Secret of the Stones Slot Game
Many slots have free spins bonus rounds as their main feature. Very few slots have as big a contrast between a solid and simple base game, and feature packed free spins round in the same way as Secret of the Stone from Net Entertainment does. The style is ancient Norse, with runes and the faces of animals plus distinctive interwoven patterns. Before the free spins game starts you get to select from stones which give you wild reels, multipliers, extra wilds and extra free spins. This really does bring the game to life.
How to Win on Secret of the Stones
The base game is a solid, with 25 lines covering the standard 5 by 3 grid. The best playing symbols are animals with distinctive Norse design. The red deer has the biggest prize, which is 1250 for 5, 300 coins for 4 and 25 coins for just 3. Next comes a yellow owl, worth 750 coins for the full set of 5. These are followed by a bull (500), wolf (300) and a snake at 200.
Playing card symbols have been decorated with simple and suitably ancient inscriptions, and make up the smaller wins.
Wild symbols during the base game are only single symbols, this shows the head of a guy with a white beard and a staff – with the word ‘wild’ underneath. As usual in online slots, the wild acts as a substitute for everything except the scatter symbols (which in this game is a golden tree).
Multiple Wilds for the Free Spins Game
There is no scatter prize in Secret of the Stones, with 3 or more of the tree symbols simply triggering the free spins bonus game. There is a benefit to starting your 10 free spins with 4 or 5 of the scatters instead of 3 – as this determines how many picks you get in the pre-spins game.
When you trigger the spins you will see a green screen with 20 ancient looking stones in a nature setting. Underneath these are some of the extra benefits you can get for the free spins bonus round. You get to pick one stone for every triggering scatter.
These can reveal extra free spins, multipliers for those free spins or extra wilds. The wilds come in one of 4 forms. Separate stones will make reels 2 and 4 completely wild throughout. Owl and wolf symbols can also (separately) be turned into wilds.
Once your picks are over you’ll go to the free spins game, and through the background hues have changed, the game is pretty much the same as the base game. Those extra wilds can make a big difference, and will often combine with the regular wilds that are still very much in play.
Ancient Nordic Design
The design of this game is sparse, and manages to bring out the atmosphere of the hard and mystic lands of the north in ancient times. One of my favorite features is the satisfying stone falling noises when you spin the reels. There is atmospheric and dark music playing in the background as you spin.
On top of the reels are rocks with ancient carvings on them, with the gold logo standing out in the middle. Symbols are simply drawn, and look amazing, with geometric and intertwined shapes around the faces of each of the animals.
Animations are minimal, with one example being the old guy with the white beard (wild symbol) banging his staff when involved in a win. When 2 scatters land the remaining reels will speed up and spin for longer – giving you anticipation ahead of the last one stopping.
The screen with stones before the free spins is well done. Those extra wilds do bring this bonus game to life – you’ll see a 3 symbol high version of the wild with the staff – and hopefully other wilds as well.
This slot uses a 25-line setup (this is adjustable, though with all those wilds in the free spins game, sticking to the maximum likes seems optimal). You can adjust your coin size and bet level to suit your bankroll.
I enjoyed Secret of the Stones, and will certainly be spinning the reels of this one again. The focus is all on the free spins game, with the base game really just a way of keeping small wins coming in while you wait for this feature. Wild reels, extra wild symbols and multipliers make a great combination, giving the bonus game the potential to deliver you some extra big wins.