Reel Splitter slot takes retro slot gaming to the next level
There are many different types of slot games available nowadays, there's video slots, licensed slots, progressive slots and slots that don't really look or play like slots.
However, if one particular genre of slot game has undergone a spectacular renaissance in recent times it is retro-slot gaming with myriads of players discovering the fun of playing simpler games that hark back to the golden era of slot gaming.
Yet recently, there has been a move to incorporate elements of retro slot gaming alongside more modern slot innovations, such as Free Spins and other bonus elements and Microgaming's partner Just for the Win (makers of Icy Gems slot) have been working on a slot that does precisely that. The slot is called Reel Splitter and it was released just a couple of days ago in mid-May 2019.
The slot is named after the fact that when you land a win, the four reels will split apart equally and in between the second and third reel, a new reel appears and will spin, giving you the chance at landing an even bigger value win.
The game has many retro-elements, but also many different modern elements too and the question is, whether splicing these two different and distinct genres together has worked. So in order to answer that question, we decided to take a closer look at the game.
- Game: Reel Splitter
- Developer: Just for the Win (for Microgaming)
- Reels: 4 (5 when bonus triggers)
- Pay Lines: 81 initially, 243 Ways to Win when the bonus triggers
- Minimum Bet: 0.10
- Maximum Bet: 100.00
- Jackpot: 12x
- Free Spins Bonus: Yes
- Other Bonuses: No
- Progressive: No
- Volatility: Medium
The presentation on the Reel Splitter slot is very simplistic with a neon lit border around the reels. In the base game you start with four reels on screen and these are all arranged in blocks, rather like the blocks used in games like Jungle Jim, although unlike that cascading reels game, this slot is based on standard reels.
The music is rather funky and the neon lit symbols make the slot look somewhat bright and futuristic, which is a bit of a paradox when you consider this is also based on retro slots. So what I would say that this is more a modern take on the retro slot.
The key thing to note though is when you land a win, the four reels will split in two on screen and in the gap, a fifth reel will appear in the middle of the two sets of two reels. This third reel will then spin and has the potential to land in such a way as to increase the value of your win, quite markedly in the case of landing five-symbol combinations across the reels. It is this feature that gives the Reel Splitter slot its name.
What is on the reels?
On the reeks are a number of different symbols, some from more modern slots and others harking back to more retro styled games. The lowest value symbols are the playing card lows which features the 10 through to the Ace and offer wins from 0.5x your stake up to 2x your stake for all five of the symbols.
Higher value symbols are the more retro symbols and these are the cherry, the lime, the plum and the lemon. These offer a range of wins from 0.6x your bet up to 8x your bet. The highest value symbol though is the Reel Splitter symbol which offers wins from 1.5x to 12x your bet.
Alongside these symbols there are two other symbols which both unlock the key bonus features of the slot, the Free Spins symbol and the Wild symbol.
There are two different types of Wild symbol on the reels. There is a single Wild symbol and also a triple Wild which is stacked so that it can cover any reel in full. Wild can substitute for all standard symbols but not the Free Spins Scatter.
The Wild and Triple Wild symbols can also be landed on the fifth reel when it appears during the game and usually if you can land either of these symbols on that spin then this can trigger a sizeable win.
Free Spins features
During the base game, if you land three or four of the Free Spins symbols anywhere across the reels then you will earn the Free Spins bonus. Three of the Scatters will earn you 8 Free Spins, but if you can land four then you will win the maximum 16 Free Spins.
One big change to the game occurs in Free Spins and that is that the entire round is played across five reels and with 243 Ways to Win in play. However, that is not all as with this bonus round you can win both ways across the reels, which means your wins can pay left to right as standard but also from the right to the left too.
The Reel Splitter function does not occur during Free Spins as the reels are already five in number but you can still land the Wilds and Stacked Wilds on the reels to help create bigger value wins.
Best feature of the Reel Splitter slot
There is a lot to enjoy on the Reel Splitter slot. The game does marry the two types of modern slot and retro slot together very nicely and I think this is a game that will have real appeal in both camps, as well as having appeal for those players that like a slot that plays differently to the norm. The split reels feature is a nice touch as are the Stacked Wilds but it is the Free Spins bonus game that is the big positive here as those 243 Ways to Win, both ways across the reels, does make it feel like you have a great chance of winning on every spin.
I have to be honest and say that I was wondering how well marrying the different elements of a modern slot with a more retro game would go and I think Just for the Win have pulled off something special here. This is a simple, fun game to play that offers fans of both modern and retro slots something to enjoy, while still being true to both types of game. I'd say it is more modern than retro though but none the worse for it. The bonuses are well crafted and different to the majority of slots and for that reason alone, I am sure Reel Splitter will be a big hit with Microgaming players all over the world.
Byline: This article was published by Mega Moolah expert Henry. Media and other enquiries.
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