Gusty winds and scattered thunderstorms are in the forecast for New Jersey Halloween night. And who knows what scary creatures of the night might be lurking about during the bewitching hour.
So the safest and smartest place for you to be on this dark, foreboding night is probably at home.
But does that mean you have to reconcile yourself to a totally boring night and miss out on all of the fun and excitement of Halloween? Not a ghost of a chance if you play the NetEnt slots game Halloween Jack at Golden Nugget Online Casino. You’re guaranteed to have a spooktacular time!
Halloween Jack is this week’s Barb’s Best Bet
As frequent readers of NJ Gambling Websites should know, out of the hundreds of online and mobile slots available to you, I am very picky and choosy about which ones I single out as Barb’s Best Bets. Frequently, but not always, I like to zero in on a game that is especially timely for a particular season or holiday.
The last game to make the cut was the Oktoberfest themed slot Beer Barrel Bash. This week, just in time for Halloween, Barb’s Best Bet is Halloween Jack. You cannot ask for a more ghoulishly thrilling way to close out October a winner.
What makes this slot game great
If you play a lot of slots and are tired of the same old, same old, Halloween Jack by the top online slot manufacturer NetEnt is calling your name. This game is as different from ho-hum as Halloween is from other nights to any kid in a scary costume going on trick or treat.
But while the youngsters are having a howling good time, so should you, and Halloween Jack is a hoot.
Have you ever played a slot game with Walking Wilds? Probably not, unless you have played Jack and the Beanstalk. But you will find Halloween Jack is scarier and creepier. It has Walking Jack-O’-Lanterns and Stacked Walking Wilds that include not just giant Jack-O’-Lanterns on the move but Stacked Hill Hound Wilds and a terrifying Expanding Death Reaper Walking Wild that covers an entire reel!
This game is not for the faint of heart. But if the daredevil in you says let’s go for it, I promise you nothing less than a thrill a minute. Your wild ride could wind up in sheer craziness. But that’s a good thing because it means you’re winning big time.
Speaking of winning, Halloween Jack has a return to player (RTP) of 96.28 percent. That’s way above the average, even for NJ online slots. So your odds of coming out ahead or, at worst, only losing minimally, are excellent.
Halloween Jack has five reels and 20 paylines. With a minimum bet of only 20 cents per spin and a maximum bet of $200 per spin, it’s a slot game that anyone can play.
Play Halloween Jack at Golden Nugget on Halloween
The stores remove their Halloween candy and other Halloween merchandise soon after the holiday is over, but don’t worry. Halloween Jack will still be around for you to play any time of the year you want. In fact, no less than 12 NJ gambling websites offer it.
But if you are going to play this game on Halloween itself, Golden Nugget is your best bet. Why? Because it’s this casino’s Game of the Week!
All of your play on Halloween Jack is worth Double Golden Points. However, October 31 is the last day this offer is in effect, so time is of the essence.
For every $100 wagered, instead of the usual 5 Golden Points, you earn 10. Your Golden Points will be credited to your account automatically as you play.
Halloween Jack Basics
Halloween Jack is a Halloween-themed video slot consisting of five reels, three rows, and 20 fixed paylines.
In other words, there is nothing unusual about the format at all. But if you think for one minute that this slot bears any resemblance to any other slot you have ever played (except perhaps Jack and the Beanstalk), you are in for quite a surprise.
Expect the unexpected and be prepared to be scared
Yes, Halloween Jack has a wild symbol and scatter symbol and special features like a win multiplier and a free spins bonus round to add an extra measure of excitement and increase your win potential. But so do many other games. But have you ever played a slot game where the wild symbols turned into Walking Wilds and even more grotesque Expanding Walking Wilds four symbols high? I doubt it, but that’s about to change in a heartbeat as soon as you give in and take your first spin on Halloween Jack.
As soon as you open up the game, even before you start playing, what you see and hear should give you a premonition that all is not going to be smooth sailing. Trust your instincts, but take a deep breath and forge ahead anyway. If you chicken out, you’ll not only miss out on what is almost certain to be a very exciting adventure, but also on what could be a very lucrative one.
A frameless window with side columns decorated with ivy appears in front of a cemetery. That’s the setting for the game. It is nighttime, and a flash of lightning, followed by thunder will make you thankful that you’re safe and snug indoors
No detail to complete the macabre scene is overlooked. For example, there are skulls on top of the spin button. But if the spin is a winner, they move upward to reveal your prize. Black crows frequently fly over the reels. And in true trick or treat fashion, on some spins, skeletons rise up from their graves as the harrowing soundtrack reaches a rousing crescendo.
No progressive jackpot
Halloween Jack does not offer a progressive jackpot. But with Jack-O’-Lanterns gone wild darting from right to left across the reels, more than enough creepy creatures to wake up the dead, respins and free spins galore, and a win meter that rarely sits still, could you care less? For a Halloween like none you have ever experienced—but only if you dare–cast your worries aside and let the fun and games begin. Take a walk on the wild side and let Halloween Jack lead the way–maybe not directly, but in due time–to any slot player’s favorite destination, the winner’s circle.
