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88 Fortunes Pokies

In Chinese culture, the number 8 is seen as having good fortune attached to it, so it’s not unusual to see online pokies with an Oriental theme and lots of ‘8’s popping up all over them. 88 Fortunes, from Shuffle Master, has the number in the title and comes packed with images that couldn’t be more stereotypically Oriental if they tried.

Decorated in the reds and golds that seem to fill most games of this nature, it’s a good-looking pokie and has some interesting features like the option to have more valuable symbols in play, a free spins round with richer reels and several progressive jackpots.

Playing For 88 Fortunes

The rich design and fine attention to detail makes it stand out, with a decorative background in various shades of red setting the predominantly gold reels off very effectively. Above the reels there’s a couple of babies holding scrolls, and while the significance of this isn’t very clear, these so-called Fu Babies become important when the progressive jackpot round is triggered.

Players can stake as little as 0.08 on a spin of the 5 reels, while the maximum wager is appropriately, 88.00, although we shall come to the difference that bigger bets will make in a minute.

Instead of trying to land symbols across specific paylines, this game sees wins come when 3 or more of the same symbol appear on adjacent reels running from the left side, and there’s 243 different ways that this can occur, leading to a low-volatility game where lots of smaller wins tend to be had, rather than fewer bigger wins.

The lowest value wins come from the J, Q, K and A playing card symbols, while the picture symbols that are unique to 88 Fortunes will be worth more.

A coin, ingots, statue of a turtle, ship and carved bird give this game its distinct appearance, but players will have noticed that to the left of the reels is a table that shows 5 bet levels. The more coins activated on each line, the more of the picture symbols will be turned gold, and therefore worth higher payouts when they are part of a winning combination.

Just staking 8 credits sees a single picture symbol going gold, while 88 credits will activate them all, and on top of this, players will only qualify for the higher jackpots when more credits are staked. For a bit of added clarity, a little image above this table clearly shows which symbols are in gold mode.

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88 Fortunes

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88 Fortunes
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Bonus Features

An elaborate red and gold symbol with Chinese writing on it is wild, so it can substitute for all except the scatter to complete winning lines. As an example, if a player lands the A symbol on reels 1 and 3, plus the wild on reel 2, they will be paid out for a line of 3 Aces.

This wild symbol only appears on the middle 3 reels however, so can’t make up lines on its own and has no value until it completes combinations with others.

The scatter is a green, red and bronze-coloured gong, and this leads players to a free spins game when it lands on reels 1, 2 and 3 at once. Although just 10 spins are awarded, these can be quite lucrative, as the playing card symbols are removed from the reels, giving players fewer symbols that need to line up and bigger payouts when they do so.

Progressive Jackpots Feature

To the right of the reels the current values of 4 progressive jackpots are displayed, with the Mini starting at just 40.00, the Minor seeded at 75.00, the Major grows from 1,500.00 and the Grand is set at 4,000.00 and increases from there.

Players enter the jackpot round at random after a spin where the wild symbol appears, and they will be taken to a screen where 12 gold coins are lined up before them. Clicking on each coin will reveal a cute Fu Baby and once 3 matching babies have been found, the jackpot associated with them will be awarded.

Once the round is triggered, players are guaranteed to win a jackpot, even if the most likely outcome is the Mini, but remember that the more credits wagered, the better the mix of jackpots behind the coins.

The Verdict

Although Chinese-themed pokies are very common, this one comes with some nice extra features and an eye-catching design. Paying out higher wins with more credits is an interesting option, while higher jackpots is an added incentive to stake more.

Quite why Fu Babies are involved is perhaps a mystery, but they can result in a big progressive jackpot win, so their presence is welcomed anyway.

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