Let’s be real. If you know your reels, you know this game. It is a permanent fixture in UK slot top 10s and one of the all-time giants of the slot world. The Gonzo’s Quest slot game was released in 2013 – which is centuries ago in terms of the fast-moving online slots world – yet it’s still on the front page of almost every online casino site worth the salt.
That’s not just because of who made it either. NetEnt are major players in the slot world indeed, and they also supply the software that many casinos run on. But, make no mistakes, if Gonzo wasn’t still tempting players onto his journey then he wouldn’t be sitting where he is now.
The theme is deep and meaningful, and actually based on the story of a real person – like most of the real stories of real Conquistadors it is a very violent and shameful story, but you’re capable of finding that out for yourself – Gonzalo Jiminez De Quesada.
Perhaps the fact that the real Gonzo’s Wikipedia biog contains the line, “after nearly a dozen years of wandering disconsolately through the gaming halls of Europe” inspired the birth of this game.
Whatever the deep story, the deep theming is unbeatable, but is it enough for you to sign up for a long slog through some deep Central American jungles?
Let’s find out more in this Gonzo’s Quest slot review and don’t forget to also play free Gonzo. Just try the Gonzo’s Quest free play demo before you play the Gonzo’s Quest casino game for real money.
The standout stat for Gonzo’s Quest slot is a bit of a mismatch: that is the game’s rating as high variance, set against its top prize of 62,500 coins, and RTP of 96%.
Don’t get us wrong, that’s a very generous top prize, but we’ve seen bigger ones in high variance games. And the 4% “house edge” of the very long-term measure of RTP (theoretical return to player) isn’t bad, but it’s by no means the best in the market at the moment. And against this is set the variance rating, which means the game is (slightly) more likely to deliver bigger prizes less regularly than it is to deliver small wins more often.
So, it looks like British slot players are big risk takers, or the gameplay of Gonzo’s Quest is so good it can overcome some other slots that rate a little better. We should also add that that top prize is delivered from very low staking – the minimum bet is 1p the highest £2 (please check bet limits and prize levels at the site you’re playing at) – so does offer potentially great value.
Innovative though it was, Gonzo’s Quest slot machine still plays on the standard five-by-three grid, on which are just 20 pay-lines.
The grid in Gonzo’s Quest operates on Avalanches rather than spins, with Aztec/Mayan/Inca-themed blocks dropping into the screen. Winning symbols blow up and trigger a respin, ticking across an increasing multiplier on wins, up to 5x for four or more drops.
Gonzo stands at the side – scratching his beard – and beneath his boots is a single strip control panel running left to right: “information”, bet level (set by levels from 1 to 5), auto-play (with sophisticated options to stop the sequence), spin button, maximum bet button, coin value, balance, and your latest wins.
The multiplier sequence runs across the top of the screen. Game controls (options, sound mute, another auto-spin button, and help) are in the game frame.
The symbols in the pay-table are hard to define because they’re variations on ancient symbols that don’t fit into a familiar pattern. We’ll go with colours and generalities here, but take this opportunity to remind you that you should always check the pay-table as you play.
The green parrot head pays out three, 10, and 50-times stake for three, four, and five. The reddish head pays out four, 15, and 75-times stake. The orangey, many-tongued head pays five, 20, and 100-times stake. The gold nose head pays 10, 25, and 200-times stake. The gold teeth head pays 15, 50, and 500-times stake. The tongue out head pays 20, 100, and 1,000-times stake. The gold eyes head pays 50, 250, and 2,500 stakes.
There is also a Free Fall symbol and a wild – a question mark – which subs in for all other symbols. The Free Fall – a gold block – is a trigger for…:
The chief bonus game here is a Free Fall round, or as most players still think of them, free spins games.
These are triggered with three gold blocks in succession on the first three reels, which wins you 10 spins. The feature retriggers within the game. The multipliers on respins also apply in the Gonzo’s Quest free spins round, but it is majorly increased, to 3x, 6x, 9x, and 15x on wins. This looks like a real gold rush Round!
This game plays slightly differently to a classic slots game as the traditional spinning reels have been replaced with “Avalanche Wheels” – symbol blocks falling from above. The symbols are all Mayan themed, and when you hit a winning combination, they explode and are replaced by new symbols.
A winning pay line causes a block “avalanche” where all the blocks crumble to dust, and more symbols pile into the space created to fill in all the gaps.
As you create additional avalanches, the win multiplier increases and the game becomes very exciting as the blocks crumble, disappear and are replaced only to crumble and disappear in turn. It makes for a very entertaining game.
This Gonzo’s Quest casino slot was one of the first NetEnt games to be given the conversion treatment to make it playable on touch devices. Some of the excessive graphic display elements have been necessarily chopped back for the mobile version, but with the rapid development of smartphone technology, it’s not going to be long until they redo the game and incorporate all of the original features.
If you’ve watched any of the “Mummy” films, then you’ll know what to expect with statues and stone sculptures making up the symbols and while it’s not particularly heavy on bonus rounds and features the novel gameplay will keep you entertained for hours on end.
As we said at the start of the review, this Gonzo’s Quest slot game is always one of the most popular used as “bait” for new player spins due to its enduring playability, and it remains the case today. It’s a simple game but in a fantastic intuitive way which makes it easy to play. And aren’t all the best games made that way?
NetEnt deserve their place at the top of the slots tree. They’ve consistently produced some of the most popular games in online video slot history. Yes, their market dominance plays a role in the popularity of these games, but a game like Gonzo’s Quest wouldn’t stay in pole position for five years and more (we’re writing in January 2019) without doing something right.
It’s no longer quite as innovative as it was, but perhaps coming first made Gonzo such a favourite. The tumbling blocks, beautiful design, and compelling character are all signs of super high quality. The sound is good and the graphics haven’t aged at all.
Gonzo’s Quest slot also works brilliantly well on mobile screens, with its squared-off look nicely suited to a phone spun round to landscape mode.
There aren’t many games that are smoother and slicker, and despite not having a world-shattering quoted top prize, those multipliers give an even better spin to the pay-table and you could change your life by joining this bearded, slouching Spanish invader on his journey.
Check out this game at your favourite Gonzo’s Quest slot casino site now, we reckon you’ll enjoy your trip to El Dorado even if you never hit a city of gold.