Man vs Gator

Man vs Gator Slot Review

Slot Provider: ELK Studios

RTP: 94% | Variance: High | Maximum Win: 10,000x

Our Score: 7.6

Play at Grand Ivy Casino

WHY YOU CAN TRUST THIS REVIEW: The information and opinions on this page are the result of an comprehensive process of information gathering and live game testing by the gambling experts who work at allslotsites.com. Find out more here.

About Man vs Gator

Reviewed by:

Published Date: 11th June 2024

How We Review Slot Games

We test and rate all slot games across 5 criteria, assigning a score out of 10 for each and an overall score that is an average of the 5. To build an accurate assessment of each game we gather information from the supplier and play in real play or demo mode. Find out more.

Man vs Gator is a 5 reel, 259 connecting paylines slot from ELK Studios where gators gatecrash a Florida bar b q, fighting men on the reels to trigger multipliers and re-spins.

The game centers on three wild symbols, all of which trigger nudges and re-spins. The best is the Man vs Gator Stacked Multiplier Wild that that carries two multipliers and nudges up or down until it is fully visible. Which multiplier is chosen depends on who wins the on-screen boxing bout between man and gator. In the free spins round up to 2 Man vs Gator Wilds are guaranteed on each spin.

Top payout is 10,000x and spins start at 20p.

Man vs Gator Game Information

  • RTP: 94%
  • Variance: High
  • Maximum Win: 10,000x
  • Progressive Jackpot: No
  • Reels: 5
  • Rows: 5
  • Paylines: 259
  • Minimum Stake: £0.20
  • Theme: Animals
  • Features: Wilds, Nudging Wilds, Re-Spins, Multipliers, Free Spins

Testing Notes: Here’s What Happened When We Played Man vs Gator

IMPORTANT: To give you an accurate assessment of the games we review our writers play 200 spins. Whilst this is a useful tool to help us review games and to give an example of what might happen when you play, keep in mind that 200 spins is only a very small sample and cannot be used to accurately predict what might happen over another 200 spins. The outcome of all slots play is always random.

Boom Or Bust? Our Session By The Numbers

I played 150 spins on Man vs Gator on ELK Studio’s test server prior to release to test the game. This is what happened.

  • Stake Size: 1
  • Start balance: 1,000
  • End balance: 1,200.25
  • Win Rate: 21.3% (37 winning spins in 150)
  • Biggest Win: 213.95x
  • Free Spins Round: 3

This was a good test session. The win rate wasn’t bad at 21.3% overall, and Man Up and Gator Down wilds appeared on 12 spins in total – that’s 8%. Man vs Gator Wilds were rarer appearing just 4 times in the first 140 spins. The best had an 8x multiplier, bringing up a 31.2x win.

Big Win In Free Spins
On the way to a big win in the free spins round in testing

Then things went a little crazy. The free spins round was triggered from a re-spin. The game state is saved so when the free spins ended I went back to the triggering re-spin state. Then the free spins triggered again … and again. It happened 3 times in total, bringing up a nice 213.95x win overall. That was just a little taste of what Man vs Gator can do on a good day.

What We Liked

  • Unique and original theme and design
  • Powerful free spins round with sticky wild multipliers
  • Lots of re-spin potential in base game
  • Chance to re-trigger free spins

What We Didn't like

  • Low max RTP at 94%
  • Highly volatile so can be a tough play

Man vs Gator Review Scores

  • Theme and Design 8
  • RTP and Variance 7
  • Maximum Win 8
  • Symbols and Paytable 7
  • Features and Gameplay 8

What Our Reviewer Says ...

"Absolutely bonkers but highly entertaining stuff from ELK ... a really original theme and gameplay built to off like a rocket!"

Overall Score: 7.6

Theme & Design

Our Score 8

Humour, Crazed Reptiles and Funky Graphics – It’s ELK All Over!

For a slot game in which gator attack are commonplace, Man vs Gator has a surprisingly chilled out vibe. The backdrop is a Florida beach, with motel, palm trees and city scrapers on the horizon and a glorious pink and purple sunset going on at the same time. The foreground houses a 5×5 grid surrounded by old TV sets, broken speaker stacks and crushed beer cans. That, the twangy guitar soundtrack and the long-haired dudes with baseball caps firing up the bar-b-q give the whole thing a Hicksville vibe.

Man vs Gator by ELK Studios
Man vs Gator – reptiles gatecrashing the bar-b-q!

