Online slots developers are always thinking of how they can produce the latest and best features. This commitment has led to many great slots innovations, such as cascading reels, second-screen bonuses, and Megaways.
Megaclusters could very well be the next revolutionary feature in online gaming. Developed by Big Time Gaming (BTG), this mechanism presents slots like never before.
Assuming you haven’t heard of Megaclusters slots, then you should check out why this engine is such a big deal. You’ll learn how it works and in what ways it differs from regular clusters games.
How Does a Megaclusters Slot Work?
A Megaclusters game doesn’t initially look impressive. It opens with a 4×4 grid and offers limited winning possibilities.
Furthermore, it presents a basic cluster-pays format that’s available in many online slots today. You form wins by landing horizontal or vertical clusters of 5+ matching symbols.
The twist, though, is that each symbol in a winning combination splits into four smaller symbols (a.k.a. Megaclusters). Here’s an example on how this scenario works:
- You get a winning cluster with 5 symbols.
- Each symbol breaks down into 4 smaller icons (20 total).
- The 4×4 grid, which normally offers 16 positions, now features 32 positions (12 + [5 x 4]).
The grid expands more when extra symbols are involved in winning combinations. At best, you can expand the grid to 8×8 (64 positions) during the base game.
What’s the Key Difference between Megaclusters and Clusters Slots?
A standard online slot features the following setup:
- Five reels.
- A fixed number of paylines (e.g. 20).
- Wins form when matching symbols land in a payline.
- All payouts must start in the first reel.
- Wins must also move left to right.
Clusters games, which have become very popular in recent years, buck this common trend. They deliver wins through matching horizontal or vertical clusters.
These slots also don’t feature any hard-set rules for where winning combinations must form. A winning cluster doesn’t need to start in the first reel.
One winning symbol turns into four icons. A regular clusters slot, in contrast, doesn’t see symbols from winning combinations break down—they just remain as one solid position.
Other Features of Megaclusters Slots
Megaclusters games offer more than just symbols that break apart and an expanding grid. They also boast one of more of the following unique slots features.
Avalanche refers to when icons from winning combinations vanish. New symbols fall onto the grid to replace the disappearing ones.
This process offers the potential for more payouts within the same round. It continues until no more win can form.
You therefore gain two major benefits from Megaclusters slots:
- Winning symbols split into 4 smaller icons.
- Symbols from wins vanish and allow new icons to take their positions.
A Megaclusters slot can feature two wild symbols. Both versions substitute for other icons to help form payouts.
However, the special wild symbol also delivers a win multiplier. This wild begins at 1x and increases one unit every time that it’s part of a payout.
The multiplier increases with no limit during a single round. However, it resets once no more wins can form and a new round begins.
Five consecutive avalanche wins can trigger free spins. The latter usually offer an expanded starting grid (e.g. 4×4 to 8×8) and the ability to grow the grid even more.
Winning symbols will still break into four smaller icons. Assuming every winning position splits into smaller symbols, you can unlock 256 positions (16×16 grid).
Free spins may also offer other bonuses. For example, the special multiplier can deliver more free spins once it reaches 10x.
You normally won’t trigger many free spins at once with a Megaclusters bonus. For instance, you might only get 2 free games at a time. However, the larger grid, win multiplier, and extra free spins give you plenty of chances to win big.
Pros of Megaclusters Slots
Megaclusters games have already gained a sizable following in the real money online slots world. You can see the main aspects that players love about these slots below.
Totally Unique Engine
Big Time Gaming introduced this mechanism through Star Clusters slot in 2020. Already the inventor of Megaways, they showed their innovative side yet again with Megaclusters.
The latter brings something totally new to the gaming world. It’s far different from traditional payline slots and even fairly unique from regular clusters games.
Megaclusters are the first type of slot to break winning symbols down into more icons. You get additional chances to collect payouts after each win as a result.
More Features beyond Megaclusters
By itself, Megaclusters would already be a draw. However, these slots include extra features to keep you entertained.
First off, you can look forward to avalanche wins. Avalanche provides an opportunity to keep scoring more and more prizes in the same round.
These games also offer special wilds that contain multipliers. Special wilds multiply your wins by anywhere from 2x to 10x.
You can trigger free spins as well. The free spins come with the added bonus of a larger default grid (8×8) and up to 256 positions.
Potential for Huge Payouts
Big wins are entirely possible through these games thanks to the Megaclusters and additional features. For example, you can win up to 23,000x your stake in Star Clusters.
If you’re betting $10 per spin in this scenario, you’d have a chance at winning up to $230,000. Even if you’re only risking $1, you could collect up to $23,000.
You don’t even need to get lucky and earn the largest prize available. You can also pull off a string of big payouts thanks to avalanche, free spins, and win multipliers.
Cons of Megaclusters Slots
I’m definitely a fan of Megaclusters games so far. But as you can see below, these slots also feature some notable downsides.
Initial Setup Is Basic
Megaclusters slots offer loads of promise. You can unlock an 8×8 grid in the base game and a massive 16×16 grid in the bonus round.
However, the initial setup to these games is far from glamorous. You’ll be dealing with a 4×4 grid until getting a winning cluster.
The average cluster-pays slot offers a minimum 5×5 grid. Most of these games feature anywhere between a 6×6 and 8×8 grid.
You may have no problem dealing with the 4×4 setup in the beginning. But you might also grow tired of starting every round this way.
Difficult to Catch Wins
These games bring plenty of excitement to the table. You’ll sometimes see a rush of avalanche wins and Megaclusters.
This powerful combination delivers both large payouts and plenty of entertainment. However, it also makes keeping up with payouts a difficult task.
Everything seems like a blur when avalanche wins are coming left and right. If you’re somebody who likes seeing and savoring wins, then you’ll struggle to keep up.
Megaclusters Are Hard to See
The fact that winning symbols split apart is both a blessing and a curse. You’ll love having the ability to form more wins with additional symbols present.
The drawback, though, is that each position becomes tinier after the fact. You may be straining to see wins on the 8×8 grid.
Just imagine how tough it is to view symbols during the bonus when a 16×16 grid is possible! This task becomes all the more difficult when playing through a smartphone.
Are Megaclusters Slots Destined for Success?
Megaclusters are a new concept at the time of this post. Therefore, it’s difficult to say whether this mechanism is built for long-term success or just the flavor of the year.
From my perspective, though, Megaclusters slots are going to do really well. In fact, they could become the next Megaways.
Another BTG invention, Megaways have spawned countless games. Many developers now license Megaways from BTG so that they too can use this mechanism.
Whether Megaclusters achieve this same level of success remains to be seen. At worst, though, this engine will be just a notch below Megaways in terms of popularity.
It has everything that modern slots fans love, including more winning possibilities, big win potential, and plenty of features.
Megaclusters slots have introduced a unique mechanism to online gaming. They allow you to unlock more symbols by forming matching clusters.
You can unleash up to 64 positions (8×8 grid) in the base game and up to 256 positions (16×16) in the bonus. The latter provides numerous ways to score prizes.
Megaclusters games are just now gaining steam. However, you’re very likely to see more and more of these slots at the best online casinos.
I’ll be interested to see if Megaclusters becomes as popular as Megaways. Megaclusters definitely have the potential to achieve this feat.