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[toc]There really are a diverse range of Middle Ages-themed slots nowadays, ranging from the fantastical through to the comical. Therefore, when a new slot on this theme hits casinos it needs to have some kind of wow factor, or a hugely original feature, in order to differentiate it from the myriad of other games on a similar theme.
Golden Knight doesn’t start too promisingly, if I am honest, with something of a nondescript name for the game. Golden Knight is one of the characters in the slot who wears gold armor, that’s it. So how does this romp around medieval times fare in a slot in its own right? Let’s strap on some armor, mount our trusty steed, and venture through the review.
Overview: Golden Knight
The Golden Knight slot is a 5×4 reel, 40 payline game. It features playing card low symbols from 9 through to Ace. There are a number of somewhat generic characters and creatures representing the higher symbols. These include the Golden Knight himself, a queen, a fire-breathing dragon, and his trusty steed. Set against a backdrop of a distant castle with a dragon flying in—presumably to attack—the game looks passable without being spectacular.
In addition to these symbols, there is a Wild symbol (which is stacked up to four symbols high across the reels) plus a bonus Free Games symbol, which offers access to the free spins game. You can, for the price of a second bet at the same level of your original bet, activate the Scatter Bucks feature. This adds additional Wilds and guaranteed cash prizes to the reels.
Who will the Golden Knight slot appeal to?
Given the amount of slots on a similar theme to Golden Knight, there is obviously a real interest in this genre of game. But, to be honest, I’m at a loss to understand the huge appeal. Certainly, this slot doesn’t have the instant “grab you” factor that Game of Thrones has, but I have to admit that over time, the slot does draw you in, but only if you have the Scatter Bucks bonus feature activated.
Fans of games with this feature, free spins features, and Stacked Wilds will also be sufficiently catered to. If you enjoy a playable free spins slot, then Golden Knight certainly hits the mark. Although I would add here that it’s markedly less enjoyable if you don’t activate the Scatter Bucks bonus feature.
Gameplay: Golden Knight
The first thing you need to do when you load up the Golden Knight slot is decide on your bet level. You have to play all 40 lines on every spin. You can increase or decrease the size of the bet per line using the arrows next to the bet per line box. It’s very simple to do, but you need to remember the Scatter Bucks feature.
Activating this feature not only gives you additional Wild symbols with guaranteed cash prizes on them, but it also doubles the cost of your bet. This makes a 40 line bet at a maximum of $0.50 per line a total of $40 with Scatter buck activated, instead of being a $20 bet. That is very expensive for a feature, but activating Scatter Bucks makes the Golden Knight slot a far more enjoyable game.
So once you have decided how much to wager per spin and whether you want Scatter Bucks in operation, you can then simply click on the Spin button to get the reels in motion. It’s here that the game kicks into life a bit more.
It’s fair to say that you win relatively frequently in the Golden Knight slot. The majority of these wins are very small, especially when you just hit lower value symbols. Even four or five on a payline don’t pay out huge amounts. Higher value symbols pay out a bit more, but even they don’t really offer you a chance at the bigger money.
For that you need to trigger the features of the slot. This is where things get a bit more interesting. The first of these is the Wild symbol. This is stacked four high across the reels and can be used to create winning paylines by substituting for low and high value symbols. The highest base game payout comes from landing five Wilds across the reels, which pays out 1,000 coins per payline.
The second feature is the Scatter Bucks feature. If you have this activated then when you land any Scatter Bucks Wild symbol anywhere on the reels, not only is this symbol wild, but the amount of money displayed is won. Scatter Bucks Wilds are also stacked. You can win a large amount of money if you hit Stacked Scatter Bucks Wild on reels 4 and 5 in particular (where the higher value prizes tend to be).
The final feature in the Golden Knight slot is the Free Games bonus symbol. This appears on reels 2, 3, and 4. Unlike some other slots which require you to land these symbols on a payline, on Golden Knight you can land them anywhere across the reels. When you hit all three of the symbols on a single spin, you’ll earn yourself seven free games.
In general, what you’ll find is that playing the base game will keep your account topped up with lower value wins more frequently. You’ll likely still lose money, especially if you’re playing Scatter Bucks. However, a good Scatter Bucks result, or hitting the free spins will give you a better chance of landing a much greater value win.
Special Features: Golden Knight
The Wilds are easy to spot and they are stacked four high across the reels. They can substitute for high and low value symbols only and they also offer the highest base game jackpot of 1,000 coins if you land five wilds on a payline.
Land three of the Free Game bonus symbols anywhere on reels 2, 3 and 4 and you immediately win 7 free spins with the chance to land some decent sized wins in the bonus feature.
Scatter Bucks Wilds
Activate the Scatter Bucks Wild symbols by doubling the price of your bet and you get additional Wild symbols on the reels, plus a guaranteed cash prize of between 25 and 10,000 credits on each symbol (depending on the reel, the higher prizes are only available on reels 4 and 5).
The Stacked Wilds are very useful in the base game and during free spins. They help create additional wins and the fact they offer the biggest base game payout for five on a payline is also a good reason to pay close attention to them.
The good news for fans of lower variance slots is that you do win relatively frequently with the Golden Knight slot. Those wins do tend to be smaller value and can be considerably less than your total wager for the spin, especially with Scatter Bucks active.
Without a doubt the best feature of the slot is the one that comes with the cash premium. Paying double your stake is worth it with the Scatter Bucks feature, as it can lead to some amazing wins in the base game, even when it appears that the first three reels have left you with no chance of a win.
There’s a lack of multipliers within the slot which doesn’t make triggering those features as appealing as it should. Even just a 2x multiplier for Wild completed wins would make a huge difference.
With a RTP of 95%, this is a medium to low variance slot, but those smaller wins can be a bit of a drag at times. It can be disappointing to win on 5 spins out of 10 but find that you are still losing a considerable amount of money over the period.
Playing without Scatter Bucks active
The fact of the matter is that the appeal of the Golden Knight slot is hugely diminished if you don’t pay double the stake and have Scatter Bucks active. This is the primary feature of the game and without it active the slot is far less appealing.
Graphics & soundtrack 2/5
There is no denying that the Golden Knight slot looks and feels a little dated compared to some of the newer slots. That’s not to say it affects the gameplay, it doesn’t, but the slot is just starting to show its age.
Originality & creativity 3/5
Although in many ways this is a standard slot game with a Wild symbol and free spins, the fact that you have Stacked Wilds and also the Scatter Bucks bonus make this a bit more original than a standard video slot.
Play value 3/5
I found that the better you budgeted on this slot, the more it was likely to pay you out over time. I did win 1,000 coins just two spins in on one session, but on others I was more than that down before I landed a bigger win to eat into that deficit. Overall though, with regular smaller wins, if you budget well, then this slot does not take too big a bite out of your finances.
Jackpot potential 3/5
There’s some good money to be won in the base game with 1,000 coins up for grabs on the Wild symbols alone. However, playing the Scatter Bucks bonus makes far more of these bigger prizes available on reels 4 and 5 and that is where the real jackpot potential lies.
Repeat play 3/5
Golden Knight is a game that will not initially appeal due to how it looks and the fact that to activate the best feature, you have to double your bet, but give it time and you’ll find that the slot does grow on you and my money is on you’ll load it up a fair few times to give it a couple of spins.
Total score: 14/25
There’s nothing spectacular about the Golden Knight slot despite the name and it can be expensive to play at times, but played with the Scatter Bucks bonus in operation, this is a fun, enjoyable slot that has the potential to deliver some big wins.