As you play Man vs Gator the story unfolds – this party is about to get gatecrashed by local gators. It’s a fun theme and typical of ELK Studios who love to build their games around animals like the dogs in Nitropolis.

RTP and Variance

Our Score 7

What is RTP?

RTP (Return to Player) refers to the amount a game will pay out in cash prizes expressed as a percentage of all the money wagered on that game. For example, a 96% RTP means a game will pay out £96 for every £100 wagered. This is an average number and will vary from one session to the next.  Read more here.

What is Variance?

Variance refers to how far a game will deviate from its RTP over time. High variance games deviate a lot and produce uneven win distributions and unexpected windfalls. Low variance games provide a more stable and even distribution of wins. Read more here.

Man vs Gator has one fixed RTP rate of 94%. Whilst this is lower than what most slots players see as the average for a game (commonly quoted as 96%) it is at least a fixed RTP. Many slot providers now create games with multiple RTP rates and let the operator choose which to run the game on. So, you might find you are playing your favourite slots at 90% RTP or even less in some cases. In this instance, whichever slot site you choose, you will ALWAYS be playing at the 94% rate.

In terms of volatility, ELK Studios rate this game as 8/10 in the game data sheet we were provided with. That makes it a high variance slot so it can be frustrating at times with little return on your wagering for long periods. But equally the configuration of wilds, multipliers, free spins and re-spins is a powerful one and out of nowhere Man vs Gator can drop a huge win from time to time.

For comparison, the 8/10 rating puts it on the same volatility scale as recent releases like Frog Blox and Pug Thugs of Nitropolis.

Maximum Win

Our Score 8

What Is Maximum Win?

Maximum win refers to the maximum amount a player can win from one spin. It is expressed as a multiple of the stake. For example, where the maximum win is 100,000x, from a £1 stake, the maximum win would be £100,000.  

The top payout in Man vs Gator is 10,000x. That is about average for a high variance slot from ELK Studios, but they do build games with better potential too. If you want to play for higher prizes you could try Dirty Dawgs of Nitropolis (25,000x) or Avalon Gold (25,000x) or Dropz (25,000x).

Explore Games With Similar RTP, Variance and Maximum Win

Like the numbers? Here are some more games you might want to try.

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Symbols and Paytable

Our Score 7

Modest Pay Table Values But Multipliers Will Help Drive Up Wins

Man vs Gator plays out on a 5 reel and 5 row grid with a connecting paylines win mechanic. That means you need to land 3 or more identical symbols on consecutive reels on the same row or one above or below, from left to right, to trigger a win.

There are 7 symbols in the table. Values are not huge, but you do have a lot of multiplier boosters in the features to bring them up.

Man vs Gator Paytable
Paytable with 5x for 5 top paying premiums

There are the Queen, King and Ace, valued at from 0.1x for 3 10s up to 0.35x for 5 Aces, and the boxing glove, gas canistor, blue gator and red gator, valued at from 0.3x for 3 of the boxing glove up to 5x for 5 of the red gators.

There are also 3 wilds to help you complete connecting paylines by substituting for pay symbols – Man Up Wild, Man vs Gator Wild and the Gator Down Wild. They also carry values of 0.8x, 1.5x and 5x for 3, 4 or 5 on a connecting payline.

Features and Gameplay

Our Score 8

All the action in Man vs Gator is around those 3 wild symbols, all of which nudge. The fun part is, they interact with one another to boost your multipliers. You have to follow what’s happening on the reels closely at all times but it’s easy once you’ve completed a few spins.

Man vs Gator Wilds With Multipliers AND Re-Spins

The Man vs Gator wild is 5 symbols high and carries TWO multiplier values – one for the gator at the bottom and one for the man at the top. When one lands and it is partially visible, it will nudge downwards until it is fully visible. At this point, ONE of the multipliers is chosen to be the active one and applies to any win that passes through the Man vs Gator wild.

NOTE: If the top multiplier is chosen, this shows that the man is the victor. If the bottom multiplier is chosen, that indicates that the gator is the victor. This is important when other wilds are in play. More on this in the next section.

But that’s not all. The Man vs Gator Wild also triggers a re-spin when it lands, during which it is sticky, so you have more chances to trigger wins.

Man vs Gator Wild
A 6x Man vs Gator Wild on Reel 6 in testing

Man Up and Gator Down Nudging Wilds

The ingenious part of this slot is how these 2 wilds interact with any Man vs Gator wilds that are visible on the screen at the same time.

