Megaways is a mechanics that has been a huge change in the way we play slots. It fundamentally alters the way we approach reels and paylines, creating extra volatility with each spin. It is an idea that has charmed many software providers and players.
Even if you have never played one, odds are you came across the term browsing through a casino’s game library. Join us as we untangle the details behind Megaways slots!
The core mechanic of Megaways serves as a replacement to paylines. The size of the playing field now changes with each spin. Current slots rarely change the number and height of their reels. That is not the case among Megaways games! The number of reels usually stays the same. However, their height changes on each spin.
How many symbols can appear on a single reel varies from one release to the next. A vast majority set the minimum height to be two symbols tall, while the maximum height is seven icons tall. Each individual reel has a different height, randomly determined with each spin. This determines how many Megaways are available on that particular spin.
On top of the main five or six reels, you will usually have an extra row or two present. This row serves as an extension of the reels it is located above or under. Other than its odd placement, the row functions the same way as everything else in the Megaways slot. They do not always appear, but they are an excellent addition. With the basics out of the way, join us as we look at some of the best examples of this game type.
If there was ever a game that perfectly captured what Megaways are all about, then Extra Chilli is the right choice! Big Time Gaming, the company that created the Megaways system, released the game in 2018. It is played on six reels, where each reel can be between two to seven icons tall. This can create up to 117,649 Megaways! It also had an extra reel, adding an additional symbol for reels two, three, four and five.
Land three or more Scatters to trigger a free spins round. You get eight free spins to start with, and four extra turns for every additional Scatter past the first three. Each winning spin during free spins increases your multiplier by one. There is no upper limit on the multiplier either, allowing you to score some mouth-watering prizes! Three or four Scatters while the bonus feature is active will enable you to score four or eight extra free spins, respectively. You can trigger it manually, or buy the bonus for money.
Extra Chilli has an RTP of 96.82%, which is above the current average. It has high volatility, and a shot at winning a 20,000x jackpot! It is the picture-perfect display of an average Megaways slot. If you have never played one before, this is the title we would suggest starting with.
After realizing they struck gold, Big Time Gaming went on to iterate and try new things with Megaways. One of the titles that impressed us most was Holy Diver! Launched in 2018, it is played on a six-reel board. Each reel can be up to seven icons tall on any spin. While playing the game, you can level up. This increases the amount of Megaways you have available. Level one offers 117,649 Megaways, while levels two and three offer 396,900 and 586,971 Megaways, respectively.
With each spin, you progress the Reel Adventure. As your knight marches on, he will come across chests. The chests can uncover various bonus features that further enhance your gameplay and win potential. If you discover a gem in the chest, it is added to your Shield of Fortune. Completing the shield with all four gems allows you to play free spins or level up. During free spins, all gems will turn Wild. If you are playing on levels two and three, they will have a 2x and 3x multiplier, respectively.
Holy Diver has an RTP of 96.39%, lower than Extra Chilli. That said, it has a more manageable medium-high volatility, which makes it easier to play. It also offers a better jackpot prize, going up to 23,306x your total stake during free spins. Smoother to play and a bigger end prize? You can see why we fell in love with this game as thoroughly as we did. After all, it remains one of our best-rated Megaways slots!
While Big Time Gaming is the first to the market, they are not the only developers who make Megaways slots. Another contender is Blueprint Gaming, which launched several games using this system. Their most popular by far was Diamond Mine, which they released in 2018. It is played on a six-reel playing field, where each reel can be up to seven symbols tall. The release can create up to 117,649 Megaways.
One big part that sets this slot apart from previously discussed titles is the inclusion of cascading reels. Winning icons disappear, and new ones fall down to take their place. You need four Scatters to win twelve free spins, with any extra Scatters adding five extra turns. A win multiplier is active during free spins. Each cascading reel reaction causes it to increase by one, rewarding you for keeping the bonus feature going. You can win additional free spins by finding more Scatters on the playing field.
Blueprint’s release comes with an RTP of 96.43%, more than the current average for slots. It has high volatility and some incredible winning potential! That said, it has one major flaw compared to Big Time Gaming’s releases. The maximum win is limited to £250,000. A serious limitation compared to the incredible jackpots other Megaways games offer us.
If you are looking for a great mix of all previously mentioned releases, you cannot go wrong with Great Rhino Megaways! Pragmatic Play created this slot, and it makes for their first foray into Megaways. It is played on a six-reel board, where reels can be either seven or eight symbols tall. The game treats the extra reel on top of the playing field as an extension of the reels. However, it spins independently from the main board. You can have up to 200,704 Megaways active if everything lines up perfectly.
The developers have their own cascading reels special feature called Tumble. All symbols that were part of a win disappear, with existing icons falling to the bottom of the screen. Brand new ones fall on top, allowing you to score several consecutive wins with a single spin. Collect four or more Scatters to win free spins, during which every tumble increases the multiplier by one. At the start of each free spins bonus, you can pick one of three options. You can choose to start with a bigger multiplier or more free spins.
The maximum RTP for playing Great Rhino Megaways is 96.58%. This will require you to activate the bonus bet, which doubles your chance to win free spins. Despite having a better house edge, this slot has a limited top prize. You cannot win more than 20,000x when playing this game. It may not be as high as some other Megaways releases, but it is more than enough for such a high volatility slot.
For a more casual friendly version of Megaways games, we advise playing White Rabbit. It is played on a five-reel board with 248,832 ways to win! Each reel can be up to seven icons tall. That said, that impressive number is only available during a bonus feature. During regular gameplay, you only have access to 16,807 Megaways. There is no extra reel present here. What you see is what you get!
Every so often, the caterpillar will randomly wake up. When she does, she will blow smoke on the reels, creating up to four bonus Wilds. These Wilds have 2x or 3x multipliers attached to them. Collect Scatters on reel two, three and four to win fifteen free spins. While this bonus is played, each reel can extend to hold a maximum of twelve symbols. Each time a reel reaches its full size, the free spins are retriggered. The extended reel now only displays Wilds and Queen of Hearts icons.
This release has high volatility but makes up for it with its fantastic RTP. At 97.72%, it is miles ahead of any other Megaways title currently on the market! With such good odds, that 13,000x jackpot looks mighty impressive.
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