Review of Star Trek: Red Alert Slots
Most television junkies like me consider the cancellation of Star Trek in the late 1960s to be one of the worst decisions in American TV history. Not to mention that they did this after a massive campaign by millions of people had saved the show the year before. NBC just didn’t understand the cultural jewel that they had in the palm of their hands.
This show broke all the rules of the day by having a strong black female in a lead role, a multicultural main cast, and a “satanic looking” character, (that would soon become a coveted sex symbol). Spock fantasies aside, this show will always be very important to me for all of these reasons, and of course the amazing stories that they told: it was totally groundbreaking.
So I’m sure you’re thinking, “Ok – this is going to be a totally biased review based on silly nostalgia of a tv show that didn’t last more than three seasons.” Well you’re absolutely right, but this slot doesn’t need sentimentality and fond memories to prop it up because it’s so much fun that it easily stands on its own two feet. Let’s explore why…
The graphic designers over at WMS did a fantastic job constructing this slot, with every image, symbol, and background looking sharp and colorful. The entire game board looks great and the images below honestly don’t do it justice – this is definitely one of the best releases from Williams Gaming.
The story was simple: it’s all about the USS Enterprise NCC-1701 and her crew cruising through deep space and boldly going where no man has gone before. Lead by Captain James T. Kirk, the main group of the starship included Mr. Spock, Dr. Bones McCoy, Scotty, Uhura, Checkov, and Sulu, who all helped to keep things in order each week as they encountered strange new worlds and bizarre alien life forms.
Sometimes the inhabitants of a newly found planet were friendly but more often than not they were twisted or evil in some way, putting the crew of the Enterprise in over-exaggerated danger. It would then be up to Kirk and his first officers to turn the tables on the aliens at hand and escape unharmed – and without interfering with the planet and violating their “prime directive”. Unfortunately, many of the ship’s members died in the process each week, with an abnormally high number of them wearing the dreaded “red shirt”.
This slot from WMS gives us some fantastic images and videos from the original show that easily brings back memories of the great plots from the series. Although the game’s creators could have went a little deeper into specific storylines, there’s enough going on here to feel like there’s an episode of “TOS” playing out in front of you.
One of the best things about this slot is that all of our favorite characters are here, with images of the original actors who played them. There are no simulated “caricatures” that are juuust dissimilar enough to not get sued by the relatives of the person’s estate. What you expect is what you get.
My main complaint here is that there aren’t unique symbols of Walter Koenig as Pavel Checkov, George Takei as Hikaru Sulu, or Nichelle Nichols playing her ground-breaking character of Lt. Nyota Uhura. Yes all three of them are featured throughout the game in a limited capacity, but I feel that they deserve their own symbols in the main game – especially when you consider the fact that John Colicos’ character of Kor the Klingon was given one. An odd decision to say the least.
Let’s not get too hung up on what’s not here because there is plenty to enjoy:
- Klingon Disruptor
- Klingon Communicator
- Klingon Tricorder
- Shields 100%
- Medical Tricorder
- Phaser Pistol (Version 2265)
- Klingon D6 Battle Cruiser
- Kor the Klingon (John Colicos)
- Chief Medical Officer Leonard “Bones” McCoy (DeForest Kelley)
- Science Officer Mr. Spock (Leonard Nimoy)
- Captain James T. Kirk (William Shatner)
- Starfleet Insignias
- Star Trek Logo (Wild)
- Chief Engineer Montgomery Scott Wild (James Doohan)
- Rock (Horta Wild)
- Feature Explosion (Scatter)
From the moment you start at the Starfleet Academy your ultimate goal is to one day get that “weird A” on your shirt, so it makes sense that the classic Insignia is the highest paying symbol in the game, giving you 1,500 coins for five on a payline. Of course the crew has to be next in line with Kirk, Spock, and Bones serving up 1,000, 500, and 400 coins respectively for 5 of a Kind.
Before starting to play you will want to note that there is a mandatory extra wager of 10x your bet amount per payline, which is referred to as the “Win Warp Bet”. This is the cash that fuels all of the extra bonus features in the game so I have no problem making the donation – it’s totally worth it for the fun you receive in exchange.
Contrary to the rumors out there on the internet, there is not a Star Trek Red Alert Slots Jackpot in this game, so don’t be fooled. Many online slot review sites are actually quoting the maximum win amount that you can get if you hit a perfect bonus round on a max bet – and how many of you plan on wagering $105 each spin?
