Legend of Cleopatra Megaways: Slot Overview
Combining two unstoppable forces of slots nature, Megaways and Ancient Egypt, is Legend of Cleopatra Megaways from developer Playson. For the studio’s first use of the game engine, they’ve elected to remake one of their older games - Legend of Cleopatra. That one was a little unusual, using a similarly patterned grid to the one found in games like Valley of the Gods 2 or Mega Flip. The Megaways version is a bit more conventional, as is the gameplay. However, Playson has done enough via the aesthetics and features to form a solid foundation for further Megaways use.
First impressions are encouraging. Sure, there is nothing new which hasn’t lit up a thousand previous Egyptian slots, but Payson’s touch is a decent one. There is a charming lightness about the look, and the gently rolling soundtrack adds to the positive feel. Surrounding the reels is a simple view of Pyramids and palm trees. Presumably Giza, yet the load screen displays four Pyramids, while the site is better for the three great one. There are a bunch of minor pyramids scattered around the site, enough to excuse the creative license.
Available on any device where stakes from 20 p/c to £/€100 per spin, the action occurs on a grid containing 6 main reels holding 2-7 symbols each, plus a 4 position horizontal reel running along the top. The mechanic alters the number of symbols on each spin to produce between 324 – 200,704 ways to win. Quite a bit more than the usual 117,649, not that you can really notice the difference most of the time.
This is a game suitable for those up for a potentially long trek through the hot sands, since the way free spins are triggered requires patience. Rewards are there when it goes off, and the high volatility means the game can flip at any moment. RTP is a little down from average, though not hugely so producing a figure of 95.80%. The thing with Playson, however, is that they don't always display the RTP, so beware. Helping keep things interesting on the Egyptian sojourn is a hit rate of 30% as well as a cascade feature. Combine those with the bonus revelation method, and there is a stack of teasing going.
Winners hit when at least three identical symbols land adjacently from the first reel, except for the top paying symbol. Cleopatra needs just two to payout, while a line of 6 is worth 40 times the bet. In descending order after her are a few gods, Horus, Bastet, and Anubis in their animal form, worth 2-4 times the bet for six of a kind. At the lower end of the player table we find 9-A card symbols making up the numbers. A gleaming gold wild symbol completes this section, landing on reels 2, 3, 4, or 5 (not the bonus reel) to replace any regular symbol to complete a win.
Legend of Cleopatra Megaways: Slot Features
The goal in Legend of Cleopatra is to trigger free spins which occurs when symbols are removed from the bonus reel. Players receive help in the form of a Collapsing Symbols feature while picking up Scarab Multipliers along the way.
Collapsing Symbols is the name Playson has given to the regular cascade/reaction feature. This device explodes winning symbols off the grid, making way for new ones to fall into the gaps, possibly creating more wins. Collapsing Symbols trundles on racking up wins until no new combinations appear.
Each of the symbols on the bonus reel may display up to three little tiny scarab badges. When these symbols explode in a win, the scarabs increase the Scarab Multiplier by +1 each. The multiplier is used for any upcoming payouts in the current win sequence. When there are no more wins, the multiplier resets back to x1, in the base game.
The only symbols not replaced by the Collapsing Symbols feature are those on the bonus reel. If the whole reel is cleared in a sequence, 12 free spins are awarded with the current Scarab Multiplier carrying over. During free spins, clearing the bonus reel awards an additional 5 free spins. The difference now is the Scarab Multiplier does not reset between free spins.
Legend of Cleopatra Megaways: Slot Verdict
This is the first Playson slot to use Megaways and it’s not a terrible freshman effort. It helps that the studio has designed a bunch of other Egyptian themed games in the past, so they are familiar with the environment. Even so, Legend of Cleopatra Megaways is a somewhat enjoyable game to play. The look is friendly, the sounds are soothing, and the team has used the power provided by Megaways to greatly enhance the original Legend of Cleopatra slot.
The gameplay isn’t quite so benign. The way free spins are triggered is a major tease – in a good and bad way. Bad since there can be significant lengths of time between bonus games, which doesn’t always go your way. Good, in that, the method adds a greater than normal level of tension. Many times you get close to clearing the bonus reel, but no cigar. Or, a win appears, clears a few symbols, then you’re doing quick mental calculations of what is needed on the next cascade to clear the remaining symbols blocking the bonus. It’s fun and provides a side activity to keep you engaged while waiting for free spins.
Playson has done a nice job with the popular Collapsing Symbols feature as well. Wins are well balanced between one-off hits and the occasional longer chains. Add in the satisfying sounds of blocks landing or exploding, and the base game ticks along nicely. So nicely, it’s easy to overlook the balance constantly chipping away. On the other hand, Scarab Multipliers plus up to 200,704 ways to win can tip the balance back in your favour, producing sizeable wins during free spins. With that said, the max payout observed in 500 million spins during testing was 6,584 times the stake which we have to say is disappointingly low for a Megaways slot.
All in all, Legend of Cleopatra Megaways is a decent first Megaways outing from the Playson team. No, it’s not a super innovative use of the game engine, but it looks good, the basics are amply covered, and its features provide just what you expect.
It might be pretty standard stuff, but Legend of Cleopatra Megaways is fairly enjoyable nonetheless and a good enough Megaways debut.