Perfect Gems (Play'n GO): Review
Wearing their devil-may-care attitude like a bullet-proof vest, Play'n GO has made sure to keep the popcorn flowing this year, and with the Starblast controversy still in fresh memory, more drama may very well come our way as the company prepares to roll out Perfect Gems, a Bonanza clone with an in-house take on the popular Megaways game engine. Instead of doing what they're expected to do in a situation like this, which is to acquire a Megaways license from Big Time Gaming like everyone else, Play'n GO has come up with a much cheaper solution. Granted, it's a bold move, but one that is likely to backfire.
It's hard to categorise the theme to the finest degree, but you won't have to get your hands dirty in a mine shaft and you certainly won't have to endure Nik's (CEO of BTG) exhausting, but equally brilliant banjo loop. What you get instead is something more baroque and slightly more fanciful. With 6 reels and a horizontal reel on top, the game can give you up to 21,609 ways to win with all reels are fully expanded. There's also a Win Multiplier feature where each win cascade increases the multiplier, a feature that applies both in the main game and the free spins feature where unlimited spins can be retriggered. You can play it across all devices from between 20 cents to 100 Euros per spin.
Perfect Gems has a classic feel to it and appears to be set inside a work area of some sort in what could very well be the English Renaissance period. On the reels you will see A to 9 card suit symbols along with more rewarding pink, green, yellow and blue gems, the latter being the most lucrative, giving you 25 times your stake for 6 of a kind. There's a wild as well, which only appears on the top horizontal reel and which performs the usual substituting duties.
Perfect Gems (Play'n GO): Features
What Big Time Gaming calls Megaways, Play'n GO refers to as Payways, and while there are apparent similarities between the two, the game engine in Perfect Gems is not quite as straightforward. Here, the 1st and 6th reels are fixed to 3 symbols while the middle reels in-between are dynamic and can expand to 4 symbols. However, with the help of the Horizontal Reel feature, the middle reels can expand up to 7 symbols high if a symbol on the horizontal reel lines up with, and is identical to, a symbol on the reel below, in which case it will split into two. Fully expanded, you can benefit from 21,609 ways to win.
Pay attention to the Win Multiplier in the top left corner, it increases by 1 with each win cascade as winning symbols are removed and replaced with new ones. The multiplier will reset itself when a cascade finally fails to generate a winning combination.
It's all about the Perfect Gems Free Spins feature here - land 3, 4, 5 or 6 scatter symbols anywhere on the reels to win 9, 15, 21 or 27 spins respectively. The regular scatter is now replaced by the Spin scatter which will add 2 extra spins to your total each time it appears in view. There is no limit to how many times you can retrigger the free spins feature. The Win Multiplier applies here as well, and the multiplier value active when triggering the feature is even carried over to the free spins. The multiplier will never reset itself here and can only go up.
Perfect Gems (Play'n GO): Verdict
Perfect Gems is yet another controversial slot from Play'n GO that surely won't go down too well with Big Time Gaming, a company that's had a lot of success licensing out its Megaways game engine. For reasons mentioned, it feels a bit awkward to review and evaluate Perfect Gems as, ultimately, it's such a blatant clone of Bonanza, although the developers have tried to cover it up and distance it by making some tweaks and changes to the gameplay.
If we put all the industry politics aside, Perfect Gems is undoubtedly a great slot that looks good, runs smoothly and offers plenty of thrill and potential. High variance, you can land wins of up to 5000 times your stake in both the main game and the free spins feature. All that remains is to see whether or not Play'n GO will get away with the Perfect Crime (no pun intended).