Review of Michael Jackson King of Pop Slots
Who doesn’t love Michael Jackson? Easily one of the greatest musical performers of all time, MJ had an unprecedented run of #1 hits and record sales throughout the 1980s and into the ’90s. I’ve been a fan for longer than I care to remember, with my affections beginning during his days in the Jackson 5 and their great soul albums of the 1960s.
Make no mistake, playing a game based on the career of Michael Jackson is both entertaining and sad at the same time. It’s great to celebrate his career, but it’s a career that we all know ended way too soon. Thankfully, this slot stays totally upbeat and includes some of his greatest hits, and features his best dance moves and flashiest costumes.
Yes, I am a huge fan of MJ but you don’t need to worry that this review will be tainted by any bias or nostalgia because Bally ensured that Michael Jackson Slots stands on its own and is a ton of fun to play. This game will totally rock you, and fans young and old will enjoy celebrating the life and times of the “King of Pop”.
I strongly encourage you to click on the images below to enlarge them so you can see exactly how well this game was designed. There are tons of video clips and animations of Michael dancing that are triggered with the various bonus features, not to mention that the game is one of the most majestic and dazzling games I’ve ever played – it even has diamond waterfalls.
Where do you even begin to tell the story of the Hall of Fame career of Michael Jackson? His accomplishments can clearly speak for themselves: 13 Grammy Awards, 13 number-one singles, and 350 million records sold across the globe say more about the power of his music than I ever could in a few paragraphs of text. The world fell in love with him over his 40 years in the entertainment business and then had their hearts broken when he died tragically in 2009 as he was mounting a massive comeback tour.
Michael Jackson’s most successful album and my personal favorite, Thriller, won a whopping eight awards at the 1984 Grammies and then went on to become 33 times Platinum in the U.S.A., which is a record that will never be broken. I’m not sure what’s a more astonishing fact: that there were seven Top 10 singles from the album, or that it achieved all of this without the aid of a tour – Michael was still performing with The Jacksons while all this was going on!
This game focuses on MJ in his prime and features his biggest hits from 1982’s Thriller and 1987’s Bad, with tons of videos and costumes from that era. I think most fans are going to be extremely happy since this is the time when Michael was sitting at the top of the music industry as the undisputed King.
Although they’re all beautiful in their own way, one of this game’s only weaknesses are its unique symbols. As you all know by now, as soon as I see a 9 as a symbol in a game I start getting suspicious about the imaginations of those who created it. However, in King of Pop Slots there is an abundance of creativity and effort, so I’m honestly at a loss as to why Bally decided to use a 9, (or any playing card symbols, for that matter).
Wasn’t there more than enough to draw upon from Michael Jackson’s fabulous career? Now I’m not saying that Bubbles the Chimp or the bones of the Elephant Man should have been used, but my goodness – couldn’t we have gotten some other images of Michael at different stages of his career? Or at least some of his amazing album covers?
This all said, I’m not going to complain too much because Bally did crank out a whopping 19 symbols that are spread throughout different parts of the game, so maybe I should lighten up a little.
- Green 9
- Purple 10
- Blue J (Jack)
- Yellow Q (Queen)
- Gold K (King)
- Orange A (Ace)
- Black Florsheim Shoes
- Ray Ban Aviator Sunglasses
- Signature Fedora Hat
- Swarovski Crystal Glove
- Diamond Wild (Wild)
- Michael Jackson (Bonus)
- MJ’s Eyes (Jackpot)
- Moonwalk Wild
- Moonwalk Wild Bonus
- Moonwalk Wild Jackpot
- Stacked Wild
- Stacked Wild Bonus
- Stacked Wild Jackpot
Diamonds are everyone’s best friend in this game because the Diamond-Encrusted Wild symbol is the highest paying regular symbol, dishing out 500 coins for 5 of a Kind. This is then followed by Michael’s Glove, Hat, Sunglasses, and Shoes, which pay 500, 200, 150, and 120 coins respectively for five across the reels.
The Moonwalk Wild symbols are on reels #2 to #5 and if they fall and are used in a payline win they will double your cash payout. The Moonwalk Bonus and Jackpot symbols both pay out like the normal Wilds but they can possibly give you their corresponding prizes as well.
At any time during the regular game there is a chance that two of the reels will become totally wild thanks to the Stacked Wild symbol. Like the Moonwalk Wilds, the Stacked Bonus and Stacked Jackpot symbols will payout like the regular Stacked Wild and also give you the opportunity to win their prizes.
You will want to note that you must play all 25 paylines every spin with the minimum wager being $0.40 and the maximum wager being $80. This means that the coin values are technically $0.016, and that’s not confusing at all, right? Shamone!
Let me help you avoid the same confusion that I had when I first launched this game and saw a King of Pop Slots “Jackpot” symbol on the reels. These do not trigger a progressive or in-game jackpot – they’re actually just the highest-paying symbols in the game. Five of them in a spin will give you a respectable 2,500 coins and trigger a visual of the iconic golden statue of Michael.
If you hit 4 Jackpot symbols in a spin you’ll win 500 coins, and 3 will only give you a paltry 50. So technically there’s a Michael Jackson Jackpot, it’s just not the jackpot that most players will be expecting. Regardless, I’ll take it.
