John Hunter and the Mayan Gods Review

John Hunter and the Mayan Gods is a highly volatile, 10-payline slot from Pragmatic Play with a Mayan adventure theme. Precious statues, daggers, gold goblets, fire-breathing serpents and tribal faces spin alongside our eponymous hero, while bonus features include Wilds, Limitless Free Spins, Symbol Upgrades and a 2,500x stake top payout.

Name:  John Hunter and the Mayan Gods

Developer:  Pragmatic Play

Paylines:  10

Reels:  5

Rows:  3

RTP:  96.51%

Variance:  High

Top Payout:  2,500x

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ABOUT THIS SLOT

John Hunter and the Mayan Gods is the next in the series of Pragmatic Play’s John Hunter real money slots, following on from John Hunter and the Aztec Treasure. Although we meet the same intrepid hero and enjoy a similar exotic atmosphere and high volatility, this new offering is simpler with fewer features and a lower jackpot.

The background behind the reels includes leafy plants and the remnants of a Mayan temple, but the opaque reels mean we can’t see much of this scene and it’s limited to peeking round the sides. These limited visuals are mitigated by the powerful sound track, which boosts the tension, especially combined with the high variance.

RTP, VARIANCE AND PAYOUTS

The RTP is a decent 96.51% and the minimum bet of 10p makes good allowance for casual players. However, this slot has a super-high volatility rating, which gives many peaks and troughs in payouts and infrequent returns, making it a risky play for low rollers.

Although the payouts from regular symbol matches are generous, the top award of 2,500x stake is much lower than its predecessor’s 9,000x stake jackpot. This incarnation also loses the Multipliers that made John’s Aztec adventure so appealing.

SYMBOLS AND PAYTABLE

The symbols here include handsome John Hunter brandishing his gun, a Mayan temple, a stern-faced tribal leader, a dagger, gold goblet, amethyst ring, gold statue and the fire-breathing plumed serpent, Quetzalcoatl.

The regular payouts are good with the high cards paying 10x stake for 5 matches. The premium symbols award from 20x to 50x your bet for 5 of a kind. John Hunter himself is the best-paying symbol, while the gold statue is Wild, appearing stacked on the reels and substituting for the other symbols in the game.

The Mayan temple is the Scatter, which activates the Free Spins round. This is where the best payouts are likely to appear, thanks to the Symbol Upgrades feature and the potential for limitless re-triggers.

WHAT WE LIKE

  • Indiana Jones atmosphere
  • Stacked Wilds
  • Symbol Upgrades
  • Limitless Free Spins
  • High-paying regular symbols

WHAT WE DON'T LIKE

  • Low jackpot compared to the original

GAMEPLAY AND FEATURES

Gold Statue Wild

The gold statue is the Wild, which can appear on reels 2, 3 and 4 and substitute for all the other symbols to create more potential wins. It also appears stacked on the reels when it forms part of a winning combination.

Free Spins

If you land 3 of the Gold Temple Scatters, you’ll activate the Free Spins round. Hitting 5 Scatters also awards a payout of 50x your bet, while you can get 20x or 2x your bet for 4 and 3 Scatters on the reels respectively.

Symbol Upgrades

During the Free Spins, you can enjoy Symbol Upgrades with 6 levels available. Whenever you land a Wild symbol, you’ll move up a level and receive extra Free Spins. Every time you reach a new level, the lowest-paying premium symbol is upgraded. The Free Spins can really mount up with multiple Wilds awarding up to 5 extra Free Spins every time.

By the time you get to level 6, the only premium symbols on view will be John Hunters, along with the low-paying high cards. If you hit 3 Scatters, you’ll receive another 12 Free Spins with no limit on the number available.

OUR VERDICT

John Hunter and the Mayan Gods is an enjoyable addition to the John Hunter adventure series. The low jackpot is a big step down from its predecessor though and the 10 paylines feels tame compared with the 7,776 ways to win in the Aztec world. However, though the maximum volatility of this slot gives jolts of excitement and underlying tension in the infrequent yet high potential payouts. Even the lowest-paying symbols award well for 5 in a row, but it’s the Free Spins you’re really waiting for with the Symbol Upgrade feature and limitless re-triggers on offer. Overall, this is a fun trip into the Mayan world and although the jackpot isn’t that tempting on its own, the Free Spins round is the main draw and with bit of luck from the charming John Hunter, you can get potentially great payouts for minimal outlay.



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