San Quentin xWays Slot Review

San Quentin xWays by Nolimit City is a super high-variance prison-themed slot with 243 win ways expanding to over 13,000,000 win ways with the help of Razor Splits and Split Wilds. The game has a breathtaking 150,000x stake top payout and a 96.03% RTP. Nolimit have laid down a marker at the very start of 2021 with a slot that delivers on every level – get ready for some serious thrills and spills in the Lockdown spins feature, with Enhancer Cells, Jumping Wilds and the infamous Psycho Manhunt driving up your wins. Top stuff!

San Quentin xWays Slot Review

About This Slot

Nolimit City have taken a fast track to the top with their particular brand of high variance mayhem, gilded by their trademark xNudge features. Fans of volatility have been wowed by games like Book of Shadows, Deadwood and Tombstone, as well as Brit-themed game, Punk Rocker. In fact, this studio are holding their own alongside super-innovators like Big Time Gaming. And if you didn’t believe it before, you certainly will now, thanks to this monstrous game that appears to break payout potential records and push the expanding reels format to new heights (with ‘nolimits’ perhaps?!).

And where do you base a hard as nails slot to test only the toughest players? Well, what about one of the US’ most notorious and dangerous jails, California’s San Quentin, home to dangerous misfits, and once the venue for a classic Jonny Cash gig! The artwork says it all – the Nolimit City team have surpassed themselves with this effort, with fine illustrations of the concrete walls, barbed wire and armed guards who patrol the grounds. But will you be able to break out and cash in a top prize? One thing is for sure you’ll have plenty of clever features and expanding reels to help you.

It all takes place on a five-reel set with three rows initially, with over 13,000,000 paylines in operations at the top level.  Let’s find out more.

RTP, Variance and Top Payout

First thing to note here is that this is NOT a game for casual slots players. This is high variance action at its most thrilling and vertiginous. You won’t be seeing many wins in the base game, it’s really all about hitting that bonus round and getting the jumping wilds and multipliers working in your favour. The top payout advertised at 150,000x will be practically impossible to unlock – let’s get real, any big wins will be much smaller than that, but it is still an indicator of the win potential of the game, which is a lot higher than most other slots of this kind. The RTP of the game is a fairly standard 96.03%.

Symbols and Paytable

The symbols on the reels are all prison-related. The low value ones are the toilet paper, handcuffs, a needle and a toothbrush, preferably with a concealed razor blade, a lighter and some soap. This will get you between 1.5x and 2x bet for five of a kind.

Premium symbols are the five most notorious criminals in the joint: Beefy Dick, Loco Luis, Heinrick 3rd, Biker Bill and Crazy Joe. These five animals will deliver between 2.5x and 5x bet for the maximum combination.

Look out as well for the Wild which will substitute for all icons to create win lines, and the Tower Scatter which is very important because it is needed to trigger the Lockdown Free Spins feature.

Gameplay and Features

The base game here is pretty steady with no real win opportunities beyond a few small payouts. The action really gets going in the free spins round. Here’s how those expanding reels and wilds all fit together:

Enhancer Cells Feature

Cleverly utilising the theme of this slot, Nolimit City have created this Enhancer Cells feature. Here, the bottom and top rows of the reels show locked cells occupied by inmates. These cells are called Enhancer Cells and can be unlocked during the base game when two one or two bonus symbols land simultaneously. The unlocked cells reveal premium symbols, Wilds, razor splits, or xWays symbols.

If razor splits are revealed, all symbols on the corresponding reel will be doubled, or split in half. This can happen twice if there is a razor split icon on both top and bottom enhancer spots. This increases your paylines up to a massive 13,189,257,216 ways at the highest level.

If the xWays symbol appears in the unlocked cells then they reveal the same icon stacked 4 high on the reel.

Split Wilds

When a split wild lands during the game it will split ALL other symbols on it’s reel. This can give you up to 46,656 ways to win from each spin.

Lockdown Spins Feature

Tower Scatters trigger the Lockdown Spins feature. Depending on how many Scatters you land (3, 4 or 5), you get 1, 2, or 3 Jumping Wilds, which may have multipliers attached to them on each free spin. Jumping Wilds move across the grid throughout the feature, landing randomly on a new position with each spin.

Before free spins start, one of the inmates is chosen as a special symbol that comes with a multiplier. After that, you get to see how many free spins you get.

And … what make this even more interesting is that during the Lockdown Spins, all enhancer cells are open which gives you more chances to win big. If a Jumping Wild lands on reel with a Razor Split then the multiplier value doubles. The win multiplier attached to the Jumping Wilds can go up to 512x, making huge payouts possible.

Our Verdict

Once again, Nolimit City have broken new ground with this slot. It is already possible to see this as one of the all-time great high variance games, up there with Bonanza and Dead or Alive. The artwork is stand-out excellent, doing the theme justice, but it is the gameplay that really takes this slot into the rarified air of all time greats. The best chance you have of getting anywhere near the top payout of 150,000x is by unlocking 3 jumping wilds as you head into Lockdown Spins, then getting Razor Splits to drive up the mulitpliers to 512x. It’s a tough ask, but who would have expected anything else from a game set in San Quentin?! Good luck!

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