NetEnt has always been known for its quality video slots but its latest release, Warlords: Crystals of Power, might just change our expectations of what a video slot should be. Most people consider video slots as nothing more than blackholes that aim to suck their time and money. NetEnt’s new video slot though, is more than just that. It’s the culmination of the company’s many years of expertise in developing quality e-gaming experiences. This fantasy themed video slot doesn’t just boast of jaw-dropping graphics and art, it also has a story that’s designed to give you a sense of progression when you play.
Story-driven with jaw-dropping graphics
The art for Warlords: Crystals of Power mixes Eastern and Western fantasy elements. Symbols feature the titular Warlords, their guardian animals, and gems/crystals connected to them. The story involves these Warlords competing against each other for ownership of their war-ravaged world’s riches. Each of the Warlords have their own color and insignia. Known for his strength, the Barbarian is represented by the color blue and has a hammer for his insignia (which is also seen on his Scatter symbol). The wise Priestess is represented by the color green and the insignia used for her Scatter symbol is the arrow. Finally, the noble Samurai sports the color red and has a katana/samurai sword as the insignia of his Scatter symbol.
As is the case with a lot of the video slots saw release recently, Warlords starts with an intro cutscene. What makes it different though is the quality of the cutscene. The first time I saw it, I was immediately amazed by how detailed the 3D character models were. Additionally, the animation was really smooth and if I didn’t know any better, I would have thought that I was watching a Disney feature film. As for the game itself, NetEnt opted for 2.5D symbols. While not as impressive as the intro, the symbols still looked like they were also rendered in 3D thanks to the fluid animation.
What about the video slot’s features? The video slot plays much like your regular 5-reel, 3-row video slot with the exception of its special features. Remember how the Warlords had their own Scatter symbols? Well, if the player gets 3 of these Scatter symbols after a spin, he/she will be rewarded with Free Spins. Depending on the Scatter symbols, these Free Spins will have different special features. If the Barbarian Free Spins were activated, players can expect an additional 3 Free Spins every time a Scatter symbol shows up. For Priestess Free Spins, the appearance of a Scatter symbol will increase the win multiplier by x1. Finally, Scatter Symbols that appear during Samurai Free Spins will turn to Sticky Wilds that will last until the Free Spins end.
Gameplay-wise, Warlords: Crystals of Power is a lot like the video slots that you’re used to playing. The way it tells a story through its graphics and gameplay though is something that’s completely new. More than a video slot, NetEnt developed an e-gaming experience that I’m sure more companies will try to emulate from this point on. Is it worth playing? Absolutely. As of now, e-gaming portals and players are rating it highly (a lot of 4/5 and 5/5s). Of course, these high ratings don’t necessarily mean that you’re a sure winner when you play. Like with any video slot, winning at Warlords will require luck, skill, and timing.