Where in New Jersey can you play Halloween Jack?
Halloween Jack is a relatively new online slot. One of the leading online slot manufacturers, NetEnt, introduced it in October, 2018, just in time for Halloween that year, but probably not in time for your favorite NJ online casino to order it. So there is a good chance you haven’t played it yet.
But NJ gambling websites recognize a good thing when they see it. As of this writing, Halloween Jack is available for you to play either online or on your mobile device at a dozen different places, including all of the following:
If you are going to play Halloween Jack on Thursday, Oct. 31, however, your best bet is Golden Nugget. Because Halloween Jack is Golden Nugget’s Game of the Week, all of your play on that game all day long up until 11:59 p.m. is worth Double Golden Points!
Halloween Jack Bet Range
The minimum bet is 20 cents per spin, while the maximum is $200 per spin. In other words, this game offers a wide enough betting range to appeal to almost all players.
Why Halloween Jack is Barb’s Best Bet
Before designating any slot game as one of my Best Bets, I examine every aspect of it carefully. Knowing that NJ slot players are a very diverse group with different types of game preferences, I take those differences into account and recommend games that cover a wide variety of themes. I also try to select games with a wide enough betting range to appeal to players with very different bankrolls and playing styles.
My most recent Bet Bet on this website was the Oktoberfest themed slot Beer Barrel Blast. This week I was hoping to find an online slot with a Halloween theme that would meet my criteria and knew I struck gold when I discovered Halloween Jack.
Here are the reasons why Halloween Jack qualifies:
- Halloween is a holiday everyone is familiar with, and nowadays, adults like to celebrate it as much as children.
- The game captures the essence of what Halloween is about with scary symbols, weird happenings, nonstop thrills and chills, and plenty of treats.
- Halloween Jack offers a wide enough betting range to appeal to most players.
- The game is readily available. 12 NJ online casinos offer it.
- Halloween Jack is mobile-friendly, so you can play it on your smartphone or tablet as well as on your desktop–your choice.
- Halloween Jack is loaded with unique features. So even if you play slots every day and think you have seen everything a slot game could offer, you haven’t. It’s impossible to be bored playing Halloween Jack!
- Your chances of winning are excellent. The published return to player (RTP) for Halloween Jack is far superior to what you will find with most NJ online slots.
Outstanding return to player
The last criterion is so important it deserves additional mention.
Like Beer Barrel Bash, Halloween Jack is a product of NetEnt. It is no coincidence that many of Barb’s Best Bets are NetEnt slots. The name NetEnt is synonymous with slots of the highest quality. Thanks to advanced online slot technology, today’s online slots bear little resemblance to those your grandmother might have played. Many of them are far more entertaining, and this is one of the areas where NetEnt excels.
But more importantly, producing a slot you will enjoy playing is never at the expense of giving you a good chance to win. All NetEnt slots have a return to player (RTP) of at least 96 percent. Halloween Jack has a published RTP of 96.28 percent. The far above average RTP, along with medium volatility, is just the right combination to allow players of all betting levels to stay in the game for a reasonable length of time and either win or complete their session with most of their bankroll intact.
Halloween Jack symbols
Winning combinations are formed whenever three or more matching symbols, with or without the help of a wild symbol, line up on adjacent reels horizontally or diagonally from left to right starting with the reel farthest to the left. You will know right away that you have won by the ring of fire surrounding the symbols in the winning combination. In addition, the foreboding soundtrack will revert to a more upbeat sound.
The paying symbols in the game include 10 regular symbols. The five higher paying symbols, in ascending order of value, are as follows:
- Female vampire
The playing cards 10 through Ace comprise the five lower paying symbols.
Payouts for five of a kind range from 1.5 X your bet to 50X your bet.
There is no way any slot game with Halloween in its title would not have a wild symbol. In this game, it is in the form of a carved pumpkin. But when it’s part of a winning combination, lo and behold. It turns into a Walking Jack-O’-Lantern!
If Cinderella’s fairy godmother can make a pumpkin turn into a stagecoach, why not?
During the base game, the carved pumpkin wild symbol appears on reels 2, 3, 4, and 5 (not reel 1). During respins and the Free Spins feature, the wild symbol appears only on reels 2, 3, and 4.
The wild symbol substitutes for all other symbols except the scatter symbol and lantern to help form winning combinations. The wild symbol also multiplies any win by 3.
The scatter symbol in Halloween Jack is a treasure chest. Three or more of them anywhere on the reels will trigger the free spins bonus round (see below).
The lantern can appear only on reel 5 during the free spins bonus round. If you accumulate three or more lanterns (nine is the maximum) before the round is over, Walking Wilds turn into Stacked Walking Wilds that are the height of two or three symbols. If you collect all nine lanterns, Walking Wilds become transformed into a monstrous looking Expanding Walking Wild that covers an entire reel. But that monstrous looking symbol could unlock some monstrous size wins! (See below).
