Crystal Mirror: Overview
At first glance, Crystal Mirror might look like another unmemorable Red Tiger slot designed to pad out an operator’s line up. However, the game has a few elements that can combine to provide some pretty decent moments. Let’s engage in some mirror-gazing to inspect what they might be.
The first impressions aren’t overwhelming, but aren’t bad either. Red Tiger has gone for visuals which are simple yet pleasing to the eye; the dark tones accentuating the glitz of all the jewelled symbols. It’s sort of like a club which hung up a few extra mirror balls to hold a Euro riche theme night for punters to act like decadent members of the landed gentry. The music is relaxing though, strangely matching the game’s display of bling.
Playable from 10 p/c to £/€20 per spin, the action takes place on a 6 reel, 4-row game area. Despite all that real estate, players get just 20 paylines to land winners on. Before the setup makes your skin crawl, there are a few features which do their best to make the most of all the room. The main one is the mirrored effect of the reels. It’s as if there is a mirror running down the centre, reflecting the symbols on either side of the grid. More on that in the features section.
On the mathematical side of things, default RTP is the familiar Red Tiger figure of 95.77% while volatility hovers in the medium+/high range. Wait time for free spins can be trying at times, but often worth it due to the enhanced features they bring. There is nothing in free spins that isn’t in the base game as such, but one tweak to the way wilds behave makes all the difference to the bonus game.
Along with a wild and a scatter there are 9 regular pay symbols grouped into lows and highs. The 4 low pays are made up of jewelled card suits – clubs, spades, diamonds, and hearts, worth 0.6 to 1.5 times the stake for six of a kind. The high pay symbols, meanwhile, are all crowns, of increasing intricacy, from a plain gold band to an elaborate neck ache inducing get up. Land six matching crowns on a payline for payouts of 2.5 to 8 times the stake.
Crystal Mirror: Features
Central to the gameplay is the Mirrored Reels feature. On every spin, the first and last reels mirror each other, landing identical stacked symbols. The same goes for reels 2+5 and 3+4 which also mirror each other as they spin in synchronization. Since symbols can landed fully stacked, full-screen wins are possible during the base game while the chances of that happening increase during free spins.
Running alongside the mirrored reels feature are super wilds, nudges, and free spins. The 1x4 Super Wild, which looks like a giant potion bottle, may land fully or partially in view. In the base game, if the Super Wild is partially in view, it may be nudged to cover the full reel.
Keep an eye out for the swirling scatter - landing 4 or 6 scatters during the base game awards 10 or 15 free spins respectively. Once in, fully visible Super Wild symbols are locked in place for the duration of the feature. Also, partially visible Super Wilds are always nudged to cover the full reel.
Crystal Mirror: Verdict
Red Tiger is a prolific developer, currently firing off slots off at a prodigious rate. On the one hand, they’re making slots like Gonzo’s Quest Megaways which sent shockwaves through the gambling community. On the other, they release a lot of mediocre slots like Crystal Mirror. Within seconds you know you’re playing a Red Tiger product. Paytables look the same; the gold spangled visuals are similar, not to mention the tell-tale piling on of paylines after a win. These slots typically don’t cause much more than a ripple, but there are a lot of them and they are increasing at an exponential rate.
Crystal Mirror finds itself squarely in this camp. It’s got the glitzy Red Tiger sheen, while underneath; the stats aren’t exactly a winning highlight. The base game isn’t super exciting either, though nudging/super wilds are there to knock out okay wins while you wait for the free spins.
The bonus games took some patience to arrive, but they could be pretty entertaining. And indeed, free spins are where the magic of locked wilds and mirrored reels come together. The best result occurred when 4 wilds were locked on reels 2-5 while mirrored symbols landed on reels 1 and 6. It meant hits on every remaining free spin from then till the end of the feature.
Due to the low number of paylines, and modest symbol value, a full screen of the premium crowns is only worth 120 times the stake. As such, we came nowhere near to cracking Crystal Mirror’s full potential of 5,240 times the stake, but it was a fairly satisfying outcome nonetheless.
All up, Crystal Mirror is another one of these Red Tiger slots which is unlikely to make an impact. However, it’s not bad either, owing to the duel interplay of locking super wilds and mirrored reels in free spins creating chains of consecutive wins. It might not create a long lasting impression, but enjoyable sessions are nonetheless possible when Crystal Mirror does its thing.
Crystal Mirror might appear to be another Red Tiger throwaway at first, but a coming together of components during free spins provides a saving grace.