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Life’s easier when you’re laughing. That’s the appeal of many forms of entertainment; keeping your brain distracted! But while there’s a very talented joker in front of us, he’s not performing in a circus. Instead, he’s the star of a pseudo physical machine slot, and poses an interesting question.
Sure, classic games are fun, and their simplicity can be a welcome change of pace compared to complex modern releases. But how simple is too simple? The only way to find out where this line is hidden is to cross it. And that’s exactly what Joker’s Jewels does!
Good graphics can absolutely change the way you experience a slot. Take a look at our review of Jade Butterfly if you don’t believe us! It had captivating visuals which impressed us. And once the game had us in a good mood, we were more than willing to overlook some of its flaws. This Pragmatic Play release can’t pull off the same thing, since it doesn’t have any interesting graphics. What are we supposed to talk about? The background which is made to look like a slot machine? The absolutely generic symbols? Or maybe we should talk about the music which was so annoying that we had to immediately turn it off?
You play this game on a 5x3 board with 5 fixed paylines, which pay left to right. Now, this isn’t so bad, and could be forgiven if the gameplay was good. Sadly, there’s barely any improvement over the visuals! What you see on the playing field is what you get. At least Irish Charms was nice enough to give us Wilds. Joker’s Jewels doesn’t allow for even that much! The only mercy we receive is a Scatter which can pay from any position. But beyond that, there’s nothing that even looks similar to a special feature. Just keep spinning until you get a decent win or run out of money.
It goes to show just how adaptable Pragmatic Play’s user interface is when it manages to fit into this kind of background, too! Obviously, it’s not perfect, but we appreciate the more modern layout compared to having an old-timey one for immersion’s sake. It also means we get to keep the more modern way to change our total bets. You can decide to fine-tune every detail by carefully adjusting the coin value and coins per payline. Or you can keep pressing one button until you find the stake that suits you best. You can wager between GBP 0.05 and GBP 25 on each spin.
The nice thing about no special feature is that you can’t get confused about your jackpot. Find the most valuable symbol, and that’s your top prize! In this case, the jackpot would be a five-of-a-kind Joker win, worth 1000x your total stake. If you look at it individually, this top prize is quite nice. But if you combine it with this release’s high volatility, it becomes far less attractive. Sure, the RTP of 96.5% is better than average. But that hardly matters when the jackpot isn’t worth chasing after.
As we already established, there are no bonuses in Joker’s Jewels. You could argue Scatters count as one, and sure, you’d be technically correct. But ask yourself if you’ll truly be satisfied with just Scatters if you decide to play this slot? We’re almost certain the answer to that question will be a resounding no. We don’t mind a three reel game when it’s done right. But if throw out everything and leave just mindless reel spinning with nothing to look forward to? Then yeah, we have a problem
And it’s on that less than savoury note that we leave our review of this Pragmatic Play release. We were willing to meet the software provider half-way, but they gave us nothing. If you can enjoy this slot, more power to you. But for us, Joker’s Jewels was doomed to fail the moment it told us it had no bonuses.