Halloween Jack special features
Now we come to what makes this innovative game so much fun, not only on Halloween, but any time of year, and sets it apart from any other slot game you have ever played.
Walking Wild Feature with Win Multiplier
Every time a carved pumpkin wild symbol appears on the reels and is part of a winning combination, it not only multiplies your win by 3 but triggers a respin, during which it becomes a “Walking Wild” and moves one reel to the left.
The respins continue until no more wild symbols appear on any of the reels.
This Walking Wild feature can be activated both in the main game and during the Free Spins feature (see below). In the latter, the Walking Wild feature temporarily interrupts the previously awarded free spins and plays out first. When the Walking Wild feature is over, the remaining previously awarded free spins resume. In effect, the Walking Wild feature can turn the 10 free spins you are initially awarded in the Free Spins feature into many more.
Free Spins Feature
If three or more treasure chest scatter symbols appear anywhere on the reels during the base game, that unlocks the Free Spins feature and 10 Free Spins.
If three or more scatter symbols show up again during the Free Spins, you earn five more free spins.
But wait–there’s more. Anytime during the Free Spins that a wild symbol is part of a winning combination, you get a respin and the wild symbol becomes a Walking Wild!
So if you’re trying to count how many free spins you have taken and how many you still have left, the latter number is probably a lot more than you think!
During the Free Spins, each time a lantern lands on reel 5, it is moved to a Jack-O-‘Lector for safekeeping. One or two of them won’t do you any good, but if you’re lucky enough to collect three, or better yet, six or all nine, brace yourself. That’s when the game really starts to get wild.
What starts out as simply a wild symbol gets transformed into a Stacked Wild or Expanding Wild that triggers a respin. The Stacked Wild or Expanding Wild then becomes a Walking Wild!
Just like the Walking Wilds in the base game, the Stacked or Expanding Walking Wild will move one reel to the left and continue to do so until it reaches reel 1, at which point the respins end.
Stacked Hell Hound Wild
As soon as you collect three lantern symbols, each time thereafter that a wild symbol appears on the reels during the free spins, it will become a Stacked Hell Hound Wild that is the height of two symbols.
Stacked Jack-O’-Lantern Wild
If you collect six lantern symbols, each time a wild symbol appears on the reels during the free spins, it will become a Stacked Jack-O’-Lantern Wild.
Expanding Death Reaper Wild
If you collect all nine lantern symbols, each time thereafter that a wild symbol appears during the free spins, it turns into an Expanding Death Reaper Wild. You may shudder at the sight of this ginormous creature occupying the space of an entire reel. But don’t expect him to go away for a while since first he has to make his way to the reel farthest to the left one reel at a time.
Meanwhile, more wild symbols could pop up on the reels, generating more wins and additional expanding death reaper wilds. But that’s a good thing because you are probably racking up huge wins.
How I fared playing Halloween Jack
As part of the process of determining which slots I will recommend as a Best Bet, I always play any game I am considering in demo mode. During my first playing session with Halloween Jack, I bet a hypothetical $4 per spin. During my second playing session with this game, I bet a hypothetical $10 per spin.
Session 1: + $70
It took a while before I activated the Free Spins round, and during the interim, although I had many winning spins, most of the wins were tiny and did not even cover the cost of the spin. As a result, by the time I triggered the Free Spins, I was down -$124. However, during the Free Spins, I rebounded nicely and finished $70 ahead. However, I did not have enough lanterns to get any Stacked Walking Wilds.
Session 2: + $477
Hoping to see some larger wins in the base game, I increased my bet size to $10 per spin. As expected, larger wins did occur, but it wasn’t smooth sailing by any means. The negative swings were bigger, too. In fact, at one point I was nearly $300 down. But I got it all back and more on a single spin (still in the base game) where I won $288. Soon afterwards, I won another $152 on a single spin.
Many times two scatter symbols showed up but not the all-important third one. When three of them finally landed, thereby triggering the Free Spins, I was $127 ahead. Then all hell broke loose. During the Free Spins round, I not only triggered five more free spins, but also collected all nine lanterns, which activated first the Stacked Hell Hound and Stacked Jack-O’-Lantern Walking Wilds and then the Expanding Death Reaper Walking Wilds. When that incredible round finally ended, the win meter showed I was $477 ahead!
The bottom line
Although both of my sessions playing in demo mode produced winning outcomes, I did not win right away either time. That type of result is not unusual at all and shows that patience is a virtue in this game. I recommend playing for the highest stakes you can comfortably afford and deciding ahead of time what size loss you can sustain initially if you are not lucky early on.
As with any slot, there’s no guarantee you will win playing Halloween Jack. But on this slot, with every spin, you are getting a good run for your money.
This seriously spooky slot with sweet treats may send shivers up your spine. But if it doesn’t take care of your Halloween weekend fix, nothing will. So if you’re serious about giving yourself a great shot to win as well as having fun, don’t be a scaredy-cat. Play Halloween Jack!