4 Seasons is a brand-new video slot from Betsoft Gaming. The Chinese zodiac forms the basis for the game, which plays out on a cartoonised 5x3 grid against a naturalistic, graphic-rich background. Players can attempt to hit matching combinations on thirty fixed pay-lines, meaning there’s plenty of cash to be won. The game should suit all players, given the coin size ranges from 0.02 to 1. 4 Seasons has been developed in HTML5 format, and gamers can play via desktop or play the mobile slot version via their mobile device.
The twelve signs of the Chinese zodiac are represented by a dozen animals, which include a tiger, a rabbit, a rat, an ox, a dragon, a goat, a snake, a rooster, a horse, a dog and a pig. Each symbol is rendered as a cute critter, with enlarged eyes, large ears and smiling features. In the words of Mark McKeown, Betsoft’s vice president of sales and marketing, “The animals are rendered in a style to delight the heart.” If you regularly find yourself Googling cute cats on YouTube, you’ll probably agree with him. Other icons in the game include a Chinese Yin and Yang symbol, which is gold. There’s also a golden cat, which acts as wild.
Each of the furry animals pays 50 for five, 20 for four or 10 for three, unless multiplied by the Seasonal Wheel. More on that later.
The aforementioned golden cat wild can replace all symbols in the game except the Yin Yang scatter. Land five wilds and you’ll also win the princely 10,000-credit jackpot.
If three or more Yin Yang symbols appear anywhere on the reels, you’ll be entitled to some free spins. Free spins are played with the same bet as the triggering spin, and further free spins can be awarded during the bonus. The number of free spins you get depends on how many Yin Yang icons you land. If you spot three you’ll win eight; four brings a dozen; and five yields 20. The scatters serve the sole purpose of providing free spins and are not linked to pay-outs in their own right.
4 Seasons features an innovative Seasonal Wheel, which bears images of the twelve animals of the zodiac. The wheel, which is located in the lower left corner, beneath the reels, turns every 30 spins, mimicking the passage of a month and marking the animal it lands upon as ‘golden’. That symbol will now come attached with a 10x multiplier, giving you the chance to seriously boost your pay packet. The animals to the left and right of the golden symbol become ‘silver’ and are worth a 5x multiplier. Not only that, but the three animals left and right of the silver animals pay a 2x multiplier. It’s easy to tell which animals have multipliers attached: the golden animal will be encircled by a golden cord, the silver animals with a silver cord and the bronze animals with a bronze ring.
Every 90 spins, the background of the entire game changes. Play for long enough and you’ll experience all four seasons, from wintry snowdrifts to autumn blossom and summer solstice. Free spins do not advance the day counter, though. The Seasonal Wheel rotates counter-clockwise.
Any of the 12 animals can appear stacked slot symbols on the reels; if you land enough to create a solid block, there’s an extra multiplier attached. This goes from 2x to 10x, so it’s worth watching out for.
After any regular pay-out, players are given the chance to ‘Double Up’. A fresh panel will materialise, showing you a coin. All you need to do is guess whether the next flip of the coin will result in heads or tails. In this respect, the gamble function differs from many other slots’, in which players are asked to guess the colour of a playing card. Anyway, the result is the same: a correct guess sees your winnings double, an incorrect guess forfeits your bank roll. You can double up as many times as you please; just hit the Collect button to return to the base game. Double Up is not available after a round of free spins, though.
4 Seasons is certainly a slot game on the innovative end of the spectrum. The inclusion of a Seasonal Wheel is a first, and the number of multipliers on offer is astounding. The graphics, meanwhile, are excellent, though some players will find the symbols rather corny.