Developer Thunderkick is releasing a five-part series of slots dedicated to mythological monsters. In this first part of the series, it releases the Kraken. Or does it? Although this giant squid certainly makes the theme for this slot, the Kraken itself is notably absent (as is its lair, for that matter). As Thunderkick made quite a fuzz about this series, I had expected a little more Kraken in this slot. A themed slot like this is also a great opportunity for an introduction video that sets the mood, but Thunderkick has decided not to disturb the Kraken, and brings us straight from the loading screen to the reels.
<h2> Beat the Beast: Kraken’s Lair fact sheet</h2>
|Theme:||Mythology, monsters, underwater|
|Minimum bet per spin:||€0.10|
|Maximum bet per spin:||€100|
|Maximum win with $1 bet:||$7,777|
<h2> Gameplay </h2>
Unfortunately, the gameplay does little to set this slot apart from others. You play on the classic 5×3 grid, where you find 9 win lines. The lower card game symbols require three or more for a winning combination, where each of the image symbols give you a token win for a combination of two. The auto play lets you play up to 5,000 spins without interruption and gives you no extra options such as loss or win limits.
<h2> Symbols </h2>
There are ten symbols, divided into two groups. Five card symbols (10-A) give you lower wins, while five images represent the higher wins. The Kraken itself is its own category; this menacing creature crawling out of the symbol gives you a maximum win of $500 on a $1 bet level. A win with four of these symbols equals the next highest win (five golden Kraken statues).
<h2> Features in Beat the Beast: Kraken’s Lair </h2>
The wild in Beat the Beast: Kraken’s Lair doesn’t just substitute for other symbols. Every time you use the wild in a combination, the Expanding Win feature is activated. This feature expands every symbol used in a winning combination to cover the entire reel. Winnings are then calculated based on the configuration with the reels fully covered. If the wild is used in multiple combinations with different symbols, it will go through each symbol individually.
Because the wild doubles as the scatter, three wilds will unlock ten free spins. During the free spins, one wild/scatter is randomly placed on the reels. The Expanding Win feature remains active during the free spins, and two additional scatter symbols will grant you another ten free spins.
<h2> Verdict </h2>
Thunderkick announced its Beat the Beast series well in advance. It sounds pretty cool: a series involving five great mythological monsters created by an innovative studio. Although there’s nothing truly wrong with Beat the Beast: Kraken’s Lair, it has tempered my excitement for the rest of the series. This slot does not have enough Kraken, no Kraken’s Lair, and no wow factor. Kraken’s Lair was released right after Esqueleto Explosivo 2, which I absolutely loved, and perhaps my expectations were too high.
If you’re excited about playing a Kraken-themed slot, I recommend Eye of the Kraken by developer Play ‘n Go. It has some neat features and actually involves the Kraken and its lair. The theme is an important part of the gameplay in Eye of the Kraken, and it is essentially the game I would have loved to see made by Thunderkick.
<h2> Results after 1,000 $1 spins </h2>
Balance: – $214
Free spins won: 40
Highest win: $133 (after retriggering 20 additional free spins)