Cartoons are a popular way of making casino games and slot machines, whether online or in physical establishments, even more attractive to users. They engage the gambler, or player, drawing him or her into the game with illustrations of fun and often recognisable characters. The cartoons are sometimes created exclusively for the slot game, but other times these products use franchised characters from the world of comic books, TV and film.
Familiarity with much-loved cartoons attracts players to a machine, or game, acting as an effective hook.
Some of the popular franchise cartoons that have appeared on physical slot machines are The Flintstones (featuring the now famous Yabba Dabba Do bonus), The Simpsons, Batman, Superman, Scooby Doo and Wacky Races. Online slot games are often themed with well-known cartoons, including Garfield, South Park and Top Cat. The Disney Company, which has long been famous for its animated cartoon films, has an anti-gambling policy. It recently decided to phase out slot machines from Las Vegas featuring Marvel comic characters, having bought out Marvel Entertainment in 2009. But that’s just the extent of it.
Use of cartoons, comic book heroes, movie stars and popular themes in slot games is not only intended to draw players and gamblers in. This may seem to be the case from the viewpoint of the outsider, but in fact physical and online casinos are an important means of promotion for the franchise owner. They keep the cartoon characters and movie icons in public view long after the film or comic book has aired. A case in point is King Kong, a film that never really leaves public consciousness. Ghostbusters, too, has been turned into a slot game, despite that the classic original is over 30 years old. Constant exposure of cartoon or film characters assists the market for merchandise and keeps warm the potential for a comeback, or sequel.