Helloween: Slot Overview
Before the grammar police start bashing away at their keyboards, no Helloween is not a typo. It doesn’t just allude to the celebration, currently huge in America, yet slowly eking its way around the rest of the world much to the despair of parents uncomfortable with their kids wandering around at night knocking on strangers’ doors. It also refers to German shredders Helloween, founded in 1984 by two members who are still rocking with the group – bassist Markus Grosskopf and guitarist Michael Weikath.
Those that have been following Play’n GO will spot Helloween as another release in the studio’s series of rock-themed slots which also includes titles such as Annihilator, Demon, Sabaton, Twisted Sister, Testament, and Saxon.
Helloween is a little unusual in the series because it doesn’t present any of the band members onscreen, past or present. Instead, the game’s 5-reel, 10-payline grid can be found in a castle tower, with views out of its huge arches of the surrounding countryside, all forests and mountains. The mystical side of the theme is crystallised on the reels which display numerous arcane imagery. Here we find all sorts of monsters, magic, and a ton of pumpkins. While Helloween’s presentation borders on the eccentric, its gameplay is solidly conventional.
The band isn’t completely absent, making its presence felt where it counts – through its music. Fans will be thrilled to know that the Helloween slot has lifted tracks right from the band’s seminal albums Keeper of the Seven Keys Part 1 and 2. Certain features have been named after hit songs, creating an eclectic yet rather sweet homage to the German rockers.
Helloween may be played on any device offering bets ranging from 10 p/c to £/€100 per spin. The math model produces a bunch of familiar stats from Play’n GO, that is, the medium volatility version. Officially rated 6/10 by the studio, so perhaps a softer ride than the ‘heavy’ metal vibe might suggest. No complaints about the RTP, the default value at least, of 96.2%, though be sure to check. Helloween’s settings may be altered by the operator, meaning RTP may be lower.
The symbols aren’t quite what fans of the band might have been expecting, aside from the metally 9-A low pay card royals. Premiums are more in line with Halloween the celebration, sort of. In ascending order are creepy hands, a bunch of creatures, a mystic waving over a crystal ball, and a ring adorned with a pumpkin face. It’s an odd mix, worth 8 to 20 times the stake for five of a kind.
If there is one thing Helloween isn’t short of its wilds. There are no less than 7 of them, popping up at certain points in the game, all based around pumpkins in some form or other. The normal wild has been styled in the fashion of a jack o’ lantern, replacing any pay symbol to make a winning combination. Wild also pay out 20x for five of a kind.
Helloween: Slot Features
Matching the seven wilds are seven different bonus games. The trick is to land 3 scatters on reels 1, 3, and 5 to unlock the Keeper of the Seven Keys Feature Wheel. This wheel spins to award one of the seven free spins games. Each one comes with 5 free spins, except Helloween Free Spins which has 7.
- I’m Alive – is based around spreading wilds. When wilds land on the reels, they become sticky and expand up or down until they fill the full reel, then disappear.
- Future Wild – whenever the Future Wild lands on the grid it expands to fill the entire reel.
- Eagle Fly Free – here wilds float around the reels to help create wins. One wild is added to the reels per spin, remaining on the slot for the rest of the feature. In between spins, these wilds fly around, landing in a new position each time.
- Dr Stein – this feature is all about experimentation. Here, a low pay symbol type is selected and all instances of it in view turn wild.
- March of Time – any wild that lands sticks to the reels, taking one step to the left on each spin until they fall off the final reel.
- I Want Out – each time wilds land in this game, they swallow the symbols around them and blow up into a 2×2 sized symbol.
- Helloween Free Spins – during these 7 free spins, every three scatters collected triggers the feature wheel and awards another feature to play.
The last extra is the Helloween Multiplier, located at the top of the grid. At the end of any feature, a multiplier of x2, x3, x5, or x10 may be applied to the total win.
Helloween: Slot Verdict
Helloween is quite an unusual mix of elements that just sort of works. For a branded slot type experience, it is quite low on the actual branding although there are some cut scenes of the band included. Just looking at screenshots wouldn’t be enough to deduce Helloween is based around a rock band that’s been in the business for over 30 years. Crank up the volume, and it’s a whole other story though – one which will knock the socks off fans of Helloween or anyone into an older metal style. Back when hair was as big as the riffs, and vocalists could hit the sort of high notes contemporary singers can only dream of.
As to the gameplay, the math model is not as boisterous as the pounding soundtrack, but the seven features aren’t bad and can be expected to trigger frequently. Despite the high number of features they are quite similar, all revolving around wilds of various ability. Having a different looking wild for each bonus game is a nice touch, however. You don’t get many free spins though unless you manage to retrigger the Helloween bonus, so you’ll need some luck to pile up a decent win. The game is technically capable of hitting 5,000 times the stake, so there is room to maneuverer should the magic of Halloween be with you. More realistically speaking though, most bonuses will pay around 10x to 50x with the occasional 100x to 300x.
Add it all up and you’ve got another solid performer in Play’n GO’s rock range. Helloween is nowhere near the biggest, baddest slot in the collection, but kudos to the studio for branching out to expose less mainstream acts to a wider audience.