About The Golden Owl of Athena
Golden Owl of Athena is a video slot set during the time of ancient Greece.
The owl is the familiar of the Greek goddess of wisdom and leads the worthy to her sprawling residence. Those who prove their intellect to Athena will find themselves richly rewarded with her blessings! These rewards include free spins and expanding symbols.
And for those who make an offering at her temple, there’s the option to skip the wait!
Introduction, including RTP and variance
This game is played on a 5×3 board with 10 fixed paylines, which is quite low for this many reels. Wins are awarded for collecting two or three identical icons in adjacent positions from left to right only. Said winning combinations must follow one of the ten active paylines. If these conditions are not met, the cash prize will not be granted.
The theoretical payout (RTP) for Golden Owl of Athena is 95.05%, almost a whole percentage point lower than the current average. We don’t mind a slightly higher house edge, but this is pushing it too far. Betsoft’s release has a medium variance, making it attractive to all types of gamblers. With good jackpots and evenly spaced out bonuses, it offers the best of both worlds.
Gameplay and Pay Table
Symbols are split into playing card royals and icons appropriate for the time period. Considering the ancient Greek theme, it might have been more interesting to use Greek letters instead of Latin ones. You can also find vases, spears, helmets, trees, temples, and Athena herself on the playing field.
This slot has both Wilds and Scatters, and rolls them both into a single symbol! The goddess’ golden owl can award pays from any position, and even has its own decently sized cash prize. But the title of most valuable icon goes to Athena herself, worth 500 coins for a five-of-a-kind win.
Collect three, four or five Scatters in any position to win eight, twelve or twenty free spins, respectively. It is possible to retrigger extra turns by collecting three or more Scatters while free spins are already playing.
During the bonus, a single symbol is randomly chosen from the paytable. This can be any icon except for Athena’s golden owl. The chosen symbol will expand and cover the entirety of the reel it is currently occupying. These expanded icons will follow Scatter pay rules. That means that they will grant a cash prize so long as enough symbols are available, regardless of position or paylines. If free spins are retriggered, the chosen icon stays the same.
Waiting for free spins can get boring, so Betsoft’s release gives you options. If you’re willing to part with 93x your total stake, you can buy 20 free spins outright. We’re not sure we would recommend this to anyone but high rollers, however. Each round has to make up for the money you already spent, which aren’t good odds with a 95.05% RTP.
CasinoWizard’s verdict: 2 out of 5 stars
We’ll be honest, we didn’t like the special features. Don’t get us wrong, they can be incredibly lucrative if you get lucky. But free spins and expanding symbols are in almost every game we’ve recently reviewed. If the developers want Golden Owl of Athena to stand out, they’ll have to try something else. Being able to buy free spins directly is one such idea!
Credit where it’s due, the graphics are an improvement over the usual Betsoft release. The background image is gorgeous, and the most valuable icons have animations! They’re minor things, like wind blowing Athena’s hair, but they look stunning regardless. We can only hope this trend continues in future releases by the developer.
Unfortunately, we cannot recommend this game. The reason for this comes down to the medium variance and an RTP of 95.05%. Medium volatility isn’t a bad thing by itself. We prefer high variance, but not everyone likes grinding their wallet to non-existence for a huge jackpot. But being almost a whole percentage point beneath 96% is unacceptable for modern slots.
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