Hit it Hard
Hit it Hard, released by Elk Studios on 21st January 2020 is their 6th instalment in their ‘Elk Classic Series’. Following on from games such as Vegas Diamonds and Hit it Big, Hit it Hard combines innovative 21st-century slot features with a retro fruity interface.
Hit it Hard is a 3x3 old school slot with retro symbols, 5 fixed paylines and an RTP of 96.3%. The reels spin on the bottom half of the game, with a board full of bonus features above. It is from the feature board or the “Roll the Dice!” bonus game as it is called, that the biggest wins (up to 2,500x the stake) are likely to originate.
Hit it Hard comes with an 8/10 volatility rating and can be played from €0.20 up to €100 per spin.
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Design & Symbols
You know what you’re in for with any slot from the Elk Studios Classic series; retro symbols, plenty of neon, and a blistering old school soundtrack. Out of all the Classic Series slots, Hit it Hard is most similar in style and design to last April’s Hit it Big with a rectangular gameboard taking up about one-third of the screen split into two parts; a 3x3 reel set on the bottom, and on the top half a separate gameboard with features around the outside and the games logo surrounded by dice on the inside. Either side of the slot is a fluorescent purple/blue contoured background and accompanying play is an upbeat soundtrack which is immediately reminiscent of any number of cheesy 90’s gameshows hosted by bouffant-haired hosts in shiny, double-breasted suits.
The reel set is 3x3 and has retro symbols on black reels separated by strips of red pulsating neon lights. Low value symbols are cherries, lemons, and melons. Medium value symbols are green bars, blue bars, and red bars. High value symbols are green 7’s, blue 7’s and red 7’s. Red 7’s are the most valuable, awarding 50x the bet size for 5 on a payline. The wild is a blue neon circle which only appears on reel 3 in the base game. The bonus symbol is a dice which only appears on the middle row of the 3rd reel.
- Wild Respins
- Roll the Dice!
The wilds only appear on reel 3 and are loaded with multiplier wilds between 1x and 5x. A non-winning spin featuring a multiplier wild automatically respins for another bite at the cherry.
Roll the Dice!
Activated by landing the dice symbol in the centre of the 3rd reel, the Roll the Dice! The bonus game takes you up to the top section of the slot, where a myriad of features and mini-games. Before the action moves up a level, however, the dice transforms into a 10x wild multiplier.
The dice are rolled to ascertain the number of moves you make. Moves are made clockwise around the square board, much like a conventional board game, and each space rewards you with a feature or spins of some variety, as shown below.
- Lucky Ballz: The bonus board transforms into a mini pachinko game, awarding 4 shots with guaranteed wins. Pachinko is a type of pinball machine where the balls are shot out into the game area and eventually come to rest in a ‘basket’ with a win multiplier attached.
- Super Ballz: Plays the same as Lucky Ballz, although unlimited shots are awarded until the same win is hit twice.
- Break the Bank: In order to ‘Break the Bank’ two keys must first be collected before landing on the ‘Break the Bank’ square which then pays the maximum 2,500x the bet size.
- Stacked Wilds: Awards a spin with stacked wilds on reel 2, a spin with stacked wilds on reel 3, and a spin with stacked on both reels 2 & 3.
- Quantum Leap: This feature gives you a jump which can be a lot bigger than an ordinary dice roll.
- Power Run: Awards every feature you pass after a roll of the dice.
- Spins & Multipliers: This makes up most of the squares on the board and award either additional spins or multipliers or a combination of both.
The Roll the Dice! the bonus game ends if a roll of the dice doesn’t result in a win.
Our Thoughts on Hit it Hard
There’s a lot to be said for Hit it Hard. I’m generally not a fan of 3x3 or retro slots, but Elk has made something of a convert of me. Even the base game with its meagre 5 lines and high volatility wasn’t too much to endure as the Wild Respins feature happily broke up the monotony nicely. The bonus game also triggered often enough to make the wait in-between times bearable. On occasions, the bonus game could be over in a flash, but on others, I enjoyed some very profitable runs.
If anything, I would have liked to have seen a slightly higher maximum win as 2,500x isn’t really playing with the big boys nowadays, but there is still more than enough potential for Hit it Hard to make its mark. All in all, this is another fine addition to Elk’s Classic Series, and in my humble opinion, the best yet.