Sugar Cubes Slot: Overview
Established in 2018, Dice Lab might not be a household name but partnering up with Relax Gaming should help boost their profile. To date, they haven't attracted much attention and their limited portfolio includes a specialised casino dice game called SlotDice which is based on Yahtzee. Instead of rolling dice for bragging rights over your kid sister, it offers payouts of up to 5,000 times the stake instead. It's a simple game that has been made for a specific niche. Sugar Cubes sees Dice Lab make quite a prolific entry into the slots market via Relax Gaming’s Silverbullet platform.
Dice Lab lives up to its name by incorporating plenty of dice imagery and references in Sugar Cubes. Indeed, the game is set in a ‘dice lab’ where the six-sided objects roll along production lines in the background. It’s a game full of sweet touches like that, and just like SlotDice, is something a little offbeat and unique. It might not please everyone, but Sugar Cubes has a look and vibe that will appeal to certain types of players. The target audience that springs to mind are the fans of Candy Crush style games and casual gamers. Candy Crush clocked up nearly 3 billion downloads in five years and earned its maker $34 million a month, so yeah, there are a lot of them out there. Sugar Cubes captures the same spirit, and does so initially with its sensorial impressions. Graphics exude a sugary sweetness through the symbols and characters and the effect is like falling into a bag of liquorice all sorts.
To get the 5x5 grid rolling, players first choose stakes that start at 20 p/c and go up to £/€100 per spin. Dice Lab has built in a cluster pays system, where 4 or more adjacent symbols result in a payout. The 6 regular pay symbols are the six different sides of a dice – a white 1, a brown 2, a gold 3, a green 4, an orange 5, and a black 6. To work out values, the paytable has a nifty new method. Pick the symbol you are interested in, and move sliders for the size of the cluster and the bet. On the lower end, a cluster of four ‘1s’ are worth 0.4x the stake, while at the other end, 16 sixes are worth 3.2 times the stake.
On their own, symbol values don’t exactly constitute a king’s ransom, but Sugar Cube’s cascade mechanic helps with that. Whenever a winning cluster lands, it's removed from the grid to allow new symbols to tumble into the empty spaces. It works very effectively here, and long chains of wins are possible from single spins. Also working in the game’s favour is a volatility of 4 out of 5, and a higher than normal RTP of 97.06%. All in all, the math model and stats gave the game a great flow with plenty of cascades, and loads of special symbols to provide a steady stream of hits.
Sugar Cubes Slot: Features
Sugar Cubes has 4 Special Symbols to help with the win rate. The first is a wild that looks like a bar of Cadbury Dairy Milk chocolate. It can substitute for any of the regular dice pay symbols. Wilds land naturally on a new spin, and one is always spawned with each winning cluster.
Next is the black and gold wand which is the Magic Symbol, and when two land side by side they transform everything in their path into the highest symbol for a cluster win. Then there is the TNT symbol which is the Bomb - when two land next to each other, surrounding symbols are blown up for a cluster win. Finally, the ‘S’ symbol is the scatter and when 2, 3, 4, or 5 land next to each other they trigger 6, 9, 12, or 15 free spins respectively. The bonus game uses most of the same rules as the base game with a few exceptions. For one, no special symbols appear except for the wild.
At the start of each Free Spin, two gummy bears leap in front of the grid, each holding a dice. The numbers on the dice are then removed from the current spin. This increases the chance of landing winners with the four remaining dice symbols. If both bears show the same dice number, that symbol is removed and a wild is added to reels, as is one extra free spin. Finally, the bonus round comes with a win multiplier that begins at x1 and increases by +1 with each cascade. Compared to what you may be used to, however, the multiplier resets between each free spin.
Sugar Cubes Slot: Verdict
Sugar Cubes is a well-produced first slot from Dice Lab. It doesn’t feel like they set out to make huge waves with a mega-hit, but that hasn’t stopped Sugar Cubes from being a successful endeavour all the same. The look and theme fit in with the company name and previous release which provides a nice continuity to build the brand. With potential of up to a mere 1,003 times the stake it won’t suit the hardcore crowd, but it has got a universal appeal. We mentioned Candy Crush, and it isn’t hard to see those sorts of players making the migration to a similarly styled slot.
What makes Sugar Cubes so playable is its charming presentation and abundance of special symbols which drive the action on. There are never huge runs of dead spins which could allow attention spans to wander- the cascading action and frequent special symbol hits see to that. It's easy to imagine hordes of commuters playing Sugar Cubes on their way to work on buses and trains everywhere. What’s not so great is that while there are plentiful wins, they aren’t super profitable, and while you’re enjoying the constant action, the game is slowly but surely eating away at bankrolls. It is quite volatile after all.
For a beginner slot from a company that has just started out it’s a commendable effort. It looks like Dice Lab has a thorough understanding of its target audience, and has served up an ideal sugary rush. Not every slot can be a hyper volatile life-changer, and Sugar Cubes is certainly not one of those. Yet, anyone looking for some light and easy app style gaming at home or on the bus will get kicks and moments of joy with Sugar Cubes.
Sugar Cubes (Dice Lab)
Game title: Sugar Cubes
● Reels: 5
● Rows: 5
● Paylines: Cluster Pays (4+)
● RTP: 97.06%
● Max Payout: 1,003x
● Volatility: H (4/5)
● Bets: 0.20 - 100
● Features: Cascading Reels, Special Symbols, Bonus Game
● Release Date: February 18, 2020
Bigwinboard Rating - 70%