With online slots evolving at a dramatic rate, software providers are always looking for that extra edge to increase player interaction and to get their slots to the forefront of the casino lobby. During 2018 there was an influx of online slots that provided players with the option to buy a bonus, and although this wasn't entirely a new concept, it was something that was yet to be seen by a large percentage of punters.
WHAT IS A FEATURE DROP OR BONUS BUY?
THE FEATURE BUY PRICE ON WHITE RABBIT MEGAWAYS IS 100X YOUR STAKE
A feature drop is a unique in game option / feature used by Big Time Gaming where players can trigger the bonus round without it landing on the reels randomly, this can be done by either collecting coins on the reels during your base game play to reduce the feature drop price to zero, or players can choose to buy the feature at any given time for the cost stated.
The first time that the vast majority of us would have seen this option to buy the bonus feature would have been upon the release of Big Time Gaming's highly volatile slot White Rabbit Megaways. This impressive release from one of the leading slot software developers saw players presented with the option of purchasing the bonus via the feature drop option for 100x the value of their stake.
A BTG COIN LANDING TO REDUCE THE COST OF BUYING THE FEATURE
What Big Time Gaming did include in their bonus buy slots was a chance to reduce the cost of buying the feature, or in fact reducing the feature drop amount to zero thus awarding the player a bonus round without the need to buy it, or win it organically in the base game.
OTHER SOFTWARE PROVIDERS SOON FOLLOWED SUIT
Once the success of the feature drop and buy feature option were realised, it didn't take long for other software providers to incorporate this into their own slots. This was particularly noticeable in Blueprint Gaming's slots since Big Time Gaming licensed them the Megaways pay mechanic, and although there were no base game possibilities to reduce the cost of the feature due to the feature drop also being trademarked, the adding of a buy feature option to certain slots was a no brainer considering the overnight success seen with this on the Megaways slots.
This in turn saw providers such as Push Gaming reskin another online slot favourite Fat Rabbit, and release a Christmas themed game called Fat Santa which offers players a feature buy option at 80x their chosen stake.
SLOTS WITH FEATURE DROP OR BONUS BUY OPTIONS
IS IT WORTH BUYING A BONUS?
The act of bonus buying is a highly debatable topic, and whilst some players think the option is a good addition to online slots, others find it irresponsible and would never dream of paying up to 100x their stake to trigger the bonus round.
I fall somewhere in the middle, I have in the past bought bonuses on slots but it isn't something that I make a habit of. The feature drop option I do like, you can plug away at a game and in time you will effectively earn yourself a bonus round through your play, or reduce the amount to a cost that is in line with your playing budget.
The part I'm not really keen on is that these slots are extremely volatile, and we have all experienced those free spins rounds that pay you an absolute pittance such as 5x or under your stake, so to get one of these organically is a kick in the stomach for sure, but to pay 50x, 80x, or 100x your stake to get that feature, would leave you fairly annoyed and for some players make them want to buy another to chase the loss.
To keep yourself playing within your means I always recommend that you have deposit limits in place at any casino that you are registered at. If you embark upon the feature buy slots then this is likely something you will be pleased you have done at some stage.
FEATURE DROP SLOTS FINAL THOUGHTS
Like them or loathe them, for the time being the feature drop and feature buy slots are here to stay, and with Big Time Gaming rolling out the Megaways license to various slot providers we could be seeing plenty of variations on those style of slots popping up in 2019 and beyond. As for the bonus buy in general, it will no doubt be added to various new slots as long as it stays popular with a strong following of online players.
It could be argued that although the bonus buy is highly controversial in its own right, it is in fact that on certain slots once you have bought the bonus you can then choose to gamble for more spins or a higher starting multiplier to increase the possible volatility of the feature itself, the problem with this is that you can of course lose the gamble, and it most instances losing the first gamble will result in no free spins and the end of the bonus round before it has actually begun. This means that a feature buy of €100 for example could be over in under a minute if the first gamble is unsuccessful.
Just keep all of the information on this page in mind if you do choose to play any of these slots, and just to reiterate the importance of it make sure you have your deposit limits in place.
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