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Every now and then you come across a slot online in NJ that totally defies categorization.
Frederic Vs Francois In It For The Monet is a perfect example.
The tagline “In It For The Monet” gives you a hint as to the theme. This is very much about art, and the two protagonists that form the basis of the slot are quite clearly French.
Just as the French are known for their unique style, this slot is like no other.
Overview: Frederic Vs Francois
The general theme of the Frederic Vs Francois slot is art, but this isn’t art that you will instantly recognize.
Both of the main characters are cartoon artists whose stylized portraits, although based on some of the world’s most recognizable paintings, are interesting caricatures.
In terms of game mechanics, this is a 5×3 reel slot, and it boasts 15 paylines in operation with spins costing between $30 and $0.15 depending on how much you want to wager. You can find it online at Virgin Casino in New Jersey.
There’s a free spins bonus round accessed via the Easel Bonus symbol landing across three reels. There is also a wild symbol (which offers the largest base game jackpot prize) and a Running Man scatter symbol that offers a cash payout.
Who will the Frederic Vs Francois slot appeal to?
Frederic Vs Francois is so different that it is hard to say who will enjoy it. It contains many elements comedic and artistic, and I think it will have a broad appeal for many individuals.
The trio of bonus features, a bonus free spins round, and the chance to win up to $50,000 on the reels are all positives.
Given that the structure of the slot is relatively standard, even if the theme is unique, it should certainly have a broad appeal for slot fans, too.
Gameplay: Frederic Vs Francois
So we have a general idea of how the slot is organized and what its theme is. How that manifests itself across the reels is in a mixture of symbols.
There are the usual playing card low symbols (10 through to the ace), but these are decorated in an artistic style, which is rather a nice touch and stops them from sticking out like sore thumbs in an otherwise inventive slot.
The higher value symbols are represented by Frederic and Francois’ recreations of world famous paintings.
The two highest-value paintings offer a payout when you land just two symbols on a payline from left to right. While these wins are only 2x or 5x the payline, they can still help add funds to your balance until a bigger win comes along.
We have already commented on the unusual aesthetics of the slot, and that does extend to the soundtrack, which is a rather cheerful musical number.
I don’t think I’d actually call the music French at all; it actually sounds more like the start of a TV show theme. It is certainly cheery enough initially, though I doubt it will be too long before people hit the mute button.
The gameplay itself is rather mixed. You can have longer periods playing the slot when it doesn’t seem to pay out hardly anything. But then you can hit a relatively lucrative spell.
However, the free spins bonus is frustratingly elusive, and there are an annoying amount of near misses when you hit two out of the three symbols but not that crucial third.
The running scatter symbol simply pays out a cash award when it is landed three or more times across the reel, which is a bit of a waste as there was plenty of opportunity for an art-themed bonus game to be triggered here.
The Easel Bonus symbol is the way to achieve the free spins, and you need three or more of these across the reels, starting on reel one and going through to reel three and so on. This can take an age to trigger, but when you do you are given a chance to pick from many options that reveal a number of free spins and a multiplier.
The game then plays through the free spins round at the same stake as the original spins, and any cash won during free spins is awarded to you. You can re-trigger free spins by landing three or more easel symbols during the round.
The wild symbol in the game is a painting depicting both Frederic and Francois with the word “Wild” etched across the front.
This can substitute for all higher and lower value symbols to create winning paylines as well as offering the jackpot top prize of 10,000 coins when five are landed across a winning payline.
The scatter symbol in the game is a picture depicting a running man. This symbol pays out in any position across the reels when you land two or more of them.
Prizes range from 3x your total bet to 50x your total bet for five across the reels.
Land three or more of the Easel Bonus symbols to launch the bonus game. Make selections to decide the number of free spins you get, plus the size of your multiplier.
You then play through free spins to earn a prize, and you can re-trigger additional free spins from within the bonus round.
There is something so unique about the Frederic Vs Francois slot that you can’t help but be intrigued by the presentation.
The slot looks remarkable, even if it doesn’t actually play differently than many other slots.
It is worth noting that you do win regularly on the slot, but there can be periods when almost nothing happens.
Mix of wins
The mix of win sizes in the base game gives Frederick Vs Francois a lot of enduring appeal. You can see your account drained of money at times, but a big win tends to bolster it more often than not.
Free spins hard to hit
The biggest bone of contention is that the free spins bonus round is exceptionally hard to hit.
Worst of all, the slot seems to produce many near misses, which can significantly increase your consternation levels at being unable to land the base game.
Use of scatter symbol
The scatter symbol in the game, the running man, is a tad disappointing payout-wise. There was real potential to develop a second bonus game linked with the theme of the game.
Music can get annoying
Initially, the cheerful music is rather pleasant, but after a few spins it tends to grate on the nerves.
Graphics and soundtrack: 3/5
The music can get a bit irritating if you have been playing for a while.
But the graphics on the slot are unlike any we’ve seen, and it is a very clever idea for a slot game. The graphics, especially the representations of famous pictures, have been cleverly done.
Originality and creativity: 3.5/5
I feel a tad mean giving this slot just 3.5 here as it is genuinely a slot that looks like no other I have played.
However, the gameplay is a tad formulaic, and the fact that there aren’t enough bonus features hurts its originality.
Play value: 3.5/5
You can play this slot for a decent amount of time provided you manage your bankroll effectively. Smaller wins are substantiated by larger wins relatively frequently.
Jackpot potential: 3/5
You can win up to $50,000 on this slot – not a small amount of money.
With the base game offering up to 10,000x your payline bet for five wilds on a payline, this a slot that has decent jackpot potential.
Repeat play: 3/5
The one major irritation is how difficult it is to hit the free spins round. That could deter players from playing, but the actual game works nicely enough.
There is the right balance between risk and reward.
Total score: 16/25
This is an incredibly original slot for sure, but it has added substance beyond the initial wow factor.
The base game is quite good and, while the difficulty encountered when landing free spins does detract a little from the enjoyment, its quirky nature and healthy base game wins will keep people playing.
Image credit: Kvitka Fabian / Shutterstock, Inc.