Bruce Lee Slots

Bruce Lee Slots

After securing a licensing deal with the estate of Bruce Lee, American casino game manufacturer WMS Industries launched the original Bruce Lee slot machine in 2010.

WMS Industries was initially formed as a pinball machine designer and manufacturer in 1943, but as the years passed and technology evolved, the company added arcade games to its portfolio in the 1970s and 1980s. WMS Industries once again anticipated industry wide shifts, transitioning into the design and manufacture of modern video slot machine models in 1996, and today the company has grown to become one of the world's leading casino game and slot machine brands.

As part of the company's growing interest in designing themed titles, or games which are centered on pop culture properties like classic television shows, movies, and musical acts, WMS Industries was proud to enter into an agreement with the estate of martial arts legend Bruce Lee.

Following the success of the original entry, the company released a sequel known as Bruce Lee: Dragon's Tale. Both games play much differently, however, and this page will cover the original Bruce Lee slot only. An online version of the original has also been released in recent years, and for the most part information contained on this page will cover both the land-based and online editions of the Bruce Lee slot.

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About Bruce Lee

Born in the Chinatown neighborhood of San Francisco, California in 1940, Lee Jun-fan was the son of Chinese immigrants. Lee's father, Lee Hoi-chuen, actually worked as one of the top Cantonese opera singers and film actors in his homeland at the time. This status, along with that of Lee's mother, a wealthy socialite, compelled the family to return to Hong Kong shortly after Lee's birth.

Lee spent his childhood living in Hong Kong, which was now occupied by the Japanese military at the height of regional hostilities, and his encounters with local gangs and hostile children eventually compelled him to take up the study of martial arts. Training in the "wing chun" method under the tutelage of Yip Man, Lee learned the foundation of the skills which would later define his life and his legacy.

After turning 18, and following regular run-ins with the law in Hong Kong due to street fighting, Lee's parents decided to return him to the United States in hopes that he would pursue a more fruitful existence. Lee attended college courses and eventually met his future wife Linda, all the while continuing to perfect his martial arts training, and increasingly showing an interest in acting and drama.

Upon being "discovered" by Hollywood agents while competing in marital arts tournaments throughout California, Lee was invited to audition for a role in the television series The Green Hornet. The show only ran for a single season, Lee's exotic style and spectacular skill as a marital artist catapulted him to stardom, and he was soon appearing on shows like Batman (1967), Ironside (1967), Blondie (1969), and Longstreet (1971).

Lee also acted in several feature films which were built around his life and training, including Fist of Fury (1972), Way of the Dragon (1972), Enter the Dragon (1973), and The Real Bruce Lee (1979).

Enter the Dragon was Bruce Lee's last movie

In 1973 Lee's life was tragically cut short, as a combination of headache-induced collapse and improperly administered medication caused him to suffer from a fatal reaction. At the time of his death at just 33 years old, Lee had become a global icon, recognized and renowned for his talent as a martial artist, his irrepressible presence on stage and screen, and his firm commitment to equality in terms of teaching non-Chinese students.

Game Theme

The title screen for Bruce Lee showcases the man himself, standing shirtless in the traditional fighting stance and set against a red background. The words "Bruce Lee" are emblazoned in green lettering with a gold dragon running through the middle of the screen.

The background screen during the actual base game consists of the same red patterned background, along with the Bruce Lee dragon logo and a few pieces of regional flair, such as bamboo leaves and lanterns.

As for the actual reel symbols you'll be spinning, the Bruce Lee slot uses only themed symbols, so the WMS standard card rank symbols have been replaced altogether. Instead, the game contains the following:

  • Portrait of Bruce Lee
  • Treasure chest
  • Dragon logo
  • Yin-Yang kick
  • Green and gold dragon
  • Chinese hat
  • Gold coins
  • Ancient scroll
  • Blue vase
  • Various weapons

Gameplay Features and Mechanics

One of the more noticeable features on the Bruce Lee slot for first-time players concerns the reel arrangement, and WMS Industries has replaced the standard five reel, 15 symbol arrangement for something new.

The Bruce Lee slot contains five reels, but the first two reels only hold two symbol spaces each. The third, fourth, and fifth reels all hold four symbol spaces, giving the reel layout the following 2 2 4 4 4 appearance:

The unusual reel setup in Bruce Lee slots

Initially, this new design style – which falls under WMS Industries' "Money Burst" concept – can leave players feeling a little disoriented, as the 2 2 4 4 4 design differs so greatly from the usual 3 3 3 3 3 arrangement. Fortunately, the 60 pay line game operates just like any other pay line slot title, with winning combinations being formed from left to right along any line connecting reel symbols on all five reels.

