Highlander FROM Games Global
The good news about a slot company making a deal with a movie company is that there’s usually a wealth of movie tie in titles that hit the market as a result. These often bring in new players to the genre if the franchise is strong, the games that come out of it are great because the movie company has expectations of quality, and really, everyone wins as a result.
So when Microgaming announced Highlander after the rousing success of Halloween, we were more than ready to jump right it. This is a 5-reel, 243- ways to win slot in which you follow the movie characters through the mountains of Scotland and in the free spins special feature, you jump to New York City, where the other half of the movie took place. The free spins bring lightning that can increase the number of Wilds and if you have two Scatters on the reels, they also transform into Wilds.
HOW TO PLAY
There’s really not that much to talk in terms of graphics. They’re rather basic and, apart from the backdrops and the lightning effects, don’t particularly stand out. Some symbols are part of the movie cast, and the rest are just poker card icons. Nothing amazing, but hardly bad. The user interface is also well done, with all the important details easy to view and alter, although the habit of shifting a large portion of it off to the side is a bit too much. The Quick Play feature could have easily stayed on the playing field. A small icon to turn off the music was a much better solution than to shove it into the menu instead of having it just one click if you don’t fancy the music.
As for gameplay, it’s not quite up to the level of tension and excitement of Halloween, but it’s still well done. Usually, missing the free spins by one Scatter is a chore, but with the Scatters turning Wild, it helps break up the monotony of base game spins while you’re waiting for the special feature to activate. And speaking of bonuses, the free spins is a Wild time, as additional Wilds outright pile in to really make it awesome. It doesn’t always happen, but when it does, it feels great.
WHERE TO PLAY Highlander
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BETTING OPTIONS AND PAYOUTS
You can bet between $0.40 to $30 per spin, which might be a bit too much for more low end gamblers, but that’s more or less always a given for 243 payline slots. For people looking to squeeze out the wins, however, it more or less all falls around seeing the free spins being hit consistently. You can reach some pretty good values with Highlander, but it does see resurgence in the Microgaming’s bad habit of using high variance gameplay without really backing it up with the prizes you can win. In general, this isn’t that big of an issue most of the time, but there really ought to be more of a prize for the bigger wins, in our opinion.
SYMBOLS AND EXTRA FEATURES
We were honestly expecting a bit more out of Highlander when it came to symbols. Again, we’re comparing it to Halloween, but that had a lot of unique symbols alongside the movie characters. Here, the poker card icons come off a bit cheap. That said, we do like the design of the Wild and Scatter, and as already mentioned, the lightning effect is rather cool looking. Getting three or more Scatters will activate the free spins special feature in which you’re transported to New York City and you have access to Quickening Wilds, which transforms regular symbols into Wilds when lightning strikes them. In addition, if you get more than three Scatters, you can retrigger the feature, which is always a plus.
It’s a good title from Microgaming, but it does have some faults which we aren’t a big fan of. The visuals could use a bit more excitement, in our opinion, and the pays could always stand to be a bit better for bigger wins, but the product as a whole is rather solid.
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