Developer: 24x7digital
Price: $1.99
Version Reviewed: 1.0

Graphics / Sound Rating: ★★★★½
Game Controls Rating: ★★★★☆
Gameplay Rating: ★★★★½

iPhone Integration Rating: ★★★★½
User Interface Rating: ★★★★★

Re-use / Replay Value Rating: ★★★★★

Overall Rating: ★★★★½

This is the game that I was looking for last week… just before I tried some bonehead moneymaking strategy on the craps table that lost me a few hundred dollars. I go to Vegas quite often for the ever so welcoming tables and the free drinks that are brought to you while you play. At some point in the last year I lost sight of what works, and I started referencing craps books that contain every scheme imaginable for making money. It’s not that these craps books show only bad strategies, it’s just that you shouldn’t try to practice the strategies in Caeser’s Palace with your own money. With this in mind, I would try to consider a game like this a reference tool… or maybe a even a training tool for the betterment or your craps play.

Aw Craps! is a craps simulation without all the fluff that is in some of the other casino games. There is a table, two dice, and some money to start with. The table in the game has just about every bet you would see on a Vegas table, excluding the somewhat rare world bet and firecracker bets. Every bet has a submenu that not only explains the odds of the bet being placed, but in the information tab, tells you what the bet is. The information provided is very thorough, and sometimes bluntly helpful. For example, when you click on the Big 6 or Big 8, information box tells you that “Big 6 is never a good bet. Make a place bet on the 6 and get 7 to 6 odds instead”. Reading on in the information area, I learned that the Big 6 only gives you 1 to 1 odds, and that I am making the same bet when placing the 6, except for the fact that the place bet will make me more money. It’s a shame really… every time I see that Big 8 in Vegas I think, “this has to be better than the regular 8″. Such a shame. Moving on.

The gameplay is extremely simple… so simple in fact that some of my friends who have never played craps in their lives lost money like a real craps pro. The beginning options seem few, much like a real Vegas table, but in fact contain functions that I don’t typically see in digital craps games, such as the option to change which bets you want to have working on the coming out roll. The dice are controlled by tapping and simply flicking them across the table, and if needed for learning, let’s you manually choose what the dice outcome will be. The throwing action seems quite simple, but it looks and feels really really nice. The dice rolling alone makes this one of those apps that you would show in an Apple store to wow a customer. It’s pretty, trust me. The sound of the game is extremely basic… maybe too much so. The clicks of the chips and the clank of the dice roll are all there, but not hearing the table guys saying “YO 11″ made me long for an actual table. I had a friend say “YO 11″ behind me whenever an 11 came out for a while, but it just wasn’t the same.

My only gripe with the game is the touch responsiveness. Usually it’s spot on, but I’ve noticed some issues with clicking on chips. The game is set up to make you click on your winnings to accept them, but there are many times that I will click on the chips and the info screen from the space the chips were on will pop up. It’s not a big deal and it doesn’t happen too often, but it is something that could be done better. Making the chip touch area larger would resolve the problem, and I would expect that it will be fixed in version 1.1.

This is a game that I will be playing years from now while preparing for a fun (disastrous) trip to Vegas. It’s an expertly made Vegas sim, missing out on only the guy saying, “YO 11″ and the drink lady giving you the liquid courage to play on. If you like Craps at all, or just really want to learn, you should really look into buying Aw Craps!.

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