Wild X Bonus 101

As if the new types of bonus video slots are not confusing or plentiful enough, I am here to add another category -- Wild Multiplier Bonus Slots.

These slots look like basic slots with three reels, but with plus, plus major bonuses. Wild symbols, (usually in the name of the slot version), are scattered about; multipliers, (2x, 5x, 10x pay+) as an added bonus option; and free spins that result in additional payouts. These versions also offer frequent hits/payouts; often every second spin, unlike basic slots.

You won't find second screen games as with bonus video slots -- Monopoly, Reel 'Em In, Let's Make a Deal, etc, however, video graphics are still present usually in the top-box screen of the slot.

I shortened the category name of these slots to Wild X Bonus Slots and list below 10 versions to search out and add to your 'future profits' slots education list.

Generally the payout for wild symbols is activated by the third coin. Five and nine paylines and ample pay tables are available with multiple jackpots that you have come to expect from bonus video slots.

1) Smokin' 7's: three reels, total of five 7 combos. Double jackpot 7's work like the wild symbol in Double Diamond-style games, subbing for any other symbol thus doubling the jackpot when one lands in a winning combo or quad the jackpot when two land. Free play symbol on third reel activates the bonus game -- now we're talking some real money. The top box is similar to Treasure Tunnel game jackpot multiplier, but with free spin numbers in circles (e.g., 5, 10 ,15 and 25 ). Once amount of free spins is established, hit the spin button once, away you go, and -- extra bonus -- each spin is a winning spin. If you land 3 wild symbols on free spin, it's the top payoff. A Smokin' Deal!

2) Wild Patriot: extra bonus for matching red, white and blue colors and for single, double and triple bar in sequence. Five normal 7 combos similar to red, white and blue 7's. Also a wild 7 symbol that subs for all other symbols offering the top primary game jackpot for three wilds on payline. Free play symbol on third reel, max coins in triggers a top box wheel with 8 spots of multipliers (e.g. 5, 10, 15, 25.) All jackpots are doubled on these free spins upping the game's top award. Occurs approximately every 50 spins. A true patriot wouldn't pass up this game.

3) Elvis 2: new features, new songs and a new look. Three-reeler with extra wild symbol and multiplying jackpots of 2x and 4x--now easier to win a second jackpot. You can now choose the song you would like played and you get video. Move toward the bonus circle that stops on a random bonus amount. The sound effects are fun in the latest version and who wouldn't want more of Elvis? The King speaks to you at a hopper fill with: 'Don't worry, I'll be with you in a minute.' Want to cash out? You hear: 'You've gotta be crazy'.

4) Lock & Roll: Want to put your machine playing skills to work? Here's the game for you. Players get to re-spin any or all the reels once on the same bet, if not happy with initial results. Similar to video poker, but instead of a poker hand, the symbols are randomly generated to appear on the reel. Make a decision on your hold for one or all of symbols, then re-spin and any unheld symbols are replaced. Meanwhile, the RNG is busy selecting 3 numbers on original spin plus selecting any other number for each reel that is re-spun. You get two shots at hitting every winning combo. Skill is in knowing the pay table. Some games have clues; e.g., only hold symbols that match each other. Usually you will not hold a blank, unless it is a wild cherry where you would hold a blank if the next symbol up is a cherry paying in any position. The best education for a novice player is the help screen that lists the odds of each different symbol showing up on the pay line. Take the time to read it for this game is worth the extra effort in frequent payouts.

5) Five Times, Ten Times Pay: a multiplying wild symbol with mix and match possibilities for larger payouts. One 10X = 10 times, while Two = 100 times jackpot. Also One 5x and One 10x = 50 multiplier. Budget accordingly; even though the hit frequency may not be high on this version, it has been determined that every 50-60 spins will bring in the right multipliers for higher payouts to put your bankroll back on track. Hang in there for those big scores.

6) Safe Buster: eight winning combinations with standard bar symbols included. Money bag symbols sub for cherries and 'safe-buster' game symbol. Three of those symbols win the top jackpot. Top box shows a safe dial bearing eight combination numbers---turning left, right and /or left trying to crack the safe for a multiplied jackpot. When all three numbers light up, the safe is cracked--triggering the reels to spin until a winning combo lands. Multipliers then range from 4x to 10x top jackpot. Generally the safe is cracked every 40 spins. Generous and action-packed.

7) Triple Diamond Slot Bingo: you get two bingo cards--one red and green with 25 numbered squares. Third reel displays Green Bingo or Red Bingo symbols. This launches an animated bingo ball for each coin bet settling on the matching numbers for each bingo card. Play until one card is a bingo. Higher bonuses are paid out for fewer numbers required for bingo, so the first 24 numbered winner receives a 100-coin bonus. When one card is full, it starts over, so you will be playing two cards at all times. This game is not just for bingo players, slot players have discovered this 2 for 1 game.

8) K.G. Bird: Aristocrat steps up with with the popular 'caged' bird in prison dress. This character is a wild sub for all symbols and five in a row offers the top jackpot. Extra payout multipliers are based on the number of coins played, therefore 5 max = 25,000 coin payout. Watch for extra pays with the firecracker scatter pay. Start off by playing all five lines but one coin/line until that multiplier payout starts to kick in. Fun CONcept for all players.

9) Roaring 20's: three reels, 3-coin buy-a-pay with bonus spin features . Bar symbol wins are different from basic slots in that these symbols pay as to where they land on the payline, rather than for matching bars. So, bar pays range from 2 coins for single bar/two blanks up to 60 coins for single, double and triple bar left to right on payline. The 'wild bar' symbol subbing for any bar on the payline increases the paybacks along the way. Top jackpot is paid for three 7's on the payline. The name of the game is the 'Roaring 20's star symbol' activated by the third coin. Have a listen to the ragtime music while the reels spin until a cumulative bonus amount is paid after the reels stop. With a hit every 3 spins, the play action is fun and dizzying.

10) Top Cat: Williams Gaming is one of my favorite manufacturers and this game proves it. The 'wild' cat and mouse symbols replace the oft-seen cherries on the pay table. The third coin activates the bonus feature. The cat's face with seven spaces determines the 2x, 3x, or 5x jackpot multiplier. Line up two 7's with a wild cat 5x multiplier for the top jackpot. As with all other Williams products, the sound effects and light show accompany the frequent bonuses.

This is the first of a series of articles that I plan to write on these types of bonus slots.

Wager management tips: play all three reels, however make sure with 9 payline versions, you bet at least 1 coin/line to cover all possible bonus options coming your way.

All features are not available or could be different versions as casinos order their own configurations.

Until next time -- Slot Players: go out and multiply!