Shield wall! We are on the defensive this week with a great game from the Nyx Gaming Group. For as long as there have been weapons and people willing to wield them, there has been the need for something to put in the way to avoid getting hurt. While swords and spears and all sorts of other weapons have been celebrated, we’re pleased to see a game that celebrates protection. This is Shields Of The Wild!
It’s All Greek
Just as there are numerous types of sword, there have been many different variations of shields. From animal hide and leather stretched around a frame, to wood, wicker, brass and iron, we have made shields from all manner of materials. The Ancient Greeks were among the first to really make use of the technology. The Hoplite shield was the most famous of these, a round shield that came with a cloth curtain that hung down from it, giving extra protection against arrows. When standing in close formation, known as a phalanx, it also gave protection to the soldier standing to your left. “Come back with this shield,” went a famous saying of the time, “or on it”.
Medieval knights carried shields of the shape that we would recognise today. Straight along the top, they curved down into a point, that allowed some protection for the legs but not so much weight to carry. Since everyone was dressed head-to-toe in steel, identifying people could be tricky. This is where shields provided another service, as heraldic designs were painted on them so that everyone knows who everyone is. We still use that shape for heraldry and coats of arms even now.
Upgrades for Everyone
There are no less than eight types of shield in Shields Of The Wild, ranging from a very crude, basic buckler to what is unmistakably the shield of a king. There are a number of ways to upgrade your shield during the game. For example, there is a shield wall feature that can activate after any spin. Like in a real battle, you would need keep your eyes peeled for an unexpected volley of arrows. It happens in the game too, so your symbols close ranks to protect you. Each time an arrow hits a symbol, it upgrades the shield.
You can also get upgrades in the Marching Stacks feature. Land three or more Scatter symbols, and the feature will activate. For these spins, the Scatter symbol is replaced by the Upgrade symbol which upgrades all the shields on the screen. If you spin and don’t get the symbol, the entire row fills with the symbol, until eventually you have an entire screen full of the same symbol. This guarantees you a win of at least 20x your stake.
Whether you win or not, you’ll find this is a really nicely put-together game. The medieval music is stirring and dramatic, and the graphics are excellent. Each shield has its own features and some of the higher value shields look like they belong in a museum (even the ‘sad bear’ shield!). It will only take a few spins to get you interested in what we’re sure will become one of your favourite games.