Charms of the Sea is a 5 reel, 20 payline slot from Playtech. With a mermaid theme, you can spin away underwater from 20p to £500 a spin on all devices including laptops, smartphones and tablets. It comes with special Mermaid symbols that expand to give you bigger wins and 3 wild features.
Theme wise, you are taken under the sea to a beautiful setting – with coral reefs, fish, sharks and a treasure chest in the moving backdrop, symbols on the reels include 4 low value pearls in oyster shells (red, yellow, green and blue) as well as octopi, crabs, fish and seahorses. The pink gem-like stone is the wild symbol are replaces all symbols bar the Mermaid symbol – it’s also the most lucrative giving you a whopping 500 times your stake for 5 across a payline.
The Mermaid symbol is the most important symbol in Charms of the Sea – she pays her paytable worth/value by the number of times she appears on the reels. When 2 or 3 Mermaid symbols land on consecutive reels beginning from reel 1, and 1 of them has a silver frame, every Mermaid symbol expands to a 2×1 size – giving you bigger wins.
When 3 or 4 Mermaid symbols appear on consecutive reels beginning from reel 1 with 1 of the symbols having a gold frame, every Mermaid symbol becomes 2×2 in size. If you get 4 Mermaid symbols on consecutive reels starting again from reel 1 with 2 of the symbols having gold frames, all Mermaid symbols expand and combine to give you a huge 5×3 symbol – covering the whole reel set. You will then win 250 times your total stake. This is known as the Mermaid Expansion feature.
Charms of the Sea also comes with 3 wild features. First up you have the Stacked Wilds feature which is randomly triggered on any base game spin. You will see a ray of light move back and forth over the 3 middle reels – 1 of them is then chosen with that reel filled with wilds (to give you a wild reel).
The wild reel locks in place with a free respin to follow – the ray of light appears again to stop of 1 of the 3 middle reels. If it stops on a reel with no locked wild symbols, that reel becomes a wild reel with another free respin awarded. This can happy a third time if you lucky giving you a 3rd and final respin with 3 wild reels locked in place.
Then you have the Wild Chunks feature which, again, is triggered at random. A fortune wheel appears and spins to reveal the number of wilds you’ve won – this can be 2, 4, 6 or 9. The wilds are then added in a 2×1, 2×2, 2×3 or 3×3 block on the 3 middle reels (depending on how many wilds you got). Basically, you can end up with 3 fully wild reels here if you’re lucky.
Finally, you have the Sticky Wilds feature – you’ve guessed it, it’s activated randomly in the base game. Once in, 3 extra wilds are added randomly on the 3 middle reels. They then lock in place with a free respin the follow – on the respin, another 3 wilds are added to the 3 middle reels which then lock in place for the final respin. Here, 3 more wilds are added – wilds can overlap but you could end up to 3 wild reels altogether.
Charms of the Sea is a very fast-paced game and the Mermaid symbol can cause some confusion – a few spins in demo mode will help explain that better. Basically, Mermaid symbols can expand and combine to give you bigger wins – filling the reel set with Mermaid symbols will result in a 250 times stake win.
The bigger wins will come from the 3 randomly triggered wild features – I particularly like the Stacked Wilds feature as you will get 1 wild reel per respin if you’re lucky to hopefully give you 3 wild reels at the end of it. If you manage to fill the reels with wilds, you will win the maximum 10,000 times your stake per spin!
It’s a medium to high variance game so don’t let the Mermaid theme fool you – it’s a very good game with good bonus features. If you like the theme, Play ‘N Go’s Mermaid’s Diamond or Iron Dog Studio’s Siren’s Kingdom are recommended.