Chilli Heat Megaways™

Chilli Heat Megaways™ Slot Review

Slot Provider: Pragmatic Play

RTP: 96.5% | Variance: High | Maximum Win: 5,000x

Our Score: 7.2

Play at Casumo Casino

WHY YOU CAN TRUST THIS REVIEW: The information and opinions on this page are the result of an comprehensive process of information gathering and live game testing by the gambling experts who work at Find out more here.

About Chilli Heat Megaways™

Reviewed by:

Published Date: 29th July 2021

How We Review Slot Games

We test and rate all slot games across 5 criteria, assigning a score out of 10 for each and an overall score that is an average of the 5. To build an accurate assessment of each game we gather information from the supplier and play in real play or demo mode. Find out more.

Mexico, festivals, heat and chillis all provide excellent inspiration for slots developers and it’s not hard to see why. Colorful Mexican street make for upbeat and eye-catching graphics and sounds, whilst the connections between hot win streaks, super high variance and eye watering win potential are easy to make. It’s no wonder Mexico, salsa and chilis pop up everywhere in slots from Big Time Gaming’s Extra Chili to Thunderkick’s Esqueleto Explosivo 1 and 2.

In this instance it’s not Pragmatic Play’s first venture with this theme. This is a follow up to the original Chilli Heat, a less volatile and more sedate affair, though still brimming with vibrant colors. In the Megaways™ release the reel set is expanded, the top payout pumped up (though still too low for our liking) and a Re Spins used in the absence of traditional free spins. It’s a useful variation on the traditional Megaways™ model but can it hold it’s own in today’s hyper-competitive high variance slot market?

We’ll find out in this review.

NOTE: Screenshots on this page were taken from playing Hand of Midas for real money at Casumo Casino.

Chilli Heat Megaways™ Game Information

  • Release Date: August 2021
  • RTP: 96.50%, 95.50%, 94.57%
  • Variance: High
  • Maximum Win: 5,000x
  • Progressive Jackpot: No
  • Reels: 6
  • Rows: Up to 8
  • Paylines: 200, 704
  • Minimum Stake: £0.20
  • Theme: Festival
  • Features: Megaways, Cascading Wins, Multpliers

What We Liked

  • Locked-In Respins
  • 7 modifiers in respins round
  • Vibrant party atmosphere
  • 200,704 paylines possible

What We Didn't like

  • Not as many features as other Megaways™
  • Top payout lower than other Megaways™

Chilli Heat Megaways™ Review Scores

  • Theme and Design 7
  • RTP and Variance 8
  • Maximum Win 6
  • Symbols and Paytable 7
  • Features and Gameplay 8

What Our Reviewer Says ...

"A volatile upgrade and interesting tweak to the Megaways format but lacks the payout potential to kick it with the big boys."

Overall Score: 7.2

RTP and Variance

Our Score 8

What is RTP?

RTP (Return to Player) refers to the amount a game will pay out in cash prizes expressed as a percentage of all the money wagered on that game. For example, a 96% RTP means a game will pay out £96 for every £100 wagered. This is an average number and will vary from one session to the next.  Read more here.

What is Variance?

Variance refers to how far a game will deviate from its RTP over time. High variance games deviate a lot and produce uneven win distributions and unexpected windfalls. Low variance games provide a more stable and even distribution of wins. Read more here.

Chilli Heat Megaways has an RTP of 94.5%. We verified this on the version at Casumo in the UK. Pragmatic Play slots have a variable RTP and the 94% setting is most common here. For comparison, other Megaways slots on the Pragmatic label include Crystal Cavern Megaways (94.38%) and Spin and Score Megaways (94.59%).

This is also, as we’ve come to expect, a high variance slot so the wins will be infrequent, though short bursts of high value payouts are not uncommon. However, what is disappointing is the cap on the top payout at just 5,000x. This doesn’t come close to the spectacular prizes offered by Megaways originators, Big Time Gaming – the classic Bonanza pays out up to 20,000x and White Rabbit peaks at 13,000x for example.


