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Sept. 30 2006
Playwize Poker and Casino - PS2 Preview
Release Date Publisher Developer Anticipation Players Price
30/11/2006505Bits Studios1-2$69.95

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Hardly pushing the PS2's graphics.
Casino and Poker themed video games seem to be quite numerous these days, and while many don't make it to the PS2 in Australia, there's still a few that eventually find their way out here (including the recently previewed World Championship Poker 2 which is also coming out through Red Ant - although in early 2007 after a recent delay). Now, Red Ant are about to release Playwize Poker and Casino on Sony's system, and it looks like covering all the bases, from card games, to table games which are all playable in four different virtual casinos.

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You're a "Looo-ser".
Upon starting the game it's possible to create your avatar from hundreds of possibilities. Players are encouraged to customise their on screen alter egos from a selection of different player models, outfits, and purchased accessories.

After being created you can then wander around the casinos, past the slot machines and video poker consoles until you find your preferred game. It's even possible to give the Wheel of Fortune a whirl. A deep system of rewards keep the player interst up: earn as many stars as you can to unlock new accessories and even new casinos!

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Selecting the casino...
Playwize Poker and Casino offers plenty of table games as well including roulette, craps, blackjack, baccarat and red dog, and poker games include Texas Hold 'Em, Omaha High, Super Hold 'Em, Pineapple and Crazy Pineapple. There's certainly enough variety there to keep you coming back for more.

Sadly there are a couple of features missing which the game could certainly be boosted by. The first is online gameplay which would, for the card games especially, keep you hooked for considerable time. Another feature - which would enhance the online mode - would be support for the Eye Toy for realtime video images - or even an avatar of yourself for other gamers to see.

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Blackjack is included of course.
Graphically Playwize Poker and Casino - like most casino and poker games really - is nothing to write home about. Unfortunately the screenshots we have here are pretty average in terms of capture quality, but they give you some idea. Then again if you're going to buy a game like this it was never going to be about the cutting edge graphics.

Yet again it looks like gamers are about to see another gambling title on the PS2. If this game has enough games to keep you occupied it may still be worth the purchase. At this stage Playwize Poker and Casino is aimed for a very late November or early December release in Australia.