Baron who? That will be probably the first reaction of many slot players when they see the new creation from Yggdrasil Gaming. But it is confirmed, the bizarre world of Haitian Vodou has made it onto a set of slot reels. Barone Samedi is known to be the head of the Guédé family of loa and as such the spirit that embodies death and fertility in the syncretic religion. He is usually depicted with a top hat, black tail coat, dark glasses and cotton plugs in the nostrils, very typical on how the deceased were prepared for burials in Haitian style.
So how to you transition that to a set of five reels and 25 pay lines? Most certainly quite a challenge for the design and graphics team. Surely it involves pay symbols from the voodoo world, the baron himself and a set of fortune teller cards. The game has a rather generous RTP of 97% and a maximum win potential of 1,200 times the stake in a single spin. Considering the two numbers, it is safe to say that Baron Samedi slot belongs into the medium variance category.
Yggdrasil executed the Voodoo theme down to the most minute detail. The game window resembles a fortune teller table complete with a glowing cigar, a glass filled with a blood-like drink, a crow’s skeleton head and a burning candle, while voodoo cards lie scattered around. At the top are card holders, one for the dealer that will issue the cards in free spins and respins, one to display the three dealt cards and one card collector, where players accumulate cards that will be used once enough are collected. A suspenseful drums beat is only interrupted by the usual reel noises and by a dark voice announcing the slot features.
Baron Samedi has eight regular symbols, starting with four gems in purple, blue, green and red colours and continuing with a male and a female Voodoo doll in brown and green colours. The top symbols are Brijit, the baron’s wife and the Baron Samedi himself. Pays for a single five-of-a-kind range from 0.8 to 4.8 time the stake. Wild is an intricate tile with a goat’s skull. Mystery symbols are a green potion bottle that will appear only in the respins and free spins. Scatters are a set of five cards in a golden holder and decorated with the Baron’s skull and red roses.
As usual, Yggdrasil slots are no simple fare and that also applies to Baron Samedi. It will take even seasoned players some time to understand the card collection and usage system. But it will all make sense after the features have played out a few times.
At the core of the bonus features are a set of 36 cards that are held in the dealer holder in the top left corner of the game window. Any dealt cards are collected in the player’s holder in the top right corner. The collection can be viewed an any time by clicking on the holder. In between the holders are three card positions where the dealt cards are placed before they are applied on the current spin. Each card represents a reel modifier or a win multiplier, that can enhance the reels and have potential to produce bigger wins.
The cards are divided into three categories – red, purple and green – with each category consisting of 12 cards. The cards come in four strength levels, reflecting the potential they have to produce or enhance a win. Three cards are dealt during a Voodoo Respin or on each free spin during bonus round.
Dealt cards are collected in the player’s holder. Based on the strength level, a total of 10, 20, 40 or 50 cards are needed to complete a collection. Once a collection is completed in the base game, the card is set into the left front card holder and three free spins are awarded with the reel modifier displayed on the collected card being applied on each spin. Additionally, two more cards are dealt on every free spin. These extra free spins are played at the average bet used for the collection of the respective card.
To list all cards would need another two pages of space, hence, this is only a short overview. In the green category, there are cards which will add superstacks of the premium and wild symbols to the reels for the current spin as well as mystery cards which will add mystery symbols on a defined number of reel positions. They will reveal a common symbols once the reels have stopped.
The purple category consists of win multiplier cards between x2 and x10, symbol upgrade cards as well as cards with a guaranteed five-of-a-kind win. The red category has only cards with wild reel modifiers where either up to eight random symbols are transformed into a wild symbol or an entire reel is turned wild.
The feature is triggered when only two scatters land on the reels in a spin. Three cards are dealt and one respin awarded. The reel modifiers on the cards are then applied and potential winnings paid. Any card that is not yet in the player’s collection will be added to the holder.
Three, four or five scatters will award 7, 10 and 12 free spins respectively. During the free spins, three cards with modifiers are dealt on each free spin, thus increasing the win potential. Should a collection be completed during the round, then three free spins with the locked card are played at the end of the round.
Easy to understand, isn’t it? Not really in our opinion. Although it provides an entertaining slotting session, it will need even experienced slot players to understand how the system works. It will all be clear though once a player has seen the features play out a few times. Visually, Baron Samedi is a feast for the eyes, especially for those with a sweet tooth for intricate graphics. The win potential could be higher for our taste but then 1,200 time the stake is something every avid slotting enthusiast will take home any time of the day.