Gladiator Legends: Slot Overview
In these modern times of ours, there aren't always huge opportunities to feel like legends in the workplace. We might pull off some particularly tricky VLOOKUP or nail a presentation, but how many times do we get the chance to step back from victory in an arena, pulse thumping, dripping sweat, while 100,000 spectators go wild? There's a good chance this will never happen, and to be honest, this is probably a good thing since fighting in the Colosseum was a risky profession. Much better to take advantage of games like Gladiator Legends from Hacksaw Gaming which captures the spirit of the arena where it is possible to find glory without risking life or limb.
For players who like to pretend they're warriors on the reels, Hacksaw has made mental conceptualisation easier due to Gladiator Legends' exceptional presentation. If the studio had been on a 300 binge when designing the game, it wouldn't be a surprise because Gladiator Legends has a similar comic book meets real-life look that is thoroughly Frank Miller-ish. In the middle of the screen sits a 5-reel, 4-row game area amidst swords, arrows, ashes; the detritus of battle. If you are still not quite ready to get your war gear on, the darkly dramatic soundtrack might be enough to push you over the line for a spin. It's heavy stuff, and all the excuse armchair slot warriors could ever need to suit up for battle.
Playable on tablet, mobile, or desktop devices, slot gladiators can pick bets from 10 p/c to $/€100 per spin. It's highly volatile, Hacksaw having rated this part of the math model a full 5 out of 5, while the standard return value is 96.31%. There are also four bonus buy options affecting RTP, all of which are noted in the next section. Hit frequency, meanwhile, has been recorded at 26.71% and occurs when matching symbols land across one of the 10 paylines, starting from the leftmost side of the panel.
The pay symbols are made up of five low value 10-A card royals and five bloodied instruments of war. Landing five identical symbols on a payline is worth a payout of 0.5-1 times the stake when made up of low pays, or 5-30x the bet for the highs. Growling lion wilds land in any reel to replace any of the high or low paying symbols. If five wilds land on a line, they are worth 30x the bet as well.
Gladiator Legends: Slot Features
We're no experts, but there is a chance some professional gladiators honed their skill on one weapon whereas others trained on a variety of instruments. For Gladiator Legends, Hacksaw has taken the latter, scattergun approach, and stacked the game with a wide selection of features.
VS symbols expand into full-reel Duel Reel symbols, and have 2 multipliers, representing two gladiators; the gladiator's battle and the winning fighter's multiplier is applied to the entire reel. Note, VS symbols only expand in the base game if they can form a win. Also in the base game, Duel Reels can be wild with a multiplier or without. Multipliers in the base game range from x2 to x100, and if more than one is used in a win, the multipliers are added together before being applied to the win.
Champions of the Arena
This bonus is triggered when 3 Arena symbols are in view and starts with 3 spins that are reset whenever a VS symbol lands. Once in, keep an eye on the Reel Multiplier sitting above each reel - when a VS symbol hits, the winning Reel Multiplier replaces the current Reel Multiplier. Moreover, multiplier coin symbols can appear in this round – Normal Coins and Epic Coins:
- Normal Coins reveal a multiplier of x2-x10, which multiplies the corresponding Reel Multiplier above it.
- Epic Coins have multipliers of x2-x10 and multiply all Reel Multipliers. When spins run out, the sum of all Reel Multipliers times the bet is awarded.
Worth noting is that Duel Reels in the Champions of the Arena bonus have multipliers of x1 to x1,000.
Unleash the Beast
Unleash the Beast also starts with 3 spins and is activated when 3 Beast symbols land at the same time. As in the other bonus, spins reset whenever a VS symbol hits. Here, reels 1, 2, 4, and 5 have reel multipliers, but when Duel Reels hit, their value is added to the respective Reel Multiplier instead of replacing it. Reel 3 is the locked Beast Reel which is unlocked when a VS symbol has landed on all of the other 4 reels. When unlocked, reel 3 has a special Beast Duel multiplier which multiplies the other reels' Duel Multipliers before they are added to the Reel Multiplier. When the game ends, the sum of all Reel Multiplier is multiplied by the bet and paid. Lastly, in Unleash the Beast, reels 1, 2, 4, or 5 can have Duel Reel multipliers of x1 to x250, while the middle Beast Reel can have x2 to x20.
If available, players have the choice of four bonus buys:
- 10x the bet guarantees a game round with at least 1 VS symbol (RTP is 96.45%).
- 40x the bet guarantees a game round with at least 2 VS symbols (RTP is 96.4%).
- 100x the bet buys Champions of the Arena (RTP is 96.43%).
- 400x the bet buys Unleash the Beast (RTP is 96.46%).
Gladiator Legends: Slot Verdict
Hacksaw Gaming continues to successfully branch away from the sort of cutesy games they are famous for. We're certainly not taking anything away from their so-called lighter slots, yet the decision to explore a grittier path is paying healthy dividends for players. Slots like Wanted Dead or Alive and The Bowery Boys are solid examples of Hacksaw's exploration of the heavier side of life. The slot Gladiator Legends most closely resembles, however, is probably Warrior Ways due to the VS battles and Reel Multiplier collection features.
If anything, Gladiator Legends was a more exciting game to play than Warrior Ways. Hacksaw has done a number on the theme, creating an ideal environment for virtual warriors to test their mettle. It can be quite a test, too. Another thing Hacksaw pulls off with consistent regularity is crafting features or bonus games that can swing from feeling infuriatingly unfair to heroically spectacular in a heartbeat, and vice versa. Gladiator Legends drips this quality. Swapping out Reel Multipliers in Champions of the Arena can be a tough pill to swallow when a measly multiplier bumps off a juicy one. You can see why there is such a price difference between the two bonus games since Unleash the Beast's reel multipliers are persistent; they don't get swapped. They can mount up too, when the battle's going your way, up to 10,000x the bet at most.
Gladiator Legends is further evidence, if ever it was needed, of the breadth of Hacksaw Gaming's design talents. While the studio has plenty of expertise creating Canny the Can, mobile-friendly Candy Crush type slots, they are just as comfortable dropping players into tightly adrenalised situations to let them fight it out for potential glory.
Gladiator Legends is a ferocious, gladiatorial battle that takes players on a relentless, nail-biting ride.