Of all the slot machines featured here it would have to be a toss-up between the Pharaoh's Fortune slot machine, the
prevalent Cleopatra slot or the multitude of Wheel Of Fortune machines
and Elvis slots (all incidentally manufactured by IGT) as to which one gets the most play in land-based
casinos around the world. What is even more amazing is the games are all actually pretty old by comparison and yet their popularity remains
undented, even in the face of newer TV-branded games like the X Factor slot machine or slightly disappointing
yet seemingly popular Deal Or No Deal.
As far as online slots go, Cleopatra still rules the roost (although in most European casinos you'll also see a lot of people sitting down to
play the Book Of Ra slot machine, a game that is closing the gap) but the Pharaoh's Fortune slot machine
was only ported into the online environment in 2011 - quite late considering a) it's been in B&M's for years and b) it's so popular!
For those few players who haven't sat down to play Pharaoh's Fortune then it's appeal comes - as usual - in the feature round which
takes the form of free spins. The kicker is that you can win up to 25 free spins with a 6x multiplier and you get different reels with more
win opportunities thrown in. The European B&M version of the Pharaohs Fortune slot machine usually only has 10 paylines in normal mode
where the US version has 20 paylines. However, in the free spin feature, 20 paylines are guaranteed. The online version is the 10 payline
version that doubles to 20 in the feature.
Although the RTP of the online version is bang on 95% (which is very good
compared to B&M versions), this 10-payline version is not as good as the US 20-payline version unfortunately. I like the fact that 20 paylines
means you can trigger a "double" feature in the US version which you can't do on the European version. But it's still a good game if
you catch it in a good mood.
The other mildly annoying thing about the Pharaohs Fortune slot is that you need the bonus symbols on specific reels (1, 2 and 3) to trigger the feature.
Aristocrat also do this on their Choy Sun Doa slot machine but where as that game allows them to appear anywhere
on those 3 reels, on Pharaoh's Fortune they have to appear on a payline. If you get 12+ spins with a 3+ multiplier then you can win some good cash
off this game - especially with retriggers - but you frequently wait ages for the feature only to get some poxy reward like 6 spins at 1x or
something. That said, I still play Pharaoh's Fortune slots a fair bit LOL...it has something about it and that might explain - whatever "that" is -
why it is such a popular slot machine.
One other minor oddity: in the bricks and mortar casino (B&M) version you get a distinctive sound when the green bonus symbols land indicating the bonus feature. On the
online version of Pharaohs Fortune, that same sound has been applied to the scatter symbol instead which if you aren't watching, is damn annoying because
you think you triggered the feature when you didn't!
For further information on the game in land-based and online, check out my dedicated Pharaohs Fortune website
which goes into a bit more detail on the characteristics of IGT's leading B&M slot machine.