After a look into the future on Wild Robo Factory and a journey back in time on The One Armed Bandit, we are travelling to the Far East on the next slot from Yggdrasil Gaming. Yokozuna Clash is taking us to Tokyo into the world of mighty sumo wrestlers as they face each other in the front of a set of slot reels. The excitement in the sumo tournament is delivered by two random features and a Sumo Clash feature in the base game as well as a Tournament Free Spins round with multiple stages that can lead to wins of up to 3,000 times your stake.
Yokozuna Clash is a video slot with five reels, three rows and 243 ways to win. Pays are awarded both ways for three to five adjacent matching symbols from left to right and from right to left. You can enter the sumo ring yourself on desktop or mobile from 0.25 to 125 credits per spin. The game has medium to high volatility with an RTP of 96.30% (confirmed).
The game is set in a traditional sumo tournament hall with the Dohyo (sumo ring) and two wrestlers in front of the reels. The crowds cheering their favourite can be seen in the background of the frameless game window while the two sumos Riko and Haru are starting their fights during the slot features.
The pay symbols start at the low end with the usual card suits – hearts, clubs, spades and diamonds – paying 0.8x your bet for a single five of a kind. They are followed by blue dragons, green lizards, purple tigers and red birds. Hit five on a line to win 6x to 12x your stake.
An intricate orange-coloured icon marked with the word itself is the wild symbol, performing the usual substitution duties. The same icon in red colour marked with ‘Free Spins’ is the scatter symbol, appearing on reel one and five only.
While sumo wrestlers look like giant fighters, they follow an extremely strict code of conduct and an intense regime on their path to become a Yokozuna, Japanese for champion and the highest rank in the sport. The tournaments and fights itself are held according to century-old rules which have to be observed and honoured down to the smallest detail by all sumos. Yggdrasil went to great length to put the mighty sumos at the centre of the three main features of this slot.
It all starts with two base game features that can trigger randomly on any spin. Based on which sumo will jump into action you will benefit from either extra wilds or win multipliers.
Hitting one or more five of a kind on a spin will trigger the Sumo Clash feature. The two wrestlers will clash and add 2, 3 or 4 extra symbols that are part of the five of a kind to the reels, increasing the total win from the spin. If two different 5OAKs are in view then the higher-value symbol is added.
Get ready for the main part of the reel excitement when you hit scatters anywhere on reels one and five in one spin. It will trigger the Tournament Free Spins with no set amount of spins. Instead, you will have a battle meter with seven bars in each direction at the bottom that will be the deciding factor when the round ends. Before the fight gets underway, the game randomly selects in a first clash Riku or Haru to be your sumo for the tournament which goes over a maximum of two rounds. The selected sumo will face two opponents and he needs to beat the first to qualify for the final fight. While wrestling, each sumo will add his modifiers when a win is scored and also move the meter towards either end.
Any win landing from the left on a spin will see your sumo activating his modifier and also progressing you towards winning the fight. He will advance to the next fight if you manage to turn the entire meter blue up to the right edge.
In turn, landing a win from the right will see your opponent gaining on you and also adding a modifier to the current spin. They will push the meter by a set number of bars to the left. The feature ends when the meter turns fully red and reaches the left edge.
In the lucky event that you manage to beat your opponent, you will progress to the final fight where you will face the current Yokozuna. However, he is more powerful than the first 2 opponents and it will need some luck to defeat him and take home the trophy. The mechanic is the same as in the previous fights.
Sheer perseverance will pay off when you finally defeat the grand champion as all winnings from the entire round will be multiplied by x2. Plus, of course, the great honour to become the next Yokozuna, well, at least on slot reels.
The eternal champion list has currently only 72 sumos who actually managed to ascend to the rank of a Yokozuna, which is the highest a sumo wrestler can attain in his career. There is only one Yokozuna at any time and he will stay in his rank until beaten. The longest period to date was over 12 years.
Well, this was quite an intense yet entertaining gaming session as we tested Yokozuna Clash for this review. Graphics and animations come together to deliver quite an engaging slotting experience, something which is bound to be seen more often in future games as developers try to involve us more into the gameplay.
Other than that, Yokozuna Clash trends towards high volatility, so maybe some caution on the bet size is recommended, while the max win of 3,000 times your bet could turn this sumo fight into a big win celebration.