Cash Splash pokies were some of the first online progressive jackpot poker machine games, produced by Microgaming in the late 1990s. That first three-reel game was an early adopter of the progressive jackpot system whereby bettors can pay into and play for an ever-increasing top prize by wagering any amount on all of the game’s fifteen pay lines.
The popularity of Cash Splash worldwide was the driving force behind Microgaming’s decision to release a five-reel game a few years after the three-reel version first hit betting websites running Microgaming software.
Today, both versions of the original progressive pokie game, the original 3-reel and its 5-reel sequel, are available for play at most online casinos using Microgaming’s software suite. Both versions are linked to Microgaming’s progressive jackpot network – the progressive prize is stitched together by shaving small amounts of every wager on the machine to a progressive prize pool. Take note, the game’s progressive jackpot is the same for both the 3-reel and the 5-reel online pokies games.
Both the 3-reel and the 5-reel game have fifteen available pay lines; bettors who want a shot at the progressive prize must activate all fifteen lines to be eligible. No restriction is placed on the coin size of the eligible wager for the 5-reel game; pokies players who place fifteen pay line bets can win the progressive pay out whether they’re betting $0.20 per line, the 5-reel title’s minimum at all casinos that host it, or $3 per line, which is the 5-reel game’s maximum. Since the 3-reel game requires a $1 coin size, only gamblers placing a $15-per-spin bet are eligible for the progressive payout.
Poker machine players that choose the 3-reel game don’t have the same variety of bet sizes as those who choose the 5-reel version. Microgaming set the bet size for the 3-reel game at $1 per credit and no variation is available. Gamblers who prefer the 5-reel game can choose between bets in a variety of increments between $0.20 and $3 per credit, for a total bet range of between $0.20 and $45 per spin.
Cash Splash features include a wild symbol and a scatter symbol, though the 3-reel game doesn’t use the scatter symbol. The Wild symbol for both games is the Cash Splash logo itself, which substitutes for any other game symbol to form winning combinations. The wild logo is also the symbol that triggers the progressive jackpot – on the 3-reel game, three Cash Splash symbols on the reels means the gambler wins a prize equal to the amount of the progressive total at the moment they spin the lucky symbols, provided the player has activated all fifteen pay lines.
For the 3-reel Cash Splash online poker machine, symbols include traditional slot images like cherries, stars, and bars. When three logos land on your screen and you have placed a bet on all fifteen lines, you win the game’s progressive jackpot.
The 5-reel game, which also allows bets on up to 15 pay lines, plays out in a similar way to the original 3-reel titles. Differences between the two include the two additional reels, more variation in coin size on the 5-reel game, and some additional symbols on the 5-reel not found in the original. A scatter symbol is also incorporated into the game with more reels.
Though the Cash Splash logo is still the wild symbol on the 5-reel version, and it is still the symbol that determines a win of the progressive payout, the 5-reel game uses a scatter symbol. The difference in the wild symbol and progressive prize on the 5-reel game is that gamblers must line up five logos to win the progressive prize on the larger 5-reel title. In both games, bettors chasing the progressive prize have to activate all fifteen lines to win the ever-increasing top payout.
The scatter symbol in the 5-reel game is called the Blue-Scatter and bears this name to avoid confusion. Pokies fans not familiar with scatter symbols shouldn’t be too confused – these pokie features are easy to understand. Unlike the wild symbol, the Blue-Scatter image can appear anywhere across the game’s five reels and still result in a payout – in other words, they don’t have to stack up in a line.
Another difference in the 5-reel variant is the use of additional symbols – the 5-reel game includes symbols based on poker’s high cards: A, K, Q, J and 10.
In both versions of the game, the logo of the pokie itself (the loud CashSplash game logo) is wild – spinning different amounts of the symbol leads to different prizes. The wild symbol not only completes winning combinations, it alters their payout amount.
It works like this – one CashSplash symbol that completes any winning combo will also double the payout amount for that prize. When the bettor uses two such symbols to form a winner, the prize amount is quadrupled. Take note that the machine will only pay out one winning combination of symbols per pay line. In the case of more than one winning combo on any pay line, the machine rewards you the amount of the most-valuable combo rather than all winning results.
The majority of Microgaming-powered betting websites still host either one or both versions even though both games are over a decade old; the title has remained popular because of the simplicity of its rules and the fact that it was one of the first progressive payout games online. Poker machine gamblers tend to have a soft spot in their heart for this, one of the original games with a progressive jackpot.
Like other pokies featuring a progressive jackpot, Cash Splash is only available in a real money version, so practicing this poker machine with play money or playing it just for fun is not an option. As an early adopter of the progressive payout method, Microgaming was ahead of the curve. Today’s progressive pokies and other casino titles are big business for casino gambling websites.