Mystical Santa Megaways (Stakelogic): Overview
Stakelogic is ringing the sleigh bells with their latest slot Mystical Santa Megaways. It's also the first Christmas themed game across the desk to be powered by Megaways so far. It might only be November, but already the Christmas slot category is a filling up fast. It pays to get in early at this time of the year though. Take shopping for example. It's amazing how we leave Christmas shopping till the last minute when the shops are packed with people and light on gifts. Anyway, Stakelogic went big last time they used Megaways, so expectations were high with their sophomore effort with this popular game engine.
You are left in no doubt what the season is when Mystical Santa Megaways loads up. Yep, it's Christmas, alright. The 6 reel set up glitters with festive spirit, while the snow-coated trees in the background and the purplish night sky set the mood. Crossing the moon in the top left corner is Santa and his sleight, so this is Christmas Eve in all its glory. The User Interface has been done in the lime green of the developer's logo colour, where players can control spins, auto-spins, and bet levels.
Online casinos have some control over how high stake levels can go. All wagers start at 20 p/c per spin but can go as high as either £/€20 or £/€40 per spin, depending on the operator. The size of the casino will be a determining factor due to the game's high potential and the amount of exposure created. RTP sits comfortably above average on 96.11%. Santa might give away presents for free, but due to the medium volatility, players need to work a bit for the best rewards on offer here.
The thoroughly Christmassy theme is used throughout, particularly in the symbols. Even the low pay 9 - A royals get in on the spirit and look like decorated ginger cookies. These are backed up with elves, snowmen, reindeer, and the big guy himself as the highest paying symbol in the game. Land six Santas to be awarded 50 times the stake. The game comes with two types of wilds. The first is a standard wild which substitutes for any of the pay symbols. The second does the same job, but if it lands as part of a winning combination, it also applies a random multiplier of x2, x3, x5, or x10 to the win.
Mystical Santa Megaways (Stakelogic): Features
Liked a child's overstuffed stocking, the selection of extras is a comprehensive one, starting with Megaways' inbuilt features. Win combinations are formed when the same symbols land anywhere on the reels from left to right starting from the first. The more symbols generated by the reels, the more win ways come into play. Not only that, but winners are dashed from the screen to be replaced by new symbols which can create cascades of wins from just one spin. The little meter at the top left of the reels displays how many win ways are active on each spin. It doesn't affect the game, but it's kind of fun seeing how high you can get it.
On to the game’s specific features. At any time the reels spin an elf can appear on the side of the screen and blast gift boxes onto the reels. These boxes contain one of four Elf Bonuses:
- Extra wilds - a random number of Wilds are added to the reels.
- Matching symbols – a winning combination is formed by a random number of similar symbols added to the grid.
- Free Spins – a random number of free spins symbols are added to trigger or retrigger the free spins feature.
- Wild multiplier – a wild multiplier is added to reels 2, 3, or 4.
The Christmas tree with purple background symbol is the scatter which can land on any of the 6 reels. When 4 land in view they award 12 Free Spins, and any other scatter in view is worth an extra 5 spins. During free spins, a win multiplier comes into play starting at x1 and can be increased by 1 per spin by the elf. The random elf bonuses from the main game can also appear at any time during this feature. The bonus round can be extended by landing 3 or 4 scatters for 5 or 10 extra spins respectively.
Finally, Stakelogic has included a Gamble feature which can be selected after a win occurs. This involves guessing the colour or suit of a blind card for double or quadruple the win respectively.
Mystical Santa Megaways (Stakelogic): Verdict
As with many forms of entertainment, whoever gets in first with a new innovation often has success with it. While there is nothing inherently innovative about Mystical Santa Megaways, it's the first Christmas themed slot powered by the popular engine so far. It is a fairly decent offering too - the game oozes Christmas from every orifice, while producing the numbers Megaways is known for.
When it comes to the theme, the developer has played it safe by eschewing attempts at humour or controversy. That is not really a criticism, but more of an observation. This is wholesome Christmas slots action that avoids offending anyone. While Megaways does its thing, the only aspect not immediately obvious is the game's potential. Has Stakelogic pushed the engine to full power or not? Like everything else, Mystical Santa Megaways sticks to the middle ground with up to 9,720 times the stake. Certainly not the highest we've seen with Megaways, but like the handling of the theme, few will likely be astounded or put off by that figure. It's, after all, higher than the majority of slots out there.
Overall, Mystical Santa Megways is an ok slot with few surprises and little to complain about. The audiovisual production is solid and the mathematical engine is rather forgiving and should be able to provide plenty of entertainment. Of all the Christmas themed slots we've reviewed so far, this one definitely belongs to the top.
Mystical Santa Megaways (Stakelogic)
● Reels: 6
● Rows: 2-7
● Paylines: 324-117,649
● RTP: 96.114%
● Max Payout: 9,720x
● Volatility: M (3/5)
● Bets: 0.20 - 20 EUR
● Features: Reel Bonus Feature, Free Spins, Gamble Feature
● Release Date: December 2, 2019
Bigwinboard Rating - 78%