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Heartfelt, but rather unrealistic wishes like ruling the world, unlimited processing power or an evening playing poker with three celebrities usually fall into the sphere of competence of a fairy. In case one happens to show up in your home: don’t ask for that poker game. That’s already been taken care of, thanks to New World Computing. NWC-mastermind Jon Van Caneghem invited three class B TV celebrities of the mid-90s for a day of green-screen filming. The result is called Multimedia Celebrity Poker.

If you’re into TV series, then you’ll probably have no trouble recognizing the faces of your opponents. Sitting at the poker table are Jonathan „Riker“ Frakes (Star Trek: Next Generation), appearing somewhat tight-lipped; talkative comedian Joe Piscopo (Saturday Night Live), showing off his array of impersonations; and aging starlet Morgan Fairchild (Hotel, Falcon Crest), sitting stiff and generally trying not to look too lost. Digitized video clips, seamlessly integrated into the main frame, depict all actions and movements of the stars -- dealing, calling, playing cards. Separate clips for the three actors are played simultaneously to avoid „freezing“ of single persons; all are continuously in motion. The celebrities comment on the their cards and your success to create a relaxed and intimate atmosphere. The number of different statements is quite limited though; prepare to learn those one-liners by heart.

Multimedia Celebrity Poker knows eight different variants of poker. You may play combinations of five cards or seven, stud or draw, lo-ball or high, deuces wild or normal. In any case, it’s always you against the computer; a multiplayer option is not included. In addition to a relaxed round among friends, you can choose to advance levels in a tournament. You win if all opponents are broke, although nobody will undress at that point. Luckily. The program’s poker skill is mediocre; it’s playing fairly straight, rarely risking a bluff. The playing style of the three celebrities does not differ.

Ready to join the game? On second thought, maybe you should wait for the fairy.


Multimedia Celebrity Poker Windows 3.x Waiting for Piscopo again...
Multimedia Celebrity Poker Windows 3.x Ha! Caught Riker, I mean Frakes, smirking!
Multimedia Celebrity Poker Windows 3.x Outtakes: Three rich people having a good time.
Multimedia Celebrity Poker Windows 3.x These cards'll show them!

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Critic Reviews

PC Joker Oct, 1995 68 out of 100 68
PC Games (Germany) Oct, 1995 61 out of 100 61
World Village (Gamer's Zone) 1995 3 Stars3 Stars3 Stars3 Stars3 Stars 60
PC Gamer Sep, 1995 58 out of 100 58
Computer Gaming World (CGW) Sep, 1995 2.5 Stars2.5 Stars2.5 Stars2.5 Stars2.5 Stars 50
PC Player (Germany) Oct, 1995 16 out of 100 16
Power Play Oct, 1995 12 out of 100 12


Topic # Posts Last Post
May 95 release? 1 BurningStickMan (18027)
Dec 29, 2010


The video clips are saved in RAD Software‘s Smacker format (.smk), a popular video compression utility at the time.

Included on the CD are 26 outtakes, showing the three stars cracking jokes during filming. Apart from being a good laugh, these spontaneous, funny poker scenes open your eyes on how unreal the multimedia part of Multimedia Celebrity Poker really is. The good news: at least someone had fun with the program.

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-Chris (7562) added Multimedia Celebrity Poker (Windows 3.x) on Nov 11, 2000