A new line of games by Scientific Games, Drop & Lock, is a spiritual successor to Lock it Link, in that it carries over some of the traits from the previous series while carrying things over and boosting its potential, but on the flip side the game brings with it higher volatility, like many sequels.
The game carries 50 credit increments like the earlier generations of its predecessor, and features in a multi-denomination format. Where it breaks apart is how the Lock model works, and the games bring new bonus structures. I looked at Deep Sea Magic, one of the new games, although Sweet Tweet, another game, has a different free spins setup as well as a different Drop and Lock trigger.
Drop & Lock Feature
What they have in common is the Drop & Lock feature. The trigger differs but the play after the trigger is the same.
In the case of Deep Sea Magic, the original Lock it Links, getting three orbs in the same row will trigger the feature. However, the orbs can have credit prizes or be empty – it doesn’t have to be three credit prizes. (For Sweet Treat you need to land six symbols, but again some may not have prizes.) And once the feature starts, how you earn the prizes changes over the old Lock it Link model, but is the same for both.
The free spin counter as always starts with 3. The reels spin, and credit prizes (or empty orbs) can land. Then they drop down to the lowest unfilled position. After each spin, the board is evaluated:
- If the bottom row is filled, you win the prizes on that row.
- If the bottom two rows are filled, you win the prizes on both of those rows with all prizes multiplied by 2x, except the Major or the Grand.
- If all three rows are filled, you win the prizes on all the rows with all prizes multiplied by 3x, except the Major or the Grand.
Then any completed rows are removed from the board, any remaining credit prizes move down their reel as far as they can go, and the spin count resets to 3. In my mind this plays a bit like Tetris, where completing a row causes the row to award and disappear. Empty orbs don’t award prizes, but help fill rows, which can help you win prizes.
You don’t land the grand by filling the board (which has never been the trait of a Lock it Link game either), but instead the Major and Grand chances, like any other progressive, are relative to the bet level, and the same bet on different denomination would yield the same chances, so denomination itself has no impact on Major/Grand. However, with Mini/Minor changing per denomination, those odds would adjust accordingly.
The credit prizes vary by bet level:
- 50 credit bet: 25-2000 credit prizes
- 100 credit bet: 50-20000 credit prizes
- 150 credit bet: 75-50000 credit prizes
- 250 credit bet: 150-50000 credit prizes
- 500 credit bet: 200-50000 credit prizes
You can also get the Mini, Minor, Major or Grand.
It’s interesting that these numbers don’t shift proportionally to the bet, and seem to encourage higher bets, but it doesn’t say at what frequency various numbers appear, so it’s hard to know for sure.
Free Games Bonus
Getting a free games symbol at least once each in reels 2, 3 and 4 trigger the free games bonus. The free games symbols can be stacked, but no matter how many you get, you get 6 free games, also like the early Lock it Link games.
Your multiplier for the free spins is determined by the total number of free games bonus symbols you collected. In the example above, a 5x multiplier is active for the free games. This multiplier will be applied to line hits and scatter pays.
Drop & Lock symbols are present in the free spins bonus, meaning a bonus in the bonus scenario is possible. However, the multiplier does not extend into the Drop & Lock feature.
Drop & Lock is another clever tweaking of the link model, by a company that has been continually tweaking it throughout the Lock it Link line and now into the Drop & Lock series. They’re tough, but the bonuses are fun, and are worth a try when you can get on one.
Watch and Learn
Neily 777 landed a big progressive while playing this version (Deep Sea Magic starts at 8:35):
Here is TheBigPayBack with a big bet bonus on the game: