Alongside the process of launching in the US, slots developer 4ThePlayer recently revealed its 90k Yeti Gigablox title, a release which the company’s co-founder and commercial and marketing director, Henry McLean, labelled as “nostalgic”.
Speaking to SlotBeats about the sequel to its first ever slot, McLean walked us through the journey of the company, from the 9k Yeti release up to now, as well as what this launch means to 4ThePlayer.
“We are still very much a small independent studio; we’re just a bit further along our exciting journey. We’ve got 11 games under our belt now, which is amazing,” he said.
“We have had quite a few milestones” he added, revealing that the developer has recently been receiving independent investment from “some of the biggest names in the industry” and announcing a deal with Gaming Realms to launch its games into the US.
“Hopefully, it won’t be long until our original 9k Yeti enters the US; we’ve started showing the game to US casinos and it’s had a great reaction.
“In terms of 90k Yeti, the launch has been nostalgic for us as 9k Yeti was our very first title; it’s still one of our top performers, so it’s brilliant to bring the Yeti back”
Going into further detail as to what inspiration was taken from its predecessor and what new features were implemented within the game, he explained that while creating the sequel, the focus was to ensure that it still had the qualities that made 9k Yeti “so successful”.
He remarked: “We wanted players who enjoyed the first game to enjoy 90k Yeti Gigablox even more.”
To achieve this, the style and symbols in the game are mostly kept the same, but with “a bit of a graphical refresh, and then we revisited the features to make them more exciting.”
After receiving feedback from the original title, McLean highlighted that the players “loved the snowstorm” featured in free spins, but wanted to see more of it. Taking this on board, he revealed that the sequel includes three in-reel base game features, each with a guaranteed win.
Walking us through each feature starting off with the Yeti Reveal, he explained that here, the Yeti stomps and smashes Snow Blox from the reels to reveal a win. Meanwhile, the SnowStorm feature sees the Yeti huff and puff and blow the reels around into a win. Lastly, in the Giga Summon feature, The Yeti calls up some of the biggest Gigablox onto the reels, including the largest size of up to 6×6.
With the game’s main new addition being the Gigablox mechanic, McLean also explained that this was featured after the company had “been watching the success of Yggdrasil’s Gigablox mechanic, and decided we wanted to try it ourselves, with our own 4ThePlayer twist.
“When we added in the massive symbols, we thought it would be appropriate to increase the big win potential – it’s gone from x9,000 max win to a huge x90,000 max win.”
Moving onto the game’s main character, the Yeti, Mclean highlighted that “despite looking pretty scary, the Yeti is actually the player’s friend”.
He continued to explain that in 90k Yeti, the character is always present, interacting with the reels and helping the player on their quest, and revealed that the developer “avoided the temptation of excessive teases so the player knows that when the Yeti moves there will be a win.”
Walking us through the features of the new title including the Gigablox mechanic and explaining the process behind why these were implemented, McLean remarked “As usual for us, we wanted to do things a bit differently, so we built the Gigablox game with the highest number of potential ways to win – 46,656 – and the highest possible maximum win – x90,000.”
He continued: “The Gigablock mechanic has been exciting to work with. It’s part of the Yggdrasil GEM mechanics and as we’re part of the YSG Masters program we were invited to licence it.
“If you are not familiar with Gigablox, it has big symbols that can take over the reels: these symbols or ‘Blox’ are 2×2, 3×3, 4×4 or 6×6 on the reels, but are made up of smaller 1×1 symbols – basically, the bigger the blox, the better the wins.”
He explained that in 90k Yeti Gigablox, the Snow Blox that appear on the reels dynamically adjust the number of ways to win on every spin. Meanwhile, in the base game, the Yeti Reveal feature lets the Yeti stomp and smash the snow off the reels, increasing the ways to win on that spin.
“The reason we did this is that it keeps every spin super exciting. The player never knows how many ways to win a spin will have, or what the Yeti will do,” he added.
Pressed as to why 9k Yeti stands as its most popular title, McLean responded “It’s tricky to say”, adding “We think it is probably due to the game having the perfect mix of simple gameplay, outstanding math and win potential. The player knows exactly what they are looking for.”
Finally, with 90k Yeti marking 4Theplayer’s final release for the year, McLean concluded by telling us what we should expect from the developer throughout 2022 and beyond.
“It’s a very exciting time for us as we’ve just had a big recruitment drive that will result in more game releases next year. However, we intend to remain very much a boutique content house, with a focus on quality over quantity.”
Furthermore, he also revealed that the company’s first game next year is themed around a bank heist and the concept of time, while the second features elements and has a “super innovative” evolving feature – “I look forward to telling you more about them nearer the time.”
He added: “We also have our US expansion. One of the great things about going into the US is we can cherry-pick the titles – the ones we know players love.”
Entain has had the limited exclusive launch of 90k Yeti Gigablox, with a network Yggdrasil release on November 1. To try a demo version of the game for yourself, click here to be redirected to the supplier’s official website.