Free Holly Jolly Penguins slot
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T'is the season to be jolly and Microgaming have produced a festive game for the occasion, Holly Jolly Penguins slot featuring these lovable Antarctic flightless birds with plenty of tinsel and colour too. We begin with seasonal music over the standard Microgaming reel sounds and the game is transparent, sitting over a cartoon ice-world with igloos bedecked in Christmas decorations and somehow they've even managed to get some trees down into the Antarctic to complete the setting. Many of these penguins are carrying gifts, but can we receive a nice Christmas bonus ourselves?
On the reels...
The game is quite basic and we get the usual 5 reels of 3 rows format to the game albeit with a high amount of paying lines, in this case 45. Symbols are all single except scatters on reels 2 and 3 and the Wilds which can both appear 2-rows high. These Wilds come in two types, a male and female penguin in a paperweight and in both cases they offer the top pay of 25x our 40-coin stake, although mixed they will pay half of that. The other high symbols are Christmas Tree Penguin paying 225 coins, Reindeer Penguin paying 175, Bell Penguin or Baby Penguin 100 with five card values of 80 down to 50 coins.
Frozen free spins
There are scatters on all five reels and we need them on adjacent reels starting with reel 1 to trigger free spins. These are the only square symbols on the reels and take the form of a Penguin in ski goggles, but on reels 2 and 3 can appear stacked 2-rows high as mentioned. This is significant as if they land in the trigger they double the standard free spin quantities which are 5 for 3 scatters, 10 for 4 and 20 for 5. If you see both double-stacked scatters then they quadruple these amounts, thus it is possible to trigger 80 free spins with all 7 scatters in view. Now where have we seen this before?
The spins have no enhancements or special reels although you can retrigger them in the same way as before. Quite why this is, I have no idea as these spins appear to be exactly the same as playing the base game, but not paying for the privilege!
Holly Jolly Penguins slot, if you haven't guessed already, is a copy of Microgaming's equally unremarkable and highly forgettable 'Oink Country Love' game. There is a reasonable 96.23% RTP and plenty of small wins to be had in the base game, but it has limited big-win potential and the bonus game is totally uninspiring, a carbon copy of the base game. I didn't feel at all jolly playing this game; Microgaming have far better classics for seasonal cheer including Santa's Wild Ride and Deck The Halls and for this reason those irritating Penguins will forever stay out of side in their frozen Southern wilderness...