A perfect slot for Halloween all year round, Golden Grimoire has gameplay, looks, and atmosphere for days. Just a shame about the low volatility.
A grimoire is a book of spells and incantations frequently used by witches in their arts and by alchemists in their attempts to turn lead to gold.
Whether Golden Grimoire will leave you with more lead or gold in your pocket is up to lady luck but it sure is an atmospheric ride. The background is a large round window looking up to a night sky walled in by bricks on which arcane symbols dance in blue light.
The reels are bedecked in jewellery made of brass insects, suits of a deck of cards, and precious stones. It is a spooky theme and a fun world to get lost in.
The graphics are gorgeous, NetEnt’s art team have done their usual excellent job putting together something that has a unified sense of theme that is also pretty to look at.
The animations, in particular, are a stand out work of art with win lines drawn out in glowing dust and a satisfying clunk to the reels.
Eerie ambient music sets the tone and each special symbol and button has its own sound effect which adds to the spooky tone of the game.
The gameplay, too, is pleasantly varied thanks to a range of special symbols and bonuses (details in the section below).
This variation keeps the simple four row, five reel, forty win line base game from getting too dull and is very well paced and balanced.
The key special symbol in Golden Grimoire is the Mystery Symbol. This symbol can appear on reels three through five and will then transform into either a Wild symbol or one of the medium or low value symbols. All Mystery symbols in a given round will turn into the same symbol.
If a Mystery symbol’s transformation results in a symbol that matches the leftmost symbol in that row, then all the symbols between the two will turn into that symbol. When a Wild occurs it changes all symbols to the left of it into Wilds as well regardless of the leftmost symbol.
The Wild symbol can only occur as the result of a Mystery Symbol transformation and substitutes for all symbols except the Scatter symbol.
The Scatter symbol is the trigger for the Free Spin bonus. If you manage to hit three Scatters you will get 8 free spins which will feature the Sticky Mystery Symbol.
The Sticky Mystery Symbol acts just like the Mystery symbol, but remains on the reels for all subsequent free spins during the bonus round. It resets each spin, so will transform into something new each time you start a new free spin.
The return to player of this game is a pretty robust 96.44%, a good-sized bump above our rough yardstick of 96%.
The range of bets on the site we tested ran from the smallest bet of $/£/€0.20 per spin up to a maximum of $/£/€200.00 per spin, which should cover players of all bankroll sizes, more or less.
The volatility of this game is Low to Medium. We prefer the highest possible variance in the games we recommend as these match best with our preferred strategies, so this is not good enough to get our recommendation.
Golden Grimoire has a lot going for it with its fantastic (and fantastical) visuals, along with its soundtrack and the clever gimmick of the Mystery symbol. It even enjoys a decent return to player and solid gameplay.
However, the volatility is low to medium which counts it out for use with our preferred strategies.
If you prefer low-volatility slots, or are unfussed by the issue of volatility altogether, then you should feel pretty comfortable giving this game a go.