Min bet $0.20
Max bet $100
Max Win bet x 1095130
Game provider Yggdrasil
Release Date 10/2016
Game Technology HTML5
Min bet $0.20
Max bet $100
Max Win bet x 1095130
Gamble Feature Number of jackpots, Bonus game or special game, Freespins, Scatter symbols, Bonus symbols
Devices Support all devices
Configurable Winlines No
Progressive Jackpot Yes
Yggdrasil Gaming is trying to conquer the progressive jackpot market and Empire Fortune is their grand attempt at it.
For a long time, the big progressive slots have come from two developers, NetEnt and Microgaming. Yggdrasil wanted a piece of this action and started to build their own jackpot series. The result was the 2015 slot, Joker Millions, which got mostly mediocre reviews. The second attempt was much better. The 2017 slot, Empire Fortune, was a major hit and it is now among the biggest jackpots on the Internet.
Empire Fortune is a part of Yggdrasil’s Global Jackpot series. They all share the same jackpot and are networked together. So no matter which one you play and no matter where you do it, you are playing for the same jackpot.
NetEnt’s Mega Fortune has been a big influence for Empire Fortune. Starting from the name, there are a lot of shared features that you might recognize while you play.
For now, Empire Fortune is not available on the UK market. Some parts of the game are not compatible with the gambling restrictions and the entire game has been pulled for the time being.
Empire Fortune is built on wealth and prosperity. Everything in it is valuable even down to the spin button, which is a massive ruby. As soon as you open the game up, you know there are large wins afoot.
Even the music and the sound share the theme of opulence. The soft strings and the solemn harp play a quiet melody that never bothers anyone or raises any emotion. Even the lack of victory fanfare fits the elegance perfectly. No brash celebration, just a dignified transfer of money.
I do like the theme of Empire Fortune. It is so over-the-top in its grandeur. All aspects of the game just scream wealth, but in a polite and stifled manner.
All the symbols in Empire Fortune are jewels, which is not surprising when you look at the theme in general. The more valuable ones are gold brooches with large gems, and the lesser ones are valuable stones in a silver basket.
There are two special symbols, the filigree egg bonus symbol and the court jester that gives free spins. Both of these are scatters, so you don’t need to get them on a single payline.
One surprising aspect about the pay structure is that the game rewards you better for just getting longer wins. Three copies of the best symbol give you noticeably less than four of the worst. This is a polarising choice, especially when there are no wilds in the game.
The game is also built top-heavy and focused on the jackpots. Empire Fortune is a high volatility slot with a measly 94.3% RTP. This means that it’s basically all or nothing. Sure, the free spins can save your butt, but get ready for a dwindling bankroll.
The court jester hands out free spins in Empire Fortune. Get at least three of them anywhere on the reels and you get free spins. Three will give you 10 spins with 2x multiplier, four will give out 20 spins with 4x multiplier and five awards you with 30 free spins and a 10x multiplier.
For me, the free spins were the best part of the game. The odds of winning any of the jackpots is fairly low, but getting a good multiplier and a bunch of free spins isn’t.
Any time you get two bonus or free spin symbols on the reels, those reels are locked in place. You won’t get a free re-spin, but you have another chance to hit the third missing symbol. If you so choose, you can remove the hold by changing the wager and spinning.
If you get at least three bonus symbols on the reels, you get to spin the Jackpot Wheel. Inside the filigree egg, there is a three-tiered clockwork mechanism, not unlike a multi-tiered cake. With three bonus symbols, you get to spin the lowest wheel, with four you spin the middle wheel and with five you get to spin the top wheel.
Each wheel has a number of different wins on them. There are cash prizes, free spins, re-spin for the wheel and fireworks, that hit multiple symbols on all the wheels. The two lower wheels also have an arrow that lets you spin the one wheel above it.
There are three symbols for the jackpots. The gold bar is for The Golden Jackpot, the diamond is for The Diamond Jackpot and the jester on the top is for The Empire Jackpot.
Empire Fortune features three progressive jackpots. Two of them are local to that specific casino and the largest is a networked jackpot. The Empire Jackpot is part of the Global Jackpot network, that is shared among multiple Yggdrasil games.
Empire Fortune is an interesting game. I was following the release of it very carefully and was hoping that it would succeed. We need more big jackpots, and seeing how well Empire Fortune did warm my heart.
If I had never heard of Mega Fortune and was playing Empire Fortune in isolation, I would probably give it a better score. The game itself is good, but NetEnt’s influence shows. It is a good thing to learn from the masters, but to basically copy another game, it leaves a bad taste in my mouth.
There are many things I like about this game. The visuals are good, the free spins with multipliers are always nice and so on. The only problem is, that for me, the game feels like the sum of its parts and nothing more.
I think it is wonderful that Empire Fortune exists and I know there are players who love this. Unfortunately, I am not one of them. To me, this is an okay game with a big jackpot.