Both are 2 row-high symbols.

When the Man Up wild lands, it will nudge up one row at a time, granting re-spins as it does. And each time it nudges it increases the multiplier on any Man vs Gator wild currently in view where the man is the victor.

A Man Up Wild in Man vs Gator
A Man Up Wild on Reel 2 and Man vs Gator fighting on reel 6

Equally, when a Gator Down wild lands, it nudges down, one row at a time, granting re-spins as it does. In this case each nudge increases the multiplier on Man vs Gator wilds where the gator is the victor.

Sounds complicated? It’s not really. What’s exciting about the configuration here is that when you land a Man Up on one of the bottom rows, or a Gator Down on one of the top rows, that may give you as many as four re-spins. And … during those re-spins you may land more Gator Downs of Man Ups to extend your re-spins further. That happened to me a few times in testing, and whilst it didn’t always bring up a win, it certainly felt like getting your money’s worth.

Free Spins Round Where ALL Man vs Gator Wilds Are Sticky THROUGHOUT

The free spins round is triggered by landing 3 more of the BONUS symbols. This feature plays the same as the base game but now all Man vs Gator wilds are sticky from one spin to the next.

Free Spins Round in Man vs Gator
A 60x win during free spins in Man vs Gator

Also, triggering the round with more BONUS symbols kick starts the round with more Man vs Gator wilds as follows:

  • 3 BONUS Symbols: 5 free spins
  • 4 BONUS Symbols: 5 free spins PLUS a Man vs Gator symbol on the first spin
  • 5 BONUS Symbols: 5 free spins PLUS a TWO Man vs Gator symbols on the first spin

The round can be extended by landing 3 or more BONUS symbols again to get you another 5 spins and a Man vs Gator on the next spin (for 4 BONUS), or 2 Man vs Gator symbols on the next spin (for 5 BONUS). 

Looking at that configuration it’s not hard to see how this game can really pop on occasion if you lined up a few sticky Man vs Gator wilds with decent multipliers and just kept triggering more spins.

IMPORTANT: Game State Is Saved When Entering Free Spins From A Re-Spin

 One of the best parts about Man vs Gator is that if you trigger the free spins from a re-spin, the game state is saved, so when the free spins end, you go back to the reel configuration that was live when you triggered. That can happen multiple times if you’re very lucky, creating a few minutes worth of re-spins and free spins action, all from one single base game spin!

The Final Verdict

I wasn’t sure about Man vs Gator on first appearances. The design looked very unusual and the gameplay hard to follow. But that’s not untypical of ELK, and after playing a few hundred spins I have to conclude that they’ve delivered another cracker.

It might be a high variance game but it never felt too tight because those wilds land on a regular basis and the production is good enough to keep you entertained even in the lean spells. The wins definitely came in clusters, but the thrill of seeing multiple features trigger one another as re-spins lead to free spins and one wild boosts the multiplier in another is what this kind of slots play is all about.

Of course, anyone familiar with NLC’s xNudge Wilds will recognise that ELK have taken their inspiration from that simple feature, but I have no issue with that. They have more than made it their own here.

In short, a top slot game from one of the industries more eccentric studios just doing what they do best. Highly recommended.

Useful Tips When Playing Man vs Gator

Remember, online slots are games of chance, there is NO strategy that can improve your odds of winning. However, reading our review and following these tips will help you get the most out of your time playing this slot game.

1. Watch For Man Up and Gator Down Wilds

These symbols are really important because they can boost the multipliers on your Man vs Gator wilds AND trigger re-spins.

2. Choose a Sensible Stake

Use bankroll management and set a low stake relative to your balance to avoid early burn out. This is a high variance slot so it can rinse your funds in no time!

3. Look For BONUS Scatters

The free spins round is where the biggest wins will drop. You need 3 or more BONUS symbols to trigger it. They are rare, so keep your eyes peeled.

4. Play At Our Recommended Slot Sites

We have chosen the sites on this page because they all scored high in our reviews and they are licensed by the UK Gambling Commission. That makes them fair and safe places to play slots.

Who Made Man vs Gator?

  • Name: ELK Studios
  • Established: 2013
  • UK License: 40844
  • Total Games: 60 +
  • Known For: Amazing artwork, wide choice of themes and styles
  • Popular Slots: Avalon Gold, Dropz, Nitropolis, Wild Toro
Find More ELK Studios slots

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