Created by Bally Technologies, Jewel of the Dragon challenges players to enter the dragon’s lair and come out with a bumper haul of coins. This 5 reel, 40 payline title comes with free spins, multipliers, cash bonuses and Hot Zones that can turn multiple symbols wild. Stakes range from 40p up to £400 per spin.
The game engine in Jewel of the Dragon is slightly unusual – the screen is effectively split into two. The bottom half is a standard set of reels including crown, bell, money shield and playing card symbols. There’s also a wild symbol which substitutes for everything apart from the bonus.
The top half of the screen features the decidedly cute looking dragon. More interesting though are the Hot Zones, the Tetris style shapes that drop down towards the reels. If these land on the reels at the end of the spin they will turn the symbols they land on into wilds and another payout will take place.
You will also notice that a diamond symbol can overlay the standard symbols on reels 2, 3 and 4 – if 3 of them appear on a spin you’ll trigger the Drop Zone Bonus feature. You must choose 1 of them to reveal the Drop Zone (another Hot Zone) which will turn the symbols wild and boost the chances of a payout.
Then there’s the Dragon Nudge Bonus feature which can randomly nudge a selection of Hot Zones into positions on the reels if they land outside. A second payout will be made with the wilds in place.
Jewel of the Dragon also comes with a Free Spins feature which is triggered when 3 or more bonus and wild symbols appear anywhere on the reels. Three symbols will give you 8 free spins with a 1x your total stake. Four will pay 2x your bet plus 8 spins. Five provide a payout of five times your total stake in addition to the 8 free spins.
The Hot Zones still apply during the free spins feature but the Dragon Nudge Bonus and Drop Zones features don’t apply. It’s not possible to re-trigger the free spins either.
The visuals and sound in Jewel of the Dragon are pretty good. It’s the extensive range of features that make it such a playable game though. Get lucky with the free spins and Hot Zones and the Jewel of the Dragon can be a gem of a slot. Dragons wise, I also recommend Viking Vanguard by WMS which is very good and highly volatile.