop movie doesn’t mean that it can’t be splashed with bight, vibrant colors. At least that’s what the game’s designers must have thought because they poured pink all over this bad boy. Click on the images below to enlarge them and see what I mean.
If you’ve never seen the original Naked Gun films, this plot summary is going to sound pretty outrageous – which is exactly what the writers were going for. The film centers around Los Angeles police lieutenant Frank Drebin as he seeks to clear his partner’s name after he is falsely accused of narcotics possession after breaking up a drug ring down at the dock. The criminal activities are being lead by Vincent Ludwig, who after questioning by Drebin tasks his beautiful assistant, Jane to help him continue his investigation and get some answers.
As Drebin and Jane start to fall in love, Ludwig makes a deal with international evildoer, “Pahpshmir” to have Queen Elizabeth assassinated during her visit to L.A. for $20 million. Pahpshmir was seen earlier in the film as one of the participants in the meeting of evil world leaders who hate the United States, that was stumbled upon by Drebin in Beirut. The story crescendos at a California Angels baseball game as Drebin tries to save the Queen from a hypnotized Reggie Jackson who is attempting to carry out the heinous deed. Slapstick comedy ensues.
This slot from Blueprint Gaming unfortunately doesn’t dive too deep into the original plot of the film, and instead relies on character symbols and images to conjure distant memories of a movie that many players probably haven’t seen in decades. The storyline is definitely the weakest part of this movie-themed slot, but that doesn’t mean that all hope is lost – perhaps Lt. Drebin can still save the day.
Most of the original cast made it into the game as unique symbols, and the only two main omissions that I can think of are “Weird Al” Yankovic and Reggie Jackson. Thankfully they didn’t try to sneak an O.J. Simpson symbol in there as Nordberg.
- J (Jack)
- Q (Queen)
- K (King)
- A (Ace)
- Vincent Ludwig (Ricardo Montalbán)
- Captain Ed Hocken (George Kennedy)
- Jane Spencer (Priscilla Presley)
- Sergeant Frank Drebin (Leslie Nielsen)
- The Naked Gun Logo
- Police Car Light (Wild)
- Detective Badge (Bonus)
For once you’ll actually want to see flashing lights in your mirror because the Police Car Light symbol is the highest paying in the game, giving you 500 coins for five in a spin. Next is The Naked Gun logo with 400 coins, and Drebin and Jane follow that with 200 coins a piece for the same. Finally, Captain Ed and Vincent will hand over 100 coins each for 5 of a Kind.
Players on the hunt for big cash prizes will be happy to know that there is a Naked Gun Slots jackpot available, courtesy of the popular “Jackpot King” network. First you will have to trigger access to the unique jackpot area and from there you will play a totally different online slot machine to try to win the grand prize, which can easily be high 6 figures when it goes off.
Please believe me when I tell you that as you see those Jackpot King symbols start to fall on the reels your heart skips a beat in excitement. If you see 5 of them across the board make sure you stay conscious so you can select crowns in hopes of levelling up and getting to spin the “Wheel King”. Your life-changing progressive jackpot could then finally arrive, (if I don’t win it first!).
Now it’s time to call out the biggest problem with this game: there isn’t a real bonus round. Sure there are tons of free games modes with unique features and backgrounds, but there aren’t any dedicated bonus areas. This means that the game is basically a constant bombardment of spinning reels and police lights flashing, without a break to catch your breath. Obviously anyone who doesn’t like bonus rounds is going to be delighted to hear this, but I would think that the vast majority of players would like to mix things up with some unique bonus features.
That said, there is a great Roaming Wilds reel feature which will have you nodding along to the sassy song as the Wilds dance around the reels and fall into random positions. It’s triggered by 3 Wild symbols landing in one spin and they send the game into a frenzy with flashing lights and police sirens. As they patrol the board they can even call on additional Wilds for backup, and every time one shows up on the scene you are awarded with a free re-spin, only stopping once no more new Wilds fall on the reels.
An additional feature sees random Bonus symbols added to the reels to increase your chances of winning. I’ll take it.
Since there’s no true bonus round it’s a darn good thing that there are 4 different free spins modes in Naked Gun Slots, with all of them being based on some variation of Roaming and/or Expanding Wilds. Of course, all of these free spins are actually paid for by the low Return to Player (RTP) of 93.75%, which many veteran players will find extremely small.
You’re going to have to be on your toes in order to play all of modes though, because once you’ve triggered the free games you’re presented with a gamble option that allows you to accept the base prize or take a chance on improving it with extra Wilds and bonus features.
You are presented with 4 Case Files to select from and if you choose correctly you’ll “level up” to the next free games round that will give you more Multiplying and Roaming Wilds, then Expanding Roaming Wilds, then on the 3rd pick it’s Multiplying Expanding Wilds. If at any step of the way you choose wrong you’re given a random cash prize and sent back to the regular game without a freeroll.
