Do you smell that? It smells like...it smells like manure. Gross! But wait, don’t wrinkle your nose up. What’s the phrase again? ‘Where there’s muck there’s gold’. That’s the one.
Barnyard Bonanza is an action-packed video slot that takes place on a bustling animal farm. Take a tumble on this farmyard and you’ll come up smelling of roses because there’s more to these pens than animals and animal waste.
There’s cash, lots of it, and it’s all yours to trouser if the slots gods deign to smile kindly on you. Are you ready to rake up a barnyard bonanza?
Barnyard Bonanza is the product of Ainsworth, a company who’ve dedicated more than 20 years to perfecting their slot game. Today, their games are some of the prettiest in the biz, with graphics so lifelike you can lose yourself in them for days and enough features and bonuses to keep you coming back for more.
While Ainsworth have produced their share of dark and haunting themed slots, Barnyard Bonanza sees them at their upbeat best. This is the sort of slot that will put a smile on your face before you’ve so much as spun a reel or notched a win, such is the innocence of its farmyard creatures and the blissfulness of the bucolic scene conjured.
The 5 reels are framed in weather-worn timber in a style that’s reminiscent of an old hay barn. Strawberry vines and maize creep around its pillars while a hay fork leans casually against one of the beams. In the foreground, a pig, horse and hen look on cheerfully, while in the background you can just make out a hayrick and a thatched farmhouse that stands resolute beneath bright blue skies. They don’t make farms like this any more.
Cleaning up in this game calls for matching 3 or more animal symbols in a row while chasing down the more valuable wild and free games symbols. The latter is triggered by landing 3 or more chickens that sit atop their nests ready to hatch.
These scatter symbols are worth €10 for 5 symbols with the bet level set at €0.1. Raise it to the maximum €100, which will activate all 20 lines, and 5 scatters are suddenly worth €100,000. That’s right – a cool 100k. While you’re probably not going to be in a position to wager €100 at a time on a single spin, it’s nice to have the option.
Ainsworth have favoured a minimalist layout across the bottom of the screen, with just a handful of options to choose from. The game’s controls comprise a pair of arrows twisted in a circle for the start button, with a plus symbol opening the autoplay controls that dictate the number of hands that will be played on your behalf. The controls for setting the bet level are annoyingly tucked behind a gear icon to the left of the screen, which makes adjusting the bet level unnecessarily complex.
The game’s lowest value symbols, 9, 10, J, Q, K and A, aren’t worth much but they’re worth mentioning just for the detail Ainsworth have lavished on them. The A has the texture of a raspberry; the 9 a watermelon and the 10 a strawberry. You won’t catch many developers applying this much care to their playing card symbols. The next tier of symbols includes a barn and a scarecrow, followed by a pig, horse and cow. With their dilated cartoon eyes and glazed expression, these creatures are as likeable as they are harmless.
Aside from the egg-laying chicken, which serves as scatter, the other prime playing symbol, wild, features a farmer sat on his tractor. As you spin the reels and they come to a halt, you can hear the engine of that very same tractor ticking over. The sound effects are subtle – there’s no theme music to get in the way here – but tastefully done all the same, just like the graphics. The tractor symbol, wild, will substitute for any of the other symbols except for scatter.
Barnyard Bonanza is a great video slot that’s highly entertaining to play. It’s also not shy when it comes to dispensing wins, with matching pairs and triples of animals often aided by the wild symbol. If only all video slots were designed with the same attention to detail as that found in Ainsworth’s Barnyard Bonanza. It’s a banger.