Imperial Riches slot review (Netent)
Imperial Riches is a Netent video slot with an Oriental theme and five different jackpots
But have we not seen this slot before?
We have to admit: Netent has done well to fool us into thinking this is a brand new slot.
It isn’t, though. Yes, the theme has changed entirely, and the way you can win the progressive jackpots seem (at first sight) completely different.
Looking more closely, we see that Imperial Riches is a perfect clone of the popular Cosmic Fortune slot.
Sometimes, slot providers copy existing slots. It allows them to release new titles in an ultra-competitive environment without the need to develop new mathematical models. It’s perfectly understandable why they do it. If something works well, it only seems logical to copy it and change some minor details.
The once-so-mighty Netent is dying for better times and would like nothing more than to be crowned the King of the online slots world, again. We do wonder whether copying existing slots is the way to get there.
We love the oriental theme of the slot. There are relaxing images of a Chinese summer palace in the background, with shaded terraces, red lanterns, ponds with water lilies, and a gentle breeze. Chinese Emperors used to go to these kinds of summer palaces to relax.
How does the Imperial Riches slot work?
Imperial Riches uses the avalanche mechanism: winning combinations disappear and pave the way for new ones.
The game has 5 reels with 3 rows of symbols and 15 fixed paylines.
The minimum bet is $€0,15 per spin. The maximum bet is a bit low: $€30 per spin.
There are five jackpots that you can win:
- Two fixed jackpots (the Rapid of $€100 and the Mini of $€500)
- Three progressive jackpots (the Midi, Major and Mega). The progressive jackpots are local (not pooled with other casinos). So, the size of the jackpot depends on the casino where you are playing. The Mega Jackpot is the highest one.
It is certainly worth the effort to shop around a bit and check which casino has the highest Mega Jackpot. It could be that the Mega Jackpot, is only $€10,000 at one online casino (because it was won recently) and $€100,000 at another casino — the chance of winning it the same for all casinos. So, look for the one with the highest payout.
Payout percentage and variance of Imperial Riches
The theoretical RTP of Imperial Riches is 96.88%.
- It includes the amount that is set aside for the jackpots. On average, 6.3% is withheld.
- It means that the rest of the game has a payout of only 90.58%.
The game, therefore, boils down to lots of smaller prizes and standard bonus features. Netent tried to be smart by splitting the free spins bonus feature into three rounds. At least, you get the feeling that something spectacular is going on.
But will you win big? Unlikely!
Unless, of course, you manage to grab one of the jackpots.
We qualify the variance (if we do not consider the jackpots) of Imperial Riches to be low.
Symbols and payouts
The slot has golden symbols, and these are also the premium symbols.
- The golden gong is wild and replaces all symbols except the scatters (the red lanterns) — spin 5 wilds on an active payline for 1,500 coins.
- The other premium symbols include a goldfish, golden coins, bamboo plants and a basket with metals. These are worth between 200 and 1,000 coins for a 5-of-a-kind.
You don’t have to worry too much about the low symbols (the card symbols): they are mainly used to fill up the screen and barely yield anything.
Free spins bonus: collect jewels to enter the Jackpot Game
If you get three or more scatters (red lanterns), you activate the free spins bonus (“Free Falls”). If you get three scatters, you earn 10 free spins. For every additional scatter, you get another +5 free spins.
When you play the Free Falls, you need to collect as many jewels as possible. Any symbol that is part of a winning combination is worth a jewel. For example, a winning combination of 5 symbols gets you 5 jewels.
If you have won any jewels after the Free Falls, you go to the next round, the Lucky Pond Bonus Game. The ornaments you collected in the Free Falls, now drop (“fall”) into the water. The idea is that the pearly coloured Bonus Fish or the yellow glowing Coin Fish eat these.
If three jewels land on the back of Bonus Fish, you get to the next and final round: the Jackpot Game. There (and at last), you can have a go at winning a jackpot.
In the Jackpot Game, jewels drop into the water again. Now, six fish are hungry to get jewels. Five of the six fish represents one of the jackpots. If one of these five fish eats three jewels, you win the corresponding jackpot.
Our verdict on Netent’s Imperial Riches slot
What can we say? It’s a pretty decent slot, which we have seen before with Cosmic Fortune.
The set up with the three rounds in the free spins feature is entertaining, and you won’t need to wait for too long to get there. Imperial Riches is a low variance slot, but also where you can win great prizes because of the jackpots.
For that reason, Imperial Riches is undoubtedly going to be popular.
If you like Chinese summer palaces, red lanterns and Koi fish, well, here you go!
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