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Their game features four funky creatures, Ringo the Flamingo, Basil the Tortoise, Burro the Donkey, and Walter the Warthog. These characters are in control of each reel and also happen to be competitors in the famous Jalapeno Race, which only starts when you trigger the four race symbols on each of the four sets of reels. Let’s learn a little more about this unusual and innovative slot.
Overview: Jalapeno Racers
Jalapeno Racers boasts a massive array of four 5×3 slots in a single game and 80 paylines in play across the four sets of reels. This is a slot that not only offers slot gaming on a different scale, but also the chance to enjoy an unspecified amount of free spins in an innovative new way to allow players to enjoy this potentially lucrative feature.
That is achieved by landing the four Race scatter symbols on each of the four sets of reels at the same time. This will launch an unspecified number of free spins. The reels will continue to spin and offer player wins until one of the reel sets lands the Finish Race symbol. This signifies the end of the race and the end of the free spins round.
Who will the Jalapeno Racers slot appeal to?
At first, you look at this slot and feel that given its scope and size and the sheer number of reels involved, that it’s probably a game best played by more experienced slot players. However, if you actually play the slot, once you’re used to the format and how the slots link together for key features, it’s actually a very simple slot to play for relative newcomers to slot gaming too.
That said, with 80 paylines to cover, this isn’t a slot for those who prefer the micro-stakes game. Even at its cheapest price, you will spend $0.80 per spin. If you want to go for the bigger prizes available, you’ll need to wager considerably more than that up to a maximum bet of $40. That puts Jalapeno Racers puts firmly in the medium stakes players range.
Gameplay: Jalapeno Racers
It’s easy to be taken aback when the Jalapeno Racers slot loads up. You’re confronted with not just one, but four 5×3 slots played next to each other. Each slot is overseen by one of the competitors in the Jalapeno Race. Burro the Donkey is on the first reel. Ringo the Flamingo on the set of reels to the right of Burro. Underneath Burro is Walter the Warthog. The final set of reels, on the bottom right, is overseen by Basil the Tortoise.
The first thing to note is that the symbols on each of the four sets of reels are all exactly the same. The lower value symbols are a number of Mexican/desert-themed symbols. These include a cactus, a buffalo skull, a sombrero, some maracas, and a trumpet. The four animal symbols are the higher value symbols in the game, with the Warthog being the highest paying symbol. He offers a payout of 1,000 coins if you can hit five on any payline.
When you set the reels spinning, all four sets of reels will spin. The paylines in each set of reels are calculated at the end of a spin. Any winnings owed to you is paid, just as on a normal slot. However, on this slot you can win on more than one set of reels at once and you can, of course, hit multiple winning paylines on any real given that symbols are stacked on the reels.
So essentially, Jalapeno Racers offers four sets of reels instead of 1 and a total of 80 paylines. But there are two features that bring all the slots together.
The first of these is the unusual Propagating Wild symbol. What this means is that if you hit the Wild symbol in a particular position on any of the four reels, then the Wild will appear in the same position on the other three reels for this spin. Of course, this means that with the Wild substituting for high- and low-value symbols, you have an increased chance of hitting a win.
However, the most important and accessible feature of the Jalapeno Racers slot is the Free Spins game. What’s interesting is how the spins are played. It’s very different to your standard “hit three scatters” and “spin for X number of free spins” bonus round.
First off, to trigger the Jalapeno Race you need to land the Race symbol in each of the four sets of reels on the same spin. They don’t have to be in the same position on each set of reels, simply that each set of reels lands the Race symbol.
Once you’ve hit four Race symbols across the four sets of slots, then the Race begins. When the race begins, there are four different animals on the reels, plus some slightly different lower value symbols to signify the race is underway.
The Jalapeno Race starts by you spinning the reels. The competing animals will race ahead if they land a chili on their reels. If they don’t land one after a few spins, they can fall over. The race ends when one of the animals wins by landing the Race Finish Bonus. Until that point, you can keep winning on spins for an unspecified amount of spins. The longer you keep the race going, the more you could win in the bonus round.
Special features: Jalapeno Racers
The fact that all the high and low symbols are stacked across all four sets of reels helps land some of the better base game wins, especially if you can hit a Propagating Wild alongside them.
Jalapeno Race bonus
Hit four of the Race symbols, one on each of the four sets of reels and you enter the bonus Jalapeno Race round. Keep spinning the reels until one of the four race competitors eats enough chillis to win the race and earn you an additional Race Finish Bonus.
Land a Wild in any position on any of the four reels and the corresponding symbol on the three reels without a Wild will also turn Wild. This offers you three more chances to win using the Wild symbol on the other reel sets.
4 lots of 5×3 slots
Although when you first load up the Jalapeno Racers slot it can look like a very complex game, essentially this is just four sets of reels with Wilds and Scatter symbols interlinked between all four to add a little extra to the game. As such, it is easy to play and understand.
Race Bonus feature
The Jalapeno Race bonus feature is a great way to organize a free spins bonus round. It can be volatile, with some races lasting a lot shorter time (and thus fewer spins) than others. However, if you can hit a longer race and more free spins, then this round can really pay out nice returns.
This is a relatively simple feature. It sees any Wild landed in one spot on a set of reels, land in the corresponding spot on the others. This increases your chances of triggering additional paylines on other reels.
Base game plays tight
You would think with 80 paylines and four sets of reels, you would win a lot more often, but somehow on the Jalapeno Racers slot, you don’t win a huge amount of the time. Furthermore when you do win, the amounts you receive back tend to be relatively small.
Hard to realize free spins
Tied in to a rather tight base game is the fact that hitting those four Race symbols across each set of reels does take a lot of time and patience. If you hit a particularly tight set of spins, it can prove costly trying to trigger the bonus feature.
The graphics on the slot are somewhat basic and unspectacular. They feature a simple cartoon style used to represent the animals that are the basis of the slot. It does the job, but the graphics and sound certainly won’t wow you into playing.
Graphics & soundtrack 2/5
The graphics and soundtrack are serviceable. They suit the overall feel of the slot (which has a kind of Wacky Races feel when you hit the main bonus feature), but they aren’t going to win any awards for complexity or innovation.
Originality & creativity 4/5
I think this is a brave attempt at a new style of slot. Not only do we have four sets of reels, but we have a new form of Wild that propagates across the reels. There’s also a new way in which you can earn free spins that isn’t confined by a stated number of spins at the start.
Play value 2/5
The biggest downfall for the Jalapeno Racers slot in my view is that the base game does tend to play very tight. Hitting that free spin race bonus feature does take time and can prove expensive.
Jackpot potential 2/5
The jackpot available in the base game is 1,000 coins for five Warthogs on a payline. Jackpots in the free spins game are half this prize, although there is more opportunity to hit the higher jackpots in the free spins round. Whatever way you look at it, these are not huge jackpot prizes.
Repeat play 3/5
Although I have reservations about the long-term value of the slot, I think the creativity and originality of the game and some of its features will certainly have you loading up the slot for a few sessions before those low-paying base game spins start to bite into your bankroll a little.
Total score: 13/25
Jalapeno Racers is a fun game with some innovative features that will certainly attract plenty of gamers, however low relative value when playing the base game and a tough to hit bonus round make this a hard slot to love.