Pompeii Slot Machine Review

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Pompeii, originally a land-based casino slot game by Australian developer Aristocrat, has been a long-standing player favorite on casino floors worldwide. This online version of Pompeii is a perfect replica of the casino game, brought to the online reels. The game design, symbols, bonus features, and even sound effects are authentic to the original casino game.

The Pompeii theme is relatively unique in the slots world; we were hard-pressed to find another popular Pompeii-themed slot game online. Like other Aristocrat slots, Pompeii offers retro style and simple gameplay that is perfect for fans of the casino game and beginning players.

Game manufacturer:Aristocrat
Number of paylines:243 ways to win
Game theme:Pompeii, Ancient Rome
RTP:95.45%
Reels:5
Min/Max bet:$2.50 / $10.00
Progressive jackpot: No
Regular jackpots:No
Coin denominations:$0.01 - $0.10
Maximum standard win:$1,000
Free spins:10 – 20 per bonus game

Theme and visuals

Aristocrat’s Pompeii slot transports you back in time to find your fortune before Mount Vesuvius erupts and the city is devastated. The reels, encrusted in classic Pompeian mosaic titles, feature symbols depicting life in the ancient Roman city like Roman helmets, chariots, and gold coins. The Pompeii skyline lies behind the reels with Mount Vesuvius looming in the background.

Pompeian gold coins are scatter symbols that trigger the Free Games Feature, which awards free spins and multipliers. Mount Vesuvius symbols are wild and also award multipliers during the free spins bonus game.

Golden amulets are the highest paying symbols on the reels, with five-of-a-kind paying out 2,500 coins. Golden Roman helmet symbols also pay out handsomely at 2,000 coins for five matching symbols. The symbol values decrease from there, with standard playing card symbols paying the lowest values on the reels.

The sound effects in Pompeii are similar to other Aristocrat slots; with clacking reel spins and retro arcade style sounds. When big wins land on the reels, Aristocrat’s signature calliope music plays, which seems out of place with this game’s theme though.

Unique to the Pompeii slot, when Mount Vesuvius wild symbols are part of a winning combination, the volcano erupts with a simple animation and loud blast. When one gold coin scatter symbol lands on the reels, a voice calls out, “Veni!”.

It took us some time to figure out what the voice was saying. It didn’t make sense until we hit three scatter symbols on the reels, and the voice called out, “Veni, Vedi, Vici!” (one word called for each scatter symbol), which is the famous quote by Julius Caesar that means, “I came, I saw, I conquered”.

The minimal and retro sound effects are true to the original slot game but can be dated and tedious relative to current standards. Unlike some other Aristocrat games, no background music accompanies the free spins during the bonus game. The five reel, three-row (5×3) game configuration and the game interface remain the same throughout the game, and free spins are played on the same reels as the base game.

Betting options and paying combinationsPompeii Interface

You won’t find any paylines on these reels as Pompeii is one of Aristocrat’s slots that feature their innovative “Reel Power” feature with “ways to win” instead of individual paylines.

Matching symbols do not need to land on preset paylines but instead can land anywhere on adjacent reels (starting on the leftmost reel). On five reels, 243 “ways to win” provides players with more chances at hitting winning combinations compared to Aristocrat’s games that offer a maximum of 50 paylines on five reels.

Although Pompeii’s online game interface includes different reel selection buttons to play one through five reels, the selection buttons don’t work in free play mode. We were only able to play with five reels (243 “ways to win”) in free play mode.

We were able to change the stake, however, and had a choice of playing 1, 2, 3, or 4 credits per reel, which is equal to 25, 50, 75, and 100 credit bets. In free play mode, one credit can equal $0.01, $0.02, $0.05, or $0.10.

The in-game paytable is static, representing one-credit bets only. Payouts on one-credit bets range from five credits, for two nine-card symbols, up to 2,500 credits, for five golden amulet symbols. The pay table will not update as you change your stake, but you can multiply the paytable values by the number of credits you’re playing with to calculate potential payout totals.

Top paytable values (for five-of-a-kind combinations on a one-credit bet):

  • Gold amulet symbols – 2,500 coins
  • Roman helmet symbols – 2,000 coins
  • Gold coin (scatter) symbols – 1,250 coins
  • Sword and shield symbols – 1,000 coins
  • Chariot symbols – 1,000 coins
  • Ace/King symbols – 200 coins
  • Queen/Jack/10/9 symbols – 100 coins
  • Volcano (wild) symbols – 0 coins

The Auto Start button starts the reels, and they don’t stop spinning until you press the button again. It is not possible to pre-select how many auto spins to play. Be alert as your balance status and the time in between spins can change quickly.

The RTP (Return-to-Player) percentage for this game is a solid 95.45%, which is a bit above average compared to other Aristocrat games.

