Maradona El Pibe De Oro: Slot Overview
We’ve mentioned it before, and we might say it again, but few game studios stretch a concept as far as Blueprint Gaming does. In their latest release, they’ve turned to a certain Argentinian football legend to create the branded online slot, Maradona El Pibe De Oro (Maradona The Golden Boy). Although this is only the second slot featuring the renowned athlete from Blueprint Gaming, following D10S Maradona, what makes it a typical Blueprint Gaming release is the fact that they’ve essentially rebranded Napoleon: Rise of an Empire. Talk about a makeover. But let’s move on from that.
If you admired Maradona’s skills on the field or are interested in experiencing the features of the older Napoleon game in a completely different setting, Maradona El Pibe De Oro might be for you. Despite the change in setting, people have long drawn connections between war and competitive sports. George Orwell, the English author of ‘1984’ and ‘Animal Farm,’ famously remarked that sport was ‘war minus the shooting.’ Perhaps in the future, when humanity rejects violence, disputes between nations or conflicting groups will be settled on the playing field instead of the battlefield. One might even imagine virtual battles in the metaverse being used to resolve conflicts. But let’s get back to Maradona El Pibe De Oro.
The game has a rather plain appearance, with a set of reels floating above a football pitch in a crowded stadium. The soundtrack injects much-needed life, evoking a sultry South American spirit. However, the game already looks a bit dated.
To team up with the Argentinian sports star, players need to choose a stake ranging from 20 cents to $/€40. They must then decide whether to place bets on individual spins or dive straight into the free spins bonus round by purchasing it for 60 times the bet. The Return to Player (RTP) fluctuates from the standard 96.04% to 96.05% when opting for the buy-free-spins feature. The game’s volatility is high, and the action unfolds on a 5-reel, 3-row screen with 20 paylines.
When examining the symbols, Maradona El Pibe De Oro features 10 regular pay symbols, a wild, and a scatter. The lower-value pay symbols are the 9-A card ranks, offering payouts ranging from 4 to 16 times the bet for landing a 5-of-a-kind combination. On the other hand, the high-paying symbols represent jerseys worn by Maradona during his career, including those from Boca Juniors, Barcelona, Napoli, and the Argentina national team. Achieving a 5-of-a-kind high-pay win results in payouts ranging from 24 to 200 times the bet.
Maradona El Pibe De Oro: Slot Features
The highlights of Maradona El Pibe De Oro include expanding Maradona wild symbols, random modifiers, and free spins featuring the D10S Streak.
Maradona graces the wild symbols, and these symbols are in play across all reels. Wilds have the ability to replace any pay symbol and carry a value of 5,000 times the bet for a winning line of 5 wilds. Additionally, wilds serve as win multipliers. When 1, 2, 3, or 4 wilds substitute in a winning combination, the payout is multiplied by x2, x4, x8, or x16, respectively.
At any point during a spin, Maradona can make an appearance, triggering one of two modifiers. In one, scatter symbols are introduced to the reels, boosting the chances of landing scatter symbols. In the other, wilds are incorporated onto the reels, enhancing the likelihood of landing wild symbols.
If you land 3 scatter symbols on reels 2, 3, and 4, you’ll receive 10 free spins. During these free spins, any win activates the D10S Streak feature. All winning symbols are locked in position, and the reels respin. This respinning continues until no more winning symbols appear on the reels. It’s worth noting that free spins can be retriggered while they are still active. In the scenario of purchasing free spins, any wilds that land may unveil an x2 or x3 multiplier, and this same multiplier value is applied to every wild symbol visible on the screen.
Maradona El Pibe De Oro: Slot Verdict
Maradona might have dazzled on the pitch, but Maradona El Pibe De Oro failed to shine so brightly. No doubt it is technically capable of glorious moments; check out the value of a 5 wild winning line, for example, yet it was tough going, bordering on cruel at times, and zero return bonus buys weren’t uncommon. There was a notably high number of dead free spins, to the point where the game felt broken, which got tedious. Maybe luck just wasn’t going our way during testing, and others will fare better, but bonus rounds felt like a tight game played by two equally matched teams with a lot of back and forth, though little in the way of scoring.
The reason may have to do with the D10S Streak part of free spins and the fairly decent symbol values. Hit even the smallest win on a free spin, and the lock and respin feature kicks into life, and already potent wild symbols may land with x2 or x3 multipliers when the bonus is bought. Not meaning to give a slot an emotional inner life, but Maradona El Pibe De Oro seemed worried that the slightest hit might kick off a respin run and result in a major result (it didn’t, at least during the review). Some might appreciate the way Maradona El Pibe De Oro functions, though, not to mention its 20,000x the bet win cap.
Gamblers intrigued by the features here but would prefer extra innovation or something more modern might do well to check out Napoleon 2 FatStacks from Lucksome. If that sounds like a random recommendation, Napoleon 2 FatStacks follows on from Napoleon: Rise of an Empire, so the features are similar, except there is a lot more going on, and the game felt like it had a better balance. Hey, some may prefer the apparent all-or-nothing nature of Maradona El Pibe De Oro and the older vibes it gives off. If so, great. Otherwise, it’s a game which came across as old before its time and just not very fun to play.