The main bonus round in King of Pop Slots is called the “Platinum Bonus Spin”, which is of course a reference to his numerous multi-platinum selling albums. It’s triggered when you hit the Bonus symbol anywhere on reels #2, #3, and #4, and a bonus wheel full of prizes will appear for you to spin. You’d better cross your fingers because you only get one chance to give it a pull.
There are a bunch of different options like the Smooth Criminal and Beat It free games, as well as numerous sections with bonus cash. Some of the prize amounts have a multiplier symbol that will allow you to spin an extra wheel that will add a multiplier to your line bet. Click the button to see Michael’s custom-designed glove made of white spandex and covered in Swarovski loch Rosen crystals appear to spin the wheel and reveal your prize.
Also, a great reel feature in King of Pop are the “Moonwalk Wilds” which will appear on reels #2, #3, #4, and #5 to really give your bankroll a boost. There are three different kinds on offer: Double Wild, Double Wild Bonus, and Double Wild Jackpot, and if any one of them are used in a payline win they’ll double the prize amount paid out.
Lastly, at any time during the regular game two reels might become fully wild and trigger a very special feature from Michael that will blow you away. Heeee hee!
Michael Jackson was known around the world for his huge heart and generosity so it’s no surprise that his game dishes out tons of free spins to its players. There are two different free games features which offer you something unique, including the music. First we have the “Beat It Free Games” which will give you a special set of reels and 10 free spins with Sticky Wilds on reels #2, #3, #4, and #5.
Then we have the “Smooth Criminal Free Games” which awards 5 free spins, with the 1st spin having Stacked Wilds on reel #5. From there it gives you Stacked Wilds on reels #4 and #5 on your 2nd spin, and then the Stacked Wilds continue to move to cover the following 2 reels with each spin. Just like Beat It, Smooth Criminal will give you a unique set of game reels that are sure to make you smile.
The graphics in this game are absolutely over the top and will have every fan’s jaw on the floor. For example, when the Double Wild symbols come crashing in and MJ appears on reel #5 to moonwalk his way across the screen to the strains of “Billie Jean” it’s one of the best things ever. The Swarovski crystal glove sparkles and Micheal’s hair flies around while he dances flawlessly to the beat. It’s honestly shocking how great a job the designers at Bally did on this one.
The bonus features all look fantastic, like the flurries of Wilds appearing on the reels amidst showers of purple diamonds in a majestic storm. You just know that MJ himself would have loved all of the dazzling visual effects that were created – he is musical royalty, after all.
And you can believe me when I tell you that seeing Michael flick that coin in the jukebox for the Smooth Criminal Free Games and dance onto the reels in the exact white suit and hat from the video is amazing, and it will have you bouncing up and down in your seat.
On top of all this we even get unique backgrounds for the Smooth Criminal and Beat It features that do a great job of keeping the game fresh and moving.
Audio & Soundtrack
Now to the category that everyone is going to want to know about: the soundtrack. I think that most fans will be very happy with what this game has to offer – I know that I certainly was.
“Dirty Diana” is the song that plays throughout the main game without interruption and it really draws you into MJ’s world. That slow, intense beat mixed with Micheal’s vocals and heavy electric guitar is the perfect soundtrack to spin to and it really builds up the anticipation. Surprisingly, the sounds of wins getting added to your balance are loud but don’t interfere with the track at all.
Then just wait until you trigger the bonus that has “Bad” kick in with the purple waterfalls of Wilds cascading over the reels – it even has a clip from the iconic video with MJ punching the air to a fantastic whipping sound. The amazing soundtrack doesn’t stop there, and as I mentioned above, “Billie Jean” drops during one of the reel features and really takes things up a notch. As soon as you hear the beginning of the song with that classic drum beat and bass synthesizer get ready to see Michael twirl onto the reels and get busy.
Next we have the “Beat it Free Games” giving us a full version of “Beat it” with the awesome guitar solo by Eddie Van Halen. Finally, we have the “Smooth Criminal Free Games” giving us what else but, “Smooth Criminal“. Both of these rounds are followed up with some bars from “Bad” as your free cash is added onto your balance.
Going into this game I guessed that 3 of Michael’s songs would be included, so for it to have 5 MJ jams was a fantastic surprise.
Without a doubt, Michael Jackson King of Pop Slots will take you on a rollercoaster of emotions, with most of them being positive due to the excellent music and amazing video clips from the hottest period of Michael’s career. This game mostly gives me good vibes because it has Michael at his best and you easily get transported back to the wonderful outlandishness of the 1980s.
Pickier players may argue that there could have been a more intricate bonus round and more songs included in the soundtrack, but I think that they would be in the minority. Five songs is a lot for a music-themed online slot, so we should be grateful for what we were given, (of course, it is always natural to want to hear more MJ).
The one thing that will probably annoy many players however, is the game’s shocking lack of an Auto-spin button. I’m not sure how Bally forget to include one of those and hopefully they’ll remember one if they ever make a sequel.
All things considered, this slot seems larger than life – just like the legend who stars in it. So if you’re a fan of Michael Jackson and his music make sure that you try out this excellent game that celebrates the pinnacle of his career. You will not be disappointed.
There’s fire in his eyes and his words are really clear, so play it! Just play it. Ooohh!
Bonus Video of Michael Jackson
I think we can all agree that there’s only one video that this review could end on, and that’s Michael’s seminal performance of “Billie Jean” at the “Motown 25: Yesterday, Today, Forever” special from March 25th, 1983. This was the first time the world was introduced to his groundbreaking Moonwalk dance. Enjoy!