Black Gold Megaways™
Having recently increased their exposure after inking licensing agreements with Romania and the UK, Dutch developer Stakelogic are now able to offer the fruits of yet another of their licensing agreements (a Megaways™ license from Big Time Gaming) after releasing Black Gold. This it Stakelogic’s first Megaways™ slot, and it is themed around the oil rush in the United States in the late 19th century.
Black Gold Megaways™ is rated 4/5 for volatility by the developers so be careful when you go digging for that Black Gold or you might end up with an empty well. This is a 6-reel slot with between 2-7 symbols per reel offering up to 117,649 ways to win. In fact, this is technically an 8-reel slot if you add the horizontal 4 symbol reel above reels 2-5, and the ‘bonus reel’ above this which spins to reveal either a desert scene or one of the five-reel modifier features.
This slot is packed with features. As well as the reel modifiers there is a free spins round with progressive win multipliers. The free spins are where the big wins occur, up to 14,400x the bet size to be precise.
Available from 25th November 2019, you can play Black Gold Megaways™ from €0.20 to €40 per spin
Design & Symbols
Stakelogic has employed a cartoon design for Black Gold, and it is a quality piece of artwork with some nice animations. The style and theme are somewhat similar to Blueprint Gaming’s Diamond Mine Megaways™; both have quality cartoon designs, both are set in the same age of American history, and both are themed around prospecting for wealth. As similar as they are, however, Black Gold’s design is a level above Blueprint’s top-performing Megaways™ slot.
The game takes place in an almost wild west setting with several oil wells dotted across the barren, dusty ground in between rocky outcrops either side of the gameboard. To the left of the reels, an animated vulture sits atop the rocks squawking at every winning combo. To the right of the gameboard, an animated gecko observes the action perched on a cactus plant. During the free spins round the scene shifts to night-time where the vulture is replaced by a coyote. The gameboard is framed in copper and the reels are designed to resemble the dry, cracked ground in the background. Directly beneath reels 2-6 are release valves from an oil pipeline which runs across the bottom of the screen. The purpose of these valves becomes evident during the reel modifier bonuses. The gameplay is accompanied by a jaunty banjo led finger-picking piece of music typical of time and place.
Low value symbols and the standard playing card values 9-A. High value symbols are a miner’s lamps, a miner’s helmet, a buffalo with a mouthful of cash, and a cowboy prospector with a fistful of loot. The cowboy is the highest paying symbol with 6 on adjacent reels worth 50x the bet size. Red sticks of dynamite are wild and gold sticks of dynamite are multiplier wilds. Thy7e scatter is a golden oil well.
- Cascading Symbols with Reaction Wins
- Multiplier Wilds
- Bonus Reel
- Free Spins with Progressive Win Multiplier
- Gamble Feature
Cascading Symbols with Reaction Wins
When a win lands, the symbols making up the win disappear and new symbols cascade into their place. Reaction wins occur when the cascade results in a further win. A non-winning cascade ends the reaction and that spin. Cascading symbols appear in both the base and bonus game.
Gold stacks of dynamite are wild symbols with a win multiplier. The multiplier can be 2x, 3x, 5x, or 10x. When more than one Multiplier Wild form part of a win the multiplier values are multiplied together and applied to the win.
The horizontal bonus reel at the top of the gameboard usually lands a desert scene but on occasion, the name of one of 5 reel modifying features will appear;
- Random: A random number of wild symbols are added to reels 2-6.
- Multiplier: 2 multiplier wilds are added between reels 2-5.
- Double-Up: Any wins on the board are doubled, as are any further reaction wins within the same spin.
- Stacked: 1 or 2 wild stacks will be added between reels 2-5.
- Destroyer: All symbols are removed from all regular reels and replaced after a random non-winning spin.
Free Spins with Progressive Reel Multipliers
4 scatter symbols awards 12 free spins. For every scatter above 4, a further 5 additional free spins are awarded. 3 or 4 scatters landing during a free spin adds another 5 or 10 more spins. Every winning cascade during free spins adds a 1x win multiplier to the progressive win multiplier meter. The multiplier value does not reset during free spins.
The gamble feature becomes available after a win or a chain reaction of wins. The gamble is offered on a double (or quadruple) or nothing basis; correctly guess the colour of card suit which is drawn from the deck of cards which appear to double your winnings OR correctly guess the suit of the next card off the deck to quadruple your winnings. If both cases a losing guess voids any winnings gambled.
Our Thoughts on Black Gold Megaways™
Black Gold is a fantastic first Megaways™ slot from Stakelogic. Not only is it eye-catching with a cohesive theme and narrative, but it also offers a cracking set of fun-features. Add to this the potential to win up to 14,400x the stake and you have yourself a great slot.
Of course, there’s very little in terms of innovation which we haven’t already seen in other Megaways™ slots. However, Stakelogic has made these features their own and their combined effect is bound to guarantee a fun grind for anyone who loves a Megaways™ slot.
I would certainly rank Black Gold among my top 10 Megaways™ slots, and for the first effort from a small developer, this is quite some feat.