Rocket Returns Pokie Review
If you are tired of widely used 5-reel solutions and familiar sight of a rectangular gaming field, Rocket Returns is just for you. This is undoubtedly one of the quirkiest pokies in the industry. You would never say that this is a pokie as it busts stereotypes of what a pokie should look like, because the game has 9 reels, 228 ways to win and a diamond-shaped active area with reels. This is a kind of experiment in pokie making, and Bally did it brilliantly. Rocket Returns is worth your while to see and play.
Graphics are deliberately created with an 80s style in mind, featuring pixelated lines and blocky buildings, which reminds retro fans of old Nintendo or Atari games of the past. The pokie takes you back in time when 8-bit platformers and pixel-art games were kings. There are no reels here in the conventional sense. Instead, the game area is created as a diamond-shaped figure that consists of nine hexagons, much like a piece of a honeycomb. Each hexagon depicts one symbol at a time and is called a reel.
A unique layout requires a new approach to calculation of wins so Bally designers implemented the following model: A winning combination must consist of 4 to 9 identical symbols that go adjacently to each other, beginning with the symbol that lands at the highest point of the diamond-shaped field.
There are five regular symbols, all of which are taken from vintage pokies: 1-BAR, 2-BAR, 3-BAR, Blue Seven and Orange Seven. Besides, the pokie has two feature symbols including a wild and a free spin trigger. The look of the symbols is actually pretty simple because they emulate a specific retro style to create a wholly unique arcade look. Whenever you get a win, you will see colorful vector-graphics fireworks that make the pokie’s artwork more interesting.
Winnings in the paytable are specified in the form of multipliers that apply to a total bet. This is a very comfortable format of representing payouts because it excludes mistakes that many first-timers make when crushing the numbers. Each symbol is listed with six possible combo variations, from 4 to 9 of a kind. Let’s explore only the extreme values. Each picture pays out uniformly, at x1 the total bet for 4 of a kind. For the combination of 9 identical pictures payouts are much higher: Single and Double Bars award x50, Triple Bar awards x100, Orange Sevens pay out x200, and Blue Sevens grant you x250.
Bet option and payouts
A total bet is the only bet option available in the pokie. It is adjusted between $0.15 and $15 per spin. Getting to know bet sizes, real-money payouts can be easily calculated. Considering the figures from the last paragraph, the top three payouts are $3750, $3000 and $1500. This is one of the few of Bally’s games that focuses on low-rollers.
The wild is depicted as a dynamite stick with a burning fuse. It appears on reel 5 only – this is the central hexagon on the game field. It acts as a substitute and extends a combination or fills in the gap in a sequence of identical symbols. When part of a winning pattern, the wild always comes with a randomly chosen multiplier of x1, x2 or x3. That said, the maximum payout of $3750 is tripled to $11,250 if you get a combination of eight Blue Sevens and the wild at x3.
Free spins with wild multipliers
An exploding red and white striped rocket that lands on the top, central and bottom hexagons will trigger a bonus feature. Before it starts, you are awarded an instant prize equaling your total bet. You receive only 5 free spins, which is somewhat below expectations these days but there are masses of opportunities to add more. Besides, wild symbols with a multiplying effect will increase your winnings while in free spins.
Bottom line on Rocket Returns
The pokie reviewed above is a bold, never-before-seen solution from Bally because it denies all unwritten rules that have been followed by dozens developers for many years. It has no paylines, it has no reels, it has no conventional game board. What you get instead is a diamond-shaped area with nine symbol positions and 228 ways to create a combination. Seeing the pokie in action is the incredible experience you should not miss out.