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The wombat says: It’s that time again Wombat Fans, for me to don my space suit and delve into the boundless vastness. This time we are exploring Star Dust, a retro-space themed slot by Microgaming- those gamers behind the Jason and the Golden Fleece slot machine, Jurassic World and Tomb Raider. But hang on for a moment, Star – Dust? With a retro-space theme? Doesn’t all this ring a bell? Yes indeed my friends, it does. Your smart stars are in perfect alignment. There is a not-so-subtle resemblance here to NetEnt’s blockbuster slot, Starburst. Let’s take a look…
Look and Feel
The Star Dust slot is a sci-fi themed game, so for those of you that are used to playing their cartoon games like the Santa’s Wild Ride slot– this is a bit different. And those of you who have played NetEnt’s Starburst will notice quite few similarities. Both slots offer a retro arcade feeling, some great graphics and a hypnotic electro soundtrack; it’s not hard to see that it’s been inspired by the galactic crowd pleaser.
This slot comes with 5 reels and offers 40 pay-lines in the main game which is a whole load more than games like the Jewels of the Orient slot machine– also by Microgaming, and in the bonus round there are 1024 pay-lines available! The lower paying symbols are playing card classics 10, J, K & A, while the higher paying symbols come in the shape of different colourful alien gems in hues of blue, red, green and yellow.
There is also the game’s logo, which acts as a Wild to substitute for ALL other symbols to complete winning combinations, and last but not least there’s also the Galaxy symbol, which is worth having your eyes peeled for as it will trigger the bonus round feature when it lands on reel 3.
Star Dust Bonus Game
The make things a little more exciting, the game features a Stardust meter on the right side of the screen. Every time the galaxy symbol lands on reel 3, the surrounding gems (the maximum is one gem per reel) are blasted into smithereens and the resulting space debris is added to your Stardust meter. Whoo-hoo! Not only does this add extra coinage to your bankroll, but will also contribute towards triggering off the bonus round.
As more and more gems are collected, the Stardust meter will eventually fill up. Once this meter is has 10 gems in it, it’s fully charged and you’ll unlock a) the instant cash prize that has been stored there, and b) the Free Spins bonus.
You can scoop up to 13 Free Spins and during the bonus round there is a good chance for that you’ll land respins (more on that below), but sadly there won’t be any multipliers added. The universe can be a cold and dark place indeed…
In order to create a balance between the not so infinite dimensions of the player’s wallet and the gravitational forces of the house edge, Microgaming treats you with the Radiant Respins, which work like this: With every 3x symbol win, reels 4 and 5 will respin once, and after a 4 symbol win, reel 5 will respin once. This feature kicks in pretty frequently Slot Fans and will help to prevent your bankroll from being blown away like stardust in a galactic wind.
In direct intergalactic comparison with NetEnt’s Starburst, the Star Dust slot might not shine as brightly. But this game does have some great features like the Star Dust meter. Plus, my wombat sense is telling me that Star Dust is a higher variance slot which means you should be able scoop some sizeable wins in this game.