When you first see MicroGaming’s Karate Pig, it looks like many other Asian themed slot games available online. Once you start to play, the humour and depth of the game-play will soon change this view. The symbols are detailed, and animal-themed. Each has an animation when you trigger wins. The star of the show is a pink pig, who will perform different karate moves – especially during the bonus games.
Those bonus games have a progressive element. Each time you complete one (you can choose from two games), you are awarded a karate belt. Once you get 7, you try and defeat a bad guy in the ‘final showdown’ bonus. There are also stacked wilds, and a free spins bonus game with a handy 2x win multiplier.
Karate Pig features 40 win-lines which cover a 5 reel and 3 row grid. You can bet just one line if you wish (though this makes the game play very slow), and up to 5 coins per line. I recommend sticking with the full 40 lines – as you’ll take max advantage of the stacked wilds this way. The ‘bet max’ button will default back to the full 40 lines.
High paying regular symbols are topped by a pig in a karate suit. This will get you 750 coins for 5 of a kind, 250 coins for 4 and 50 coins for just 3 from the left. A bearded cat comes next at 250 coins, with a musician in purple at 100 for the full 5.
For the lower paying symbols, a variety of characters and traditional Asian icons are used. There is a muscled bad guy, Buddha symbol, waving cat and even a bonsai tree on the reels.
Logo symbols are wild. They will substitute for any of the regular symbols covered above, creating many extra wins. These are also stacked on the reels. This means they come in long strips, and will often cover one or more entire reels. When this happens, you can trigger up to 40 wins at the same time. With any luck, this will cause the ‘win’ box on the bottom left to expand – showing a ‘big win’ instead.
A different pig symbol, where he wears a hat, triggers the bonus games. This is a scatter, and will pay based on the total number anywhere on the reels. If you get 3+, you will be given a choice of bonus games. You see a screen where the pig stands in the middle, and wooden signposts point left and right. You click on one each time to start the bonus.
To the left is the ‘Pork Chop’ bonus. You go to a scene where the pig stands behind a wooden table. Above him is a series of barrels. You get to pick 3 of them. Each one will drop down, revealing a sack. The pig then karate chops the sack, revealing the contents (food, chopsticks and so on). At this point you win a prize. The right hand ‘Hammer Bonus’ involves picking tarps, which reveal ice blocks. The pig headbutts them. Inside each are frozen fish – and of course cash prizes.
Once you have completed seven bonus games, your next bonus is the ‘Final Showdown’. This is a fight game, where you get to battle with the muscled guy. You pick moves each time.
If these bonus games were not enough, there is another which is certainly worth hitting. A special scatter on reels 1 and 5 at the same time will trigger 15 free spins. All your wins are doubled during this.
The level of detail in the symbols really stands out in Karate Pig. Each of these has an animation, which gives you a rich experience. Above the reels you will see crashing waves and a pagoda, while the background of the reels is plain white.
A lively Asian tune plays while you spin. There are karate type sound effects when the scatters hit the reels.
It is the bonus games where the visuals and humour combine to the greatest effect. The animated pig will certainly keep you amused while you win. The worried expressions on the faces of the fish in the hammer bonus are also worth watching out for.
This game will appeal to a much wider audience than most Asian themed slots. In addition to the humour, there is plenty of big-win potential. Stacked wilds in the base game can trigger multiple wins. The highlight is certainly the progressive bonus rounds. Once you get to black-belt, the final showdown awaits!