Shields of the Wild from NextGen Gaming: Slot Review - the mightiest shields of all!
Travel back to medieval times when you play this new title from top software provider NextGen Gaming. This game transports players to the grassy floodplains of the Inner Kingdom, which is a land ruled by a famous knight called Sir Virillis Manblade. He leads a large army into battle at the request of his sworn ally, King Trenin DeSaxe. If you are a NextGen Gaming fan then you will spot the name King Trenin DeSaxe straight away as he was also featured battling to save his own kingdom in another recent NextGen Gaming slot called Kingdom's Edge. Let’s join Sir Virillis Manblade on the battlefield and see if we can help him lead his army to victory and hopefully nab lots of cash prizes for doing so!
Shields of the Wild is a 5 reel slot with 10 paylines that includes Stacked Symbols, Marching Stacks Free Games, and Upgraded Symbols.
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The first feature to talk about is the Wild symbol which is represented by a long purple shield. This symbol replaces all other symbols apart from the Scatter and the Upgrade symbol to help form winning combinations on the reels. Keep a very close eye on this symbol as it is the highest-paying symbol in the game. Land 5 Wilds on an active payline and you will be leaving the battlefield smiling with a payout worth 25X your initial wager!
Shields of the Wild comes with a random bonus event called the Shield Wall feature. Once triggered, all symbols on the reels except for the Wild and the Scatter are upgraded to the next higher paying symbol. Upgrades can occur for up to 8 times. This can lead to some epic wins on the reels especially if you fill the screen full of Lion Shield symbols as you will land a payout worth a massive 100X your stake!
The main attraction of this slot is the Marching Stacks Free Games feature which is played when you land 3 or more Scatters anywhere on the reels. The Scatter symbol is denoted by an image of a sword with a red hilt. Once activated, a stack of symbols will appear on reel 5 and depending on how many Scatters you used to trigger this feature then you will be given a chosen group of 5 symbols. For example, if you land 5 Scatters then you will get the 5 highest paying symbols apart from the Lion Shield symbol.
You will then receive some Free Spins with the Scatter symbol replaced by the Upgrade symbol for the entire feature. When the Upgrade symbol appears on the reels then the stack will upgrade to the next higher paying symbol. If an Upgrade symbol does not appear then the stack will move 1 reel to the left with a matching stack of symbols added to reel 5. This basically means that you will have a stack of symbols on both reels 4 and 5. More Free Spins are awarded by landing additional Upgrade symbols. The process continues until all 5 reels are filled with stacked symbols at which point the feature will end. As soon as the Marching Stacks Free Games feature completes then you may be awarded a Retrigger Bonus which lets you play this highly lucrative feature all over again.
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Theme and Graphics
The graphics are visually stunning as the game features an autumnal setting with soldiers marching through the mountains, sunlight breaking through the sky above in the background, and brown leaves falling all over the reels. You really get the sense of a war on the horizon when you spin the reels in this slot. Symbols are intricately detailed and consist of a range of shields bearing animal heads such as Bulls, Bears, Wolves, and Lions as well regular wooden shields adorned with different designs and colours. The animations are top-notch as symbols fly up and down the reels and enlarge nicely when part of a winning payline. In particular, I really like how lightning strikes the reels and the background changes to a dark nighttime setting whenever you trigger the Free Games feature.
The music is dramatic and suspenseful which ties in perfectly with the medieval war theme of the game.
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Win lines, Payouts and Jackpots
The game has 10 paylines, a reasonable RTP of 95.56%, and a maximum payout worth 2,500X your initial bet.
Below is a summary taken from the PayOut Table from the game. The amount won for each combination depends on the value of the bet when you spin the reels.
Bet Range: 0.10, 0.30, 0.50, 1.00, 2.00, 3.00, 5.00, 10.00, 20.00, 30.00, 40.00, 50.00, 100.00
- Shields of Wild Wild Symbol: 30 for 3X, 100 for 4X, 250 for 5X
- Lion Shield Symbol: 25 for 3X, 50 for 4X, 100 for 5X
- Wolf Shield Symbol: 20 for 3X, 40 for 4X, 75 for 5X
- Bear Shield Symbol: 18 for 3X, 30 for 4X, 60 for 5X
- Bull Shield Symbol: 15 for 3X, 25 for 4X, 50 for 5X
- Silver and Brown Shield Symbol: 12 for 3X, 20 for 4X, 40 for 5X
- Brown and Orange Shield Symbol: 10 for 3X, 15 for 4X, 30 for 5X
- Brown and Green Shield Symbol: 8 for 3X, 10 for 4X, 25 for 5X
- Blue and Silver Shield Symbol: 5 for 3X, 8 for 4X, 20 for 5X
Our Verdict on Shields of the Wild
This game comes from top software developer NextGen Gaming and is an action-packed gaming experience definitely worth checking out. Shields of the Wild features stunning graphics and animations, a gripping soundtrack, as well as a whole host of excellent bonus feature. The Shield Wall feature triggered quite often when playing and there is huge potential to rack up lots of cash prizes with Upgraded symbols here. The most lucrative feature of the game is the Marching Stacks Free Games feature as you get to fill up all the reels with matching symbols and are guaranteed a win worth 20X your stake. It’s also possible to win a top prize of 2,500X your bet in this feature too. Variance-wise, I found this slot to be between Medium and High so make sure to have plenty of bankroll as well as time if you plan on winning the top prize in this game. For slots with a similar medieval theme, check out Poltava and Knights of Gold.
Upgrade the symbols to win a fortune on the reels when you play Shields of the Wild!