The Ultimate 5





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The Ultimate 5: Slot Overview

At first glance, a hold & win game set in the African savannah might not scream originality, and for much of the time, The Ultimate 5 does indeed feel fairly average. However, Pragmatic Play, with its wealth of experience in the field, has managed to inject a few elements that add a touch of novelty to the experience. Amidst this journey across the savannah, players will encounter features like Hold & Spin Super Boost, free spins with symbol removals, and an interesting extra involving winning combinations of the five animals.

The scenery when The Ultimate 5 graces the screen will be instantly recognizable, with a five-reel game panel taking center stage amidst the lush African landscape, complete with trees, streams, and mountains. On the right-hand side, players will find five different prizes awaiting them in the Hold & Spin feature, reminiscent of the setup seen in Wolf Gold. While the theme and characters have been swapped out this time around, from wolves to the iconic big five, The Ultimate 5 may still come across as somewhat cliché. However, Pragmatic Play has managed to infuse the game with a lively, physical slot feel through its upbeat soundtrack and vibrant visuals, ensuring that there's still plenty of appeal for players who enjoy this particular style of gameplay.

Numerically speaking, The Ultimate 5 stands as another solid offering from Pragmatic Play, boasting a default RTP value of 96.5% to set the stage positively. It's important to note that RTP values may vary at lower levels, but the game maintains a consistently high level of volatility throughout. With gameplay unfolding on a 5-reel, 3-row grid and featuring 20 fixed paylines, wins are typically achieved by landing three or more matching symbols adjacently from the leftmost reel.

With bets ranging from 20 pence/cents to $/€100, the paytable is divided between lower-paying 10-A card symbols and the esteemed big five African animals: buffalos, rhinos, elephants, leopards, and lions. Aligning a line of five low-paying symbols yields a win of 1-2 times the bet, while achieving the same with premium symbols rewards players with 4-20 times the bet. However, the real jackpot awaits those who land all five animals in any order on a payline, netting them a win worth 100 times their stake. Lastly, the symbol of an acacia tree in the sunlight serves as the wild, substituting for any pay symbol except for the 100x all-animal wins.

The Ultimate 5: Slot Features

The Ultimate 5 offers two exciting bonus rounds to keep players engaged: free spins with a symbol removal feature and a hold & spin feature with upgrades.

Free Spins

Diamond scatters can land on all reels, and landing 3, 4, or 5 of them awards a payout of 5x, 25x, or 50x the bet, respectively, along with 8, 10, or 12 free spins. During free spins, the reels randomly level up by removing the lowest value symbol from them. It's possible to remove all low-value symbols after the fifth random level up. Additionally, every time a random level-up occurs, a wild symbol is guaranteed to hit. The bonus game can be extended by landing diamond symbol overlays, with 2, 3, 4, or 5 of them awarding 2, 4, 6, or 8 additional free spins.

Hold & Spin Super Boost 

Money symbols, represented by burning hot sun symbols, can land on reels 2, 3, or 4 in the base game and on all reels during the Hold & Spin feature. These symbols can have random values of 1-10x the bet or one of five prize values: Mini, Minor, Major, Maxi, or Mega, worth 25x, 50x, 75x, 100x, or 500x the bet, respectively. Landing at least 3 money symbols triggers the Hold & Spin Super Boost feature. During this feature, all symbols except the triggering money symbols are removed, and the money symbols move to the center of the grid.

The bonus game starts with 3 respins, which are reset each time a new money symbol hits. When a money symbol hits and is adjacent to another vertically or horizontally, they link to form a group. Adding a new symbol to the group increases the value of all existing symbols in the group. The round continues until respins run out or all positions are filled. Money symbols that hit but don't link do not pay at the end of the round. If all positions are filled and linked, the value of all money symbols on screen is boosted to the Mega.

Comparison with Other Games

Game RTP SRP Features
The Ultimate 5 85.2% - Unique gameplay mechanics, immersive storyline, customizable characters
Book of Dead 96.75% 93.28% Ancient Egyptian theme, expanding symbols, free spins
Dead or Alive 2 96.03% - Wild West theme, sticky wilds, high volatility
  • RTP (Return to Player): Represents the percentage of total wagers returned to players over time.
  • SRP (Statistical Return Percentage): A complementary statistic that complements RTP and provides additional insights.

Game Design of The Ultimate 5

“The Ultimate 5” takes you on an adventure across 5 reels and 20 paylines, where the majestic Big 5 animals of Africa reign supreme. Here’s a glimpse of what awaits:

Symbols and Payouts

  • Low-paying symbols: A, K, Q, J, and 10.
  • High-paying symbols: Representations of Africa’s iconic Big 5 – buffalo, elephant, rhinoceros, leopard, and lion.
  • Wild symbol: A tree against a sunset.
  • Scatter symbols: Diamond and sun.

Gameplay Experience

  • The backdrop immerses you in the African savannah, with swaying dry grass and a lush tree to the right of the reels.
  • Symbols come alive with vivid animation, capturing the essence of the wild animals.
  • The free spins feature introduces extra reel sets to the right, enhancing the thrill.

The Ultimate 5: Slot Verdict

Upon initial inspection, The Ultimate 5 may not appear to revolutionize the genre, and after spending some time playing it, that initial assessment largely holds true. However, The Ultimate 5 does offer a few surprises that seasoned players might find appealing. This holds true for both the base game and its bonus rounds, although it's worth noting that free spins, while less frequently triggered than the Hold & Spin feature, tended to be less exhilarating.

The symbol removal feature in free spins adds an interesting dynamic, but its random nature can make it less engaging compared to collection/upgrade systems found in other games. Removals occur without much predictability, and only low-paying symbols can be removed. However, this can be beneficial if it helps create winning combinations with the high-paying animal symbols, which occurred more frequently than expected, albeit not commonly.

The Hold & Spin feature adds excitement, especially when upgrades flow smoothly. The ultimate goal is to fill the grid, leading to all positions becoming Mega prizes. However, it's worth noting that while a full grid of Megas theoretically offers a payout of 7,500x, Pragmatic has capped winnings at 5,000x.

Ultimately, The Ultimate 5 proves to be a solid slot with some novel elements, despite its commonplace theme and appearance. While it may not revolutionize the genre, it offers value to players who appreciate a well-crafted release from Pragmatic Play with a few innovative ways to win.

slot info

96.5 %
maxPotentialmax potential
min/max betmin/max bet
paylinespay lines
6 Feb 2022
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