24 Hour Grand Prix: Overview
Red Tiger partner studio R7 revs up their engine in the racing-themed slot 24 Hour Grand Prix. Set in the past, this retro era of driving is full of dream cars, rocking tunes, and a fair amount of attitude. While powering to the finish line, players get stacked symbols, two-reel wide Super Wilds, and free spins where low the pay symbols have been removed.
While the most famous all-day race is Le Mans, 24 Hour Grand Prix has more in common with the Monaco Grand Prix. The 6-reel, 30-payline game area is backgrounded by tight twisting corners by the sea, the very essence of the principalities' Formula 1 race. Motorheads will go weak at the knees over the cars used in the game, which include what looks like a Ford GT40, a Ferrari 330 P3, and a Porche 906 Carrera. All are nice looking motors whatever they might be.
Audio is one of 24 the strong points in the game. Engine noises add excitement to Super Wilds when they stack across the reels, yet it's the music that's the real winner. Jamming across the base game is a rock meets blues track, sort of uber-cool Rolling Stones. It's easy to picture Keith Richards, cigarette balanced on a lower lip, face scrunched into an expression of unadulterated joy as blue notes pour forth from his magical set of fingers. It's just as cool during the bonus game, where it kicks up several gears while sliding round corners.
Players join the race by selecting bets of 10 p/c to £/€40 per spin, on any device. Being an R7/Red Tiger product, the RTP is unsurprisingly below average on 95.73%. Not hugely below, though and in line with the 'new' standard. Winning combos light up the screen on visible paylines at a hit frequency of 3/5. Not sure exactly what that rating translates to, but hits are quite frequent and often include multi-line wins due to stacked symbols. Slightly higher is the volatility, rated 4/5 on Red Tiger's proprietary scale.
24 Hour Grand Prix is a straight forward slot, with no hidden complexities to be aware of. Winning combinations are formed of three or more matching symbols, landing across the 30 fixed paylines. Nine regular symbols make up the paytable, 4 low pay card suits, and 5 high pays. The high pays are all racing cars, worth from 3.8 to 11.4 times the stake for five of a kind. As mentioned, symbols can land stacked to create full-screen wins up to 342x at the most. Better returns are possible from the Super Wilds which substitute for all paying symbols. Fill the reels with Super Wilds for a win of 1,050 times the stake.
24 Hour Grand Prix: Features
Well you wouldn't class 24 Hour Grand Prix as a feature-rich slot. Along with Super Wilds, the only other extra is a round of triggered free spins. You can't land Super Wilds directly. Instead, when 2 adjacent reels are stacked with the same high paying symbol, an animated 2x4 sized Super Wild is created in their place.
When 3 or more Race Spin scatters land in view, the Race Spins feature is triggered. Exactly 3 scatters award 10 free spins, while every additional scatter in view increases free spins by 5. What makes Race Spins stand out, is that all low pay symbols are removed from the reels.
24 Hour Grand Prix: Verdict
Despite the so-so stats and limited gameplay, 24 Hour Grand Prix is actually kind of fun. What helped was the soundtrack/graphics combo which produces a hint of the reckless, drivers smoking fags and knocking back cans of Stellar while they raced era. R7 made the inspired choice of using retro motors rather than their modern-day counterparts. They could have squeezed more out, but the theme has been quite well utilised. With a bit of imagination, you can pretend you are in the 1960s. Back when cars were far less safe and drivers won through a combination of grit, determination, a dash of talent, plus a shed load of luck.
As to the gameplay, it's not as freewheeling as the theme. Super wilds are useful, but they often appear on the fourth and fifth reels, not accomplishing much a lot of the time. Free spins too, can be equally frustrating, despite the removal of low pays. In truth, it does get repetitive, but then again, non-racing fans might raise the point that repetition is the very essence of watching cars go around and around a track for 24 hours. Should all the features fall into place, then potential of up to 2,166 times the stake is available for the winner.
If you look past the underachieving numbers you might just get a glimpse of the laid-back golden age of racing that the studio aimed for. It would have been great if R7 had really run with the theme and pushed it harder. Jammed the accelerator on the potential, expanded the features, sweetened up the visuals by using more animations perhaps. What they have made isn't bad for what it is, provided you can look past the sub-par stats. If you're okay with the numbers and want to get your motor running, 24 Hour Grand Prix might be okay for a few cheeky spins.
24 Hour Grand Prix has a certain level of enjoyability, but could have been closer to pole position if the developers had dropped in a gruntier engine.