September 28, 2010

Lucky Stash & the "50-50" Bonus Spin

I'll start this post where it ends: Mafia Wars sometimes presents options that appear to have certain odds favoring a certain result. As discussed earlier, for example, the Daily Chance Lotto 6-of-6 prize - promising "up to 5 Reward Points" really means "exactly 1 Reward Point." Oh, how life's bitter lessons make us wise...

Now ignore that pessimistic start, because I truly enjoy the Lucky Stash feature in Vegas - a slot machine where you can win free Reward Points. There's a slot machine icon at the top of your Mafia Wars screen (second from the left above), and the number there shows how many free Lucky Stash spins you have.

You can get a few free spins each day if you monitor your Mafia's feed, and some more if you post your own slot machine after a winning spin on Lucky Stash, which will bring up the screen below:

If people win on Lucky Stash by clicking YOUR slot machine, you can get some free spins. Plus, Mafia Wars gives you one free spin per day. Also, you can get spins when you see a friend post a Lucky Stash invite on his or her newsfeed announcing he is a Lucky Stash jackpot tycoon:

Don't confuse this with the Vegas Slots offer in the newsfeed, which has the icon to the right, and lets you play some one's Vegas Casino slots for V$ winnings. Who needs V$ when you can win Reward Points?

First, you'll get three spins to see if you can earn a FREE spin on Lucky Stash. The spin below earned me one free Lucky Stash spin.

It's guaranteed that you'll win on one of those three spins, and lose on the other two. You can still get two free spins this way by getting three "Mafia Wars Bars" in a row on this first stage. After your three spins, you'll see a screen like:

Make sure you are using a free spin - there is a daily limit, and once you reach it, you're playing with your own Reward Points - that is, you can spend your own Reward Points in the hopes of winning more Reward Points.

Once you're playing the Lucky Stash slots - either with free spins or your own RPs, you're playing for real Reward Points, based on the three symbols on the center line.

The most common result is the one below (no win), though I just as frequently get three "ladies" (one RP). I've hit 5 RPs a few times. One afternoon, I blew through 80 RPs (playing three at a time) to see if I could hit the enticing Jackpot. Bad call. The Pay Table shows all the combinations.

Whether you get 0, 1, or 14,493 Reward Points from your Lucky Stash spin, your Bonus meter - the bright red bar right under the Jackpot amount - increases by one after each spin. So after the spin above, my Bonus Meter is just one short of eligibility for the bonus.

After you fill the 20 slots in the Bonus Meter, you are eligible for the Lucky Stash Bonus Wheel, which is the subject of tonight's cautionary tale.

Once the red bar is all the way full, click on the yellow BONUS rectangle to head towards - if I may cite an album from yesteryear - the Grand Illusion, a/k/a, the Lucky Stash Bonus Wheel.

The Bonus Wheel has an equal number of slots for Loot and Reward Points. You don't need a Ph.D in statistics from Harvard to see that you have a 50-50 chance at getting Reward Points versus Loot. But give it a spin, and I'll bet good money the next thing you see is:

If I've reached the bonus 15 times since the Lucky Stash slot machine debuted, I've gotten Reward Points once, and a Loot Item the other 14 times. No complaints here about a free 54-defense armor, but don't be fooled by the 50-50 chance the wheel APPEARS to give you in terms of scoring Reward Points. Have you had similar experiences on the wheel?

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  1. My experience has been about 10% I would get RP. But the RP I get are usually 5 with the rare occasional 10 RP or 20 RP.

  2. I've played about a dozen bonus spins. I have never gotten loot, with RP amount that vary from 1 RP to 25RP. Now, of course, I've jinxed it.

  3. Yup, just did it there for about the 5th time now and just loot and only once ever a RP prize. It's really annoying how they do that. It's kind of condescending. "Our players are idiots so they won't notice a thing" is the vibe I'm getting from Zynga. Dressing it up as a 50-50, making the Free Spins slots rigged, Daily Chance 6 of 6 prize only being 1RP now. I wouldn't mind if they were more direct about it.

  4. yea total bullshit I stopped bothering with that unless I have a free spin. Also, has anyone else been leveling non stop? I've jumped 400 levels in a week with a new level in about 20 minutes up to almost 1400 already and no end in sight. I'm doing robbing jobs in Bangkok and area 51 nab the prototype over and over. it's kinda weird.

  5. Not sure how you're able to level up continuously because those jobs and rob don't return over 2 to 1 XP to energy ratio? You must have a lot of overflow in energy.

    It is very rare to find anyone these days that can still level continuously!

  6. I've never got a Reward Point. Ever! :(

  7. Leveling continously: put skill points in stamina and do fighting jobs in top LV districts (same loot as energy jobs and better ratio).

  8. The best ratio for your Stamina Points is obtained by robbing Bangkok properties and clearing entire boards so you get the bonus XP - on the 25 point jobs, you can get 63 XP (2.5+ ratio) before the board-clearing bonus of an extra 60-75 XP.

  9. Agree with Phil here ... though at SOME point you need to put some points in offense (or you'll never be able to defeat the bosses). Since I had to do that (and of course since Mastermind / Wheelman bonus went down to 10%), I wasn't able to continuously level any more. In a way that's good ... 3-4 levels a day (with the helps of the Mafia Wars / Zynga toolbar) is more than enough and still costs oodles of time.

  10. Six of my family members play and only one of them won RP in the last year. 20RP, the rest has been loot.