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I must admit that I did wonder what this slot was about, as the most Lions you can get on the reels at any one time is 20. But then I saw the 50 Paylines and wondered if it was a pun…you know 50 Lines – 50 Lions slot machine? Anyway, what we have here is a slot that isn’t really about 50 Lions as such, but more about life on the African plains.
So where do the Lions come into it? Well they’re stacked across the reels and are the only symbol that is stacked. Of course, that means that the potential for multiple winning lines exist with this symbol. That’s where you can take home a jackpot considerably in excess of the 1,000-coin jackpot available for landing one payline filled with the Lions.
Overview: 50 Lions
The 50 Lions slot is a somewhat dated-looking 5×4 reel slot with a total of 50 paylines in play. The jackpot in the base game and free spins is 1,000 coins. However, you can win this on multiple paylines, as it is the Stacked Lion symbol that offers this top prize. The setting for the slot is the African savannah. You can see a herd of giraffe and a single elephant silhouetted against a rather angry looking orange-and-red sky.
Rather than attempt to copy the sounds you would encounter on an African Safari, what Artistocrat has done is attempt to make this slot sound like you’re playing it in a casino. So the backdrop isn’t the sound of roaring lions, trumpeting elephants and howler monkeys. It is instead a mix of noises you’d hear from other casino machines mixed with indistinct voices. In truth, it doesn’t quite work and the slot suffers as a result.
Who will 50 Lions slot appeal to?
This is a larger 5×4 reel slot and has 50 paylines. This means that someone bored with 5×3 reel games and looking for something a little larger to play will enjoy it. The African theme is one mirrored in many different slots, so this will always prove popular too. However, the sound effects do detract somewhat from creating the right atmosphere.
The jackpot on this slot isn’t huge at 1,000 coins, albeit it can be won on multiple lines. So this isn’t a jackpot for those who prefer larger prizes to play for. Nor is it a slot for players who prefer more regular value wins, as this tends to have long spells without a win. As such, this is a challenging slot to play. Only players who enjoy that type of slot and have excellent bankroll management, will thrive playing it.
Gameplay: 50 Lions
One of the biggest mistakes a game developer makes when putting together a 5×4 reel slot is to not have enough paylines. 50 sounds like a huge amount of paylines compared to some 9 or 20 payline games, but on a 5×4 reel set, it isn’t actually a huge amount and this is clearly evident once you start the process of playing.
You can select the number of lines and the bet per line you wish to make. (Though for the best chance of winning you should play all 50 lines.) Bets per line start at just $0.01, but you can ramp up the size of the bet to $1.50 per line. This gives you a minimum bet of $0.50 and a maximum bet of $75.00 with all paylines in play.
The symbols on the reels are a mixture of the usual playing card low value symbols. Here they go from 9 through to the ace. Unusually, the King and Ace offer the same highest payout for five symbols as two of the higher value symbols (the tribeswomen and the tree against the setting sun symbols) of 400 coins. Other high value symbols include the giraffe and the zebra.
The biggest value symbol is the stacked symbol lion. This offers payouts of up to 1,000 coins if you can land five on a payline Although with this symbol being stacked, it’s possible for you to win on multiple paylines when you land this symbol, especially if you have hit some Wild symbols on the reels too.
To help you achieve more wins, there is the Diamond Wild symbol. This substitutes for all the high and low value symbols, plus the stacked Lion symbol. Although somewhat disappointingly, it doesn’t offer a high value win if you trigger several diamond symbols on a payline. Nor does it offer you a multiplier for any win it completes.
The Free Spins bonus round is triggered by landing three of the Flower scatter symbols on the first three reels. Achieve this and you unlock 10 free spins during which the Wild symbol, as well as the Lion symbol is stacked on the reels. Furthermore, extra Wild symbols are added to the reels to help you try and land a bigger value win. Land three scatters again during the free spins and you trigger an additional five free spins.
Special Features: 50 Lions Slot Game
Stacked Lion symbols
The Stacked Lion symbols are what gives the slot its name and they also offer players the best chance of a big win, especially during the free spins round when Wilds are also stacked and so it is easier to trigger multiple payline wins with these symbols working in combination.
Land three of the flower scatter symbols and you earn 10 free spins with Extra Wilds on the reels making Wild symbols into stacked symbols. You can retrigger additional free spins from within the bonus by landing the same three scatters once again.
The Diamond is the in game Wild and this can substitute for any high or low value symbol, or the Stacked Lion, to create a winning payline. During Free Spins there are additional Wilds on the reels which become Stacked Wilds offering you a much better chance of a bigger win.
There’s no denying that 50 Lions casino game is a very simple slot. Although it has a 5×4 reel set up and 50 paylines, this is essentially a slot with a single Free Spins bonus round and a Wild symbol with one set of stacked reels. That makes it simple to play and easy to understand.
Mixed value wins
One of the better features of the slot as you notice as you play is that the size of wins you get does vary nicely. There are some very small wins, but they are interspersed with a good number of wins of 2x to 5x your standard wager and these bets do soon add up when the slot is playing more loose. However there are times too when it plays very tight.
Lots of paylines
In truth once you hit a slot of 5×4 reels, then you need more paylines in order to make it accessible and if you are going down the payline route, rather than ways to win, then 50 is about the minimum you need to make a 5×4 slot work and indeed, that is precisely what happens with the 50 Lions slot.
Given that there are so many low value wins and that the Wild symbol doesn’t offer a big win on its own accord, it is disappointing that the 50 Lions slot doesn’t offer any real multiplier bonuses during the base game or during free spins.
Very basic presentation
Being charitable, you could call the 50 Lions slot a retro styled game, but in truth it is just looking very dated. The graphics are reminiscent of what you would find on the old 8-bit games, chunky and not particularly refined. The sound is also extremely basic with just a series of generic casino effects.
Lack of variation in gameplay
Perhaps the biggest issue with the slot is the fact that after a while, there just isn’t enough happening in the slot to keep you spinning the reels. The base game works ok, but nothing really excites you. When you do eventually trigger free spins, which can take a lot of patience, the round can be over quickly and sometimes, you win very little, leaving you wondering why you sought to trigger it in the first place.
Graphics & soundtrack 1/5
Whether you want to be kind and say rustic or retro, or more harsh and say very rough around the edges, in terms of presentation, the 50 Lions slot falls well short of what we’d expect to see from a modern slot.
Originality & creativity 2/5
This gets an extra mark due to the fact that the Stacked Lion symbols are joined by Stacked Wilds in the base game which is a nice feature, but other than that, even though this is a 5×4 slot, it isn’t bursting with any creativity or original features at all.
Play value 2/5
The 50 Lions slot should have a solid play value as it is purportedly a more medium to low variance game, but I found it very tough to make any form of profit on the slot and even when the game seemed to offer more wins, I found myself down money considerably more often than I’d like.
Jackpot potential 2/5
The jackpot is 1,000 coins for 5 Lions on a payline, but this can be increased by landing these symbols on multiple paylines. However, that said, this is not a jackpot size likely to attract many big jackpot hunters to play.
Repeat play 1/5
50 Lions could have been a good slot, but it suffers from so many niggles and issues that after only a few spins your interest starts to wane and in the end it just becomes a slot. This isn’t a slot that will remain on your must play list for long.
Total score: 8/25
50 Lions is a basic slot that has some nice elements but just doesn’t deliver the goods. The presentation is poor, the gameplay is rather dull and unrewarding, and the whole experience leaves you feeling a little flat and bored, rather than excited to stay and play.