Mercy of the Gods (NetEnt): Review
Fans of NetEnt's progressive jackpot slot Divine Fortune (2017) will instantly recognise the mechanics at play here. A near clone of the aforementioned game, Mercy of the Gods was first released as an exclusive before being made available across all NetEnt casinos. Aside from the new theme, some minor tweaks to the paytable, and a 0.05% increase in the theoretical return to player, there's nothing new to discover in terms of featyres if you're already familiar with the original, which, by the way, proved to be a hit for NetEnt. There are some important differences between the two, however, which we will highlight in our review.
With smaller, but more achievable progressive jackpots, Divine Fortune has generated more than a few life-changing wins since its release, and keeps doing so regularly as been noted in Casumo's monthly big win reports. In January 2019, a happy player landed the 5th biggest win of the month after triggering a £109,272.44 jackpot, in February 2019, it was responsible for the single biggest win on Casumo after one player landed a €45 107,63 win on a €0.40 stake, and in September last year we wrote a story on a player who won £146k on a £1 spin!
Both Divine Fortune and Mercy of the Gods are local progressive jackpot slots, which means that the jackpots are collected locally on the casino they're hosted on and not network-wide as is the case in multi-million progressives such as Mega Fortune Dreams and Mega Moolah. Though smaller in size, these jackpots are much more likely to drop.
Set in ancient Egypt with a typical faux-Arabic soundtrack playing in the background, Mercy of the Gods utilises a setup of 5 reels, 3 rows and 20 paylines. It comes with the Gift of Life Re-Spins where you'll see wilds move one position downwards with each re-spin, continuing if new wilds appear in view. The Gift of Double Wilds feature sees wild expand to cover the full reel for enhanced wins while also re-activating the re-spins. There's also a Free Spins round where both previously mentioned features come into play, but the reason most will play this slot is the progressive jackpot which can be triggered in the Gift of Wealth Jackpot game. You can play it across all devices from 20 cents to 100€ per spin.
The artwork is excellent, as usually is the case with NetEnt, and the attention to detail is spectacular. Set at the gates of a pyramid and with Anubis statues resting on either side of the reels, you will see lower-value A to J royals alongside more rewarding Tutankhamun figures, scarab beetles, and Horus (God of the sky). The most valuable symbol is the female explorer - 5 on a payline yields 80 times your stake. There's also a wild symbol included in the set which substitutes for all regular symbols.
Mercy of the Gods (NetEnt): Features
The most frequently triggered feature is the Gift of Life Re-Spins feature. It comes into play when one or more wilds appear in view. Each wild will then proceed to move one row downwards at a time on each re-spin until falling out of view. Should more wilds land on the reels, the re-spins continue. If a wild symbol lands behind another wild in the Gift of Life Re-Spins, it will expand to fully cover the reel while also re-activating the Gift of Life Re-Spins feature. This is known as the Gift of Double Wilds feature.
There's also a Free Spins feature to benefit from in Mercy of the Gods. Land 3, 4 or 5 scatter symbols anywhere on the reels to gain 5, 8 or 12 free spins respectively. Here, you only need one wild to trigger the Gift of Double Wilds feature, which also triggers the Gift of Life Re-Spins in the same way as in the base game.
Lastly, and the only good reason to play this slot, there is the Gift of Wealth Jackpot game. The jackpot chamber is entered when 3 or more bonus symbols are collected on the same base game spin or during the Gift of Life Re-Spins feature. When triggered, your collected symbols will then be randomly placed on the jackpot game reel set. Starting with 3 spins, if a bonus symbol hits, the number of spins resets to 3 again.
Now, while each bonus symbol comes with a random cash prize attached to it (between 10 and 200 times your stake), what you really want to do is to fill entire rows with bonus symbols. If you fill one row, the Minor jackpot equivalent to 20 times your stake is won. If two rows are filled with bonus symbols, the Major jackpot is triggered, giving you 100 times your stake. Fill the entire screen with bonus symbols and the progressive Mega jackpot will be yours!
Mercy of the Gods (NetEnt): Verdict
Though Divine Fortune and Mercy of the Gods are identical in terms of mechanics and features, there are some important mathematical differences between them you should be aware of. First of all, Mercy of the Gods benefits from an enhanced paytable that offers higher payouts outside of the jackpots (1600x vs 600x). Mercy also appears to be slightly more volatile with a lower hit frequency (17,64% vs 20,33%), and with more RTP allocated to the free spins when compared to Divine Fortune.
This comes with a price, however. While the progressive jackpot is likely to grow bigger on Mercy of the Gods, the odds of triggering it is lower. For example, you have a 1 in 3355 chance to trigger the Major jackpot in Divine Fortune, but only a 1 in 3674 chance to do it in Mercy of the Gods. The conclusion we can draw from this is that Mercy of the Gods is better balanced out of the two, offering decent potential throughout. Divine Fortune, on the other hand, is a merciless slot that is all about the progressive.
Overall, both are two very strong jackpot slots with excellent graphics and of outstanding production quality. With the original already having proved itself as one of the best jackpot slots on the market, there's a high probability that Mercy of the Gods will follow suit.
Mercy of the Gods (NetEnt)
● Reels: 5
● Rows: 3
● Paylines: 20
● Default RTP: 96.64%
● Max Payout: 1600x
● Variance: M/H
● Bets: 0.20 - 100 EUR
● Features: Gift of Life Re-Spins, Gift of Double Wilds, Free Spins, Gift of Wealth Jackpot
● Release Date: July 4, 2019
Bigwinboard Rating - 78%