The online casino industry has an interesting relationship with the holiday season. Players from all over the world have different holidays that they celebrate, and since casino software companies will use just about anything that people identify with as the theme for a game, it's not really surprising that they'll base games around these holidays. Xmas Joker is a slot based around Christmas, and it's a fun crossover between the classic slot tropes and a classy, Christmas theme.
Xmas Joker has the usual classic slot format with three reels, but it also has three rows to accommodate five paylines. This isn't as flexible of a format as video slots, but it's flexible enough to fit in some extra features. Coin sizes aren't really used in this game, and you can't select fewer than five paylines. Instead, you can choose between a number of different total bet sizes for your play: $0.50, $1.00, $1.50, $2.00, $3.00, $5.00, $10 or $25 per spin. To get the equivalent coin size, divide your bet size by five. For example, a $0.50 spin is like playing with a $0.10 coin on each of the five paylines.
The Christmas theme of this game is captured in a very classy way, and that's worth pointing out for a couple of reasons. First, it's worth pointing out because many other software companies have developed Christmas-based slots that have a much more risque approach that you might not want to play with kids (or anyone else for that matter) around you. The graphics and theme of Xmas Joker are very family-friendly. Additionally, this game uses a classic Christmas theme instead of trying to put a "modern" edge on it, and games that handle holidays in this way are difficult to find.
There are five normal symbols in the game. Winning with any of them requires getting three in a row. Even though five symbols might seem limited, it's important to realize that this makes it easier to win overall. Play'n Go has done a great job making sure that you can hit multi-line wins with this set of symbols as well because they all show up as stacked.
Three of the gingerbread men will get you a 10x win, and so will three of the candy canes wrapped in a blue bow. The payouts jump up a little when you get 30x for three of the Christmas tree ball with holly, and 40x is awarded for three of the bells with a red bow. Finally, you'll earn a 50x win for picking up three of the gold star in a row. There's sort of a Christmas tree decorating motif going on with these symbols.
Scatter Symbols and Free Spins
During the main game, there's a joker scatter symbol. This Xmas Joker is from the title of the game, and appropriately enough, he's wearing green and red (Christmas colors). If you pick up three of these scatters on the reels at the same time in any position, then you'll earn a set of 10 free spins. These free spins are very valuable, however, because they have an extra feature not found in the regular game.
The present scatter symbol only shows up in the Xmas Joker free spins mode. Symbols exclusive to bonus modes are a hallmark of Play'n Go slots, and it's a concept used extremely well here. When you pick up two or more of the scattered present on the reels at the same time, then you'll be rewarded with a random win of up to 100 times your total bet size. This is a pretty massive payout that's the equivalent of a 500x regular line bet jackpot.
Additionally, if you get three of the scattered present symbol at once, you'll get an extra 10 free spins added on. You can re-trigger this over and over until you pick up as many as 50 total free turns in this bonus feature.
Overall, the Xmas Joker slot is pretty solid. It has a classy theme and extremely smooth gameplay that's very relaxing. For people who are enjoying this over the holiday season, it'll be great to have such a relaxing experience at your fingertips during what's normally one of the most hectic times of the year.