Even with the addition of the PopWins feature, the base game of HelioPOPolis doesn't feel as exciting as some similar cascading reel games within the same niche. If the new symbols fail to make an additional win, then the reels return back to the standard 5x3 format very quickly.
And with high volatility, you can expect this to be the case most of the time. A lot of effort has gone into the free spins round by adding additional features. But to satisfy a broader range of players, it may have been better to distribute some of this additional magic throughout the entire game. Restricting wilds and multipliers to the bonus round can kill a base game in our opinion.
One of the hardest niches to enter for a slot developer is the world of Egyptian-themed slots. They've been done a million times before and some of the big-name titles are clearly dominant and have been for several years.
AvatarUX has done a fairly good job at adding interesting mechanics to the game to outshine its competitors but it does fall short on the design elements. The background is, predictably, a pyramid sitting in the desert and the soundtrack is an upbeat 80s synth sound with a vague Egyptian feel to it. Although there are some nice animated elements as the reels expand and free spin features come into play.
HelioPOPolis is a simple game that works well on mobiles and all other devices. But you will spend quite some time waiting for the free spins bonus to appear. In some areas, this can be overcome by simply buying into the feature.
And in other areas, you can increase the chances of landing scatter symbols by turning on the ante bet. This will cost an additional 25% on top of your existing wager. Personally, we found ourselves using the additional options quite frequently to keep things more interesting.
One area where this slot holds its own is in the win potential department. There is a massive 20,000x stake maximum payout available and this will only be found during the all-important free spins bonus.
The RTP is about right at 96% and the volatility is very high. For that reason, you won't see a lot of action during the base game and you'll need to pace yourself if you are in this for the long haul.
HelioPOPolis is a decent game and despite the fact that we have torn into the design a little and the lack of base game features, there was plenty to get excited about. The free spins feature is a fun bonus packed full of variation and the PopWins mechanic certainly gives it an edge.
If you like Egyptian-themed slots and massive max payouts, then crack on and give it a whirl. This game certainly has huge potential - there's no denying that.