Area 21

Area 21 by Cryptologic takes its name from the mysterious Area 51 and adopts the alien theme (combined with an unusual, if innovative blackjack free spin feature). There’s a good variety of coin sizes with big jackpots on offer, especially in the free spin feature.

Highlights

  • Slot type: Video Slot
  • Reels: 5
  • Scatter: Yes
  • Theme: null
  • Lines: 25
  • Bonus Game: yes
  • Free Spins: Yes
  • Payout: $50,000
  • Software: Cryptologic

How to play

Area 21 slots is a 5 reel, 25 payline game where players can choose to play either 1x, 5x, 10x or 25x paylines per spin. The coin sizes available are 0.01, 0.02, 0.03, 0.04, 0.05, 0.10, 0.25, 0.50, $1.00, $2.00 and $5.00, meaning the maximum bet ranges in size from $0.25 – $125. This variety of coin size means that betting the maximum is always viable. Wins pay from left to right except for the scatter which pays anywhere on the reels, and wins are multiplied by the payline bet. However, scatter wins are multiplied by the total bet.

  • Wild symbol substitutes for all other symbols except the scatter
  • Wild symbol doubles all wins
  • Area 21 logo is the scatter symbol
  • 3x, 4x or 5x scatter symbol triggers the Blackjack Free Spin feature
  • 5x scatter = 50x total bet (up to $6,250)
  • 4x scatter = 10x total bet (up to $1,250)
  • 5x wild = 2000x payline bet (up to $10,000)
  • 4x wild = 1000x payline bet (up to $5,000)
  • 5x green alien symbol = 1000x payline bet (up to $5,000)
  • 5x purple alien symbol = 750x payline bet (up to $3,750)
  • 5x red alien symbol = 500x payline bet (up to $2,500)
  • 5x Saturn symbol = 500x payline bet (up to $2,500)

Free Play

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Blackjack Free Spin Feature

The feature is triggered by hitting 3x, 4x or 5x scatter symbols anywhere on the reels. To play the feature round, players are taken to a separate screen where they play a hand of blackjack against the alien dealer to determine how many free spins are awarded (normal blackjack rules apply):

  • player loses – 10x free spins with all wins multiplied 2x
  • player wins – 10x free spins with all wins multiplied 3x
  • player splits and wins one of the two hands – 10x free spins with all wins multiplied 3x
  • player splits and wins both hands – 10x free spins with all wins multiplied 3x
  • player doubles down and wins – 20x free spins with all wins multiplied 3x
  • player is dealt blackjack – 25x free spins with all wins multiplied 5x

Further free spins can be re-triggered during the feature. If this occurs, a new hand of blackjack is dealt at the conclusion of the preceding set of free spins.

Graphics and Sounds

The eerie electronic soundtrack that plays throughout is reminiscent of The X-Files theme tune, while the overall look and feel is similar to an early Hollywood alien invasion film, with loud laser bursts whenever the scatter appears on the reels. The screen is in very bright luminescent colours, predominantly purple and lime green, and there are comic depictions of the aliens. After a winning spin symbols animate with the aliens revealing playing cards, while a helpful box under the reels tells you which payline(s) has won and how much the payout is. The animation during the free spin feature is fairly rudimentary by the latest standards but nevertheless engaging enough and in keeping with the game’s overall theme.

 Jackpot

Area 21 online slots is a medium to high volatility game with a number of potentially sizeable payouts. The biggest jackpot available is up to $50,000 for hitting 5x wild symbols during the free spin feature when the 5x multiplier is in play (provided you are betting the maximum coin size and number). During base play, the biggest jackpot on offer is $10,000, again for hitting 5x wild symbols when betting the maximum coin size and number.

Special features

The Area 21 slots innovative blackjack free spin feature undoubtedly makes it stand out as a game:

  • a free spin feature where the number of free spins and multiplier varies
  • wild and scatter symbols
  • auto play feature (although it can take quite a while for the reels to commence spinning again after a win)

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