There are some games that will stand the test of time and which are hugely popular with slot gamers. For some, it is a particular feature that has fans flocking to play it, for others it is the sheer playability of the game.
NetEnt’s Starburst slot is just such a title. First released in 2012, this space-age themed slot is brightly coloured, has excellent sound and rather simple and easy to follow graphics. It’s beguilingly simple game play though is what has made it one of the most popularly played slot games across the world over the years.
Over eight years following its release, the game remains a massively popular with players due to how much fun it is to play, allied to the clever game mechanics, the unusual set up and the fact that it can be played from just $0.10 per spin.
So, what is it about this game that has seen it enjoy such popularity and longevity in amongst the notoriously fickle slots community? We decided to take a closer look to find out.
- Name – Starburst
- Released – 2012
- Theme – Space
- Studio – Netent
- Reels – 5
- Reel Set Up – 3-3-3-3-3
- Pay Lines/Ways To Win – 10 Lines (Win Both Ways)
- Minimum Bet – $0.10
- Maximum Bet – $5.00
- Jackpot – 2,500x
- Key Features – Expanding Wilds, Respins
- Volatility – Low
- RTP – 96.09%
- Find The Game at – DraftKings Casino
Graphics & Sound – 7/10
By modern standards, the Starburst slot is a serviceable slot. The sound remains excellent, with a very space-age theme playing while you spin the slots and the music does change when you hit key features, which also makes it very easy to recognise the different modes of the game.
The sound effects when you land big wins are suitably epic and enhance the feeling of the win markedly. The graphics are simplistic, the gems are very simplistic designs and are not as detailed as you would expect to see on some more modern slot games, but what does help this game is that each symbol is distinctive and easy to tell apart from the others.
So yes, by 2021 standards, the Starburst slot is starting to look a little dated nowadays, but in truth, that doesn’t really matter as it wasn’t the looks of the game that made it such a hit with slot gamers.
Gameplay – 10/10
On the reels are a series of different gemstones. Each is rather simply designed and is a different color, which makes it very easy to distinguish from the others on the reels. These gemstones can be stacked up to three symbols high on every reel, so it is possible to fully cover the reels in the same symbol for some sizeable wins.
Wins start with three symbols of the same type from the leftmost reel, but you can also win from right to left across the reels on any of the ten pay lines. This is a fantastic feature and actually offers great value for money for players, as you essentially get 20 pay lines in play on each spin, even though you are only paying for 10 pay lines.
There are Expanding Wild star symbols on the reels to help you land wins (more on these below) and the good news is that as a lower variance slot, you tend to win relatively frequently on this game with around one in every four or five spins on average producing a winner.
What I would say though is that the Starburst slot can be very streaky and it is not unusual to play 10 spins and not land a win, but then play through five spins and land four wins out of those five spins. What is pleasing is that wins can be a nice amount of money, especially if you can hit five symbols across any of the pay lines.
Bonus Features – 9/10
There is a school of thought nowadays that goes that unless a slot game packs a massive progressive jackpot, or has a good Free Spins bonus game offering, then it is not going to be a smash hit success with the fans.
Well the Starburst slot was released at a time when Free Spins games and Progressive Jackpot slots were taking off and it more than held its own against them without either of these supposedly key bonus features.
The main bonus feature of the slot is the Wild symbol. This is the multicolored star symbol and it only appears on the middle three reels. However, when you land it two things will happen.
First the Wild symbol will expand to cover the reel and if you land a win with it expanding, it will pay you out. Then it also triggers a free Respin of the remaining reels, with the Wild being held in position on the reel.
On that respin, if you can add another Wild on another reel, this will also expand, pay you out any winnings owed and then trigger a third respin. If you can land the third and final expanding wild on the reels for this spin, then you can land some huge wins.
These are the only two features of the slot, apart from the fact it is set up to pay both ways across the 10 pay lines. But it is a fantastic example of how complementary features on a slot game really make it so enjoyable to play. Triggering those respins and the win both ways features, allied to the expanding Wilds makes this game hugely enjoyable.
Conclusion – 26/30
Quite simply, Starburst is one of the very best slot games you can play nowadays. It may be over eight years since the game was released into casinos online, but it has lost none of its appeal or playability over that period and remains as much fun to play now, as it was to play when it was first released.
Of course, it isn’t perfect. A lack of Free Spins options would put some modern day players off and the relatively small jackpot prize of 2,500x your bet may also be something that doesn’t appeal to those that want to play slots with a bigger prize on offer.
However, if you value playability, enjoyment and want a game that is affordable and immense fun to play, then Starburst is a perfect place to start.
You can find the game at DraftKings Casino and BetMGM Casino.