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Blue Blazes

International Game Technology

Blue Blazes
International Game Technology

This is an intriguing new stepper slot from IGT’s Barcrest subsidiary. The base game is a simple three-reel, single-line slot game with tripling wild symbols. One 3X symbol triples the jackpot in winning combinations; two with a win multiply the jackpot by nine; three pay the top line jackpot of 2,500 coins. It is a quarter game with wagers up to five credits, or $1.25.

Embedded in the top box is a second set of reels, with a separate, more basic pay schedule and five paylines. It is the home of a free-spin bonus. A “+3 Free Games” symbol on the third reel increments a free-spin meter, and the player can accumulate free spins or press a button to collect them at any time.

The top box reels contain “BAR” symbols, 7s, “FREE GAMES” symbols and wild symbols. Bar symbols pay 10 times the wager; “7” symbols, 25 times the wager. The wild symbols pay 100, 200, 300, 400 or 1,000 credits, for lining up three on each one of the respective paylines, and three FREE GAMES symbols on a payline triggers an additional three free games on the top-box reels.

What makes the game unique, though, is that for a total wager of 10 credits, the player bypasses the base game and goes right to the top box. There is a fourth, bonus reel next to the primary reels that is activated with the 10-credit wager, with the symbols representing the six sides of a die. Landing 1, 2 or 3 on the die is a losing spin; a 4 spins again. A 5 or 6 on the die registers one or two free games on the top box, respectively. The player then has the option to play the free games or bank them and keep spinning.

According to the manufacturer, the player has a five-in-six chance of winning at least one free game on the high-paying top reels with the larger wager. It is designed to promote a very high average wager, particularly as it is offered in the quarter denomination. (It also is available in multi-denomination or denomination-selectable setups.)

Manufacturer: International Game Technology
Platform: S2000
Format: Three-reel, single-line stepper slot; mechanical bonus
Denominations: .25; configurable as multi-denomination
Max Bet: 20
Top Award: 5,000
Hit Frequency: 40%
Theoretical Hold: 2%-15%

Frank Legato is editor of Global Gaming Business magazine. He has been writing on gaming topics since 1984, when he launched and served as editor of Casino Gaming magazine. Legato, a nationally recognized expert on slot machines, has served as editor and reporter for a variety of gaming publications, including Public Gaming, IGWB, Casino Journal, Casino Player, Strictly Slots and Atlantic City Insider. He has an B.A. in journalism and an M.A. in communications from Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, PA. He is the author of the books, How To Win Millions Playing Slot Machines... Or Lose Trying, and Atlantic City: In Living Color.  

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