Treasure Skyland (Just For The Win): Overview
Microgaming partners and independent studio Just For The Win officially categorised Treasure Skyland’s theme as ‘Monkey Pirates in the Sky’. It’s refreshing when a new concept comes along, and this must be one that hasn’t appeared before. Sure, monkey pirates have popped up in the past - and they make great sidekicks. The most famous is probably Jack the Monkey from Pirates of the Caribbean. But, rarely do monkey pirates appear in the sky. With Just For The Win’s track record you expect a good looking game. Often though, the style is stacked to compensate for a lack of substance. So the question at the outset is whether Treasure Skyland is going to bring it when it comes to gameplay and rewards?
First predictions are confirmed. Right off the bat, Treasure Skyland is a nice looking slot. The 5 reel, 3 row set up is transparent to reveal a dreamy, blue-hued background complete with floating islands of stone and Asian junk boat styled flying ships. Providers have the option of using Chinese characters on one of the premium symbols, so the game looks destined for both European and Asian markets.
Flights on this madcap pirating voyage through the skies start at 10 p/c, and stakes can be raised as high as £/€100 per spin. The stats coming out of the math model are an interesting mix, and it was a surprise to see that Just For The Win has cranked up the volatility. Typically, their games coast on a medium setting, but Treasure Skyland has been shifted up a gear to high. Despite the ramped-up intensity, hit frequency is steady at 1 in every 4 spins or 24.24%. RTP is decent too on 96.18%. Pretty solid numbers which are let down a tad by overall potential, but we’ll get to that.
Treasure Skyland uses 20 paylines and the paytable is split between 5 low and 4 high pay symbols. The lower symbols are different coloured coins with 10 - A imprinted on them. They are unique but simple, and make the game look a little Spartan since it’s them you see most often. The high pays start with three monkey pirates – a cabin boy/monkey, a male pirate, and a female one. Look out for the game’s logo which is the most valuable symbol on the reels at 40 times the stake for a line of five. The Wild map symbol is worth the same amount and its job is to substitute for any other pay symbol in the game.
Treasure Skyland (Just For The Win): Features
Well, we said the base game rules are simple, but there are several modifiers and features that can appear to boost wins. On every spin, a Feature Frame ("The Helm") moves around and stops at random over any symbol on reels 2, 3, or 4. If the spin results in a win and if one or more of the winning paylines passes through the Feature Frame, then the Feature Reel is triggered. Appearing on the leftmost side of the screen, the Feature Reel will now spin and stop randomly on one of the following features:
- Multipliers – a multiplier of 2x, 3x, or 4x is applied to the triggering paylines.
- Symbol Upgrades – the regular pay symbols on the triggering payline are upgraded. They can move up to three levels higher on the paytable.
- Win Extend – wilds are added to the triggering payline. Two wilds for a 3 symbol win or 1 wild for a 4 symbol win. This feature is not triggered on 5 symbol wins.
- Symbol to Wild – all winning symbols that appear on the triggering payline are changed into wilds.
The Feature Reel can also trigger the Pick Bonus feature. If this is launched then the game shifts to a new screen covered in 15 floating islands. Players begin with 5 picks, and each one reveals a cash prize of 0.5x, 1x, 2x, or 5x the total stake. In addition to cash prizes, some can also reveal extra picks to extend the round further. Moreover, to the right of the islands is a prize map with 15 steps on it. Each pick moves the player one step towards the final prize on the map. The final 7 steps on the map award 10x, 20x, 30x, 50x, 100x, 250x, and 1000x the stake. The feature ends when all picks have been used and the final position on the map is applied.
Treasure Skyland (Just For The Win): Verdict
Treasure Skyland is more of what we have come to expect from Just For The Win. That is, a good looking, yet low potential slot. It’s quite well thought out though, and what the game offers will appeal to certain players for sure. The theme is unique for one and nicely portrayed and the omission of a free spins round is compensated for by its selection of features that culminates in the bonus picking game. However, that does mean that sessions can get tedious on a bad runs as wins tick over with the odd modifier tossed in now and then, and not much else.
Treasure Skyland’s high volatility raised an eyebrow in surprise as Just For The Win seems to have dialled back their usual dazzling visuals a notch while dialling up the math model. Shame the potential couldn’t have been dialled up at the same time. The most players can look forward to is cracking the pick bonus game for returns of just 1,000 times the stake which will do little to excite anyone but those who allow themselves to be suckered in by the cartoonish visuals. All told, Treasure Skyland might just surprise you with what it does, but its inability to produce huge wins will ultimately be a deal-breaker for many.
Just For The Win has produced another attractive game whose looks aren’t quite good enough to make up for its stifling potential.