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Game of Thrones 243 Ways Pokies

Just about everyone will have heard of Game of Thrones, even if they have never read any of the books or watched a single episode of the hugely popular TV series. With a massive fanbase and endless media coverage, it’s now available as an online pokie, and in an unusual step, developer Microgaming have released two versions, one with 15 paylines and this one that features their popular 243 Ways to Win system.

Whichever is chosen, the same symbols and bonus features play out, meaning there’s a free spins game with players able to choose the format, wild wins, scatter payouts and an optional gamble round that takes them on a journey across a map of the fabled lands.

Enter The Houses of Westeros

While the books and TV show are full of complicated plot details, lots of twists and turns and the odd bit of sex and violence, (well, quite a lot actually), the pokie is fairly easy to follow.

Game of Thrones has 5 reels and in this version, instead of normal paylines we find 243 Ways to Win, whereby any 3 or more identical symbols in any positions on adjacent reels will result in a payout, as long as the line starts from the left hand side.

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Game of Thrones

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Game of Thrones 243 Ways
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The basic playing card symbols J, Q, K and A are featured, while the higher value ones are the seals of the 4 Houses of Westeros, Stark, Lannister, Baratheon and Targaryen, all presented in a game that really conveys the dark and forbidding atmosphere of the show. It’s a shame that there are no images from the series being used as symbols, but instead we have to make do with clips from it during the gamble game.

There are some extra symbols that launch bonus games and can bring in additional wins, with the Game of Thrones logo being a wild which substitutes for others to help complete winning lines. It’s also stacked in the base game and free spins round, meaning that it can fill a whole reel and potentially complete more than one line at once.

The iconic image of the Iron Throne is a scatter symbol, so it can land anywhere on the reels and as long as 2 or more appear, players get a win that will be multiples of the total bet amount.

However, the real highlight is the free spins round that starts when 3, 4 or 5 scatters land at once. After an introductory clip of castles and dragons, players are shown 4 banners, each representing one of the great Houses, and they just click on a banner to determine what free spins and multiplier combination will be used.

By choosing the House of Baratheon, they get 8 spins, and all winnings are multiplied by 5 times. The House seal will also be stacked 3 high when it appears, for an improved chance of a payout. The House of Lannister spins consists of 10 free spins, but a slightly smaller multiplier of 4x, while the Lannister seal will be stacked 4 high on the reels.

Picking the House of Stark triggers 14 spins and any winnings will be multiplied 3x over, plus the seal symbol will be stacked 5 high throughout, while lastly, there are 18 spins with the Targaryen House, plus a 2x multiplier and 6-high stacks of their family seal.

Although these seem quite varied, in practice the overall payout difference is minimal if anything, so players who like to see lots of spins should go for the Stark or Targaryen ones while those who just want to win bigger multipliers should pick Baratheon or Lannister. Or real fans may just go for the House of their favourite character.

While many pokies have gamble rounds that give players the chance to multiply wins several times over, the one here is pretty interesting as it takes place across a map of Westeros and Essos. Players double the triggering win with a correct heads or tails guess and move along the map, with clips from the TV series played as they do so.

Gamble rounds are usually a good way to lose a bet, as a single wrong guess ends them, but this one should be tried out even if it’s only once, just to see what happens.

Do You Know Nothing, Jon Snow? Or Do You Know If It’s A Good Pokie?

Whichever version of Game of Thrones is played, it’s a quality poker machine that has a couple of particularly rewarding features, notably the varied free spins rounds and stacked wilds. It’s something of a missed opportunity that character symbols are not featured, but that doesn’t stop it from being a good-looking game that comes from a trusted developer.

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