The Race Megaways Review
The release of a Big Time Gaming slot is always cause for excitement – after all, this is the studio that came up with the Megaways mechanic in the first place.
That puts the pressure on the developer to come up with something new – or is that simply too much to ask? This was something we needed to check out, so we took The Race Megaways for a spin.
Our first thought was that the developer had taken Bonanza, removed all the rocks and added a ton of mirrors. Colourful playing card symbols and big gemstones make up the game symbols, which struck us as less than inspiring.
Even the music never seemed to go anywhere – it all seemed well below what we’d expect from a leading studio such as BGT. Then the Heart Bonus kicked in, and we took it all back!
The excitement levels ramped up a notch, along with the game’s design, and even the music took on a new lease of life. Clearly, this is a game that’s all about the bonus features!
Base gameplay is much as you’d expect, with six reels and up to 7 rows with every spin. The extra, horizontal reel is placed below the game, adding an extra row to reels 2 – 5. This is where any Wilds will appear, which can duplicate on the reel above to create one or more Wild Reels.
Every winning spin results in contributing symbols disappearing from the reels, allowing new icons to drop down from above. Reactions continue as long as they keep generating wins, although no corresponding multipliers kick in until the free spins bonus round.
Land 3 Scatters to activate the free spins bonus, which starts with the Heart Bonus feature. You’ll be awarded 3 respins in which only blanks and hearts feature. Landing hearts resets the Respin Counter back to 3, and the feature ends when there are no spins remaining or you’ve collected 20 hearts.
Free spins play out on the original game grid, but with the excitement ramped up several notches. Now those Wild duplications come with increasing Multipliers, boosting any wins they contribute towards. Every win adds +1 to the Win Multiplier, with no upper limit.
Free spins continue indefinitely, for as long as you have Heart tokens remaining. Watch out for the red cross symbol, which removes one Heart from your collection. Once the final heart is removed from above the reels, the free spins bonus round ends.
With an RTP percentage of 96.27%, decent returns are definitely available for some players, but let’s not forget that this is a high-volatility slot. With such a huge prize, worth over 24,000x the stake, on offer, only a few players will benefit from really big payouts. Careful bankroll management is the key to a lengthy gaming session, although wins aren’t guaranteed.
Some jurisdictions permit slot players to buy the bonus feature for 100x the bet. This won’t ensure you’ll win back the cost of buying the feature, so don’t rush into anything – and explore your demo options to assess your winning chances before risking your bankroll.
We have to admit that we were completely unimpressed when we first launched The Race Megaways. It felt like a cheap clone of Bonanza, and we were all set to give it the thumbs down –then we landed the Heart Bonus feature!
The exciting use of a Link & Win style mechanic took us by surprise, and the fun only increased once the free spins started. We’ve learned, once again, not to judge a slot by first appearances.
We’ve also learned that Big Time Gaming continues to surprise and delight us, even when we think we’ve seen it all before. We’re not saying The Race Megaways is going to be the Next Big Thing in online slots, but it’s definitely worth at least a couple of hundred spins of every slot player’s time.