Fri, Oct 26, 2:26pm by William Brown
Last Updated Mon, Oct 7, 11:35pm
Pandas are Wild in this Engaging Dragon Link Pokie
Dragon Link pokies are an Asian-themed subset of the popular Lightning Link games. What they have in common is the ‘Hold and Spin’ bonus games. This allows you to win cash prizes and jackpots, by covering the reels in special symbols. This title is also available in Dragon Cash format – the only difference is that the progressive jackpot is stand-alone.
On the reels of this game you will find a bamboo-chewing Panda, and many classic Asian symbols. There is a free games bonus game to go with the link feature – where even more panda wilds appear on the reels.
Here is what to expect when you plan Panda Magic:
Hold and Spin is a bonus feature shared between a lot of new Aristocrat pokie titles. These include the Lightning Link, Lightning Cash and Asian-themed Dragon Link games.
While you spin in the base game you will see dragon balls. These look like balls of fire, with a flame circling around them quickly. Each one will contain either a cash amount, or a name of one of the three smaller jackpots.
Most of the time, these balls have no effect. When you are lucky enough to hit 6 on a single spin – things take a dramatic turn. For a start, the entire screen is covered in flames – and some traditional Asian music kicks in.
Regular symbols are greyed out, with only the dragon balls glowing brightly. The triggering balls lock into place, and you get 3 free spins to add more to these. If you are lucky enough to get a ball with the mini, minor or major jackpot – you could be looking at a big prize. Each time any prize symbol appears, the free spins reset to 3.
If you cover all 15 spaces on the reels with balls, you win the biggest jackpot of all – the grand.
Bright red lanterns are scatter symbols in this game. You will get scatter prizes of up to 250x your total bet for 5, though 3 anywhere on the reels is enough to trigger the free spins. Once again, your bonus will be accompanied by a traditional tune.
This time, the extra comes with richer reels. Those playing card symbols, which provide the smaller wins in the base game, all disappear. This gives a lot more room for the higher paying symbols – and makes the wild panda symbols appear more frequently too.
Dragon link pokies have more options for your denomination than Lightning Link games. You can choose to play for 1c per line, up to $2. While the base setup is 25 or 50 win-lines, for the highest denominations you can go as low as 5 lines. Note that the smaller jackpots are bigger as you raise your denomination.
This Panda Magic pokie machine is available in the following States:
As you might figure from the name – the Panda is the key symbol. This is not only a wild, it has the highest prize. Other symbols are those found on countless other Asian slots from Aristocrat. These include a tiger, traditional boat, cockerel and a lotus flower. During the base game you will also find playing card symbols in bold colours.
The panda above the reels looks cute and ferocious in equal measure. He is sat among bamboo shoots, which continue down under the reels. Above your host, you will see the linked jackpots displayed.
My pick for the animations comes at the end of the Hold N Spin bonus. Here flames shoot up from each of your prizes – making a spiral around a box which counts them up. Symbols each have their own animation, including a striking 3D effect for the lanterns and the panda chewing on a bamboo shoot.
I’d rate this as an excellent addition to the Dragon Link range. Panda-themed pokies have been around for many years. The addition of the Hold N Spin jackpot bonus makes the Panda magic poker machine one to stand out from the crowd. Add to this free spins with richer reels, and the linked progressive jackpot and you have a pokie which is worth checking out.