Net Entertainment's Hook's Heroes video slot is more or less based on the pirate kids from the Peter Pan stories, though they don't come right out and say that. While NetEnt is known for putting out some pretty high-quality video slots that often use 3D graphics, this game is a bit different in that they went with almost a 2.5-D approach. A number of video games have used this visual style in recent years, and it's a very good way to give top-tier visuals that feel clean and look great.
Layout and Game Format
The format of this game is pretty basic. It uses five reels with three rows of symbols, and there are 20 paylines in the base game. This is a good example of how Net Entertainment likes to use standard layouts as a canvas to work their magic. Coins start at $0.01 apiece, and they go up to the $1.00 level. Players can bet a range from $0.20 to $200 per spin with the ability to bet up to 10 coins on each payline, and that's a reasonable range that will cover every different type of player.
The two key symbols for this game are the wild and the scatter. The wild is Captain Hook, and it has a dark purple background unlike anything else in the game. He shows up on all five reels. The scatter is a kid wearing an alligator suit. If you'll remember from the story this game is loosely based on, this is likely the alligator that took Captain Hook's hand in the first place, and it swallowed a ticking clock so that Hook would always hear it coming. In this game, you want to see it coming, because three or more of them will trigger a free spins bonus feature that we'll discuss below.
For the high symbols, there are five different pirates. The red pirate has skeleton paint on its face, and it's a high-paying symbol. The irritated girl pirate has an orange background, and the red-haired pirate with glasses has a green background. You'll see a blue pirate with a cap pulled over his head and a rubber ducky sitting on top of his cap, and the purple pirate is a chubby bald kid with an eye patch.
The colors of these five pirate symbols also match up with the colors of the low symbols A, K, Q, J and 10. The A is red, the K is orange, the Q is green, the J is blue and the 10 is purple. Some people criticize software companies for using these types of generic symbols for lower pays in online slots, but they're presented in a great way here that matches up with the visual styles of the rest of the game.
On each normal spin, you can pick up one of three different bonuse features. The pirate feature removes the paylines for a spin and gives you a spin that uses a 243-ways format, and this obviously gives you more chances to win than a normal 20-payline spin. The fairy feature sees a fairy (likely to be Tinkerbell?) who adds a few random wilds on the reels. Finally we have the mermaid feature, and during this feature, you'll see what appears to be a spaced-out, zombie mermaid holding a sign that tells you two multipliers. One multiplier is for all regular wins on that spin, and the other is for wins that include a wild symbol. In our experience, this is usually a 2x multiplier for normal wins and a 4x for wins with a wild.
Three or more alligator scatters gets you a set of free spins. However, you get to choose between three options for these. You can pick up 10 free spins that all use the mermaid feature, 15 free spins that all use the pirate feature or seven free spins that all use the fairy feature. These options have been scaled in terms of the number of free turns you get to all give about the same value, so you should just choose the one that appeals to you without worrying about not getting the best value possible.
Hook's Heroes is a great online slot that gives players a lot of ways to get paid. It's visual style is a bit atypical, but it's definitely aesthetically pleasing, and the gameplay is full of action. It's hard to find much of a fault with any part of this game.