Archer has a face as pretty as Maid Marion but a heart as black as the Sheriff of Nottingham. The low RTP of 94.99% and medium volatility should warn you away from these woods.
Archer is a slot that has clearly been built around the iconography of Robin Hood, but has leaned away from being direct about it in the title.
Given how familiar we all are with the Robin Hood mythos, it is no bad thing that this slot takes a different tack. Making what was old, new again.
Perhaps it was for the same reason their Robin Hood looks rather old, and their Friar Tuck and Guy Gisborne look eerily like brothers. The strange character designs notwithstanding, Archer does a nice take on the story with a well-built world for the characters to inhabit and plenty of medieval style in the designs.
Archer’s graphics are well designed, offering a neat new take on the familiar characters. There is some pixelation in the imagery that gives the whole thing the feel of late-90s point and click adventures.
The animations are a little basic. And really just highlight the few things that are necessary to make wins clear and to sell the player on the idea that there really are reels spinning.
There is also a musical track that plays as part of the spin sounds and does a good job of echoing the musical score of those technicolour classics put out by Hollywood in the mid-20th Century.
Archer is on the face of it a simple five reel slot with three rows and an any way wins system.
However, it sports a neat little gameplay feature in the base game called Expand and Split. Random cells on the reels have an arrow border. When these symbols are part of a winning combo and a Scatter is present on the reels, they expand to fill their entire row.
However, instead of replacing the other symbols on the reel, those other symbols split and become both their original symbol and the expanded one.
The Wild symbol substitutes for all symbols except the Scatter symbol and appears on reels two, three and four.
Three or more Scatter symbols anywhere on the reels trigger a Free Spin bonus in which the player starts with seven free spins. They also pay out twice the player’s bet per spin for three Scatters, and ten and fifty times the player’s bet for four and five Scatters respectively.
During the free spins, the Expand and Split feature is triggered for all symbols with an arrow border if they are part of a winning combination. This is different from the base game, where the Expand and Split feature is triggered only when a Scatter is also present.
Free Spins can be retriggered with no upper limit to the total number of Free Spins.
The return to player of this game is 94.99%, a little over a percentage point below our yardstick for average of roughly 96%. This counts badly against the game, especially as the volatility is only medium.
Medium volatility makes this slot a poor match for our preferred slot machine strategies. Our slot strategies target the highest possible volatility. This could be made up for by a generous RTP, but this slot opts to steal from the rich, without giving to the poor.
The range of bets on the site we tested ran from a minimum bet per spin of $/£/€0.25 up to a maximum of $/£/€1,250.00 per spin.
Archer is a fun, immersive Robin Hood-themed slot with some nice little visual quirks that keep it fresh.
However, once the surface is scratched, the game is rather dull. The Expand and Split feature by itself is interesting, but does not manage to work with the other features to create something worth playing.
On top of this the poor RTP means the game is expensive to play, and the medium volatility won’t work as well with our slot strategies as higher volatility games.