We all love a villain. Alan Rickman practically made a career out of it. And while we may well be glad that the Victorian era is behind us when we walk down the street without our shoes being covered in human excrement, we still hanker back with rose tinted spectacles and romanticise about how exciting things were back then. And it is with this Dickensian mindset that Microgaming have developed this five reel, All Pays online slot, and jolly playable it is too ‘cor blimey.
A sinister cackle greets the start of each spin. Lonesome violin refrains that might find their way into a Tim Burton soundtrack accompany the spinning reels, while foreboding footsteps along cobbled streets step perfectly in time as they land. The atmosphere that Victorian Villain oozes is superbly crafted, right down to the beautifully drawn characters.
To that end, our high symbols are the characters of our Victorian tale. The Victorian Villain of our piece is the highest paying symbol, complete with misshapen teeth and skull-topped cane, while our Victorian Ladies and Honest Bobby are hot on the Villain’s tracks. Even the 9s through Aces are given a atmospheric twist with an eerie glow that lifts them from their lowly status. The All Pays win structure, which means that any adjacent symbols pay out rather than having to find them in stuffy running payline order, simplifies the gameplay so we know where we stand as we search for our Villain. That said, the Game Logo Wild stands in for all other symbols as normal.
The bonus we’re after is to catch this Villain and hold him to account for the dastardly deeds he has done, boosting our own accounts in the process. To get to the sought-after finale of this mystery we will be looking to land three or more Skull Scatters, which launch the Free Spins bonus feature. But like true detectives we must follow the right clues – should we plump for 15 spins plus 3x multiplier, 10 spins plus 5x multiplier or five spins plus 10x multiplier? The secret of the case lies in our canny ability as Villain seekers.
We do have a second opportunity to search for vital clues in the Search For Clues feature. Landing three of these symbols on reels three, four and five leads us to a room filled with clues. The right clues lead us to solving the mystery, and boosting our winnings to boot.
Microgaming have done it again. Victorian Villain’s theme is well designed and developed, with bonus features to back up the gameplay. Dickens would be proud.