Raging Reindeers: Overview
It has begun people. The calendar has just flicked over to November and already the Christmas season is upon us. No, it’s not the Christmas lights in the middle of town, or the seasonal shopping specials, or carol singers knocking on doors. The levy has officially broken on the Christmas themed slot deluge. Okay, a deluge is a slight exaggeration, but still, brace yourselves slots fans because they are on the way. The latest one to grace the screen is Raging Reindeers from iSoftBet. The title, of course, is a witty word play on Raging Rhino, and like most Christmas themed slots, it's also a clone of an older title, namely Jumbo Stampede.
First looks are promising, with crisp graphics full of personality and a festive rock 'n roll soundtrack to top it off. The action is set a long way away from Jungle Stampede’s African Savannah. Now we’re right in the midst of Santa’s patch on top of the world at the North Pole. If you usually play 5 reel slots, the extra reel you get with Raging Reindeers can feel a little disorientating at first. Not in a bad way at all, it is more interesting to see the change just one reel can make. Each reel can hold four symbols, and the whole set up provides 4,096 ways to win. How it works is that symbols payout for adjacent symbol combinations. For example the same two symbols on reel one and three on reel two results in 6 winning ways.
The symbols are a standout feature of Raging Reindeers. Well, the high pay ones at least. They might be all animals, but these are animals with an attitude, particularly reindeer with the fake red nose to look like Rudolf. He happens to be the highest paying symbol in the game at 7.5 times the stake. He is useful during the base game, but the fiery guy really comes to life during the bonus game. He is followed in descending order by a wolf, coyote, owl, and stoned looking bunny playing. They are not exactly traditional Christmas wildlife, but who’s complaining? The wild bursts into the game with an explosive kick, literally, and appears on reels 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6. It substitutes for any symbol except the Raging Reindeer logo symbol. Finally, we get 9 - A card icons that look like they have been carved from different coloured bits of wood. RTP is a hairs breath on the wrong side of the industry standard at 95.94% which is fine, as is the medium volatility.
Raging Reindeers: Features
There isn't a whole lot going on in terms of features here and it all comes down to the Jingle Spins Bonus game really. The Logo is the scatter which can land anywhere. When 3, 4, 5, or 6 land they award 8, 15, 20, or 50 Jingle Spins respectively. During these free spins, when the wild lands as part of a winning combination it morphs into a x2 or x3 multiplier while still acting as a wild on its reel.
The wild also boosts the power of the reindeer symbol. Any wilds and Rudolph symbols will pay out as winning combos even if they sit on non-adjacent reels. This means that a wild on reel 3 and a reindeer on reel 1 forms a winner, for example. Jingle Spins can be extended by the scatter which continues to show up durung the round. As before, up to 50 free spins can be added which can result in a healthy 100 free spin round.
Raging Reindeers: Verdict
Remember that feeling of being a kid, sitting by the fire on Christmas eve, watching telly while it snowed outside, knowing that Santa would be visiting soon because you’d been good that year. Oh dear, we are getting caught up in the magic of the season already… Fine, Raging Reindeers doesn’t hit those emotional heights, but it's a feel-good Christmas slot in its own right. Will you still be playing it on December 26th? Probably not, but until then it is a good accompaniment to the season.
What makes it successful is the high fun factor, with just the right mix of payout rate and features. The game oozes personality, provided predominately by the raging reindeer of the title. This guy is good when he lands in numbers during the base game. But get him during the free spins and he can turn a session around. The key is not having to land side by side, and the boost from multiplying wilds. Having non-adjacent winners isn’t exactly new. It has been done before, famously in the Ra/Book series, but it works so well it’s a wonder it doesn’t show up in even more slots.
Raging Reindeers does the big things right, but it also contains subtle touches that make it that little bit more special. An example is when two scatters fall. Like a million other slots, if you have two scatters it builds tension on each reel as you wait and hope for the third one. As it does so it dumps a well animated wad of snow. Yes, a little thing, but you appreciate the thought that goes into details like that.
When you are testing a clone, and don’t find yourself constantly comparing it to the original you know on some level a good amount of effort has been invested into it. Raging Reindeers easily stands on its own four feet. Potential wise it offers solid returns of up to 4,332 times the stake which is not bad at all. If Raging Reindeers was a present it would tend towards being a stocking filler rather than Santa’s main gift, but sometimes that's all you need.
Simplistic gameplay and a not so interesting base game don’t fully diminish the pleasures of this attractive and festive slot titled Raging Reindeer.