Balloonies Basic Information:
Do you remember the overweight kid, Chunk, from the Goonies? Well, this is not a pokie about him. Initial disappointment aside, the concept of living balloon animals is as interesting as it is terrifying. Does this game bring quality to the table, or is this more of a case of throwing concepts at a wall to see what sticks? Keep reading our review to find out…
This game operates under the use of the IGT gambling software system. IGT, also known as International Game Technology is an utter giant in the industry. They boast that their video slots take up around half of all video poker slots which current exist in physical casinos in the United States, with this being one of their more recent forays into digital gambling. This game was released on the 6th of April, 2016.
The IGT system is compatible with a great many devices which are capable of running Flash. This means most PCs, Apple computers and tablets, along with a variety of other mobile devices. Check if your device supports flash, if it does you should be able to run games from IGT.
Balloonies comes with a total of 20 paylines over 5 reels in a 3×5 layout.
- The minimum coins bet sits at 20.00
- The maximum coins bet sits at 400.00
- Minimum coin size sits a 1.00
- Maximum coins size sits at 20.00
- The return to player offered by this game is 94.32 which is towards the lower end of average.
By clicking on the main menu button towards the top-right of the game screen the player can access the options menu. This brings up a menu with six different options. These are as follows:
- Sound Effects
When toggles this option determines whether sound effects will play in the game.
- Dealer Voice
When toggled this option determines whether the occasional Family Guy voice over will comment.
- Ambient Sound
This option toggles ambient noises when clicked.
- High Quality Graphics
This option toggles the best looking graphics when it is clicked. This is an important feature which is often overlooked. Users on older or less powerful devices might want to disable this.
- Full Animations
Acts as the quickspin option of this game, when it is toggles off there is less time spent waiting around for the reels and other animations to play out.
- Fit To Window
This option changes the overall shape of the main game screen to best fit whatever frame it is located in.
These are the options and buttons which are simply linked from the main game screen. These include:
Located up the top-right of the main game screen. When this is clicked the player enters the paytable screen. This section lists all of the various symbol payouts, payline and bonus information.
- Coin Value
This option simply changes the total amount which is bet on each active payline.
The button used to spin the reels.
- Auto Spin
The little blue button located to the lower-right of the main game screen. When clicked this will bring up a simple tab with 5 selections of autospins to play out: 10x,20x,30x,40x, and 50x. Once these have been started they will either finish once the total spins are completed, or when the player manually ends the spins.
- Graphics Quality ‘i' Button
This set of options simply allows the player to set their chosen level of graphical fidelity. There are four different levels here: Best, High, Medium and Low. While best will obvious look the best, lower options will perform better on older or less powerful hardware. Keep this in mind if your game slows down. Games tend to get more crash prone the more they struggle to run. A crashed game means no payout, so low can be best in these situations.
What are Balloonies, exactly? Where did they come from? Are they creatures created from the wonder and wishes of innocent children? Maybe they are brought to us as agents of the dark lord, hoping to use their cuteness to find their way closer to their prey. We don't have a backstory to go on here, so choose whichever you would prefer, or just make up your own!
Other Features and Bonuses
The star symbol in Balloonies acts as a mulitplier, depending on how many are collecting in a single spin. These can appear on reels 1,2 and 3 onliy, in both regular and free spins.
- One of these in a combination gives a 2x payout when gathered
- Two of these in a combination gives a 3x payout when gathered
- Three of these in combination give a 5x payout when gathered.
The wild symbol in this game comes in the form of this nasty spiky balloon. This symbol can substitute for all other symbols except the bonus and start symbols.
The bonus symbol in this game comes in the form of this red bonus balloon. These appear on reels 1,2 and 3 only. These do not need to appear on active paylines in order to give their bonuses. When 3 of these are gathered in a single spin the player is given access to the free spins bonus game.
The free spins bonus game in Balloonies is won when the player manages to gain three or more bonus symbols in a single spin. Once this occurs the player will be brought to a screen with three separate coloured balloons. Clicking on one of these balloons will randomly reveal a quantity of free spins to be played out. Additional free spins cannot be retriggered from within this game.
How to Play:
Basic play for Balloonies is as simple as a player selecting a coin value and active paylines and clicking spin.
Clicking the autoplay button allows the player to go through a selection of different amounts of autospins.
Overall Design and Usability:
Simplicity is the name of the game when it comes to the design of Balloonies. The background of this game is a simple sky-blue, which makes sense. Set against this sky and the whispy clouds are the colourful and animated symbols, swaying so softly in the breeze. It's a nice look, all around. Very clean and sharp, the designers over at IGT were going for a very specific look here, and they pulled it off perfectly.
In terms of usability, this is game which performs just as most from IGT – above the pack in most ways. From the speed and reliability of the game to selection of options on display, Balloonies carries a lot of quality. We are especially big fans of the multitude of graphics options. These are so often overlooked, yet are so helpful for players on older or less powerful devices, so marks for IGT for putting the work in. The only real issue, in terms of usability, comes down to the lack of autoplay stopping options. This means intermediate or veteran players might get turned off of this game. So, if you are one such player you need to keep this in mind.
Where to find it:
IGT aren't as prolific as NetEnt or Microgaming, though they still make quite and impression on those websites which include their use. If you already have a favourite gambling website then check out if they offer IGT games, if they do then you might be able to find Balloonies there. If it is not available, or if you want a more direct list then check out the links below.
Like many IGT creations, this is a game which we think is perfect for newer players. Balloonies looks nice, runs very well, and comes with many options that are sorely missed in many pokies. The only real issues with the game revolve around the lack of autospin stopping options and the lack of larger bonus structures. As we said, this is a perfect place for new players to start, but those intermediate or veteran players might not have their attention held by this game for very long.
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