We can confidently say that style is Mancala Gaming’s forte, even when the provider tackles classic slot themes that are incredibly popular at the vast majority of casinos. Fruit Collector is a breath of fresh air, not just thanks to its aesthetics and layout, but the gameplay as well. Between the Life Bar mechanic, the free spins, and the game’s other features, Mancala Gaming has done a lot with the 1-reel slot concept, and it has succeeded in creating quite the action-packed title.
We were also pleased to see that Mancala Gaming’s interface is just as convenient as always, seeing as there are 15+ language options available, you can access the auto-spin mechanic by long-pressing the spin button, and switching between landscape and portrait on mobile takes no time at all.
Fruit Collector Theme, Graphics, and Sounds
In terms of its looks, veteran gamblers might find Fruit Collector to evoke feelings of nostalgia as the slot borrows its aesthetics from retro slot machines. The graphics quality certainly meets modern gaming standards, however, and there are also some major aspects of Fruit Collector’s layout that make it stand out. There is only one reel, after all, and next to it we can see the game’s Buy Bonus button, the Scatter symbol counter, and the collection of fruits you accumulate during gameplay. On that topic, the icons in Fruit Collector are the classic fruit symbols that used to be the default in older slot machines, and the Lucky 7 is the star of the show. The music you can hear in the background has a catchy beat and is pretty dynamic all in all, which prevents it from sounding monotonous. Style-wise, it further contributes to the retro atmosphere of the slot.
Fruit Collector Symbols and Payouts
To say that Fruit Collector’s layout is unique would be an understatement. You have one reel at your disposal, and during the base game, only the middle position of the reel counts towards creating winning combinations. During Free Spins, however, the winline can be on one of three possible positions as opposed to just the middle row, thanks to the Bonus Life feature.
It takes three symbols to score a win, which means that you will need to spin the reel multiple times in order to get a full set of winning icons and a payout. You can keep track of your fruit collection in the box on the left of the reel, while the Bell-count is displayed in the Free Spins section on the right.
Players should also note that there is a life bar at the top of the reel. The bar fills up with three hearts, i.e. your lives, whenever you get a Bell icon or a symbol that can be added to a winning combination-to-be, and so long as you keep getting such icons, no lives are consumed. You will also keep your lives if you land a respin symbol. If an empty spot lands on the payline, however, then you lose one life. Once you run out of lives, all of the combinations that were in progress will be reset to zero. A line of symbols will also reset when the said icons achieve a win.
As established, you need to get 3 symbols in order to score a win, and the first icon with a payout is the Cherry. It grants the player their bet x1 whenever a 3-win combination is formed. Next we have the Oranges, which have a payout of 2x your bet. The symbol that follows is the plum, and getting three copies of this fruit nets you your stake times 4. The Watermelon is the most rewarding fruit icon, as landing a win via this icon will win you 7x your bet. Then there is the Bar pays out your stake x10. The last icon is the Lucky 7, which grants you your stake x50, making it the most lucrative symbol.
As established, the game also has a scatter icon, the Bell, three of which trigger the Free Spins bonus. There is also a Wild Horseshoe symbol which adds a random symbol to your fruit collection if it is empty. If you get a wild when you already have fruit patterns that are in progress, the Horseshoe will grant you a copy of each fruit that is in the process of forming a winning combination. Finally, the Special Respin icon is a base game only symbol that grants a respin.
Fruit Collector Bonus Mechanics
Apart from its innovative core gameplay, Fruit Collector also has a few extra features up its sleeve. The first such bonus is the Free Spins mechanic, which you will access whenever you manage to earn a total of 3 Bell Scatters. You get 15 free spins in total, and you are also granted three lives automatically at the start.
After each spin is executed and the result is reflected in the game, the winline pointer will move and land on one of three possible positions. This is dubbed Fruit Collector’s Bonus Life mechanic, which can be activated only during the Bonus Game. The pointer landing on an empty position once during one spin will not cost you a life, thanks to this feature. You will only lose a life if the arrow points to an empty spot both times.
Like in the base game, fruits are added to your collection when they land on an active pointer, and Wilds grant additional fruits. Scatter and respins icons, however, are not available during this mode. We should also emphasise that your symbol progress, as well as your life count, will be kept once you run out of free spins.
Fruit Collector’s Respin mechanic is the next feature. It is pretty straightforward, as you simply need to land a Special Respin Symbol in order to receive one respin. As we touched upon above, this feature is only available in the base game.
The final extra feature of this slot is the Buy Bonus, which lets you buy your way into the Free Spins mechanic. As with the Free Spins feature that is triggered naturally, you will be granted three lives at the start, and the Second Chance mechanic will be enabled throughout the entire duration of the Free Spins mode. Do take note that buying the Free Spins bonus will reset your base game fruit collection progress, so the most optimal strategy is to buy free games when your fruit count is at zero.
All in all, we were more than impressed with what Fruit Collector has to offer. The game is packed with a good variety of bonus features, which are fun and very easy to get the hang of. The visuals of the slot are great, as is the sound design, and the overall experience will cater to both players who prefer familiarity, and those looking for something new and unique to spice up their gaming sessions. The fact that Fruit Collector is an HTML5 title also means you can enjoy playing this slot while you are out and about.