Thunderkick Launches Its Latest Slot Game, Carnival Queen

Sweden-based software specialist, Thunderkick, has bolstered its games catalogue with the release of slot game Carnival Queen. Most recently joining the Thunderkick portfolio is the festive themed Carnival Queen, which was launched as recently as 20 February 2019. The six-reel, four-row grid offers an enormous 4096 paylines across the game, which is among the largest number of paylines available in any other slot game developed by the company.

Statistics and Facts

The return to player (RTP) percentage of the slot is a very healthy 96.1%, which is around the same score as many other games by this developer, but above average for the industry at large. The RTP is a very useful indicator of a game’s fairness, with the closer to 100%, the better it is for the player. These figures are decided upon and set by the developer, which shows the generosity of the company in some ways.

In-game action from the Carnival Queen slot game.

The avalanche feature in Carnival Queen.

The volatility of Carnival Queen is 47, which is almost exactly in the middle of the road of the system. For example, a low volatility slot will pay out small amounts very frequently, but a high volatility slot will pay out large amounts very infrequently.

The game uses the company’s ‘Avalanche’ feature, which is essentially a cascading symbols system that will see any symbols that are included in a winning payline disappear. The symbols above those that disappeared will ‘drop’ into place, and the grid will be filled from the top with new symbols. This opens the possibility for multiple winning combinations in a row, which will also trigger a multiplier that increases with every consecutive avalanche combination.

A highlight of the new slot is the bonus game, which is triggered when three or more scatter symbols are found simultaneously on the grid. During the bonus, the amount of Carnival Queen scatter symbols will dictate how many free spins you are awarded. If one of your spins is completely void of winning combinations, then a Wild symbol will ‘explode’ and remove all symbols both horizontally or vertically from its position. Multipliers in the bonus do not reset, instead continuing to increase with every additional multiplier.

Game Design

A jumbo win triggered in Carnival Queen

A Jumbo Win being triggered

When describing the symbols used in Carnival Queen, it seems clear that the developer is aiming for something of a Mardi-Gras theme. The Wild symbols is a simple W, but the scatter is the Carnival Queen herself. Alongside the near-persistent playing card symbols of the 9, 10, Q, K and A, you’ll also find a King’s Crown and some fabulously-masked characters. All with brightly coloured hair, enormous grins and intriguing masquerade outfits, they seem to be the main attraction for the Mardi-Gras parade in New Orleans. In fact, the background of the game shows a collection of people watching the grid intensely as if on a street sidelined by a Jazz Club and Music Hall.

The crowd’s cheers are heard alongside the explosions of fireworks as a staccato interruption to a bass-heavy jazz soliloquy that adds a bit of soul to the soundtrack. A trumpet adds a high-pitched drawl, with the soundtrack seeming to come directly from the club that’s visible in the background.

Carnival Queen has been developed using HTML5, which means that it is perfectly optimised for both desktop and mobile play. This has been a focus for the Swedish development firm since its inception in 2012.

Growing Game Catalogue

Carnival Queen is Thunderkick’s first slot game launch for the year 2019. The company also released a new game in December of 2018, titled Rocket Fellas, which is a steampunk mining themed slot game in a five-reel, four-row grid with 30 paylines. The RTP of this slot is the same as Carnival Queen, clocking in at 96.1%.

There are a few other similarities between the two games, namely that three scatter symbols will trigger the bonus game. The play style of the bonus round is different, though. In Rocket Fellas, reels that feature a Sticky Wild will form a ‘hot reel’, which is essentially meaning that any barrel symbol that is found on that reel will also become a wild.

Both of the games have been independently tested by QUINEL, a Malta-based authority, and were found to be compliant with the ‘Remote gambling and software Technical Standards’ as set out by the United Kingdom Gambling Commission (UKGC). The firm also tested and certified the RTP of the games.

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