An interesting layout, it's fast moving, and when the wins come in, they are great

The Grand is a new slot we are offering that was developed by Quickspin. Once a week, we pick one game to try out so we can tell the Stakers community what it's like. That way you get a sense of the game before you risk your money on it. And we get to have fun playing a cool new slot!

So, we spent about an hour and a half playing The Grand. Here's what we found out.

First off, it's not set up like a normal slot machine. It has six reels, but that's not the oddest part. The first two reels have three rows, the second two reels have four rows, and the last two reels have five rows each. That throws a lot of traditional slot strategy out the window.

You also don't have a ton of icons. You only have spades, hearts, diamonds, clubs and then two other oddly shaped icons.

Like any other slot, you need to get at least three in a row to win. What's not usual is that randomly, it will throw extra wilds on the board, or nudge a reel to give you a win, or else have two reels spin in sync. You have no control over when these events happen – they just do.

Then the free spins mode happens. When you land on three Free Spin icons, the game will suddenly shift. You'll get your free spins, but all the wilds will be replaced by Bonus icons.

During the free spin mode, if you score three bonus icons, it will bring up two spinning wheels. The top wheel will spin between Wilds, Sync and Nudge. The lower wheel will spin and show you how many extra free spins you will receive.

When this happened to us the first time, we got Wilds and six additional free spins. This turned four non-winning icons into wild cards during every spin. The second time we got we got Sync plus two free spins. This caused two reels next to each other to spin as one reel. The extra four wilds kept coming up. Over the course of our free spin round, this meant we won a total of 26.60 credits. Not bad for a one-credit bet.

The thing is, with so few icons and a great free spins rounds like that, you'd expect The Grand to be low variance. It's not. It's randomized enough so that it is a very high variance game.

That means you have to be willing to invest in it. If you do, when you get your wins they should more than cover your losses. But they will come in few and far between. So you'd better pack your bankroll so you can play through the sessions when you are losing.

Of course, a lot of our players love high variance games. And if that's you, then you'll love this game. You might even say it's grand!

If you don't like high variance games, you should probably shop around and find a low or medium variance game to play.

Overall, we give this game five out of five stars – that's a ranking we rarely give, but we think The Grand deserves it. It's got an interesting layout, it's fast-moving, and when the wins come in they are great.

We like that the game rewards patience and that our wins more than offset our losses. The bottom line is that this game is cracking hot fun and won't disappoint you – as long as you are good with high variance games.

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