Mayan Treasures

Review of Bally’s Mayan Treasures Slot Machine

The Mayan Treasures slot machine is a 5 reel, 40 pay line slot machine game manufactured and designed by Bally Technologies. Like many slot machine games, Mayan Treasures presents a theme that orbits around an exotic culture and its correspondingly exotic and large treasures. With a hit frequency of 43%, the game awards winnings often enough to keep even the most attention deficit player interested.

The game features sound effects and music which are quite similar to many of Bally Technologies’ other games, but the graphics and reel symbols are fun and compelling enough to look at for hours. The music reminds me of some of the overly dramatic instrumental pieces that often accompany reality television and some of the newer breed of melodramatic game shows that are now popular.

Reel Symbols

All the symbols on the reels of Mayan Treasures intend to remind the player of Mayan civilization. The most pleasing of these images include the frog on his lily pad, the butterflies, and the exotic Mayan necklace. The pink / purple flower image and the blue and red gem-encrusted bracelet are also interesting visually.

The game also features symbols based on playing cards. This is a common tactic used by Bally Technologies to round out the symbols on their games. These symbols include the ace, the king, the queen, the jack, the ten, and the ace. In the case of this game, they’re not dressed up particularly; they’re simply a little more ornate, with some harder edges, which, admittedly, do make them fit the overall Mayan aesthetic of the game.

Coin Denominations

All wagers are made per pay line. Players can wager at any of the following stakes: €0.01, €0.02, €0.03, €0.04, €0.05, €0.06, €0.07, €0.08, €0.09, €0.10, €0.15, €0.20, €0.50, €1.00, €2.00, €3.00, €4.00, €5.00, and €10.00. With the wide variety of denominations available, both low rolling and high rolling slot machine players can enjoy this game. Low rollers can wager a penny per spin by betting on a single line, while high rollers can wager €10.00 on 40 pay lines for a total wager of €400.00 per spin.

The prizes are scaled to your wager size per spin. Top prize is 5000 units, but that’s multiplied by how much you’re betting, so you could win as much as €50,000 on a single pay line.

How Do the Payouts Work?

The payouts for the wild symbols and the Mayan king symbols are the largest in the game, followed by the blue and red gem encrusted bracelet. The necklace, the butterflies, and the frogs are the second tier of winnings. The lowest prizes, which are still significant, are reserved for the more generic playing card symbols.

Of course, the wild symbols are good for more than just a standard win when you line up between 3 and 5 of them. They also act as a substitute for any symbols you might need to complete a winning combination. In this respect they’re similar to the blank tile in the word game Scrabble, which can be used as any letter than will create the word you’re hoping to make.

The Mayan Civilization as Represented in Western Culture

The Mayan civilization could be considered America’s answer to ancient Egypt, which is entirely appropriate from the perspective of a slots player, especially since Egypt is such a common slot machine game theme. This is probably because the Mayans built pyramids, too. But there’s a lot more to Mayan civilization than that. The Mayans built the most accurate calendar of the ancient world, including means of tracking the year, along with much longer cycles of time.

The Mayan pyramids and other aspects of Mayan architecture are probably the most visually arresting aspect of their culture. El Castillo is probably the most famous Mayan pyramid, but the culture is also known for their cave sites and their cities, the ruins of which still stand in many areas in Central and South America. The Mayan temple at Chichen Itza was built in the image of the feather serpent god, Kukalcan. If you look at it from the right angle, the scales on the serpent’s back line-up, so you can see his form on all sides of the temple (the “serpent effect”). The complex was built to have interesting acoustics, so when you clap your hands together three times, the buildings seem to reverberate with the words “Ku-kal-can!”—I’m certain a powerful impression to the Mayan worshippers of the time.

Those who visit should beware, though. I stayed a week in Cancun without any troubles, but when our group visited Chichen Itza, we all returned to civilization with so-called Montezuma’s revenge. Go figure.

Like the Egyptians, the Mayans achieved amazing things architecturally with a minimum of technology. They didn’t even have draft animals, so they used tremendous amounts of human power to build their pyramids. These temples, cities, and pyramids were mostly constructed from locally quarried stone and limestone.

Some people assume the presence of pyramid-building in several disparate cultures around the globe is sign of cultural connections, or perhaps alien visitations. In truth, the pyramid is the soundest and most basic of structures: early engineers wanted to build tall structures and modeled them on the tallest things they saw: mountains. If you go to the beach and pour sand out of your hand onto the ground, it will form a pyramid, because it’s the most stable form of structure.

Pre-Columbian Mesoamerican Cultures

Some Americans confuse the Mayans with the Aztecs and the Incas, although, strictly speaking, the latter two cultures came during a later historical period. One of the more gruesome aspects of Mayan culture is their practice of human sacrifice. They share that ritual with the Aztec culture.

Mayan jewelry used precious metals like gold and silver, but jade was even more valuable and special to Mayan citizens. This aesthetic is reflected in popular media depictions of their culture. This representation is noticeable in the symbols for this game. Treasure is always one of the major themes of these kinds of slot machine games, and the treasure representative of the Mayan culture here features that gold and silver jewelry with the jade accents.

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