Pug Thugs of Nitropolis

(ELK Studios) Slot Review

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ELK Studios

✅ Pug Thugs of Nitropolis Demo & Casinos

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Pug Thugs of Nitropolis: Slot Overview

After itching and scratching our way through critter-infested slots featuring Gritty Kitties, Dirty Dawgs, and Rogue Rats, it's time for the Pug Thugs to shine. The game is Pug Thugs of Nitropolis and is ELK Studios' final build-up slot before they drop Nitropolis 5 on the scene. Like an atom bomb? If everything that's preceded it is any guide, then yes, it should be a goody. There was a thought ELK Studios might ease up when making slots dedicated to a single clan, but no, the studio has poured some excellent gaming ideas into each while not scrimping on the presentation. Factor in a pug's cuteness, and the makings are positive for another solid Nitropolis slot.

So far, Rogue Rats of Nitropolis was arguably the most experimental of the lot mechanically. It played like no other, doing away with the usual online slot accoutrements. Pug Thugs of Nitropolis isn't as experimental, but it uses a pay system that's a cross between clusters and paylines. In a nutshell, it has connecting paylines that can start from all four sides of the grid. The grid itself has 6 reels, laid out in a pattern of 4-5-5-5-4 active symbols. Technically a 6x6 grid, on each corner can be found special Feature Screens, triggering features at random. As for the environment, Pug Thugs of Nitropolis lays on the Pugs' floating workshop/home/blimp, hovering above a cloudy skyscrapered landscape. It gave off vague Guardians of the Galaxy feels, a pug filling in for the role of Rocket Racoon, the furry inventor and lover of all things gadgety.

Pug Thugs of Nitropolis slot
Pug Thugs of Nitropolis slot - base game

In this game, players may choose a stake of 20 c to $/€100, and there are five X-iter bonus modes optionally engageable. A highly volatile slot, Pug Thugs of Nitropolis posts ELK Studios' standard 94% RTP value no matter what mode it's in. Winning combinations begin from the edges of the gaming grid and pay through at least 3 matching symbols connected either straight or diagonally. All winning symbols and Nitro Reels respin after a win.

The pay symbols appearing on the matrix include Jack to Ace card rank lows, then a gun, a computer, a rocket pack, and a pug. Hitting a line of 6 matching royals pays 0.5 to 0.7 times the bet, while 1 to 2 times the bet is paid when a line of 6 matching high pays hit. Wilds substitute for all paying symbols. A line of all wilds has the same value as the highest-paying symbol.

Pug Thugs of Nitropolis: Slot Features

Pug Thugs of Nitropolis slot
Pug Thugs of Nitropolis slot - super free spins

Strap in for the extras where we cover Nitro Reels, Feature Screen features, Nitro Insane, the free spins bonus rounds, and X-iter feature buys.

Nitro Reels

A Nitro Reel is a special symbol that contains a stack of symbols in one position. The size of the stack is indicated by the number on the Nitro Reel. Nitro Reels only appear inside the central 4x4 area on the grid. Intersecting paylines create a Nitro Reel at the intersection position after the payout. If there is already a Nitro Reel in the position, the Nitro Reel is upgraded to a maximum of 8. Nitro Reels containing scatter symbols represent only 1 symbol instance. Nitro Reels containing coin symbols contribute the number of coins represented by the size indicator when collected. All Nitro Reels land the same symbol after respins.

Feature Screens

The 4 Feature Screens may randomly trigger their respective modifier. More than one modifier can trigger at the same time:

  • Make Big - expands a random symbol on the grid to 2x2, 3x3, or 4x4.
  • Collect - activated before a win evaluation, it collects coin values on the grid. Coin symbols respin after a collect, landing either a coin symbol or a pay symbol. This repeats till there are no more coin symbols in view. The accumulated coin value is then awarded. At the start of the Collect feature, a Coin Rain may randomly trigger, scattering additional coins on the reels.
  • Nitro Wild - converts one or more Nitro Reels on the grid into Nitro Wilds containing wild symbols.
  • Nitro Match - selects a random symbol on the grid and matches all Nitro Reels in view to the selected symbol.

Nitro Insane

The Nitro Insane feature may trigger randomly at the start of any spin. Nitro Insane places a random number of Nitro Reels on the reels before the spin stops.

Free Spins

Hitting at least 3 scatters triggers the free spins bonus game - more scatters trigger more free spins. A Nitro Insane is triggered at the start of each free spin, and there is no super scatter symbol in the bonus game. However, if at least one of the triggering scatter symbols is a super version, then the super bonus game is triggered. In this feature, all Nitro Reels are sticky and remain in place till the round ends. Landing 3 or more scatter symbols during bonus rounds awards additional free spins. Bonus mode starts when potential respins and activated features have been played. Any features not yet activated are deleted.

X-iter

From the X-iter, it is possible to activate these bonuses:

  • Bonus Hunt - 3x the bet for triple the chance of triggering the bonus game.
  • Nitro Insane - 10x the bet for a spin with Nitro Insane.
  • Nitro Insane Plus - 25x the bet for a spin with Nitro Insane and one random Feature Screen.
  • Bonus game - 100x the bet.
  • Super Bonus Game - 500x the bet.
Pug Thugs of Nitropolis slot
Pug Thugs of Nitropolis slot - super free spins

Pug Thugs of Nitropolis: Slot Verdict

Whilst Pug Thugs of Nitropolis is a relatively conventional Nitropolis slot in some ways, well, compared to the Rat release, it successfully adds extra depth to the range. Nitro Reels, a key plank in the series, are here, and are responsible for providing many of the best moments. Capped at 8, they might not go as crazy as some Nitropolis slots have done in the past, but when mixed with the connected ways pay system and the fact the game pays in 4 directions, there are opportunities here for achieving exciting results.

Or not, you never know. This is an ELK Studios slot, and they aren't exactly designed to make friends. They are entertaining, however, and Pug Thugs of Nitropolis can pour on the mayhem with the best of them. There's no faulting the audiovisuals as usual, though the gameplay might turn out to be capricious. Be doubly aware that this is not a cluster pays slot, to avoid wondering why the heck all those Nitro Reels aren't paying on the respin. They can do, when enough matching symbols connect them to one of the grid's four sides. It's an ingenious twist on both the regular cluster/paylines method and leads to moments of tease and potential reward. At best, Pug Thugs of Nitropolis goes as high as 25,000x the bet, meaning the game holds its own in the payout department.

With Pug Thugs of Nitropolis out of the way, we've cleared the four clan-centric Nitropolis slots, thereby making way for Nitropolis 5 to roll into town. No pressure on ELK Studios or anything, but it's hard not to envisage the developer dropping a massive release on the gambling community to cap the whole project off.

Great

Pug Thugs of Nitropolis is another feature-heavy Nitro Reel thrill ride, told from the Pug Thug clan’s point of view this time.

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