Diamond Mine Extra Gold Megaways: Overview
Diamond Mine Extra Gold Megaways is the follow up to Blueprint Gaming’s debute Megaways slot Diamond Mine Megaways. The original was an absolute blast and took players on a high volatile trip down a mine shaft in search of wealth and riches. It was warmly received by the gambling community and made the most of the Megaways engine while adding in personality and charm.
Sequels are a funny thing. There is a delicate balance to strike and tough decisions to make. Do you go wild and build something completely different that might repulse fans of the original? Or do you create something similar with one or two tweaks to not shock loyal followers? There are perils and pitfalls of both routes, but there is no doubt which option Blueprint opted for. Is this slot an extra cherry on top for fans, or another squeeze on the Diamond Mine cash teat? Let’s find out.
Screen shots provide a major clue. The game looks exactly the same as its predecessor. The background is comprised of the same cactuses and rock, while the game grid is held together by the same rickety scaffolding. Players are treated to Megaways on max setting which means 6 main reels with up to 7 symbols on each, along with the 1×4 extra reel on top.
Win ways can rocket as high 117,649 when all symbols are in play. It gets so high because winners are formed by the same symbol combos left to right regardless of row position. Winners can also cause chains of winners as symbols are removed from the reels to make way for new ones to fall into place. Cascades continue to fall and payout as long as winning combinations land. We are sure you know the drill by now, but for the sake of any newcomers there you go.
Stats are more or less the same this time rounds as well. Along with an RTP of 96.43% comes a high volatility that can lead to some truly memorable gaming moments. Symbols are, you guessed it, the same. The less exciting end of the paytable is made up of 9 – A icons styled in a wild west fashion. Backing them up are a shovel/pickaxe, a lamp, and the prospector, still looking like Santa Claus in a mining suit. These ones can create combos of 3-6 symbols. The other regular symbol is the diamond which only needs 2 or more, and is worth 50 times the stake for 6. That’s not too bad, but due to the Cascade system, other symbols offer weak values unless part of chains. Also, the features make a huge difference to what the game is capable of returning.
Diamond Mine Extra Gold Megaways: Features
Three more symbols flesh out the game – a wild, a mystery symbol, and a scatter. The Wild is a bundle of dynamite sticks that can land on the 1×4 reel to substitute for any regular pay symbol in a combo.
The Mystery Symbol appears in the form of a barrel of TNT anywhere on the grid. Regardless of number, they will always reveal the same common symbol which can be anything but the scatter.
The scatter is appropriately a sack of gold. It can land in any position, except the on 1×4 bonus reel at the top. When 4 scatters land, they award players with 8 Free Spins. Any additional scatter in view will add 5 more spins to that amount. One feature that fans will breathe a sigh of relief over being retained is the Unlimited Win Multiplier. This starts at x1 and increases by 1 with every cascade win. As the name suggests, there is theoretically no limit to how high the multipliers can go, which has a significant effect on the outcome of a gaming session. Scatter symbols continue to turn up on the 1×4 reel where 3 or 4 awards 5 or 10 free spins to prolong the bonus round.
Now to the new add-on that prompted the ‘Extra Gold’ in the title – the Free Spins Gamble feature. Before free spins commence, players have the option of gambling the number of free spins they won. There are two options – spin a wheel which can result in more, or less, free spins, or just collect and head straight into the section.
Finally, depending on their country of residence, players can choose to activate free spins rather than wait for fate to intervene. To do so, hit the Golden Bet button on the left of the screen which guarantees at least 3 scatters on the next spin. This saving in time comes with a monetary cost of 50x the total bet which isn’t too bad considering other feature buys we have seen recently.
Diamond Mine Extra Gold Megaways: Verdict
Well, it’s a fine game, but anyone who makes a carbon copy of a classic could pull that off. It would be easy to tear Blueprint to bits for bolting an extra feature onto a popular game and re-releasing it. And with the gamble feature in the mix, we basically have Big Time Gaming’s slot Extra Chilli – down a mine shaft. While we shouldn’t be encouraging developers to be so creatively lax, Extra Gold is an exciting slot. The highlight is, of course, the free spins and that unlimited win multiplier. The gamble feature ups the volatility and gives players even more chances to milk free spins for all they are worth. They are capable of serving up big wins, and as before, the potential is capped at 10,000x or £250,000 per game.
So yes, it’s completely unoriginal, and that will rub some people up the wrong way. Yet, it is also hard to deduct too many points, because the gameplay is as good as ever. Perhaps more, if you appreciate the new gamble feature. The new addition can certainly provide thrilling and epic moments. If you enjoy pushing things to the limit in search of glory and coins, it might suit you. Of course, it is just as likely to result in heartbreak if things don’t go your way. But, as Bodhi said in that old surfing movie – ‘if you want the ultimate, you have to be willing to pay the ultimate price.’