As you’d expect in the wake of the most exciting World Cup in anyone’s memory (I hope there aren’t any Germans reading this!) there has been a significant jump in the number of soccer-based online slots. We’ve already looked at Hugo Goal, which we loved, but it was only loosely related to soccer. The Champions is all about The Beautiful Game, from the on-pitch sound effects to the symbols, design, and the penalty shootouts!
The whole game takes place within a buzzing soccer stadium that looks more like a One Direction concert. It’s soccer to its core!
Gameplay Overview & Symbols
Graphically speaking, The Champions is very much par for the course, and so we won’t fixate on that. The game loads and you can choose out of all the World Cup 2018 teams, which is a nice touch. Anyway, let’s jump right into features and gameplay. For a start, there are some nifty symbols:
- The wild symbol is the golden trophy with “The Champions” blazed across the front
- You’ve got the eponymously-designed “bonus” symbol
- The football is the highest-value standard symbol
The biggest game-changer, however, comes in the form of the target hovering over the symbol in the middle of the screen. When a football lands in there, you get 10 respins with a 2x multiplier! Not only that, but every time it happens again during the same spell, the respin count resets to 10 and your multiplier increases by 2x!
This is known as the “Momentum Progressive Game”. You can move this target wherever you want, in an attempt to anticipate where the football symbols will land next. The multiplier goes all the way up to 20x, which offers you a theoretical 1,364x on every spin!
Rather than the conventional free spins round, Pragmatic Play has opted to use the game’s theme to its advantage: penalty shootout!
This round is activated by landing 3 of the bonus symbols (the one with BONUS in huge text) on reels 2, 3, and 4. You’ll enjoy a nice transition onto the pitch, where you’ll take 5 penalties – don’t worry, you can’t knock it over the crossbar! You can choose between 4 different spots around the keeper, which is pretty good odds.
Your payouts will be as follows:
- 1 goal – 5x stake
- 2 goals – 10x stake
- 3 goals – 15x stake
- 4 goals – 25x stake
- 5 goals – 100x stake
If you can trigger this bonus with the maximum wager ($125) then you’re looking at up to a cool $12,500. Not a bad day’s work, even by footballers’ standards!
While The Champions isn’t the most complex game we’ve ever played, it understands its audience better than most and delivers a good enough experience. The graphics are fairly basic, but the medium volatility will suit most players. If nothing else, the game will help you recall fond memories of Russia 2018!