Jackpot Raiders (Yggdrasil Gaming): Review
Largely based on the studios 2017 release Holmes & the Stolen Stones, and its 2018 clone twin Ozwin's Jackpots, Jackpot Raiders is not an entirely new creation, as experienced players will notice. In what Yggdrasil claims to be an "improved version", we leave Victorian-era London behind us to head out on a more sunny journey where we are joined by adventurers Sir Bear Buckingham and Sam Campbel on their journey to find the treasures of the Sunken City.
The format is essentially the same as its predecessors, albeit with some variations as you will see. Just like on Holmes and Ozwin, Jackpot Raiders utilise 5 reels, 3 rows and 20 paylines, and for every spin played, 3.8% of your wager is contributed to the jackpots, which are larger than on previous versions. Worth noting, however, is the 96.3% RTP, which is significantly lower compared to Holmes's 96.8% and Ozwin's 96.7%. In terms of features, there are 2 different free spin modes, 2 different bonus games, and a pick-and-click chest game to ensure you don't lose interest too fast while helping to fill up the 5 jackpots. You can play Jackpot Raiders across all devices from between 10 cents t0 40€ per spin.
Set in what could very well be the 1930s, and using a colour palette typical for the adventurer genre, it emulates the Indiana Jones look and feel quite well. While the base game takes place inside an old ship, you will get to experience other sceneries as well once you start triggering some features.
Visually, the quality is decent and the game is designed with a high level of detail, but there's something about it that seems a bit off and out of the ordinary. The texture comes off as more gritty, somewhat lower in quality, and not nearly as smooth as we otherwise know Yggdrasil games to be. Either it's just our minds playing tricks on us, or Yggdrasil has outsourced it to someone instead of using their usual designers. It would be interesting to hear from our readers if you agree or not.
Either way, spinning the reels you will come across 4 card suit symbols designed as maps. You'll also see backpacks, hats and our two adventurers, Sir Bear and Sam, the latter being the most lucrative, giving you 200 times your stake for 5 on a payline. There are no wilds included, but a compass scatter symbol appearing on all reels that will help you trigger the various features.
Jackpot Raiders (Yggdrasil Gaming): Features
Central to the game is the compass scatter symbol. If 2 of them appear in view anywhere on the reels, the Pick-and-Click Chest Game is activated. Here you will be presented with 5 chests and asked to pick one of them. Potential prizes include 20 to 80 coins, Jackpot Free Spins, the Treasure Hunt Bonus game, or 1 random Map towards your Map collection.
If you land 3 compass scatter symbols (5 of them will award 500x), on the other hand, you'll trigger the Compass feature in which either the Jackpot Free Spins or the Treasure Hunt Bonus game is awarded. Visually, the compass gives you the impression of there being a 50/50 chance to activate either of the features, but in reality, we found it to be in favour of the bonus game.
If you're awarded the Treasure Hunt Bonus game, you'll have the choice to play either as Bear or Sam in this mini-game. Bear is the less volatile option, offering a higher success rate, but lower prizes, while Sam is the exact opposite. Once the feature gets underway, your character will have 3 attempts to cross the river and open the chest you have aimed for. There are 3 levels and each time a chest is opened, the game proceeds to the next level with higher awards on offer. Depending on which character, prizes can include wins of up to 1800 coins (90x), as well as collection maps, and relics.
If the Jackpot Free Spins round is activated, 10 spins will be played with a 3x multiplier. Most importantly, however, it's about collecting 5 gems of the same colour to trigger one of the 5 jackpots.
Pay attention to the Map spaces below the reels. There are 5 different maps to collect: the Summit Shrine Map, the Highland Gate Map, the Jungle Ruins Map, the Desert Tomb Map and the Templar Grave Map. Each Map only appears on its own reel and pertain to the fixed jackpot prizes above the reels. All new players get 2 Summit Shrine Maps and 1 of all the other maps to start their journey with. These maps can also be collected in the Treasure Hunt Bonus game and the Pick & Click Chest game. When a collection is filled with 5 matching maps, the Jackpot Free Spins is triggered with one gem head start towards that reel's Jackpot collection.
Significantly harder to trigger is the Sunken City Free Spins game which requires you to collect 5 relics in the Treasure Hunt Bonus. The rewards, however, are much higher - instead of a 3x multiplier, you get a 10x multiplier. Furthermore, you also get one of each gem head start added to the collection to increase your odds of triggering the jackpots.
Finally, and being a jackpot slot, most importantly, we have the 5 Jackpots which you can land in the Jackpot Free Spins round only. It should be mentioned that the probability to win the Jackpot in each spin is proportional to your bet size. The jackpots are progressive and always have the following starting values:
- Forgotten Jackpot - €40
- Rare Jackpot - €200
- Mythical Jackpot - €600
- Ancient Jackpot - €1 500
- Legendary Jackpot - €15 000
Jackpot Raiders (Yggdrasil Gaming): Final Verdict
With all the features included in the game, it's easy to forget that it's primarily a progressive jackpot slot. To play it as a regular slot, however, is useless as the payouts are extremely low, so unless you're in it to win it, you'd be better off playing a non-jackpot slot. Then again, that is an obvious point to make and one that could be made for nearly every progressive jackpot slot out there. Not counting the jackpots, the most you can win is 600 times your stake per single spin in the regular free spin feature and 2000 times your stake in the Sunken City Free Spins game, although just to trigger it could be considered somewhat of a feat in itself. In the end, all the features are just smoke and mirror to entice you to help fill up the progressives.
While the overall production quality is high and the game appears well balanced, we eventually grew a bit tired of the repeated Treasure Hunt Bonus animations with its usesless prizes, leading us to click frantically all over the screen to skip it. The Free Spin feature is much more rare and usually pays nothing while often teasing you with close call jackpot triggers, so be prepared to get burnt.
Both Holmes & the Stolen Stones and Ozwin's Jackpots seems to have worked well for Yggdrasil, two games we personally tend to avoid. The rare times we're struck by a sudden onset of jackpot mania, we usually tend to go for the classic massive ones such as Mega Fortune and Mega Moolah, but with the growing number of jackpot slots available on the market, it's getting increasingly hard to make a choice. Jackpot Raiders might get a few spins here and there, but there are far more interesting, fun and better built options out there in our humble opinion.
Jackpot Raiders (Yggdrasil Gaming)
● Reels: 5
● Rows: 3
● Paylines: 20
● Default RTP: 96.3%
● Max Payout: 4000x (€164,000)
● Variance: L (24/100)
● Bets: 0.10 - 40 EUR
● Features: Jackpots, Free Spins, Treasure Hunt Bonus Game
● Release Date: Out Now
Bigwinboard Rating - 63%