Symbols and Paytable

Our Score 7

Chilli Heat plays out on the classic Megaways reels format: there are six reels available, each with a minimum of 3 icons on it, but capable of stretching as high as 7 rows on reels 1 and 6 and 8 rows on reels 2, 3, 4 and 5. With the maximum number of rows in play across all six reels, and with payouts made for identical symbols on adjacent reels regardless of position, this gives you a maximum of 200,704 active paylines.

Those who have played the original Chilli Heat game will be familiar with the symbols on the reels. Low payers are represented by the cards 9 through to Ace with the 9 paying out 0.1x for three in a row and the Ace paying out 1.5x for five in a row. Premiums are  a chihuahua, a tequila shot glass, a hot sauce bottle and a Mexican man. These are valued at from 0.3x for 3 tequilas up to 10x for six Mexican men.

There are also Chilli Heat Wilds which land on the middle four reels only and substitute for all others, except the scatter, to form wins. The scatter itself is the money bag symbol which triggers the re-spins feature.

Features and Gameplay

Our Score 8

There are four features in Chilli Heat Megaways™ that can help boost your wins, including the main event, the respins, as well as some extra multipliers and the traditional Megaways™ feature of Cascading Wins.

Cascading Wins

Also known as Tumbling Reels or Wins, this feature is very simple but effective at creating good win sequences. When wins are triggered, winning icons are removed from the reels. New ones are dropped in to replace them and more wins may be triggered. The process repeats until no more wins are scored.


Look out for the Money Bags which are required to set up Re-Spins. These can land anywhere on any spin. They have a random value and if six land then a re-spins ensues. At this point, all other icons are removed from the reels so that ONLY the money bags remain. 3 Re-Spins are granted and as the re-spins start, the 1st and 6th reels are locked.

Landing more money bags will re-set the counter to 3 so it’s possible for this round to go a long way, stacking up more bags as you go. Simultaneously, the extra 4×1 reel above the main reel set now serves a new function, dropping modifiers on each spin like this:

  • A left leaning padlock unlocks reel 1
  • A right leaning padlock unlocks reel 2
  • Up and down arrows cause the reel underneath to fully extend to 7 high
  • Down arrow in a circle collects all money bags in the reel beneath and adds their value to the win total
  • Square down arrow collects ALL the money bag values across the ENTIRE grid and adds them to the total
  • Circled X activates a 2x, 3x, 5x or 10x multiplier applied to all money bags on the reel beneath
  • X in a Square activates a 2x, 3x, 5x or 10x multiplier applied to ALL money bags on the ENTIRE grid

When no more Money Bags land, the total value of all these symbols on the grid, taking into account all multipliers, is calculated and paid out.

The Final Verdict

So, how does the Megaways™ version of Chilli Heat measure up to the original, or indeed other Megaways™ slots on the market? Well, first up we should say that in terms of presentation and vibes, this sequel is not very different to the first version, and as such retains its fun and vibrant appeal. Where it differs is in the maths model and features and whether you prefer that will depend on your budget and risk attitude. This is definitely a more volatile game but with that comes the chance to win a greater prize – more than twice the top payout of the original in fact. So for high risk fanatics and Megaways™ fans, in this respect, this is an improvement.

However, compared to other games in the expanding reels format right now, it falls a bit short. Top jackpots in other Megaways™ games can be as high as 50,000x or more right now, and most utilize a free spins round to drive wins, though Chilli Heat’s Re-Spins model is still fun. But if you are looking for something with more feature action you could do better with a slot like Scientific’s recent Invaders Megaways™.

So, overall something of an upgrade to a solid game from a few years back, and a good one to pass the time, but perhaps a slot that won’t make the top 100s list at the end of the year!

Useful Resources

Pragmatic Play Website

Slots Variance Guide

Who Made Chilli Heat Megaways™?

  • Name: Pragmatic Play
  • Established: 2015
  • UK License: Remote 046683-R-325951-014
  • Total Games: 500 +
  • Known For: Wide range of themes and styles, live casino including gameshow formats, and bingo
  • Popular Slots: Fruit Party, Dog House Megaways, Big Bass Bonanza, Release the Kraken
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