Enter the world of secret agents on the slot from NetEnt. Jack Hammer is on a mission to find the Evil Dr Wüten who threatens to destroy Gand City with a giant airship bomb. Sticky symbol respins and a free spins round with an x3 multiplier can lead to wins of up to 3,000 times your bet.
Jack Hammer is a video slot with five reels, three rows and 25 fixed pay lines. A version geared towards our Asian slot friends has been released in October 2019 under the name of Long Pao, which loosely translated means the dragon’s robe.
Wins are paid for three to five symbols on a line from left to right only. While it was initially developed in Flash format and thus available for desktop play only, NetEnt went on to convert it to HTML5 in 2018, which allows you to spin the reels on any desktop or mobile device. The game has low to medium volatility with a generous RTP of 96.96%.
The skyline of Grand City is in the background of a simple geometrical game window with differently coloured pay line indicators on each side. The main characters from the story plot dominate the reels while a simple generic soundtrack reminds us that the game is nearly a decade old.
The pay symbols start at the low end with a potion vial, an old-style dial phone, a newspaper, a chasing police car and Dr Wüten’s airship. Five landing on a line will pay 1.6x to 5x your bet. They are followed by four character symbols – the paperboy, a female 911 caller, Evil Dr Wüten and Jack Hammer. Hit five across the reels to win 8x to 40x your stake.
A bomb flash is the wild, appearing on the three middle reels only and substituting for all regular symbols. A bomb with a timer attached is the scatter on this slot.
Central to the entire gameplay and key to big wins is the Sticky Win respin feature. It activates when you score a win with any symbols or land at least three scatters at the start of a spin sequence. Any winning symbols or scatters are locked in place and a respin awarded to potentially land more matching symbols that improve the current winning combination or additional scatters that would then trigger the free spins. The respins continue as long as symbols are added to the winning combo and ends when you have either a full screen or no new symbol landed. Wins are then evaluated and paid in one amount.
Landing five or more scatters anywhere on the reels, either outright on the initial spin or via the respins, will trigger the Free Spins feature. Five scatters will get you 10 free spins with the number increasing up to 30 free spins for nine or more scatters. The free spins can be retriggered indefinitely. During the feature, the Sticky Win respins are in play as well as an x3 multiplier for all wins. To score the maximum win in a single spin you would need a full screen of Jack Hammer symbols, which would pay 3,000x your bet.
While Jack Hammer was quite the hit when it was released in 2010, it has, in my opinion, served its time. The reel mechanic is still used today in some other slots but mostly in connection with other features such as progressive win multipliers while the simple free spins round will not lift too many eyebrows either. Overall not a totally bad game as the high RTP and low volatility make it suitable for grinding through a bonus wagering requirement.