Close Up: A look at Valley of the Gods, the newest online pokies game from Yggdrasil.
In my experience, all well-established creators of online poker machines can be nestled into one of two categories. In one corner, you have those that churn out a large number of games in a relatively short period of time (Microgaming, Playtech, NetEnt, etc.). In the other, you have the creators that spend a great deal of time to deliver a single new online pokies game that is truly unique and imaginative (Yggdrasil, Betsoft, Habanero).
This time, the kudos go to Yggdrasil, whose newest online pokies is one of the most innovative ever to hit the digital gambling market. It’s called Valley of the Gods, and it takes players on a journey to an apocryphal time when legendary scarab beetles divined fortunes.
This game isn’t for everyone. Without a great deal of luck, a casual player with a small bankroll might not get very far in a short-lived session. Valley of the Gods becomes progressively profitable as players unlock special features and extra positions on the reels. Suffice to say, it could take a substantial investment to unlock the game’s true potential.
Valley of the Gods – The Basics
Valley of the Gods is themed around the legendary Gods and scarab beetles of ancient Egypt. High paying symbols include 4 Gods, with 6 hieroglyphic symbols on the lower paying end. The graphics are beautifully rendered, the subtle sound track highly befitting of the theme. Players can wager anywhere from $0.25 up to $100 per spin.
Valley of the Gods – Blockers & Respins
On the surface, Yggdrasil’s newest online pokies game takes places on a 5×5 reel-set that incorporates ‘ways to win‘ instead of paylines. With all positions unlocked, Valley of the Gods presents 3,125 ways to win. When the game starts, however, the three corner-most positions in each corner are locked by encased scarab beetles (12 in all). Only the diamond-shaped pattern in the center will spin unless the blockers are removed.
The extra positions are unblocked every time a winning combination is spun. Each symbol involved in a win will release a scarab beetle onto the reels, which will fly over to a random blocker and unlock it.
Additionally, every winning spin on the new online pokies game will result in a free Respin. This increases the odds of landing consecutive wins to unlock all of the blockers. When no blockers remain, player’s automatically earn a 2x win multiplier. All subsequent scarab beetles released by winning symbols will turn Red or Blue, and will be collected in the Gods statues of their respective color to help activate the following features.
Valley of the Gods – Features
The Red God on the right side of the screen will deliver one Extra Life each time 5 red scarab beetles are collected. Extra lives are automatically used to respin the reels after a non-winning spin.
The Blue God on the left side of the screen will award players with an additional 1x win multiplier each time 5 blue scarab beetles are collected. There is no specified limit to how high the multipliers can rise.
Valley of the Gods – The Catch
Every time a respin does not result in a winning combination, all features are reset, and the encased scarab blockers reappear in each corner. No more extra lives, no more multipliers – it’s like starting the game all over again.
That’s the only disappointing thing about Yggdrassil’s newest online pokies game. After working so hard to unlock all the beetles and rack up a high multiplier, a single non-win sets you back to start. But considering there are 3,125 ways to win with all positions unlocked, the hardest part is actually unlocking them all. From there, it’s a virtual free for all until your luck runs out.