Game of the Week – 1st of the Irish
1st of the Irish is the latest cluster online pokie from Red Rake Gaming. It features an Irish theme where players are hoping that luck is on their side. The game also features multiple bonus features that can help you win big – that is if you’re willing to wait it out.
1st of the Irish a Cluster Pokie With Cascading Wins
This game plays a bit differently than your standard pokie games. Wins are made when you make a cluster of 5 or more of the same symbol either vertically or horizontally. Clusters start at 5 and can go up to 30 of the same symbol.
This game has a mix of lower and paying symbols. Lower paying symbols are rainbows, four-leaf clovers, pipes, and Leprechaun hats. Higher paying symbols are Irish Beer, harps, horseshoes, and pots of gold. The Leprechaun is the Wild symbol for this game and replaces all other symbols.
This game also features cascading wins. When a winning combination is made, those symbols disappear and the remaining symbols drop down to reveal new symbols. This continues until there are no new winning combinations.
For this game, you will only turn a profit on a single win if you catch the highest paying symbols, meaning the horseshoes and pots of gold. Like most cluster games, you need to catch larger winning combinations or land multiple winning combinations to win anything substantial.
However, the big draw for this game is the bonus features that can result in massive wins. Let’s take a look at a few of them.
You will notice that there are five meters down the right-hand side of the board. These meters are launched whenever you land nine or more of the appropriate symbol in a single spin. The symbols do not have to all be in the same cluster. Multi-cluster wins in the same spin are normally how you will fill this meter.
Below are some of the meters and their associated bonus:
Pipe – When the Pipe meter is activated, one of the symbols will be chosen at random and you will receive a multiplier equal to the number of those symbols on the board. However, it does not stop there.
That multiplier will be placed on top of each symbol and then the multiplier combined to create a grand multiplier. If clovers are chosen and there are four clovers, you will get a 4x multiplier to start and those multipliers added to give you a 16x multiplier.
Beer – When triggered, this feature will add a 3×3 grid of beers to the board.
Shamrock – Four sticky wilds will appear on the board. These wilds have three lives and every time they are involved in a winning combination, they lose a life. The wilds will remain on the board until all three lives are used up.
Hat – When triggered, a hat will appear on board and add 8 wild symbols into the reels. The hat will move up and leave two of the wilds visible. The other six will be above the reel. If winning combinations are made with the wilds, the other wilds will drop down in subsequent cascades.
Rainbow Free Spins
The last meter is by far the best. When you trigger the Rainbow Free Spins meter, you will get 12 free spins. During the free spins, the hat and rainbow meters will not be reset after each spin. During the free spins, each time the Rainbow meter is filled, the total amount won during the free spins will be multiplied by 2x. Each time the rainbow meter is filled, an additional 1x is added.
When testing this game, I was only able to unlock the Rainbow meter, but boy did that pay off. During the free spins, I was able to trigger every bonus meter and filled the rainbow meter twice more. In the end, my total win was tripled, earning me a massive win of over 100x my initial bet.
Expect a Lot of Variance With 1st of the Irish
This game has a low RTP of 95.4% and it shows during gameplay. I will admit that at one point, I was about to write this game off. There were long periods where I either didn’t win a penny or a minimum win.
Just as I was about to give up on the game, I triggered the free spins and turned what would have been a losing session into a reasonably profitable one. With that said, this game is primarily recommended for those looking for big wins and don’t mind high variance.
This game is definitely a high variance pokie and one not recommended for beginners or those looking to clear online casino bonuses. However, if you have the patience to wait to trigger the free spins game, you could enjoy a profitable session.
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