Name:  Dropz

Developer:  ELK Studios

Paylines:  Up to 262,144

Reels:  6

Rows:  6 to 8

RTP:  94%

Variance:  Medium-High

Top Payout:  25,000x

Jackpot:  No

Release Date:  October 2022

Features:  Wilds, Locked Wilds, Free Spins, Avalanche Wins

About This Slot

ELK Studios have released a new candy-themed game to rival Pragmatic Play’s Sweet Bonanza and Big Time Gaming’s Chocolate for sugary hits. If you feel like gourging on candy cane, jelly sweets, candy floss and lemon drops then you are in the right place. Just keep your dentist on call at all times.

The ‘Dropz’ of the title could refer to sweet ‘drops’ but it doubles up in referring to the alternative word for ‘spin’ used in slot games. And with drops come avalanches, as we shall see.

Whilst the game has thematic similarities with many other video slots, it’s distinctly ELK in it’s gameplay. The six reel and six row grid is something we’ve seen before in games like the Gold series, including the blocker tiles that disappear when appearing next to avalanches. The twist is that this time, blockers release special symbols and you get Wilds, Locked Wilds and extra drops in their place.

Dropz has been live at UK slot sites since October 4th 2022.

RTP, Variance and Top Payout

Dropz has a slightly lower than average RTP of 94% which is quite low. ELK Studios do not build games with particularly high RTP but for comparison, you can get a better return on games like Route 777 (96.3%) or Wild Seas (96.3%).

Dropz is a medium-high variance slot. If you prefer something with a higher risk-reward ratio then you could try Avalon Gold or Pacific Gold from the same studio.

The top win potential in this game is really good at 25,000x which is excellent for a game with a medium(ish) volatility rating. It competes with other ELK Studio games like Avalon Gold too.

You can play Dropz from 20p per spin.

Symbols and Graphics

Dropz is a whirlwind of sugary treats and chocolate blocks with bright pink and yellow graphics and candy cane everywhere you look. Symbols have some good value, particularly in the premiums.

Here are the highlights of the paytable:

  • This is an expanding reels game which starts out on a 6 reel and 6 row grid but the rows can expand to up to 8 high.
  • Initially, half the symbols on each reel are inactive chocolate blockers. You may have seen blockers before in other ELK games. In this instance, they are only removed by avalanches if the are next to a winning symbol. Sometimes they release special symbols when they go.
  • With wins triggered by landing 3 or more identical symbols from left to right across the reels, that gives you 729 paylines to start and 262,144 when all 8 rows are active.
  • Low payers are the sweets in blue, green, yellow and red with a very modest 0.25x for six on a line.
  • Premiums are represented by the fruits – lemons, strawberries, apples and grapes. These pay up to 5x for six on a line.
  • There is also a lucky 7 which pays out up to 50x for six on a line.
  • Look out as well for Wilds that sub for all other symbols to create wins, and Locked Wilds that defy the avalanches to stay in place, and the bonus scatters that unlock the free dropz round.

What We Like

  Expanding rows give 262,144 paylines
  Massive 25,000x top win
  Superb sugary theme
  Blockers reveal useful modifiers

What We Don't Like

  Low RTP at 94%

Gameplay and Features

There are some complex interacting features at play in Dropz so you’ll need to pay attention throughout this part. Here is how it all works:

Avalanche Wins Remove Chocolate Blockers

After any winning spin, ALL winning symbols are removed from the reels as well as ANY ADJACENT chocolate blockers. When the chocolate blockers are removed, if they held a special symbol, that symbol is activated in the same position.

After winning symbols are removed, new ones then drop in to replace them. If more wins are created, the process then repeats, and so on until no new wins occur.

Wilds, Locked Wilds, Dropz and Level-Ups Enhance the Gameplay

There are various Specials on the reels that each perform a unique function. Here they are:

  1. Wilds – sub in for any other symbol to form a win
  2. Locked Wilds – do the same, but remain in place for up to THREE avalanches
  3. Dropz – give you 1 or 2 extra drops (spins)
  4. Level-Ups – takes you through the game levels with added paylines at each stage. Level 1 has 6 rows (3 active, 3 chocolate blockers), Level 2 has 7 rows (3 active and 4 chocoloate blockers), Level 3 has 7 rows (3 active and 5 chocolate blockers).

NOTE: the next level opens up at the end of the avalanche sequence in which the Dropz symbol appears. And any live features from the triggering spin are carried over onto the new level.

Symbol Pairs and Pair Matching

Collecting pairs of symbols will also help you by contributing to a win multiplier in the game, displayed above the reels. When two identical symbols land they will be added to the meter (top left of reels) and your multiplier will go up by 1x.

Also, removing those pairs of symbols will cause further Avalanches and more wins!

Special Free Dropz On An Enhanced Grid

The ‘free spins’ part of this game is called Free Dropz and it happens on a bigger 8 row grid with 5 chocolate blocker rows. You get 5 extra dropz, when 3 or more scatters land, in which chocolate blockers that explode are always replaced with pay table symbols and wilds lock between spins. However, there are NO level-ups during this part of the game.

Drops Slot Pays

More Games Like Dropz Slot

Sweet Bonanza – the most obvious comparison here is Sweet Bonanza from Pragmatic Play, a 6 reel slot with a win ways engine and a top prize of 21,175x. This is also an Avalanche Wins game with a free spins round with 10 free plays. Rainbow bombs also come into play to get you multipliers of up to 100x. Variance is set to medium-high like Dropz.

Chocolates – High variance specialists, Big Time Gaming brought out this candy-centric slot in 2020. Starting on a 4×4 grid, opening chocolate boxes expands the number of symbols and increases the win ways up to 65,656. This game has a more volatile maths model but a preferable RTP at 96.6% and a much higher top win of 65,536x.

Where to Play Dropz Slot Slot – Further Recommendations

Dropz is available at these slot sites with ELK Studio games.

Race CasinoThis is a new slot site from L and L Europe offering a 100% match bonus up to £100 for first time depositors. It has a huge slots catalogue of more than 1,000 games including ELK slots and games from Big Time Gaming and No Limit City. You can deposit from just £10 and play slots with Paypal too.

Casumothis is another great slot site at which to enjoy ELK Studio games. Casumo has been in action since 2012 and offers a massive range of video slots from all the top providers. You get 25 Book of Dead spins when you sign up and deposit and you can join in the hourly slot races with prizes of up to £2,500.

Our Verdict

Dropz is a fun sweet-filled slot game in which a series of cumulative events on the reels can lead to some very good payouts. The best modern slots work in this way where one trigger leads to another and another to create one of those epic wins that you see on the streamer sites.

For the stars to align here you will be looking for a good consecutive run of Avalanches, unlocking chocolates to reveal one or two locked wilds and hopefully a quick level-up or two to start playing with 8 rows. Then, if your Symbol pairs collection gets you a good multiplier, you might just be on course for one of those high value payouts!

Of course, the reality is more often than not you will fall well short. But the good news is there is enough going on here to keep things interesting even when you aren’t scoring big wins. They key to any success is opening up the chocolate blockers and revealing special symbols, so always keep your fingers crossed for that!

In summary, for those who enjoy sweet-themed slots Dropz is another exiting addition to the genre. It holds its own against Sweet Bonanza for payouts and gameplay. The only weakness here is the 94% RTP which is a good 2% below average. But if you can live with that Dropz will bring plenty of fun in the coming months.