Megaways….again? The question might come up more often as we have seen the Megaways engine being used ad infinitum in 2018. Especially Blueprint Gaming seems to have set up a production line to release at least two Megaways game every month. And, to be honest, it is slowly getting too much as we barely digested the release of Primal Megaways. While the concept and gameplay of these slots has taken our gaming experience to a new level, it seems the providers are fixated more on maximizing the exposure instead of quality.
Vikings Unleashed is basically a clone of Extra Chilli from BTG with some Diamond Mine elements thrown into. It has the same paytable, a mystery symbol feature, a free spins round and an option to buy the former at a fixed cost. There are two elements that are slightly different, one is that once players decide to buy the bonus round, they can choose the number of free spins. The second difference is that they can gamble to win more free spins or higher starting multipliers… Extra Chilli anyone?
The question that comes up is how the RTP is distributed as it insinuates that taking the standard 12 free spins starting with an x1 multiplier won’t be a big winner and players need to gamble to start with higher values. But we shall see what discussions will pop-up in the forums once the slot is released.
Vikings Unleashed Megaways is a video with six reels and up to 117,649 ways to win, using the licensed BTG Megaways game engine. The number of ways from 324 to the maximum is randomly determined for every spin by selecting between two and seven pay symbols for reels one and six as well as two to six pay symbols for reels two to five. Additionally, the game has an extra reel at the top of the game window with four positions, extending from reel two to five, where more symbols appear on every spin.
Stake sizes range from 0.20 to 10.00 credits. The RTP of this high variance game is set at 96.75% – 96.91%, depending on which free spins option players are taking. Autoplay will let you choose 10 to 100 consecutive spins without interruption.
The three Vikings and their sorcerer are sailing on the high seas on their journey to conquer the next foreign land. Their ship can be seen in the background while waves are rocking it, which might lead to a feeling of seasickness for some players. Bold graphics and a battle call soundtrack round off a well-designed slot. The entire visual arrangement seems though slightly cramped with the six-reel game window, the display for the current number of megaways, the feature buy option and the bet size selector.
Blueprint chose to stay with their usual set of 10 regular pay symbols, consisting of card royals 9 through to A at the low end and four Viking characters – the sorcerer, a lady Viking, a red-bearded Viking and a spear-wielding warrior – at the high level. The pays have also remained unchanged from 0.8x to 50x the stake. Wild is a rune tile with the word itself, while Thor’s hammer is the mystery symbol. Scatters are a Viking battle mask, appearing in silver and on the main reels in the base game. During the free spins, it will appear in gold on the horizontal reel only.
At the start of every spin, symbols drop from the top onto the six reels based on the random selection of reel positions. In addition, the extra carts at the top of the game window spin four symbols into view abeam reels two to five adding an extra symbol position to those reels. A display at the top shows the total amount of active ways to win for the spin.
Wins are paid for adjacent symbols from left to right. The symbols from a winning combination are part of a reaction which will see them explode to make room for new symbols to cascade into place. This will continue as long as a new winning combination occurs after a reaction. Wins are accumulated from all cascades and paid before the next spin starts.
Thor’s hammer symbols can appear on all reels on any spin in the base game and free spins. They will reveal one common symbol once the reels have stopped, including the top paying symbol. However, they cannot contain wild or scatter symbols.
Are you one of the impatient players who can’t wait for an organic feature trigger? Then the Unleashed Bet might be the right choice for you as it offers direct entry to the free spins round. Just hit the button before a spin starts and the game will give you four options at different cost levels:
After selecting one option, the game will lead to the Free Spins Gamble screen where you can either collect and play the bought round or can gamble for more free spins and/or higher starting multipliers.
Hit four scatters on a spin to trigger 12 free spins with an x1 starting multiplier and enter the gamble feature. Any extra scatters landing on the triggering spin will award five additional free spins. You can now gamble the standard feature to win more free spins or a higher starting multiplier. At any stage, players can decide to collect and play the free spins. However, any lost gamble will forfeit the entire feature and the bonus round ends.
During the free spins, scatters appear in the horizontal reel only. Three or four on a spin will award +5 and +10 free spins respectively. The main attraction though in the free spins is the unlimited multiplier. It will increase by x1 after every winning reaction. Hence, why the possibility of gambling for a higher starting multiplier is maybe not a bad idea but it also raises the question of whether accepting the standard bonus round is actually capable of leading to big wins.
We are big fans of the Megaways slots and are sure to welcome any new release as the gameplay is very entertaining and the win potential is sky high. But what we do not like are endlessly cloned slots that are only launched at a quick rate to cash in on the Megaways craziness that has set in after BTG released Bonanza. Vikings Unleashed Megaways falls into that category as it does not offer anything significantly new feature or some extra creative pay mechanics. I guess it will be popular with players because the extra gamble feature in the bonus round seems to have a special attraction in the slot playing community as Extra Chilli and Who Wants To Be A Millionaire have shown.