All of the 4 free games modes give you a fixed 10 free spins along with the roaming Wilds, and in order they are:
- Home Run Free Spins: Roaming Baseball & Glove Wilds
- On the Edge Free Spins: Roaming Statue Wilds
- Stake Out Free Spins: Fish with Pen Wilds
- Crime Scene Free Spins: Chalk Outline Wilds
The escalating features are a little confusing at first glance but you’ll quickly learn what each offers. The 1st level gives you Roaming and Sticky Wilds, the 2nd level gives you Roaming and Sticky Wilds that expand if 2 collide, the 3rd level gives you Sticky Wilds that will give you a 2x to 5x multiplier if 2 collide, and the 4th level will give you Sticky and Roaming Wilds that expand when 2 collide and give you a 2x to 5x multiplier on your winnings. Simple, right?
The free games are triggered by 3 or more Detective Badge Bonus symbols in a single spin.
The graphics in this slot were very well done, which all experienced players will immediately expect from any slot that’s released by Blueprint Gaming. Clean game controls, sharp imagery, and smooth game play is how this casino software company has begun to separate itself from the rest.
Some of you will probably be surprised at the neon colors that were chosen for the playing card symbols and the bright pink that is heavily featured in all of the various bonus areas. The colors actually do a great job of cheering up the drab police office backgrounds that rarely change throughout the game, so I for one appreciate the choice.
As I mentioned above, Roaming Wild symbols are the real star of this title since they’re featured in all 4 of the Free Spins Modes, and when these babies go for a walk across the reels they do it very smoothly. The animation team gets an A+ for their efforts on this one, as well as the few other moving pieces that are contained in the game.
Audio & Soundtrack
There is a huge problem with the regular game soundtrack that I would have never expected from a company like Blueprint Gaming. The main song is on a terrible loop that stops each time the reels do, so trust me when I tell you that this game cannot be played with audios on while auto-spinning. It’s ridiculously annoying.
It actually sounds like many of the game’s audios are broken because they jump, skip, stop unexpectedly, and then restart with little rhyme or reason. The ultimate problem is that you cannot choose to mute only the music but keep the rest of the game audios on, so if you go without music you’ll go without all of the one-liners from the film, which are one of the main reasons that most of you will be playing it in the first place.
A rare high point of the soundtrack is a delicious saxophone-dominated funk jam that pumps up when you trigger the Roaming Wild Free Spins, and it sounds like it was inspired by the theme from Night Court. So if you’re playing the game on mute, make sure to turn the volume back on when you trigger this feature so you can hear what I’m talking about. Oh – and this one isn’t on a 3 second loop like the main song, which makes their other terrible audio choices even more confusing.
The song in “Home Run Free Spins” sounds like a cheesy medieval piece that would play as knights gallop across the countryside to rescue a princess. I think that most of you will probably agree that this was yet another strange audio choice by Blueprint. The rest of the game mostly has the same official sounding song that’s dominated by a classical horn section and strings.
The good news is that they included tons of audio clips from the movie that only play in specific areas of the game, so you’re usually caught off guard with a giggle when a rare soundbite drops. Classic lines like,
Aren’t you afraid that it might go off accidentally? and
Isn’t that right, Mr. Poopy Pants? intermingle with the high-energy songs that blast throughout the game.
However, I should warn sensitive players that quotes from the film get even more risqué than that with the likes of,
Sexual assault with a concrete dildo!?! Although I guess if you’re making a game about The Naked Gun you have to include the craziest parts, right? Still, this one did seem a little over the top.
This is a “must play game” for any fan of the original movies, and most of you will enjoy The Naked Gun Slots for at least a little while. However, with the extremely bad soundtrack and frantic free spins modes that are hard to keep track of, I think some of you will find it a little frustrating after a while.
To be honest, it kind of feels like this game was released without being given a final test by someone who is a seasoned slots player. I’m confident that if this would have happened the annoying songs and their sloppy loops would have been immediately flagged and the game would have been deemed as, “unplayable for long stretches of time”, and therefore the problems would have been fixed. I also believe that the person would have pointed out that having 4 free spins modes and no bonus round is a total waste of energy.
This all said, Naked Gun Slots is a fun little blast from the past if you only play it in short gambling sessions – Leslie Nielsen’s comedic genius alone demands that you give it at least one chance. Also, I realize that there are slots players out there who don’t like bonus rounds and prefer the simplicity of free spins, so if that describes you, you will probably find yourself enjoying this game a lot, (most likely on mute).
It’s sad that Detective Frank Drebin ultimately goes down in a repetitive and annoying game because we all know how he would have preferred things to be,
A parachute not opening, now that’s a way to die.
Well, that probably would have been a lot less painful than this game’s soundtrack. Let’s hope that a Naked Gun 2½ Slots is released soon…
Bonus Video of Naked Gun
I looked around for a while but couldn’t find a video that was really interesting about the original film so here’s a ridiculous video on the making of Naked Gun 2½. It’s not too long and it’s a must-watch for any true fans of the franchise. Enjoy!