Released in 2004, Gold Rally is that rare thing – a video slot that has endured the test of time. Playtech’s three-reeler is one of the most exciting games of its kind, offering as it does a mammoth progressive jackpot. On average, the title pays over half a million credits and is won every six weeks. Not many slots dangle retirement money in front of your eyes, but not many slots are as good as Gold Rally.
Given the size of the jackpot on offer, you might be surprised to learn that Gold Rally also features a scatter icon, an autoplay mode and a bonus game. While there’s no wild or free spins to be found, the slot, which features 8 paylines, is one that can be enjoyed time and time again thanks to its terrific gameplay. It can also be played on an array of mobile devices, including iPhones, Android, Blackberry and Windows Phone, as well as on desktop and tablet computers.
Gold Rally is unusual in that it takes place on a 3x3 grid. Yes, there are just nine symbols on display at any one time, each occupying a square designed to resemble a paving slab, the whole tableaux bordered by wooden boards.
Gold Rally has a gold mining theme, the idea being that you yourself will be prospecting for gold while spinning the reels. To the right of the grid, you’ll see three men riding a coal cart through the caves, their expression alternately demented and terrified as they hurtle into the darkness. Above them, there are tabs showing your Bet, Credit, Win and Line Bet, and below the grid itself you’ll find buttons for Spin, Bet One, Bet Max and Paytable.
The coin value in this game is fixed at two, and you can stake a maximum of 16 spin if you elect to activate all eight paylines. Given the low betting stakes, though, the base game pay-outs are pretty damn respectable. The top fixed pay-out, for instance, is 8,000 coins.
The symbols in Gold Rally stick very closely to the theme. They include a coal cart with golden wheels, a set of golden scales, a stick of dynamite, a silver revolver, a bag of gold bars, some golden horseshoes, a lantern, a prospector’s pick and a GR logo on a red background. Thankfully, there are no playing card icons to speak of.
The gold set of scales is the game’s scatter. It not only holds the key to the progressive pay-out, but it’s also associated with generous sums in its own right, sums which are multiplied by players’ bet amounts to grant prizes. You can win cash for landing between five and nine scatters on the grid. For five, you’ll win five, for six it’s 10, for seven it’s 50 and for eight it’s 200.
For nine? Well, then we’re in progressive territory. And by progressive territory, we mean you’ve won the progressive – a sum which could plausibly be seven figures. Naturally, you need to be playing on all eight paylines to be eligible for the progressive prize.
It’s not possible to land nine individual symbols except in the case of the scales. Most of the other icons can only appear in combinations of two or three. The top prize for three GR logos is 500, while the best you can hope for with three horseshoes is 200. For three prospector’s picks it’s 100 and three lanterns is 75.
To unlock the slot’s bonus game, you need to collect dynamite in all four corners of the grid. The bonus game prompts you to blow things up in order to win cash prizes.
Gold Rally is without question one of the finest three-reel slot games out there. The title offers a dynamic gaming experience with the potential to win truly life-changing money. If you want at least the possibility of striking it rich, this one could be for you, although a healthy dose of reality should also be taken in case you start spending the cash before you’ve won it!
If Playtech were interested in making Gold Rush even more attractive, they might add a free spins bonus round, preferably with a multiplier attached to all wins. Hey, we can dream. As it stands, Gold Rush is a solid-as-granite slot game that provides hours of fun.