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Pachinko 3D Casino Games

If you live outside of Japan, there’s a chance that you may be unfamiliar with the concept of pachinko. These machines have been exported to other markets as well, but they are certainly a Japanese creation and obsession. Similar to vertical pinball machines, these gambling games feature many small balls that fall into locations, some of which may earn prizes for players.

Patagonia Entertaiment has taken the name of pachinko and used it as a part of a line of their popular online bingo games. It’s a bit of an odd pairing, as the two games don’t have much in common, and this title is definitely based on bingo rather than the infamous machines. But that doesn’t mean that this game isn’t entertaining of fun to play, and the theme does come through a bit even with the bingo framework.

Japanese Theming, Classic Bingo Action

Pachinko 3D tasks players with making patterns on up to four bingo cards. At the start of the game, you’ll be in control of just how many tickets you want to play: all four are active at the start, but you can click on any of them to toggle each on or off. In addition, you’ll need to set a bet size at the bottom of the screen. Each card will receive the same bet, and these are measured in credits, which are generally valued at 0.25 units of the currency you’re playing in.

The cards themselves are derived from North American, 75-ball bingo games. They each feature a 5x5 grid of numbers, with the center square being a “free” spot – in this case, represented by a smiling cat. With bright pastel colors and music that sounds vaguely Japanese, this give the entire game a bit of a “Hello Kitty” vibe: the whole thing is pretty cute, and if the music starts to annoy you, it’s easy enough to turn it off in the settings menu.

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Pachinko 3D

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Once you’ve set up your bets, it’s time to get the action started. Clicking on the play button will send a series of balls down into a large area at the center of the screen. Each of these balls has a number on it, and if that number matches any of the spots on your tickets, those spots will be marked off. As the balls continue to be released, you may make winning patterns on your cards. If this happens, the game will briefly slow down so that you can see where you’ve made a win.

One of the interesting things about this title is the number of unique patters that you can make in order to score prizes. In fact, the majority of these patterns are based on the name of the game: each of the letters in “PACHINKO” can be formed in order to win at various payouts. There are also a handful of other patterns – on the high and low ends – that you can score with. The payout structure is as follows:

  • Four Corners: 2x
  • Two Lines: 8x
  • O: 10x
  • K: 15x
  • N: 20x
  • I: 25x
  • H: 30x
  • C: 50x
  • A: 100x
  • P: 150x
  • Perimeter and Inner Corners: 1,500x
  • Bingo (Full Card): 3,000x

In the initial phase of the action, 44 balls will be released into the lower pen. At the end of this period, you’ll be able to see how many patterns you’ve made so far. If you’re happy with how things turned out, you have the option of stopping at this point.

However, there is also the possibility of purchasing additional balls in order to improve your chances of winning. Each extra ball comes at a cost in credits that is determined by how much you stand to win by taking it. If there’s no risk of you winning a top prize, it might only cost you a credit or two to take the next ball; if you’re just off filling a couple cards, you can expect to have to pay a lot more.

In any case, these decisions are entirely optional. If you want to stop the game at any point, you can click the “NO” button to end play. Alternately, you can hit the extra ball button to get a new number. You may request an extra ball up to 10 times; after that, you’ll be forced to stop.

Special Features Add to Gameplay

There are a handful of additional features that serve to add some value for players and mix up the game flow a bit and add variety to the action. For instance, the game will occasionally offer you free spins at random; these games will be played at the same stakes levels as the round that triggered them, and you’ll still need to pay for any extra balls you want to buy at the end.

Speaking of extra balls, there is one occasion when you may not have to pay for an additional number. At the end of the opening 44 ball drop, you may see a “free” symbol appear over one of the extra ball spots. If you purchase some of these extra numbers, there will be no cost to take the one that appears in this spot (though you will still have to pay for any other balls you buy).

Finally, there’s also the opportunity to win a jackpot if you have an especially good round. In order to be eligible, you’ll first need to play all four cards and play for a minimum of three bets on each. If you’ve met that requirement, then fill an entire card without purchasing any extra balls, the jackpot is yours!

A Very Small Dose of Strategy

Pachinko 3D, like most bingo games, is one in which your results will ultimately be determined by luck. There’s nothing you can do to influence what numbers are selected, nor what patterns emerge on your cards. Like most specialty games, that means that the house edge is what it is (though we don’t have an exact figure on the return to player in this game), and there isn’t anything you can do to change this.

However, there is one spot in which smart decision making could be important. As in the rest of the Patagonia line of bingo-based games, the purchase of extra balls is normally a bad idea, as the cost is calculated to be more expensive than what the “fair” price would be. However, the inclusion of some free balls does change this a little bit. Because the house edge isn’t outrageous, it’s well worth paying for one or two balls in order to get to a free one. In fact, if the price is low enough, it might be worth paying for even more: if you’re two spots away from a good payout, the game may price buying new numbers very cheaply for the time being – opening up the possibility of getting within one spot of a big prize cheaply, then getting a free extra ball for a chance to win that reward.

A Fun Game with a Misleading Title

Let’s get the obvious out of the way here: Pachinko 3D is not, in fact, a pachinko game. It has very little in common with the machines that give this product its name, other than the bit of Japanese theming we’ve already discussed. This is unabashedly a bingo game, and will appeal only to those who enjoy that sort of action.

That said, this game isn’t bad at all as far as bingo games go. There’s a lot of fun here, thanks to the wide variety of patterns that win prizes and the attractive presentation. The lack of a bonus round is surprising when compared to many of the other games created by Patagonia, but nonetheless, there’s still enough variety here to keep bingo fans happy for a long time. As long as you’re not expecting something that resembles pachinko, we think this title can provide players with a highly enjoyable experience.

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