Medieval battles and history were a thing of human past before the fantasy genre repopulized them all over again. The works of Tolkien made the world of knights, sieges and sword warfare something in the forefront of many minds, with the added flair of magic, destiny and dragons into the mix. Of course, if there were lots of dragons flying about, something like a medieval siege wouldn’t really be a particularly lucrative affair, as the dragon could simply fly from above and torch everyone inside. Of course, a touch of suspended disbelief is needed for a lot of stories to make their mark, but there’s not much story in Fire Siege Fortress. Instead, it shapes its reels in a 4-3-4-3-4 layout, much like the shape of a castle wall, and sets several special features on it, using the different shape and its verticality to its advantage to create some unique ways of activating the bonus. It’s nice to see that NetEnt is still doing their best to try new things to see what works, though we don’t think this is quite the success they might have hoped for.
This is a NetEnt game, so there’s no surprise that it looks nice. Banners fly in the wind, flames burn on the edges of all symbols when they’re part of a winning combination. You have cool transitions when certain features are triggered. You’ll see archers firing or dragons spewing flames onto the reels under the right circumstances. That said, the experience is somewhat marred, in our opinion, with the knight sitting by the side of the reels. The way he taps his spear against the stone gets annoying as you spin a fair amount, and his animations aren’t bad, but they’re just awkward enough that it messes with our enjoyment of the title.
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|Target Markets:||Canada, Europe, Sweden, United Kingdom|
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|Cash Out Time:||24-48H|
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|Target Markets:||Europe, Sweden, United Kingdom|
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|Cash Out Time:||24H|
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|Target Markets:||Europe, International, Sweden, United Kingdom|
|Software:||Felt, Microgaming, NetEnt, Playtech|
|Cash Out Time:||24H|
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|Target Markets:||Canada, Europe, International, Ireland, United Kingdom|
|Software:||1X2gaming, 2 By 2 Gaming, Betdigital, Big Time Gaming, Blueprint Gaming, Chance Interactive, CORE Gaming, Crazy Tooth Studio, Cryptologic, ELK Studios, Evolution, Extreme Live Gaming, Eyecon, Fortune Factory Studios, Foxium, Games Lab, Games Warehouse, Gamevy, Genesis Gaming, Genii, Inspired, Iron Dog Studio, Just For The Win, Leander Games, Leap Gaming, Lightning Box, Magnet Gaming, Microgaming, NetEnt, NextGen Gaming, NYX, PearFiction Studios, Play'n GO, Playson, Quickspin, Rabcat, Scientific Games, Skillzzgaming, Slingshot Studios, Stormcraft Studios, Switch Studios, Thunderkick, Tom Horn, Triple Edge Studios, Wazdan|
|Cash Out Time:||48H|
The gameplay can feel a bit different at times, but it isn’t that different compared to most other games. While 576 ways to win can sound exotic, it’s simply a by-product of the reel setup, and the title was balanced around having more reels, so you’re not really that far ahead compared to a standard 5×3 playing field. What hurts Fire Siege Fortress more, in our opinion, is the failed experiment with verticality that NetEnt tried to do. While it’s a cool idea that certain features can only be triggered from the top or the bottom of the castle, it’s more annoying than cool after a while.
The symbols do their best to fit the theme of a medieval fantasy siege. The playing card symbols, 10, J, Q, K and A are drawn as different coloured banners, while you will also find warhammers, axes, and swords lying about, as well as the soldier you also see on the playing field and the siege dragon they’re using against the castle. None of these symbols are particularly spectacular, but they get the job done.
The bottom of the second, third and fourth reel are Wild windows, within which three small features can be activated if Wild lands on top of them. You can win an archer’s attack, which will spawn between one to three Wilds, a dragon’s breath which will cover the third reel with Wilds, and a trebuchet assault which creates one or two giant Wild symbols on the playing field.
Collecting three Scatters on the first, third and fifth reel will activate the Fire Siege Free Spins, which, for the most part, have no additional bonus attached to them beyond the fact you don’t pay for extra spins. Depending on where triggering Scatters land, you can win 3 free spins or 6 free spins if the Scatter lands on the very top of the reel. If you only collect two Scatters, you get a consolation prize randomly picked between a 5x coin win, or three free spins.
Trying something new can be a gamble. People may end up absolutely loving it or they’ll shun it and you’ll have wasted your effort. While we appreciate the effort, NetEnt didn’t quite nail it this time around, and what we’re left with is something a bit less awesome than what could have been.
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