Please Note

Players can always click on the help tab to locate a full description of the pay lines in play, providing a visual representation of all 60 pay lines and how they connect.

Coin denominations for this "penny slot" game begin at $0.01, but in Bruce Lee, players are paying one penny for two lines. When putting all 60 pay lines in play – the optimal move according to slot machine strategy experts – you'll face a minimum cost to cover per spin of $0.30, which aligns with the WMS standard.

The "Money Burst" concept also means players can toggle between various pay line amounts, ranging from 10 through 60 in increments of 10 pay lines. This means you could conceivably activate the minimum of 10 pay lines and bet one penny apiece, making the true minimum cost to cover per spin for the Bruce Lee slot just $0.05. As mentioned though, activating all 60 pay lines is always the preferable play, as your prizes will increase in kind, and the game's full array of bonus features will be enabled.

High-rollers can increase their coin per pay line bet up to $2.00, making the maximum cost to cover per spin an even $60.00.

Even though the Bruce Lee slot features a much different reel arrangement than WMS slot players are used to, the game is still built around the usual lineup of wild symbols, scatter symbols, and free spin bonus rounds. You won't find any multiplier features, however, so line pays can't be increased, and there aren't any wider progressive jackpots connected to either the land based or online versions. For a list of basic game specifications for the Bruce Lee slot, see below:

  • Wilds: Yes
  • Free Spins: Yes
  • Multiplier: No
  • Bonus Game: Yes
  • Progressive: No
  • Return to Player: 96.05%

During the Bruce Lee base game, a fairly standard pay table will be up for grabs, and as usual the title symbol represents the highest-paying score.

Landing five of a kind in the Bruce Lee symbol pays out 400 credits, while four of a kind is good for 100 credits. If you can land three of the Bruce Lee symbols in a row, the reward stands at 30 credits. Fortunately for players, this important symbol often appears as a stacked symbol, filling two, three, or even all four of the symbol spaces on one or more reels.

The Bruce Lee dragon logo symbol is the second-most valuable on the pay table, offering 200 credits for landing five of a kind, 100 credits for four of a kind, and 30 credits for three of a kind.

Both the Yin-Yang kick symbol and the green and gold dragon symbol pay out 200 credits each for landing five of a kind, with slightly smaller payouts than the Bruce Lee dragon logo symbol for four of a kind and three of a kind.

The Chinese hat symbol pays out 150 credits for five of a kind, while the gold coin, the ancient scroll, and the blue vase symbols all pay out 100 credits for landing five in a row.

The prize for landing five of the nunchakus symbol is 60 credits, you'll receive 50 credits for five of a kind in throwing star symbols, five of a kind in sai dagger symbols pays out 40 credits, and five of the knife symbols is worth 30 credits.

The wild symbol is the high paying Bruce Lee symbol, which can substitute for all other symbols except the treasure chest scatter symbol to create winning combinations. As mentioned, wild Bruce Lee symbol often appears as a stacked symbol, so it can fill multiple reel spaces, or even entire reels, on any given spin.

The scatter symbol is the treasure chest symbol, which is the key to triggering the game's free spins bonus round. The treasure chest scatter symbol will only appear on the third, fourth, and fifth reels.

Triggering the Bonus Round

The free spins bonus round for the Bruce Lee slot deviates from WMS Industries' standard, and the majority of games designed by other companies for that matter, by setting up a three-part method of triggering the bonus.

For experienced slot players who know their way around a WMS machine, this change might be a bit jarring at first, because we've all come to know and appreciate the simplicity of landing three or more scatter symbols anywhere on the reels. Using this tried and true method gives players a tangible goal to anticipate on each spin, especially when one of the first reels displays a scatter symbol right off the bat.

Instead of the usual triggering system, the Bruce Lee slot has devised a rather complicated threefold method of unlocking free spins and other bonus features. Because the language used in the game's official rules section can be a bit dense, take a look at how the manufacturers have constructed the bonus game triggers below, and after that we'll try to decipher what it all means in layman's terms:

Method 1
  • If reels 1A, 2A, 1B, and 2B contain 4 matching symbols, WILD included, and 3 scattered FEATURE symbols on reels 3, 4, and 5, 20 free spins are awarded.
    • Reels 1A, 2A, 1B, and 2B are held and 1 EXPANDED WILD symbol will land on either reel 3, 4, or 5 making it wild, and 1 WILD symbol will land in a random position on each of the other two reels on each spin.
    • During free spins, an alternate set of reels is used.
    • During free spins, the feature cannot be retriggered and FEATURE symbols do not appear on the reels on each spin.

