Jackpot Express: Overview
Players, get your tickets for the Jackpot Express, a floating riverboat casino cruising through the roaring 20’s, offering three progressive jackpots from Yggdrasil Gaming. There are a few progressive jackpots in the Yggdrasil catalogue, but none played off the back of a boat.
In fact, despite the perfect location, not many slots are based on a riverboat casino. The setting makes a great first impression, and with three progressive jackpots on tap, Jackpot Express starts on a positive footing. Will it be as rosy when we come out to dock on the other side?
As we said, the first impressions are good. The game’s 5 reel, 20-payline grid sits on board an opulent riverboat decked out in white posting with plenty of gold trim. Yggdrasil has injected a heavy dose of Art Deco styling to enhance the experience.
On the whole, visuals are of a high standard, and a jazzy soundtrack accentuates the old world charm. The only minor sticking point is the boat drifting past all those houses. Getting decadent in such a residential setting feels a little gauche, but no matter.
Playable from 20 p/c to £/€100 on your desktop or mobile device, this low/medium volatility game offers a total RTP of 96.2% with jackpots, or 91.2% without them. Winning the big one is what it’s all about for most here, but a hit rate of 32% helps the game tick along in the meantime and can probably work quite well for wagering purposes.
As to symbols, they start on low pay card suits imprinted on casino chips, their plain white background something of an eyesore. High pays are better, depicting fellow gamblers taking the trip down river. Here you’ll find a card shark, a lady smoking through an Audrey Hepburn cigarette holder, a dice/champagne lady, and the dependable captain.
Cap’s worth the most from the bunch at 12.5 times the stake for a line of five, down to 5x for the card guy. The 1920s-fonted Wild is worth the same as the Captain, while also substituting for any of the regular pay symbols.
Jackpot Express: Features
While spinning for some jackpot action, the game has several other features to help retain player interest. Extras include the Wheel of Fortune which bestows Card Free Spins, Dice Free Spins, Roulette Free Spins, and the Jackpot Bonus Game.
Landing exactly 3 scatter symbols triggers the Wheel of Fortune. The wheel takes over the middle reel, spinning to reveal either free spins or the jackpot game. There are three different free spin rounds; each one awarding 10 free spins that can’t be retriggered. The action then shifts to one of these rooms:
- Card free spins – two cards are dealt at the end of each spin, one for you, one for the dealer. If your card is higher, a sticky wild is added to the reels in a random position.
- Dice free spins – on each winning spin a pair of dice are thrown. The win is then multiplied by the sum of the two dice from x2 to x12.
- Roulette free spins – a roulette wheel spins on each free spin to award either a sticky wild, +1 or +2 free spins, coin wins of 1x to 5x the bet, or an x2 or x3 multiplier of the current spin. Or nothing.
The Wheel of Fortune’s final prize is the Jackpot bonus game. This game is played out on a three-tiered wheel offering ascending prize values. Triggering the feature with 3, 4, or 5 scatter symbols will start the feature on level 1, 2, or 3 respectively. Each level of the wheel may award coin wins (ending the feature), cash prizes with respins, multipliers, or an arrow which advances players to the next level.
The Mini Jackpot can be won on the 2nd level, the Side jackpot on the 3rd. Should players hit the arrow on the 3rd level, they move to the centre of the wheel where the Mega Jackpot is won.
Jackpot Express: Verdict
Yggdrasil Gaming’s jackpot slots have proven quite popular and Jackpot Express certainty has its highlights too. For one, the setting is a great choice by the team. It’s not every day you get to spin reels aboard a riverboat, so that’s appreciated. The Art Deco stylings, along with the animations and graphics, have all been executed to a typically high Yggdrasil standard.
With several different features to trigger, and with a high hit rate, the game gives off the sense that there’s plenty to explore despite the lack of features on offer in the base game. The first time the Wheel of Fortune triggered was after 50 spins which was a nice surprise, resulting in a cheeky 50x win from the Jackpot bonus game.
With that said, Jackpot Express can also be a test of patience when features appear few and far between. During the in-between phase, wins tended to be fairly numerous thanks to the high hit rate, albeit small in value, not helped by the non-jackpot portion of RTP. When it comes to non-jackpot payouts, the most players can hope for is 2,175 times the stake.
Then again, many people playing a game with the word ‘Jackpot’ in the title probably won’t even bother about things like RTP. It’s all about hitting it big, or not at all. For those in this category, pay close attention – here is the info you’ll want to know.
The Major Jackpot is set to drop when it hits around €100,000, the other two at €4,000 or €500 for the Side and Mini Jackpots respectively. A solid figure, but one eclipsed by other progressive jackpots from Yggdrasil such as Joker Millions or Empire Fortune – if you’re looking for the biggest payouts you can find.
Sure, this is a boat race for the Major Jackpot whilst the rest of the game is basically a pretty sideshow, but isn’t that typically the case with jackpot slots? When you weigh everything up, Jackpot Express definitely has its moment – it’s a looker with a collection of fun features to keep you entertained whilst hoping to land the big one.