Scrooge Megaways: Slot Overview
Joining iSoftBet's Twisted Tales series is Scrooge Megaways, a Christmas themed slot to fire up over the holiday season. Since Christmas themed slots are bookmarked for a specific time of the year, they kind of don't make a whole lot of sense to play at others. As such, there is a tendency for studios to clone previous work, which is what we have in Scrooge Megaways. To get the game in front of as many seasonal players as possible with a minimal amount of resource expenditure, iSoftBet has stripped the chaps off Western Gold Megaways and given it a Victorian Christmas time makeover.
If you play slots for a full calendar year, there's a good chance you'll run into Ebenezer Scrooge sooner or later. The miser turned good is a popular choice amongst game providers for numerous reasons. One possibly relates to the fact Dickens released A Christmas Carol in 1843, so it's deep in the public domain, meaning no one's going to sue for using the story or its imagery. The imagery in Scrooge Megaways is quite good. iSoftBet has set the game out on a London street, covered in snow and lined with warmly lit olde buildings. The music has an enchanting touch, and our man Scrooge pipes up every so often to offer a bit of commentary, creating a cosy spirit.
The game is played on a 6-reel Megaways driven grid with 2-7 symbols landing on each reel. Each spin produces a different number of symbols on the panel, meaning ways to win vary from 64 to 117,649. iSoftBet appears to have reused the same math model as the one used in Western Gold Megaways, so players get a medium-high volatile game, generating a theoretical return value of 95.98%. Though potential is fairly high in theory, when you see the features, it doesn't seem like the sort of game that is going to hit its upper limit in a hurry.
Playable from 20 p/c to £/€20 per spin, the paytable consists of nine regular paying symbols and several special symbols. On the lower side are snow-covered 9-A royals, then come ball 'n chains, cooked turkeys, top hats, and Mr Ebenezer Scrooge as the most valuable pay symbol. Scrooge pays out when just two of him land on the reels; the rest need at least 3 or more to form a win. Values-wise, premium symbols pay 2 to 25 times the stake when landing 6 of a kind across the grid. The last symbol for here is the wild. Substituting for all pay symbols, the wild only appears on reels 2, 3, 4, or 5.
Scrooge Megaways: Slot Features
Picking Scrooge for a Christmas themed slot isn't the most original move, and the game is mostly decked out with equally unoriginal features. The list includes cascading wins, Scrooge Cash Respins, two Haunting of Christmas modifiers, and a bonus buy.
The cascading system removes each winning combination from the game grid whenever they hit. The newly created spaces are filled by remaining symbols on the reels which dropping down into the gaps. This may create consecutive strings of winning combinations, only stopping when no new wins hit, and the next spin can take place.
When the Haunting of Christmas feature triggers on random, one of two modifiers are activated:
- Max Megaways - guarantees a spin with the full 117,649 ways to win in play.
- Bonus Award - adds additional scatters to the reels for an increased chance of triggering Scrooge Cash Respins.
Landing 5 scatter symbols triggers the Scrooge Cash Respins feature. Players start with 3 respins, and if another scatter lands, the number is reset back to the original 3. Each scatter displays a bet multiplier, and when the bonus ends, all values in view are awarded. If, during the feature, a reel is filled with scatters, a multiplier equal to the number of positions on the reel appears. All scatters on that particular reel are increased by this multiplier.
In addition to regular scatter symbols, it's possible to land scatters with Past, Present or Future printed on them. These ones are worth 10x, 25x, or 50x the bet, respectively.
If you live in a country that allows bonus buys, then Scrooge Megaways may come with one. It costs 50x the total bet and guarantees to trigger Scrooge Cash Respins when activated. The return value when buying the feature rises to 97%.
Scrooge Megaways: Slot Verdict
Scrooge Megaways is just how you expect it to pan out if you've played the template slot Western Gold Megaways. Even if you haven't played the previous game, there won't be many surprises either, really. Western Gold Megaways was iSoftBet's second Megaways game, and it was something of a let-down after their first one, Aztec Gold Megaways. One of the biggest downers was the reduced values of the three jackpot values during the hold and win bonus game. Where Aztec Gold had that elusive 1,000x scatter, Western Gold and, by extension Scrooge Megaways has the 50x. Reasons for the reduction are up for debate, but it is what it is.
The positive things about Scrooge Megaways are centred around its charming Xmas atmos. In slots, Ebenezer Scrooge has come to represent Christmas almost as much as Santa Claus does, and iSoftBet bet has made good use of the guy to add personality. Scrooge Megaways potential is also a highlight, technically speaking, at least. However, it does feel like the equivalent of a Christmas miracle might be needed to get anywhere close to hitting it. Or even halfway to it.
For example, one bonus round during the review managed to cover all but one position on the grid with scatters. Even then, with 5 reel multipliers activated, the winning total was 134x the bet, so it's difficult to see many people hitting 12kx from the bonus game. Maybe an insane run of cascades in the base game or a once in a lifetime Max Megaways hit is the key?
Being a clone and all means Scrooge Megaways probably won't rock too many worlds, but like a caring nan that always gifts a pair of socks or a hanky for Christmas, you can count on Scrooge Megaways to deliver a certain level of entertainment.
As a clone, Scrooge Megaways isn’t a cracker of ingenuity but as a Christmas slot, it could well suit the season like a turkey dinner.