Beginning with Method 1, we find an offshoot of the standard "3 scatter symbol" trigger used in most WMS Industries' slot games. The scatter symbol is known as the "feature" symbol.

Essentially, you'll need to land three of the treasure chest scatter symbols on the third, fourth, and fifth reels – while ALSO landing four matching symbols in the 2x2 reel grid created by reels 1A, 1B, 2A, and 2B.

When you land this difficult combination of symbols in the precise order, the Bruce Lee slot awards you the game's most generous allotment of 20 free spins during the upcoming bonus round.

Even better, reels 1A, 1B, 2A, and 2B will be held in place, so the symbols which triggered the free spins bonus will remain in place, helping to create winning combinations on each successive free spin. The game will also drop an expanded reel filled with wild Bruce Lee symbols on either the third, fourth, or fifth reel on every free spin, while an additional single wild Bruce Lee symbol will appear on one of the other two main reels.

All told, with 20 free spins to work with, along with locked symbols in the first two reels, an expanded wild reel, and a single wild symbol all working together in conjunction, this free spins bonus round represents a tremendous opportunity to score significant credit amounts. Unfortunately, you can't retrigger the 20-free spins bonus round during a free spin.

Method 2
  • If reels 1A, 2A, 1B, and 2B contain 4 matching symbols, 5 free spins are awarded with reels 1A, 1B, 2A, and 2B held.
    • During free spins, 3 scattered FEATURE symbols add 5 additional free spins to the amount of free spins remaining.

The second method of triggering the free spins bonus round is a watered down version of the first. Here, all you need to do is land matching symbols in the 2x2 reel grid created by reels 1A, 1B, 2A, and 2B. With no requirement for three or more treasure chest scatter symbols, this second method is much easier to achieve.

Accordingly, the second method only awards five free spins, but yet again the symbols found in reels 1A, 1B, 2A, and 2B will remain locked in place during the duration of your bonus round. This makes it much easier to create winning combinations, as you always need matching symbols in this 2x2 reel grid in order to land winners on the other three reels.

During a free spins bonus round triggered by the second method, you can retrigger additional free spins by landing three treasure chest scatter symbols on the third, fourth, and fifth reels.

Method 3
  • If there are 3 scattered FEATURE symbols on reels 3, 4, and 5, five free spins are awarded. 1 EXPANDED WILD symbol will land on either reel 3, 4, or 5 making it wild, and 1 WILD symbol will land in a random position on each of the other two reels on each spin.
    • During free spins, an alternate set of reels is used.
    • During free spins, the feature cannot be retriggered and FEATURE symbols do not appear on the reels on each spin.

Finally, the third method of triggering the free spins bonus round simply replicates the traditional WMS Industries model. In this case, you'll be looking for the usual arrangement of three treasure chest scatter symbols on the third, fourth, and fifth reels.

When you land this combo, the Bruce Lee slot awards you five free spins. In this case, an expanded wild Bruce Lee symbol will fill up one entire reel (either the third, fourth, or fifth) on each free spin, while a single wild Bruce Lee symbol will randomly appear somewhere on one of the other main reels. Players have no ability to retrigger a free spins bonus round after using the third method.

All in all, this convoluted setup for triggering the free spins bonus round may seem like a lot of mess to wade through, but in reality it's actually a refreshing change of pace. Each of the three triggering methods offers its own slate of helpful bonus features, like expanded wild reels and random wilds, making each bonus round a slightly different experience.

Summary

By offering a funky new twist on the traditional reel and symbol setup, the Bruce Lee slot pays homage to its inspiration by forcing players to challenge their preconceived notions, just like Bruce Lee spent his life doing. In purely technical terms, the "Money Burst" concept doesn't alter the gameplay on a fundamental level, other than increasing variance just a bit and leading to longer runs of little or no payouts.

This weakness is offset, however, by the presence of stacked wild symbols which appear quite regularly, as well as three unique methods of triggering the free spins bonus round. All in all, the Bruce Lee slot is just different enough to provide a change of pace, while staying true to the style and feel of WMS Industries' tried and true slot design elements.

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