I’d like to think that this is why readers come to The Queen of Online Slots and read my reviews: truthfulness! (I mean, I did put “honest reviews” right in this website’s description.) I don’t know if the other reviewers out there are deceptive or just plain sloppy, but I do know that I work hard to always bring you the straight facts. Horn toot!
Anyway, the Red Alert “jackpot” is simply the maximum win that’s available in this game so let’s just move on…
Get ready when Sulu shouts out “Win Warp!” because it will trigger 1 of the 4 cool bonus features that are available in Red Alert Slots, and all of them are totally unique. It can come at anytime after a winning spin so be ready for action and to hopefully stack up some extra cash.
First we have the “USS Enterprise Fly-By” that will change all winning symbols in a spin into one of these profitable symbols: Bones, Spock, Kirk, Insignia, Wild, or Feature. Next is the “Scotty Wild” that’s triggered when Scotty has had “a bit too much” down in the engine room and explodes with a stern warning to the captain and an aggressive Expanding Wild that randomly covers either 1 or 2 reels.
Then we have the “Mr. Spock Multiplier” that is swift, logical, and doesn’t mess around. He simply appears over the reels and gives you a 3x to 10x multiplier on your total win amount -thanks, Vulcan! Another possibility is the “Rock Creature Multiplying Wild” which gives you a disgusting rock with tentacles squishing across the screen, depositing a 3x to 10x Multiplying Wild to pay you back for grossing you out. I believe that he’s technically a “Horta”, and it’s one of the most disturbing things I’ve ever seen in an online slot machine. Enjoy!
Finally, there is a great “levelling up” feature in Red Alert that will allow you to access more “episodes” of Star Trek, which are simply more unique Trekkie-themed slot games from WMS like “Explore New Worlds”. You steadily earn medals based on your performance in both the regular game and the bonus rounds, sometimes getting a few medals at once.
You need to be awarded 50 medals to move on to the next episode and if that’s not enough of a motivation, your Starfleet Rank also goes up slowly based on the amount of medals that you earn. Your number of medals is always displayed at the top of the screen and the game will save them and remember your total even if you close the game down for a while.
Believe me when I tell you that you’ll feel quite proud and accomplished once you hit Lieutenant Commander – I know that I was! The medals flow pretty freely thanks to all of the different bonus features and it only took me about 3 hours of playing to hit the 50 mark and level up.
This game is all about staying on your toes and being ready for battle so it’s no surprise that the free spins mode is called the “Red Alert Feature”, which of course is a recurring theme throughout the television series. It’s triggered by 3 or more Scatter symbols that say “Feature”, with 4 Scatters giving you an extra 125 coins, and 5 giving you an extra 1,250. Oh, you’ll also get 1 medal added to your total each time it’s triggered, so there’s plenty to get excited about.
The free games has a unique set of reels with a few different symbols on it because the character images are now different. There’s also a bonus board above the reels that lets you follow all of the action and how much free money you’re winning as the feature progresses.
You start the round with 5 “shields” and lose one every time you take a hit from a fiendish Klingon cruiser. Of course you get to fight back by shooting them with photon torpedos, while you also hunt for the prize multipliers that they’re hiding with the Enterprise’s phasers.
With each winning spin you will shoot a cruiser that is guarding a multiplier amount between 2x and 15x, which will then be applied to your win amount from the spin. You will also get a medal every time you expose the elusive 15x multiplier, so set your phasers to “kill”. However, whenever you encounter a losing spin you’ll get rocked by enemy fire and lose a level from your shield.
Once the Enterprise’s shields have dropped to zero you have an important choice to make. The game allows you to play as Lt. Uhura and make the final decision about which channel to use to hail Starfleet Command. You can choose either Channel A or B, and if you choose correctly you will either get your shields reset to full and continue the freeroll, or you’ll get a “Spin till you win” prize that will give you free re-spins until you’ve hit a winning combination. Choose incorrectly and you’ll get warped back to the regular game to collect your winnings and wait to fight another day.
You can also be revived thanks to the results of an individual spin and continue to do battle if you hit 3 or more “Shields 100%” symbols while you’re freerolling. No matter what level your shields are at they will go back to 100%, and if you hit 4 of these symbols you’ll get an extra 125 coins, and 5 of them will give you an extra 1,250. So these can be your best friend during free spins mode if you want to maximize your winning potential, (and who doesn’t?).
