Viking Runecraft has the honour of being one of the most well known and iconic slots on the market today, as one of the slots that first helped to popularise the cascading reels mechanic that’s now ubiquitous in the industry.
While it may be starting to show its age graphically, there’s no doubt that its combination of good looks, fun and interesting gameplay and big prizes is hard to beat. So is this game an instant classic or is it past its prime? Let’s take a look in our Viking Runecraft review.
In case you were in any doubt, this slot has a Norse theme that it is keen to trumpet everywhere in the game, all the way from the frozen wasteland behind the reels to the iconic carved runes that make up the symbols. There is also a changing Viking god to the right of the reels, who plays a part in your bonuses. Speaking of the symbols, these range from low value coloured stones inscribed with runes all the way to Viking themed symbols such as helmets, a talisman, a hammer, and four god symbols. The whole package has an epic quality to it, from the manly chanting in the background to the flashes, bangs and lightning strikes of the winning animations, so it almost feels like you’re in a movie yourself.
The mechanics behind this game are complicated, to say the least, and while this is what makes it so fun and has players coming back for more, it can be baffling to new players. Simply, the Viking Runecraft slot game employs a cascading reels mechanic that destroys winning combinations and lets new symbols fall from the top of the screen to take their place. This means you can chain together wins as new symbols keep creating combos as they fall in, and this is how you progress in this game. Each win in a row you create fills the charge meter to the left of the reels, and when it is full up you activate one of four special bonuses that grant new features. For example, the Scorching of Surtr feature burns a cluster of symbols and replaces them with matching symbols, creating a guaranteed win. The volatility is high, but with maximum wins of 5,000x your stake possible on every spin and an RTP of 96.7% it’s clearly a risk worth taking.
It’s difficult to pick out a specific aspect of this game as the bonus round because it’s bursting with them. Even the bonuses have bonuses. So here’s a look at how they’re structured. Fill up the charge meter twice over in a spin and you enter the Ragnarök feature, in which you get one free spin where you try to match a total of 80 symbols for a 5x multiplier, which adds up to a chain of 16 successive wins. Even when you stop winning, the bonus features mentioned earlier will fire one after another to give you even more cash, until they’ve all played once.
That’s a really generous bonus round, but on top of that, there are three other passive bonus features to watch out for. The first rewards you with cash prizes for making certain combinations, the second rewards you with a wheel of fortune mini-game round for making combinations of certain colour rune stones, while the third upgrades the god on the right of your reels when you land combos in certain patterns and gives you access to random bonuses. For example, Odin causes ravens to fly onto the screen and convert symbols to higher-value ones, while Freya fires a beam of light onto the screen that destroys symbols. Underneath all of this is a levelling system that fills up as you make combos, stretching from Journeyman all the way to Godhood, with each new level granting you yet another bonus that destroys or replaces symbols randomly. Phew!
Viking Runecraft is a mad, exciting, baffling sugar rush of a game that has wins cascading down on you like rain and flashing lights and explosions going off as you play. If you can handle the adrenaline of playing, and you don’t mind betting big to get the big wins, there’s no way you can fail to enjoy the ride.