Gold Volcano: Overview
Developer Play’n GO flexes its grid slot muscle in the lava flowing game Gold Volcano. Volcanoes pop in the slot world from time to time, which is no wonder, given their raw power, and the emotional response they produce. However, Play‘n GO hasn’t picked volcanoes just for the heck of it. They have integrated the theme seamlessly with almost every aspect of the game.
The rumbling starts with the grid itself which has 8 columns arranged into a 3-4-5-6-6-5-4-3 configuration creating a mountainous shape. Faded white dots above the grid allude to what is possible during bonus features when it expands. Located behind the transparent grid is the volcano itself which does look pretty threatening .
From fear to wonder, and everything in between, any volcanophobiacs out there may find the view a little unsettling. A volcano erupting during a slot is almost always a good thing though, so most players will be hoping it blows at some point.
Volcanoes, by their very nature are volatile entities. Either they’re sitting there doing nothing, or they’re erupting and causing all sorts of mayhem. Gold Volcano might not be the most volatile slot, but it has been rated 7 out of 10 which is still high on Play'n GO's volatility meter. Default RTP is a respectable at 96.2%, though this is configurable and may be offered at a lower setting.
Playable from 10 p/c up to £/€100 per spin, players are required to land 4 or more matching symbols touching vertically or horizontally to constitute a winning cluster. As you’d expect from this game style, winning symbols are then removed from the grid to let new ones fall into the gaps. This cascade mechanic continues to run along until no new winning clusters appear.
Opening up the paytable reveals 8 regular pay symbols, which are a little plain considering the theme. Then again, what sort of volcano based symbols could you use? Lava, flying chunks of magma, clouds of poisonous gas?
It’s not overly inviting imagery, so instead we get diamonds, clubs, hearts, and spades as the low pays. The high pays are four gems, coloured purple, red, green, and finally the Gold symbol. Gold symbols are by far the most desirable - here’s why. Clusters of 30+ lesser symbols range in value up to 35x for the green gem. However, landing 30+ Gold symbols are worth 1,000 times your stake.
Gold Volcano: Features
It wouldn’t be a grid slot without a ton of features, and Gold Volcano offers several during the base game as well as a triggerable bonus game. During the base game, the Dormant feature may appear on any non-winning spin. When activated, one of three effects comes into play:
- Rumble – all symbols on the grid are shuffled to provide a new chance to win. Also, a scatter symbol is created in the process.
- Lava – one extra layer of any symbol except the scatter is created.
- Excavate – places three to five wilds in random positions on the grid.
From the Dormant stage we move to the Pressure phase. The Pressure feature is triggered at random when winning symbols are removed from the grid. A wild symbol is created in one of the empty spaces before the new symbols cascade into the gaps. Wild symbols may even come with an x2 multiplier. Having more than one multiplier wild in a cluster has their values multiplied together rather than added.
Keep an eye out for the glowing rock scatter which is the key to the Crystallisation feature. Every 3 collected scatters transforms one of the lesser high pay groups into Gold symbols. The collection/transformation process resets at the end of each spin, except when the bonus feature is triggered. In that case, the current progression is carried over and not reset.
When enough pressure builds up in a volcano, the final cataclysmic step is an eruption. When 6 consecutive cascades occur, the Eruption bonus comes into play. Here, 5 free spins are awarded, which are all played on an expanded 8x8 grid where the volcano pushes symbols from the centre columns to fill the outside positions. During free spins, the Crystallisation feature is not reset between free spins. Moreover, an extra free spin is awarded when 6 consecutive cascades occur.
Gold Volcano: Verdict
Gold Volcano is another well-designed grid slot from the Play’n GO team. You have no idea what these guys will do next, though you don’t have to wait too long to find out due to their busy release schedule. Gold Volcano is one that makes great use of the immense power of volcanos as a theme, thanks to the grid arrangement and the way symbols are distributed. Even better is the way the theme integrates with the features – which have also been cleverly named.
Gold Volcano might not be as highly volatile as some heavy-hitting grid slots out there, but it is still high. This broader setting opens the door for a range of players who will be able to appreciate the mix of gameplay with the crafty features. Another attractive draw is sure to the potential. At up to 10,000 times the stake, Volcano Gold offers double the amount you usually see in a Play’n GO title.
To sum up, Gold Volcano is another top grid slot entry into the Play’n GO range. It’s a little different to what they usually do, which is nice to see, and provides something novel for players to have a crack. Its unusual setup, compelling gameplay, and larger than normal potential provide Gold Volcano plenty of intrigue.
Game title: Gold Volcano