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About This Slot
Blueprint have entered the very crowded space of the Wild West slot genre with their newest release, King of the West – there are some stone cold classics to compete with here, from NetEnt’s brilliant Dead or Alive to more recent high risk mayhem from Nolimit City in the form of Deadwood and Tombstone. So, can the recent masters of Megaways™ gameplay add anything new? Well, sadly high variance slots fans may find that King of the West is a little light on features for their tastes, though it’s sharp graphics and high top payout compensate a little and provide something of a draw at least.
As we open the game up we find ourselves in front of a reel set that stands in the middle of a typical Western town, complete with trademark tumbleweed and all the other standard outlaw iconography you would expect. The symbols on the reels include satchels of gold, bottles of whiskey, poker cards, pistols and mask-wearing bounty hunters.
The reel set is a standard 5-reel and 3-row with a simple 20 payline engine, a hint before we even spin that Blueprint haven’t exactly re-invented the wheel with King of the West! At least the wood-effect reels, cowboy characters and twanging guitars sounds with classic Wild West music build the atmosphere a little.
There is one slightly unusual addition to be aware of here – the horizontal prize reel above the main 5×3 set is an important opportunity for added prize-winning potential – we will come onto that in a moment.
RTP, Variance and Top Payout
The RTP in King of the West is set to 95.49%, a little under average for slot games in the UK. The minimum bet is set to 10p and the volatility rating is most definitely high. In short, this means it’s risky play (check our variance guide for more information on this) and those will smaller budgets will need to play at the lowest betting levels to make this work or you could find you burn through your balance in no time.
The top prize of 50,000x stake is enticing though, but only achievable during Free Spins where the horizontal prize reel is filled with bigger prizes.
Symbols and Graphics
The symbols in King of the West include a whiskey bottle, stagecoach, poker cards with cigars and a pistol, a saddlebag of gold coins, a bounty hunter wearing a mask and a bullet hole Wild symbol. The bounty hunter is the Scatter and this character can launch the Free Spins round or award a cash prize from the horizontal prize reel.
The regular symbols can pay from 3x to 20x stake for 5 of a kind, while there are also various high card symbols to award the lower payouts. The bullet hole Wild doesn’t award a payout of its own but it can substitute for the other symbols to create more potential winning combinations.
What We Like
Cool Wild West atmosphere
Prize line bonus rewards
Wanted Wilds land randomly
50,000x stake top prize
Up to 20 free spins
What We Don't Like
Wilds don’t land often enough
Not enough features for some players
Gameplay and Features
King of the West won’t appeal to those players who like action-packed high risk slots action – this is not like your average Megaways™ adventure, but rather a simple slot with pared-down features. However, those who like to keep spinning to unlock one or two features that can trigger the big wins rather than multiple features that work in tandem will enjoy the gameplay.
Here is how it all works:
The Wanted Wilds feature can trigger randomly after any spin. This causes a random number of Wilds to appear on the reels. There is also the chance of a Reload, which will add even more Wilds to the screen and boost your winning chances for the next spin.
Horizontal Prize Reel
The horizontal prize reel runs above the main reels. Whenever a Scatter symbol lands on the main reels, the prize directly above the corresponding reel is awarded. These prizes can be Multipliers and cash payouts or you could trigger the Free Games feature.
Landing the Free Games feature on the horizontal reel will trigger an animation of a gun barrel spinning round with a number of Free Games in each chamber – this can award anything from 6 to 20 Free Games. The spins will play out with more Scatters added to the reels. During this feature, the prizes on the horizontal reel are boosted and include the chance to win extra Free Games or the jackpot prize of 50,000x stake.
King of the West by Blueprint is a reasonably formulaic slot but the theme is strong and the 50,000x stake jackpot highly tempting. The music, horsey sound effects and cowboy imagery work together to build atmosphere, while the horizontal prize reel is a fairly original touch, leading to anticipation that extra wins are just around the corner. It would be good to see a more exciting bonus game to make the most of the cool theme, but as it stands the Free Games play out in the same fashion as the main game, except for boosted prizes from the horizontal reel. The Wilds don’t land often enough but the Scatters do appear regularly to trigger extra prizes. It’s the Free Spins round where the fun really starts, as this is where you could take home the big bounty of 50,000x stake. This cowboy adventure is highly volatile and low rollers will be on shaky ground, but if your saddlebag has enough coinage to stand the ups and downs, this is a solid Wild West caper and definitely worth a few spins for the atmosphere alone.
You’ll be able to find out for yourselves as the game becomes available in UK slot sites from May 2021.