|Game Type:||Video slot|
|Bet Levels:||0.09 - 90|
|Free Spins:||Yes (12-17)|
QuickSpin – Sticky Bandits 3: Most Wanted
A superb quality release – those who enjoy classic nine-line slots are in for a real treat this May
When Playtech acquired the QuickSpin brand back in 2016, many expected the two companies to merge and the QuickSpin brand would be forever forgotten. This would have been a crying shame, as QuickSpin have consistently been producing some of the very best online slots ever since they were first setup way back in 2011.
Overview – Sticky Bandits 3: Most Wanted
Whilst Sticky Bandits 3 shares its name with two previous games, all three of the slots in this franchise are distinctly different from each other. You might have expected the odd nod to the Home Alone movies in here somewhere, as the two antagonists from those films became known as the “Sticky Bandits” after originally being called the “Wet Bandits” in the first movie. Personally, I’m pleased to say that there is no sign of any such connection between these games and those movies, as QuickSpin has chosen a Wild West theme instead which is arguably much more interesting and attractive.
Whilst the first two games featured 30 and 40 pay lines respectively, Most Wanted is a classic nine line slot with dramatically improved payout potential over the first two iterations. The game uses a standard 5×3 reel layout and has an RTP of 95.82%, but what is really interesting is the 22,468x maximum win advertised by QuickSpin for this release. That’s a huge jump from the 1,145x offered by Sticky Bandits Wild Return, and will surely attract many more players to give this release a try.
It wasn’t long before I noticed a very strong similarity between this game and another hugely popular Wild West themed slot, however. See if you can guess which one it is as we move on to discussing the symbols and payouts used in Sticky Bandits 3.
Symbols & Payouts
The lower paying symbols in Most Wanted are represented by your average royal glyphs – the symbols 10 through Ace are used, but the payouts for each of them are very low. As a nine-line slot though, a five of a kind of any symbol does at least award you enough to pay for for your next couple of dozen spins. As always though, what we are really interested in are the picture symbols which have much greater payout potential.
In this game, golden horseshoes, dynamite sticks, whiskey bottles, neckerchiefs and bags of golden coins are used to represent the higher paying symbols. The top symbol is the bag of gold coins, which returns 111x your stake for a full line of five-of-a-kind. A standard wild symbol appears during the base game which substitutes for all symbols, but does not multiply any combinations formed using it, which is a tad disappointing.
What isn’t disappointing are the games scatter symbols – these appear on every reel and have their own payout attached to them, in addition to awarding twelve free spins whenever three or more appear in view. See if you can recognize the following payout schedule:
- Two Scatters 2x Stake
- Three Scatters 4x Stake
- Four Scatters 25x Stake
- Five Scatters 2,500x Stake
Still not worked it out? Let’s move on to the special features and see if these jog your memory. If not, you clearly haven’t played one of the most legendary online video slots of all time before. If that’s the case, then Sticky Bandits 3: Most Wanted makes a very interesting alternative to the game that it is has so shamelessly cloned. This is because the payouts for the top paying symbols in this game are actually higher than those offered by NetEnt’s classic original. Oops, did I just give you a clue? On with those special features….
Hitting three, four or five scatter symbols simultaneously awards 12 free spins, with the possibility of winning an additional five free spins if you manage to land a wild symbol on each of the five reels during the bonus round. A bonus buy feature is also available for the cost of 60x your current stake, which is actually a very reasonable rate for a bonus buy feature.
Unfortunately, bonus buys are rapidly becoming banned by regulators of online casinos around the world, so you may find this option is not available in your country. If the option is available, you can actually slightly increase the overall RTP of the game by only playing bonus rounds. The bonus buy feature guarantees you at least three scatter symbols, but will occasionally award four or even five – meaning you could start your free spins with 2,500x your stake already in the bank, if you are lucky!
During free spins, all wilds which land on the reels will become sticky and remain in place for the duration of the remaining free spins. Land a wild on one of the three vertical positions of each of the five reels, and you will be awarded an extra five free spins which are played out immediately after your initial 12. All of the wilds you have collected remain in place for these extra five spins, and if you have been lucky enough to land five wilds on a line you may have a chance of collecting this games maximum win of 22,468x your stake.
All wins are doubled during the free spins feature, too. These features combine to make Sticky Bandits 3 an extremely exciting – although ludicrously high variance slot machine to play.
The Verdict – Sticky Bandits 3: Most Wanted
Okay, if you still don’t know which slot this is a clone of, I think it’s only fair to tell you now. Sticky Bandits 3: Most Wanted is an out-and-out, unashamed clone of NetEnt’s Dead or Alive slot machine, with a slightly lower RTP but a theoretically higher maximum payout.
Dead or Alive is an all-time classic, but is has been superceded now by Dead or Alive 2, which also has a bonus buy feature and a maximum win of 100,000x your stake – so QuickSpin are a little late to the party with this release. Nevertheless, Sticky Bandits 3 is by far the best in the series and a brilliant fun little slot in its own right. NetEnt games aren’t available in every country where QuickSpin games are, so if you haven’t had the opportunity to play Dead or Alive until now, you’d be mad not to give this slot a try.