One casino software developer who has hit the ground running in 2018 is Pragmatic Play. They had a few quality releases at the tail end of last year – including Gold Rush – and look set to keep us entertained over the next few months with other stellar games.
Gold Rush is about that small craze on the West Coast a few years ago in California. You know, the one which transformed it into a globally recognised synonym for wealth and status? Anyway, the game is far removed from politics, and focuses on the rewarding labour of mining ore in a literal goldmine!
The Jolly Prospector is there with his trusty pickaxe, mule and other equipment, ready to start plundering Mother Nature. When you activate the Progressive Free Spins feature, delve even deeper into the mines where the big, clean and lucrative golden nuggets are found.
Gold Rush is an extremely simple, rewarding video slot, with an outstandingly chipper and bouncy soundtrack!
As soon as the game loads, the wickedly catchy music starts playing, and you’re hooked. The game is a bit silly and doesn’t take itself too seriously, with a happy hillbilly vibe. Super enjoyable!
Gameplay and Layout
As you no doubt expected, the whole game takes place within the goldmine. You started a little way in, but can delve deeper by accessing the Progressive Free Spins round! The 5 reels are set in a rough wooden frame, like the ones used to support tunnels underground, and have 25 paylines.
You can choose up to 10 coins per payline, with a maximum coin value of $250 if you want to play big. You’ve got the usual low-value symbols (10, Jack, Queen, King, Ace), but also a donkey, cart of gold, shovel/pickaxe, oil lamp, dynamite (wild) and, of course, the Jolly Prospector himself.
Landing 3, 4 or 5 prospectors on a payline returns 1x, 8x or 20x your stake, making him the most valuable regular symbol. If you manage to get 2, 3 or 4 scatters on one payline, you launch the free spins round.
While the regular jackpot is maxed out at 500 coins, you can win a whole lot more if you strike it rich during the bonus round. It’s a medium-high variance game, so be prepared to stomach a few slow periods before getting anything too valuable.
Progressive Free Spins Round
As with most video slots, there’s a free spins round which usually allows players to take home a tidy wedge. In this case, stacks of gold! You start with ten free spins, but there’s also a new symbol injected into the game: the golden nugget. The more nuggets which land on the reels (and are collected at the top of the screen), the more prospectors are involved in the spins:
- 0-4 nuggets = 7 extra miners
- 5-9 nuggets = 16 extra miners
- 10-14 nuggets = 21 extra miners
- 15+ nuggets = 29 extra miners
Needless to say, the extra miners make a huge difference when it comes to winnings! Oh, and every new scatter symbol gives you an extra two free spins. This is an explosive bonus round, by anyone’s standards.
True to their name, Pragmatic Play don’t bother with superfluous thrills. They put lots of effort into aesthetic design, simple game mechanics and a jaw-dropping special feature to get players hooked. It’s a great video slot.