The graphics in this game are pretty darn good since they walk the perfect line between “modern” and “retro”, and look new while exuding a vintage feel. The decision to make the reels transparent was the correct one because players are able to look at the beautiful journey of travelling through outer space, with purple clouds and stars moving through the screen softly.
The space battle between the Enterprise and the Klingon Cruisers in the bonus round is awesome to watch as they blast each other above the reels, and it’s definitely one of the visual highlights of the game. Also, the swirling star clusters that change your medal count is flawless, and is another example of a small visual effect that doesn’t jump out at you, but is still great and adds to the fun experience of the game.
The level of detail in the images is really going to impress even the most fickle of fans, and the design team at WMS deserves high praise for their efforts. For example, the Klingon Disruptor pistol symbol in the free games area is perfect, with every line and curve looking exactly as it did in 1966.
There’s even a bit of visual comedy included in this title. When the Win Warp is triggered I always laugh because the site of Sulu and Checkoff turning around simultaneously like a cheesy, ’60s choreographed dance move is absolutely ridiculous.
Finally, I’m not sure who’s in the “Spin till you win” video message that gives you more reinforcements in the bonus round, and I certainly don’t remember him from the show. He actually looks more like a WMS employee making a cameo than a grizzled 1960s actor.
Audio & Soundtrack
You will find some of the best sound effects ever put into a game when you play Red Alert Slots because all of the classic sounds are here, and exactly as you remember them. Phaser blasts, warp speed, you name it – there’s even a few bars of the original music from the show’s opening credits that play as you spin. Sadly, at no point in the game do we get to hear the full theme with the wonderful theremin lead that was written by Alexander Courage. (And if that’s not one of the greatest composer names of all time, I’m not sure what is.)
The game is filled with lots of soundbites of Captain Kirk shouting out commands, especially during the Red Alert bonus feature where Shatner really takes it up a notch. There’s also a small sampling of Spock sprinkled throughout but there should have been a lot more. Hearing Nimoy say, “Congratulations on your new rank,” is nice and all that but I wanted to hear some of his famous speeches and catchphrases. Oh well, you can’t win them all.
I predict that the biggest complaint from fans of the show is going to be that it is not the real Scotty saying, “We can’t take much more” and “I can’t keep her together much longer”. I believe that the lines are said by a random WMS intern who was rushed into a sound booth when they realized that they couldn’t use James Doohan’s real voice. Regardless, it’s clear that something weird is going on because it is Doohan’s voice when the Scotty Expanding Wilds are triggered and he says that he “can’t change the laws of physics”, so I’m not sure what the heck to think.
The most out of place audio in the game arrives when you hit a big win and a robotic voice gives you random praise such as, “fantastic” or “unbelievable”, which triggers a high-energy Euro dance beat that pumps out of the speakers as the prize amount is added to your balance. This is found in many WMS games, but I’m not sure how or why it’s in this particular slot. However, since it’s more “hilarious” than “annoying” I’m not going to worry about it too much. I just shake my head and laugh every time it’s triggered – it’s like a quick trip to a Berlin discotheque in 1989. Scheisse!
Fans young and old are going to be extremely happy with Star Trek: Red Alert Slots and there’s definitely a little something here for everybody. Diehards will love the attention to detail and the original characters playing the roles, while casual fans will love the overall campiness and retro Sci-Fi vibe.
With tons of bonus features and an intricate free spins mode that you can re-trigger indefinitely, this game packs in a lot of fun and excitement. Not to mention that winning medals and levelling up never gets old, so you’ll always be focused and engaged as you’re spinning.
I think it’s safe to assume that Gene Roddenberry himself would have strongly endorsed this game because it stays true to the spirit of the series and doesn’t deviate from the script. There’s really not much more that even diehard Trekkies could ask for.
The Enterprise was on a 5 year mission to explore new worlds and seek out new life and I think that you could play this game for just as long and still not get bored. Simply stated, this is a fantastic television-themed slot so get yourself over to the transporter room and try it out today.
Beam me up, Scotty!
Bonus Video of Star Trek
Well here’s something that I had never seen before – a 10 minute long blooper reel from the original series. There’s all kinds of flubs and laughter, and it’s definitely strange to see Kirk and Spock frolicking around the set with such abandon. Enjoy!