What jackpots are available? Pompeii Free Games Feature Bonus Trigger

Pompeii spin-off slot games on casino floors may offer jackpot options, but unfortunately, the original Pompeii casino slot and this online adaptation do not offer any jackpot options.

Additional features and bonuses

Most of the action in Pompeii takes place in the Free Games Feature that awards free spins and multipliers. Otherwise, the feature selection is limited.

Wild Symbols

Mount Vesuvius symbols are wild symbols that only appear on reels two and four. During the free spins games, wild symbols become wild multipliers; if a wild symbol lands on reel two and completes a winning combination, a x3 multiplier is awarded, a wild symbol combination on reel four awards a x5 multiplier, and wild symbol combinations on both reels award a x15 multiplier.

Scatter Symbols

Three or more scatter symbols (Pompeii gold coins) on adjacent reels triggers the Free Games Feature, which awards free spins with wild multipliers. At least one scatter symbol must be on each adjacent reel, starting with the leftmost reel, to trigger the bonus feature (instead of being scattered anywhere on the reels). Scatter symbols can also retrigger the Free Games Feature.

Free Games Feature (Free Spins Bonus Game)

At least three scatter symbols on at least three adjacent reels, starting on reel one, awards the Free Games Feature. Three scatter symbols awards 10 Free Games, four scatter symbols award 15 Free Games, and five scatter symbols award 20 Free Games. During the free spins, wild symbols on reels two and four award multipliers when they are part of a winning combination. The Free Games Feature can be retriggered.

Gamble Feature

After any winning spin, continue spinning the reels or gamble your win to double or quadruple it. Guess the color of a face-down playing card to double your bet or guess the card suit to quadruple your bet. Cash out any time or gamble up to five times. If any guess is wrong, you’ll lose the current total gamble amount.

Who is this game ideal for?Pompeii Gamble Feature

The online version of Pompeii is ideal for players who like the original casino slot game, considering that they are identical games. The simple, retro game design and basic bonus features also make it an easy game to play for beginners.

Similar games from Aristocrat

Choy Sun Doa and 5 Dragons both feature Aristocrat’s “Reel Power” feature with 243 “ways to win” on five reels. The “Reel Power” feature is the main similarity between these two Chinese themed games and Pompeii, however.

Both Choy Sun Doa and 5 Dragons feature a choice of five different bonus game options, with different free spins and multiplier options, whereas Pompeii awards a set number of free spins and multipliers.

Aristocrat currently doesn’t offer other Pompeii or ancient Roman-themed online slot games. However, the free spins bonus game (with multipliers) in their infamous Buffalo slot, set in America’s wild western frontier, is very similar to Pompeii’s free spins bonus.

What’s hot:

Free Spins Bonus Game – Win 10, 15, or 20 free spins with wild multipliers on the reels, plus get a chance at retriggers.

“Reel Power” – Offers more “ways to win” with 243 possible options on five reels. Combinations hit when matching symbols land anywhere on adjacent reels, instead of on individual paylines.

Authentic Casino Slot – Play the same game online as the popular slot machine in land-based casinos.

Easy To Play – The game interface and features are simple enough that anyone can play.

Gamble Feature – Gives players an option to enhance wins in an otherwise monotonous base game with limited features.

What’s not:Pompeii Paytable 1

No Jackpots – The original Pompeii casino slot doesn’t offer jackpots, but some players may be disappointed that no jackpots were added for online players.

Limited Bonuses – Despite the multipliers in the free spins bonus game, the bonus features are sparse compared to newer online slot games.

Dated – The retro design and animations are very basic and dated looking, with outdated sounds that don’t help.

Win Totals – The win counter is not prominent compared to more current games. It can be difficult to see the total win and there are no visual effects to celebrate a big win. The coin fountain win effect in Aristocrat land-based slot games is missing from the online versions of the games (in free play mode).

Final ratings

  • Graphics and Design- 2.5/5: The graphics are retro and basic compared to newer online slots. Aristocrat’s online version of Pompeii is an intentionally faithful replica of their popular casino slot, however, and the graphics are average compared to other Aristocrat games, which raises our overall rating up to average.
  • Sound Effects- 1.75/5: The Pompeii sound effects are below average compared to newer slot games, and even below average compared to similar Aristocrat games. We are also rating the sounds below average due to the mostly inaudible audio when a single scatter symbol lands on the reels, which detracts from the gameplay experience.
  • Jackpot Value- 0/5: There are no jackpot options in this game.
  • Replay Value – 3/5: Despite being a dated game with weak sound effects, we’re giving this retro slot an above average rating due to its unique Pompeii theme and Aristocrat’s Reel Power feature that gives players 243 ways to win on five reels. The variance in free spins games and wild multipliers bring more potential replay value to this game as well, as does its authentic appeal to fans of the original casino slot game.