Hellcatraz is set as you might expect in a bay with a backdrop of bridges and cop sounds as you attempt to bust out of the worst prison imaginable and take the loot with you. The 8-bit imagery is a game changer, the crazy format of 6x6 with choices over the base game with two options, depending on your craze for high variance and a day or night theme. A Bonus Game round that is pinged full of mystery symbols and disappearing wilds that create bigger win chances and an opportunity to buy features based on your spin stake. A fascinating Relax Gaming pokie special that takes a bit of getting used to!
Well worth a few goes in demo mode of course but when playing for real money it offers up a max win of 51,840x your stake and 46,656 different ways to collect across 6x6 reels of wonderful pixel graphics.
If you are a complete beginner to pokies at the best online NZ casinos then Hellcatraz will take a little bit of getting used too. First up you need to choose between Mixed Mode and Lockdown Mode – both come with clear differences. Try them both in demo mode if you can and then it will be a lot more clear what to expect when you switch to real money play later on.
In Mixed Mode the game is still set at high volatility but lower than Lockdown Mode and will include mixed mystery symbols, in Lockdown Mode you are aiming for the stars with some serious volatility levels to contend with and if you do hit the bonus round here expect then the rewards can be huge but be prepared for some barren spinning in search of that lucky escape bust from Hellcatraz!
Once you’ve decided then set you bet stake from 0.1 to 25.00 and if you want to use the auto-play then set that up from the simple to spot and understand controls in the game display, anything from 10 to 1,000 spins is there to choose from. You’ll soon get used to the 9 symbols including a prison officer, a shark from the bay and some handy handcuffs of course. You’ll need anything from 3 to 6 matching symbols to cop a win or two and make your planned run for it out of the pen!
There are simple controls, the ability to switch modes, buy the feature round and access the pay table info or change the sound settings and music options. We quite liked the Starsky and Hutch themed background noise but it won’t be for everyone that’s for sure.
Hellcatraz wilds are the big orange W’s and with a cascading wins feature the winning symbols on spins and the free spins will disappear to deliver more symbols and increase the chance of further wins.
The Mystery Reveal feature is crucial, the different numbers between 1 and 5 are important with the cascading wins, get the same two matching and you can unlock the winning combos as the number counts down to the bonus feature. Golden Keys will appear along with the regular symbols and these will be counted up as you go about the game adding anything from 1 to 10 to the total. You need to hit 2000 keys to get the super free spins no deposit NZ round underway, that’s if you don’t go right in and buy it from the buy feature button – this feature is only available in certain versions of Hellcatraz so if it’s not there don’t panic!
During free spins it is possible to still get the cascading wins and add a few free spins to the pot from the Golden Mystery Symbols, two of them across the reels with two cascading wins and you’re better off by two more free spins.
Hellcatraz is seriously volatile online pokie offering from the Relax Gaming Studio, even allowing for a choice on modes between mixed ( high volatility ) and lockdown ( super high volatility ), with a best case RTP of 96.46% from the lockdown mode. There are 46,656 ways to win and maximum possible win of 51,840x your stake and the Gambling.com Slot Review team are convinced Hellcatraz will appeal to the higher risk players across New Zealand.
Taking time to review Hellcatraz was fun, it’s a very different game starting with the pixel inspired graphics, the clear themed play on Alcatraz and the myriad of options and mathematical brain work needed to get started.
Once in the game and spinning it felt like there was potential for some big wins but ultimately you could be waiting a while given the volatility levels and the complex triggers. If you were a Sega games head in the distant past it’s a game you’ll immediately feel comfortable with but be patient and make sure to give it a good practice before settling in for a session on Hellcatraz. Step forward risk takers and retro graphics fans as this is the game for you.
If you want to try out some other prison themed video pokies then the classic Cops n Robbers might appeal to those with less of a risk appetite but still retains that old school feel which we certainly enjoyed in Hellcatraz.
Senior content operations specialist at gambling.com
With over 12 years of experience in online gaming, Adam has seen, played, reviewed, and tested hundreds of slot games. He is always keeping an eye out for new features, themes, and potential jackpots by testing slot games even before they are released to the market.