Did you know what is your Chinese New Year symbol? With the start of the Chinese New Year imminent, it is always a popular time of year for Asian-themed slots to be released to commemorate the fact and Realtime Gaming have got a jump on their rivals with the January 2019 release of their new slot Pig Winner.
That's because this Chinese New Year is the Year of the Pig. It is the final animal in the 12-year cycle of the Chinese Zodiac and if you were born in 1959, 1971, 1983 or 1995, then you are a Pig. The good news is that while the Pig may not be viewed as loftily as a tiger or horse or similar, it does represent someone who is a hard-worker, trusting, truthful, generous, patient, reliable, sincere and sociable person, which isn't too bad all things considered.
However we want to know if the Year of the Pig will be one that bestows winners with good fortune and sizeable bank balances, so let's take a look at what the Pig Winner slot has to offer.
Where can I play the Pig Winner slot?
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It is fair to say that the Pig Winner slot is very eye-catching in terms of the colors used, the graphics and sounds. Realtime Gaming have done a good job here in creating a game which does catch your attention but doesn't do so in a way which is going to irritate the player. That makes the game easy on the eye and ear.
I also like the way each of the symbols on the reels is a different color, which makes them easy to differentiate and the way the symbols fit in perfectly with the Chinese New Year theme of the slot, without a playing card low in sight, is also a big plus.
Sure, Pig Winner doesn't really push any boundaries in terms of groundbreaking graphics, animations or features, but what it does offer, it offers in a very neat and tidy package.
What's on the reels?
Perhaps unsurprisingly, there are a total of 13 symbols on the slot and 12 of these are devoted to the 12 different animals that signify a Chinese New Year.
Six symbols are the lower value symbols offering wins of up to 60 coins for five across a single line. These are the Goat, Dog, Monkey, Snake, Horse and Rooster. These are joined by the Rabbit and Dragon that offer slightly better value wins of up to 80 coins.
The three highest paying standard symbols are the Tiger, Ox and Rat, all of which offer small pays for landing just two on a pay line but which also offer wins of up to 150, 300 and 750 coins on a line respectively.
The more astute of you will have noticed that I have only named eleven of the dozen animals in the Chinese New Year, that's because this year is the year of the Pig and in the Pig Winner slot, this symbol is the Wild, while the only other symbol on the reel is the Yin and Yang Scatter and both of these symbols are the keys to the main bonus features of the slot.
The Pig Wild is the main Wild symbol in the game and this operates as a standard Wild symbol, substituting for other symbols to create winning lines. However, the Pig Wild also comes with a 2x multiplier as standard in the base game, which doubles the value of any win that it is part of.
This is particularly useful in combination with the 243-ways to win aspect of the slot as it means if you land a Wild anywhere on the reels, or even multiple Wilds, you can often trigger more than one winning line and with these paying out double the standard amount, the value of a single spin win can be drastically increased.
Free Spins features
The key to landing the Free Spins bonus game is the Yin and Yang Scatter symbol, which can appear anywhere across the five reels. Land three or more of these and you will then kick off the Free Spins bonus round, which sees you land a total of eight Free Spins.
That may seem like not a huge amount but within the bonus game you are also treated to an increase in the size of the multiplier on the Wild from 2x up to 3x and in addition, there are also more of the Wild symbols on the reels, which means of course you stand more chance of landing them on any of your Free Spins.
There are also more of the Yin and Yang Scatters on the reels too during Free Spins and this means that you stand more chance of re-triggering the Free Spins bonus game by landing three more of the Scatters across the reels during the Free Spins bonus round.
Other bonus features
Other than the Free Spins bonus game and the Pig Wild, there are no other bonus features on the Pig Winner slot.
Best feature of the Pig Winner slot
While it is tempting to say that the Free Spins bonus is the best part of the Pig Winner slot, the fact that you don't trigger the bonus too often means that I feel the Pig Wild is the most dominant feature of the slot. Not only does it impact your game considerably more often, but the fact that it offers you a 2x multiplier on any win in the base game, and an increased 3x multiplier bonus in Free Spins, means that this is the feature of the slot which will be the one that pays you most often.
What does the Pig Winner slot lack?
While the Pig Winner slot is a good, solid fun game from Realtime Gaming, I have to be honest and say that it isn't a slot that pushes any boundaries in terms of game play of graphics or indeed any aspect to be truthful. However, what you do have is a very solid 243-ways to win slot that offers great value gaming (it's medium variance means that it isn't going to be chomping its way through your bankroll at any great pace) which is perfectly suited to medium or low rollers, but higher rollers may want to play something that offers a little more excitement than a 200x your bet jackpot.
There's nothing to inherently dislike about the Pig Winner slot. Realtime Gaming have produced a very good example of a 5-reel, 243-ways to win slot that has a very generous pay out compared to some other games. The multiplier wins with the Pig Wild are what make that possible, but the Free Spins round, with even better value 3x Wilds and more Wilds and Scatters on the reels, can be very lucrative, if a little difficult to hit. For lower to medium roller players, this is a fun slot to play and a perfect way to celebrate the start of the Chinese New Year.
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