One of the most famous casino pokies around is Wolf Run from IGT. I was interested to see how similar Ainsworth’s Run with the Wolves was to that classic pokie game. The main things in common are the choice of images for the symbols. Not just the wolf, dreamcatchers and eagles can be seen. Stacks of wolf symbols, which are wilds, play an important role in both slot games.
Game play is very different. Run with the Wolves gives you a choice of free spins. The more spins you take, the lower your win multiplier. Quad Shot progressives involves a 6th reel. This is a jackpot system which is used in many Ainsworth titles. Here are the highlights of this medium variance pokie:
There is a small design touch I really like which happens when you hit 2 of the bonus symbols. A small wolf appears under the next reel, howling in anticipation of the 3rd symbol. This also appears on the next reel, and so on. You need 3+ logos to get a scatter win and trigger the free spins games.
You then have a choice to make:
Those multipliers apply to wins with the stacked wolf symbols. As an extra, they are shifted one reel to the left. In the base game, wilds are on reels 3, 4 and 5. In the bonus games, they are on the middle 3 reels instead. This makes wins a lot more frequent – making the choice of which balance of spins / multiplier to go for more important.
There is a new regular symbol in play during the free games. This is the eye of a wolf. It also appears stacked (on all the reels). Eyes will often cover a lot of the reels.
You’ll find Quad Shot jackpots on a lot of Ainsworth titles. This jackpot system lets you win progressives without interfering with the main game. It works using a 6th reel, which has a frame in the middle. Your goal is to get the special quad shot logo in this frame alongside a 5 of a kind win.
There are 4 levels of jackpot. The biggest can be 5 figures. This is won by hitting a 5 of a kind win with the high paying symbol, without involving a wild and getting the quad shot in reel 6. The next one is for lower paying symbols with no wilds, then higher and finally lower value symbols with wilds. It is possible to trigger multiple jackpots on the same spin.
Ainsworth went for a 25 win-line setup this time, with the usual 5×3 grid for the reels. You can bet up to 5 coins per line.
With no wolf symbols on reel 1 in either the base game or the free spins, these symbols can’t create wins. Instead they are substitutes for the other symbols (all except the logo scatter symbols).
The highest paying symbols show a fierce looking bear. Following this is a coin with a wolf on it, an eagle, lynx and a dreamcatcher. Playing cards make up the smaller wins.
When you hit the free spins, additional wolf-eye symbols are stacked on the reels.
There are a lot of pokies featuring the icy north along with native wildlife. Run with the Wolves stands out for the detailed, sharp graphics and for some small animations like the howling for bonus symbols. While all the animals look great, the eagle stands out for me. It has a keen eye, sharp beak and is taking no nonsense from any land-based creatures. Wolves look at you straight on from the reels. This can make for an imposing sight when you hit a lot of them on a single spin.
Along with the on-theme sound effects, there are some beeping noises which did feel a little out of place!
This is an excellent pokie, which appears to be trying for the Wolf Run look and feel, without copying the game play. Sharp graphics and quality animations are a great starting point. The features list includes the Quad Shot progressives, which can reward 5 of a kind wins if you hit a special symbol on reel 6. When you trigger the free spins, you have strategy choice to make. You can have more spins, or a bigger multiplier!