What are ‘Expanding Wilds’?
Expanding Wilds is a special feature in many multi-payline video slot machines. They function similar to a regular wild symbol by substituting other symbols on the reels to form winning combinations, however, instead of remaining stationary on the reel, the Expanding Wild symbol becomes animated to expand vertically or horizontally, depending on the game.
When the vertically Expanding Wild symbol is activated it becomes animated and fills the entire reel by transforming other symbols above and below it into wild symbols. This obviously creates more winning opportunities, and adds more excitement to the slot game.
‘Expanding Wilds’ Explained
Whether you have ever played a slot machine in a land-based or online casino, no doubt you have encountered a wild symbol in one of the games you played. Wild symbols have been used in slot machines to increase your chances of winning. Wild symbols substitute other symbols to form winning combinations.
When the Expanding Wilds feature is activated, it becomes a big production on screen, with sound effects, lively animations, and 3D graphics. Payouts for this bonus feature varies depending on the game played, however there are often multipliers involved, and the payouts can become huge.
Because of the bigger payouts, the game developers typically make you work a little harder to activate the Expanding Wilds feature, and generally they are limited to specific reels, usually reels 2, 3, and 4.
How this feature becomes activated varies, depending on the game played, and you will always find information regarding all the particular details in the game’s rules or payout table.
‘Expanding Wilds’ Slot Games
Lucky Lager Video Slot by NYX Interactive is a good example of an online slot with expanding wilds. During gameplay, when the mug of beer symbol appears on Reels 2, 3, or 4, a beer tap at the top of the reels appears and starts filling the mug with beer until it overflows and fills the entire reel.
Another excellent example is the Fruit Zen 3D video slot machine by BetSoft Gaming; a developer known in the industry for their impressive 3D games. Fruit Zen is a beautiful example of not only BetSoft’s cutting edge 3D graphics, but also for its Expanding Wilds feature. The symbols include fruits like berries, plums, grapes, watermelons, lemons, and oranges. The Fruit Zen Logo is the wild symbol.
When the Fruit Zen Logo appears on reels 2, 3, or 4 the symbol animates and transforms into blossoms that grow and expand to fill the entire reel. You are then awarded with one free re-spin. If additional Fruit Zen Logos appear on the remaining reels, they will also expand to fill the reel, and you will be awarded with an additional free spin.
As you can see, Fruit Zen-style slot games can be very rewarding games to play, not only for their visual appeal, but for their Expanding Wilds features that offers great winning opportunities.