Punk Rocker Slot (Nolimit City): Overview
Punk Rocker is a LOUD slot full of life that aims to recapture the spunk and spirit of the punk rock movement. Not the watered down South Cali pop-punk of the 90s and naughties, but the real punk movement that flared up in the UK 20 years before. This is back when fans spat on their heroes while they performed, 'artists' lived the lives they sang about, and if you couldn't actually play your instrument, who cares? Music was a key avenue for expression but punk spilt over into fashion, art and attitude. All of this has anarchic vim has been crammed into NoLimit City's new slot Punk Rocker which is not short on features either.
The game starts with a default 5-reel, 3-row setup with 243 win ways that can be expanded by its features. A throbbing 4/4 track plays in the background, muffled as if a band is playing at an underground club - great touch. Visually the background is chock with London icons such as Big Ben, a tagged Underground sign, and a red phone box. It's not without some anachronisms. The sign on the wall is a 'punk' version of Abbey Road, NW8 - one of the least anarchic postcodes in London. Joining in to do some rule breaking costs 25 p/c to £/€125 per spin. Mathematically, the game packs quite a bit of grunt - RTP without the buy feature sits at 96.11%, and volatility feels very high indeed.
The design team has done a great job in designing all new symbols that convey the game's spirit. On the low side are a pair of kicker boots, knuckle dusters, Molotov cocktails, distortion pedals, and an anarchy symbol. The premiums are a bunch of irreverent Warhol/Banksy style takes on (mostly) famous people. In ascending order is Kim Jong Un, Einstein, a monkey flipping the middle finger, Mona Lisa, and Winston Churchill. Winnie leads the paytable with 6 times the stake for five of a kind. Or, when the bonus reel is active 20 times the stake for six of a kind.
There are two wilds. The standard variety is the Molotov Wild - this wild can land during the main game and Riot Respins to substitute for any symbol except scatters. When these wilds land, they can also change several symbols next to them wild as well. They might stack a reel with wilds, or make one symbol next to them wild, it’s total luck of the draw.
Punk Rocker Slot (Nolimit City): Features
In keeping with the chaotic vibe comes a long list of features. The xWays Mystery Symbol which we saw in Dragon Tribe is back, and bigger than before. This mystery symbol usually holds 2-4 of the same pay symbols and expands when it lands and also expands the size of the reel. This feature can appear during the base and bonus games. So if all 6 reels are active with 6 rows each, then win ways are boosted to 46,656 ways to win. Not only that, but the premium symbols can super expand to 20 high.
The scatter looks like a London Underground sign with the word 'Bonus' on it. When two land, instead of being annoying, they award a Riot Respin. In this respin, the scatters become Molotov Wilds which can transform other nearby symbols into Wilds. The Bonus Reel is also activated, which increases minimum win ways up to 729. Next, any of the reels that contain wilds are locked while the others are respun. It’s a nice way of easing the pain of landing just two scatters.
Get 3 scatters or 4 scatters though, and you unlock Anarchy Free Spins or Civil War Free Spin respectively. Both rounds award 8 free spins and abide by the same rules, with one exception. Anarchy Free Spins come with 3 jumping wilds, while Civil War Free Spins has 4. The bonus sixth reel is activated for both, and so is a modifier train that runs along the top of the reels. Each carriage of the train has a different modifier in it. While the reels spin the Jumping Wilds leap from position to position at random. When the spin stops, the carriage above a reel containing a jumping wild symbol has its modifier applied. There are several:
- xWays: adds xWays mystery symbols to the reels.
- Free Spins: adds 1 - 3 more free spins to the round.
- Jumping Wild: adds an additional jumping wild.
- Multiplier: Jumping wilds get a multiplier for the current spin of x2, x3, x5, x10, x15, or x25.
- 6x6: this converts the game to a 6x6 format with those 46,656 win ways.
Obviously, more jumping wilds in the round means more modifiers can appear on a spin. Finally, if your local regulator allows it, players can cut to the chase with the Bonus Buy option. This lets players fork out for either Anarchy or Civil War Free Spins. The cost for doing so is 80x or 243x the stake, respectively. Doing so not only shortcuts you to the bonus round but also increases the RTP rate to 96.62%-96.64%.
Punk Rocker Slot (Nolimit City): Verdict
Punk Rocker is absolutely packed with features which can be a little confusing at first but quickly starts to make sense. What we've found is that the game is very volatile so beware. Triggering the bonus organically can be a real pain and you cannot depend on the base game to keep you afloat for too long either. During our first run we gave up chasing the bonus after about an hour and a 400x loss and just bought the bonus instead in order to evaluate its functionality.
Although there is a lot of things going on in the base game, much of the RTP is likely allocated to the bonuses. The again, that is the nature of the beast playing volatile slots so you have to be prepared for the high risk, high reward premise of it. For those contemplating the feature buy, the 243x cost for the Civil War Free Spins might seem ridiculous and it sort of is although the returns were often quite good.
Punk Rocker is one of those slots where the combination of features and modifiers can have a major effect on the outcome of a spin and a session. Expanded 6x6 reels with juicy multipliers, for example, can be outstanding when they happen. It's also nice to see xWays return, not to mention excellent potential of over 15,000 times your stake as a big fat cherry on top. All up, Punk Rocker is a well-designed game, and undoubtedly one of NoLimit City's best so far.