Vikings Go Berzerk: Overview
Swedish developer Yggdrasil Gaming explores its Nordic roots with a sequel to their popular Vikings go Wild slot. This time, they lads aren’t content with being just wild, so have kicked it up a gear to berserk mode.
Berserkers were those next level warriors who would go into a sort of battle trance, hacking their way through enemy lines, until only death brought them down. Let's put it this way; if you were on the wrong side of a berserker's axe, it would probably be better just to lay down arms and give up the gold. The sequel is a more developed game than the first, enhancing several features, while retaining everything that made the original a hit.
Vikings Go Berzerk has a similar look to the original, so fans will feel at home straight away. Its 5x4 reel setup sits on a dragon carved Longship as it powers its way through the North Sea. No doubt it’s on the way to do so some wanton pillaging, maybe ransack a village or two. Visually, the graphics aren't a paradigm shift over the first, but they are subtly better, more redefined, the mark of a developer constantly honing their craft.
What's not so berserk, to the relief of some perhaps, is the medium volatility the game ships with. Hit frequency, meanwhile, is a shade over 1 in 5, on 20.9%, while the overall return to player rate is 96.1%. There are several ways of unlocking free spins, giving them a frequency of 1 in 128, on average.
Playable from 10 p/c up to £/€125 per spin, the key rule on the high seas is landing combinations during the base game and triggering quite a number of features. Vikings Go Berzerk uses 25 paylines, where combinations of three or more similar symbols constitute a winner.
All symbols are custom made, consisting of 4 lows and 4 high pays as the regulars. The four low pays are coins of various metals, while the high pays are all Viking warriors or warrioress’ – each one having gone through a makeover from the first slot to harden them up. Five of a kind values range from 6x for the Skaede looking one up to 10 times the stake for the tough guy berserker. The big Celtic backed WILD, is well, the wild, which can substitute for anything except the scatter to form a winning combo.
Vikings Go Berzerk: Features
So far Vikings Go Berzerk might sound a lot like the first, but the two games start to diverge when it comes to features. Treasure chests are used again, this time there are two kinds that may appear on any spin. The standard treasure chest appears on the 4th reel, while the golden treasure chest appears on the 5th.
During the base game, the treasure chest may award a win of 2x to 40x the bet, or 7 to 21 free spins. The golden chest possesses better rewards such as a win of 10x to 400x the bet, 7 to 21 free spins, Ragnarok free spins, or a Rage Boost.
During free spins, treasure chests may award 2x to 40x the bet, 2-4 extra free spins, a sticky wild reel, or 1-2 extra sticky wilds. Golden chests may award a win of 10x to 400x the bet, 2-4 free spins, a sticky wild reel, or 2 extra sticky wilds.
As well as via chests, free spins are awarded when 3 or more scatters land. Hit 3, 4, or 5 of them to be awarded 7, 14, or 21 free spins respectively. Before the round begins, a bonus reel is spun, resulting in one of these modifiers:
- Wild reel – one reel is randomly turned wild for the feature.
- Free spins – 1, 2, or 3 extra free spins are bestowed.
- Starting wild – 1 sticky wild is placed in a random position.
- Extra chests – 5 extra treasure chests and golden chests are added.
- Ragnarok Free Spins – All Vikings are Berserk.
During free spins, any Viking that lands does battle with the Siren. If it wins, it is turned into a sticky wild for the remainder of the feature. Another new feature is the Rage Meter you will be able to see at the bottom of the screen.
When play begins, one of the Vikings has their meter half filled – the Welcome Rage. Then, during the game whenever combinations of the premiums hit, their respective meter is slowly filled up. When a meter is filled, 7 free spins are awarded with the respective Viking in berserker mode. Vikings that go Berserk always win battles against the Siren and become sticky wilds of the duration of the free spins. These free spins cannot be retriggered, but it is possible to win more free spins via treasure chests.
Vikings Go Berzerk: Verdict
Yggdrasil has nailed the sequel formula in Vikings Go Berzerk. It is recognisable from the first, and brings all of the parts players loved while stacking it with a host of extras. The result is what every good follow up should be. A solid improvement fans will enjoy even more than the original.
What makes it great is the extra chest and of course the way characters go berserk. Berserkers are a great touch, amplifying any free spins round they are a part of. If you manage to trigger Ragnarok Free Spins, make sure to stand clear of the carnage. Not only will Sirens be dealt to, but sticky wilds can be super effective when they rack up in greater numbers.
Vikings Go Berzerk will have no problem winning over fans of the series, while those new to the 'Vikings Go' range will certainly be entertained as well. With so much raw energy, stacks of features, and potential of up to 4,000 times the stake, what's not to go a little berserk over?
Those who appreciated the original should find in Vikings Go Berzerk a phenomenal looking and enjoyable, if somewhat familiar, experience.