You know a game is good when it celebrates it's fifth year anniversary and it's still as popular as ever. Just like one of the other more famous NetEnt slots , Gonzo's Quest is timeless: players join the Spanish conquistador in the search for the El Dorado and are rewarded with free spins, multipliers and other exciting features. In a nutshell, if there was a slot Hall of Fame, Gonzo's Quest would certainly be right up there with other legendary slots. Read our review to find out what we are on about.
Slot Game Overview:
Set in the Peruvian jungle, the main hero of the slot, Gonzalo Pizzaro, tries to find the hidden and long-lost city of gold - the El Dorado. This is a refreshingly unique theme among heaps and heaps of pirate and fruit themed ones, and is the first platinum slot of NetEnt, meaning that it was the first to have the Avalanche feature and 3D graphics.
The great popularity is brought not only by the awe-inspiring 3D graphics, but also by the massive maximum payout of £25,000. And that's not taking into consideration the multipliers, reaching up to 15x in the free falls feature round Imagine just how big a ship you'd need to bring that loot back to Britain!
Featuring ancient Maya pyramids, the five reels and 20 adjustable paylines await the gambler, just as the El Dorado awaits the explorer Gonzalo. Although the 20 paylines are fixed, you can adjust the Bet Level to be anywhere from one to five, which accordingly increases your total bet. You can also alter the Coin Value and choose from 1p, 2p, 5p, 10p, 20p, 50p, £1 and £2. The Bet Level then multiplies the Coin Value so you've got double control over how much you bet - as little or as much as you want.
This medium variance slot brings the moderate 96% return-to-player, which by no means is spectacular, but winning combinations do occur frequently thanks to the Avalanche feature. This means that instead of spinning reels, you let the symbols fall down and the winning combinations vanish into smoke making way for more symbols to fall down, thus more chances for winning. But let's discuss this further in the Features section of the review.
Although you might expect that Gonzo's Quest has many features and mini-games, it's not necessarily true. The intensely detailed graphics and cut scenes are rather misleading, because the game offers Free Falls (i.e. free spins), Wilds, Multipliers and that's about it. Despite that, the game is still entertaining to play and unpredictable, due to the fact that there are so many possibilities to turn the symbols into a winning combo.
First of all, as I briefly mentioned in the Gameplay section, instead of spinning five standard reels, the symbols in Gonzo's Quest "fall from the sky". This is called the Avalanche Feature. If a winning combination is present, the symbols will shake about, explode into rubble, disappear and make way for new symbols to fall into their place. So, without spinning again, a winning combination can be triggered again - double whamy! This will continue for as long as you keep winning, up to four times.
Through this Avalanche Feature, another feature is triggered - the multipliers of 2x, 3x and 5x of your win. So, if you hit a winning streak of four 'spins', you could see your winnings multiplied five times, which is a great opportunity to maximize your win without having to make another bet. We absolutely love this feature and NetEnt were one of the very first ones to implement it. Now, other developers are creating games that have this 'cascading' symbols feature, because players love it and it's win maximizing potential so much.
Then, there are the Free Falls that are triggered if you are lucky enough to hit three Free Falls symbols glistening in gold. Ten free falls are given to you that are released automatically and if you hit a winning combination, the Avalanche Feature still holds true. Thus, the real number of spins that you get can be much more than 10. The multipliers in the Free Falls round are also bigger - 3x, 6x, 9x and 15x, so the winning potential is absolutely huge!
Although it was designed and created five years ago, the slot still looks impeccable. Actually, it is hard to believe that it's been five years, because the fascinating 3D graphics, the pastel colour palette, the smooth transitions and the compatibility on mobile devices make it seem like a new release.
The conquistador moonwalks and performs other, rather embarrassing, dance moves when you win big. He jumps and hops around a tad too much for my liking, but it is precisely this playful animation that brings the slot to life. Add the nature and animal audio effects to that and you got yourself a slot that truly deserves the five stars that we've awarded it.
You might wonder why on earth we would be reviewing slots that have been released such a long time ago. Well, we think they are so brilliant that they deserve the limelight once more. Among stand-out, timeless classics type slots, Gonzo's Quest definitely is right up there.
So what does it take for a slot to have that timeless quality? Well, it's multiple things. First, a theme that is distinguishable yet approachable and likable enough so that people keep going back to it time and time again.
Second, it needs some pioneering features, which doesn't mean that it has to be an overly complex slot with five mini-games. In fact, Gonzo's Quest is anything but that, as it has no mini-games within it. But it does have the Avalanche Feature and the multipliers, both of which were rather innovative back in 2010.
Lastly, to reach the slot longevity Olympus, a game must offer fair chances of winning and Gonzo's Quest definitely does that. It is a medium variance slot, but the paytable is rather generous. This is all made many times better by the multipliers in the regular game and the even bigger and better multipliers in the Free Falls Feature. When you are generous with your payouts, the people keep coming back and that's what makes Gonzo's Quest a timeless classic.
Gonzo's Quest Review - Our Conclusion
Five years after it was released, the game doesn't fail to entertain. The Avalanche reels, the Free Falls Feature and the multipliers are generous, the 3D video and the graphics are stunning and the overall performance of the slot is something we cannot find fault with. So, if you are on a look out for a game that will withstand the pressure of time, then Gonzo's Quest is the one to stick with.