Jade Shuriken, developed by Slingshot Studios, is disappointingly unrelated to the popular card game Hearthstone. Instead, Jade Shuriken is a Microgaming-affiliated online slot that borrows the Epic Strike feature seen in Blazing Mammoth from Pear Fiction Studios. In addition, there are features like the Epic Strike Trail and the Epic Strike Respins, both of which can result in more spins and bonus wins.
Throw on your gi, because Jade Shuriken is all about a fight between martial artists and shurikens are those discs with sharp points that ninjas throw at one other. The default option features a rural area with cliffs, pagodas, and a winding river (or lake?) under a purple sky and a thin crescent moon. The game interface consists of a five-reel, four-row grid matrix, a trail of green and gold shurikens, and an escalating ladder of monetary awards (the Epic Strike section). Slingshot does a great job of emulating the comic book style with its cartoon martial arts setting, complete with good guys, evil guys, fan-waving damsels, and bearded Wisemen.
You probably know about E. Honda’s Hundred Hand Slap from Street Fighter II if you’ve played the game. Simply pressing one of the punch buttons rapidly caused a barrage of blows to be delivered. In certain respects, Jade Shuriken is comparable. The default 96.24% RTP version is a low-volatility game with a high hit rate of 42.76 percent. The hit rate varies very slightly between the 92.24% and 94.24% versions, but the volatility is consistently minimal. The same 20 p/c to £/€80 per spin betting spread is accessible across all devices.
There are 40 fixed paylines crisscrossing the grid, and you may win with any combination of three or more identical symbols. Four low-paying Asian-themed symbols appear first on the paytable, earning 1-1.5x the wager for a full house. Next come the premium 7s, double 7s, and triple 7s, paying 3.75-18.75x the bet for a full house. Further, combinations of seven symbols can be valued as much as 1.5x for five of a kind. The Jade Shuriken logo serves as a wild symbol and appears on reels 2, 3, 4, and 5. It may complete winning combinations on its own or help complete others, paying up to 62.5 times the wager for five in a row.
Slot Functions of the Jade Sword
Let’s begin with the Feature Trail, a relatively recent addition to Jade Shuriken. The Feature Trail, which can be either green or golden shurikens, is shown at the top of the reels. When you spin the shuriken on the left, it acts as an activator and the trail advances to the left by one space. The Epic Strike feature may be triggered when three green shuriken symbols land on the middle position of the central reel set. The other way to activate Epic Strike Respins is to have gold shuriken symbols appear on the center three reels when a golden shuriken is active.
To win money, you need to land three or more green shuriken symbols anywhere on reels 2, 3, or 4. The payouts for getting 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, and 12 of them are equal to 1, 3, 5, 10, 15, 30, 100, 250, 1,000, and 2,500 times the wager, respectively.
Strike Reruns, Epic Style
When 3 or more golden shuriken symbols appear on reels 2, 3, or 4, the Epic Strike Respins feature is activated. The inner three reels will hold the triggering symbols while the outside reels respin. If further golden shurikens are thrown and struck, they, too, will be retained, and a re-spin will be granted. Payouts for seeing 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, or 12 when no additional shurikens land or the middle reels are full are equal to 1, 3, 5, 10, 15, 30, 100, 250, 1,000, or 2,500 times the wager, respectively.
Free spins are triggered and the multiplier for landing three scatter symbols in the middle reels is increased by 1. The player has a choice between three outcomes:
Obtaining at least one golden shuriken symbol on the Trail triggers the Pools of Prosperity (low volatility) feature, which awards 15 free spins with a multiplier of x2.
When you land at least four golden shuriken symbols anywhere along the Trail in Forest of Fortune (medium volatility), you’ll get 10 free spins with a 3x multiplier.
High-risk Canyon of Courage: Six free games at a multiplier of five and with only golden shuriken symbols on the Trail.
Only line wins count toward the win multiplier; Epic Strike wins are paid out in full. Finally, bonus spins can be retriggered if they are still active.
Verdict of the Slot Jade Sword
Jade Shuriken is a very basic slot machine game, including a free spins bonus and a scatter symbol payout for cash. However, Slingshot has woven in some newer elements to liven things up, all while melding the experience with a fun kung fu, good guys vs. evil guys concept. Perhaps Slingshot wasn’t aiming for the moon when they made Jade Shuriken, but it’s not as original a hero game as, say, Infectious 5. It has a more universal feel, and some players should have no issue enjoying themselves with a couple spins of Jade Shuriken.
What works is the graphic novel/anime style, the randomly selected bonus round locales, and the overall atmosphere of an animated film. The premium fortunate 7 symbols, when used to generate non-mixed winning combinations, turn into in-theme sceneries, which is a nice touch. Features similar to Epic Strike can be found just about anywhere, thus it’s nice to have Feature Trail and Epic Strike Respins included here. While Jade Shuriken isn’t the most intense slot machine out there, players may amp up the action by playing around with the free spins features. Even though the maximum payout on Jade Shuriken is just 2,500 times the wager, this seems reasonable given the game’s minimal volatility and high hit rate.
After seeing the artistic embellishments in Jade Shuriken, it seems like Slingshot might benefit from taking a vacation from their recent string of Link&Win, Power Stack, and Epic Strike slots. In doing so, they may be able to let their imaginations run wild. Maybe the studio is most productive when given strict limits, such as when composing a haiku. Not easy to say. While there are certainly a lot of 9 Masks of Fire clones out there offering $2-$2,500 in rewards, Jade Shuriken stands out from the crowd thanks to its high-quality, comic book-style production and the undeniable allure of ninjas.