Name:  Tropicool

Developer:  ELK Studios

Paylines:  45, 656

Reels:  6

Rows:  6

RTP:  95%

Variance:  Medium

Top Payout:  10,000x


Release Date:  


About This Slot

ELK Studios are a slot provider with a reputation for crazy themes and narratives in their games – check out past glories like Lake’s Five and the futuristic Nitropolis 2 for excellent example of this. And in this highly competitive market, it pays to be creative and eye-catching. Which brings us to their latest release for Summer 2021, the eccentric slot, Tropicool. Quite why the two main characters, Tony Toucana and Fiona Flamingo find themselves inhabitants of an iced-over tropical paradise is anyone’s guess, but it makes for some cool graphics and a memorable backdrop to this 6 reel and 6 row slot.

The grid-like layout is deceptive here – this is not a cluster pays game, but rather one where wins are triggered in the usual way, except that every line is a payline – all you need to do is match 3, 4, 5, or 6 identical symbols on adjoining reels starting from the leftmost one. That creates a total of 46,656 (6x6x6x6x6x6) win lines active at all times.

Whilst high risk fans might be hoping for another Diablo Reels here what we are actually getting is something closer to the medium variance of Miss Wildfire. But don’t let that put you off, this game has plenty of cool features, some high value multipliers and a top payout that is worth spinning for.

Stakes start at just 20p per spin.

RTP, Variance and Top Payout

So Tropicool has a relatively even win distribution with a medium variance and hit rate of 23.1%. That makes it a mid-range slot which will be attractive enough to casual players looking for something with a bit more bite but not as intimidating as some of ELK’s more risky titles. The RTP is a bit under average at 95% but the real treat is the top payout of 10,000x, possible only by landing high value multipliers in the free spins round which we will come onto next.

Symbols and Graphics

Tropicool utilizes some classic fruit machine icons with characters from the storyline, sometimes appearing in stacks.

Low value icons are the plums, lemons, mangos, cherries, coconuts, apples, and strawberries. The premium ones are the 2 bird characters – Tony and Fiona – who land stacked on the reels. The symbol with the highest value is Tony Toucano which pays 0.3, 0.6, 0.9, or 1.2 x stake for matching 3, 4, 5, or 6.

Also look out for the W wild symbol which replaces any other except the Bonus, Wild feature, and Row Swap elements to form winlines. Finally, check the ‘B’ for bonus which is required to unlock the free drops / spins round.

What We Like

  Fun, quirky theme
  Multipliers up to 20x
  Avalanche wins, progressive multipliers
  10,000x top payout
  Large number of paylines

What We Don't Like

  Variance could be higher

Gameplay and Features

There are 4 main features in Tropicool slot. The basic gameplay works like a mix of cluster pays and a standard slot. Rather than ‘spins’ we get ‘drops’ where icons just drop into place in the grid rather than via spinning reels. And like grid slots, Tropicool also has a Cascade feature that runs after every win. This is how it all fits together:

Win Avalanches

As soon as you get a winning combination, the Avalanche / Cascade feature is activated. Winning symbols will explode and the new ones will drop down to replace them. This is like a standard Avalanche, but Tropicool has an added element …. there is a special frozen feature reel above the main grid that drops extra icons in after a cascade to trigger further events.

Feature Reel

If, after a win cascade, a position opens up on the reels below a special symbol, then the ice-covered icon above it in the feature reel melts and drops down, bringing with it a modifier which can be:

  • Standard Wild: substitutes all other icons to form wins
  • Locked Wild: it remains locked for a set number of drops
  • Multiplier Wild: wins come with a multiplier from 2x to 5x
  • Row Swap: this symbol picks one other in the same row and changes all others on that row into the chosen symbol, boosting your chances of scoring wins

Free Drops Bonus 

The Free Drops Bonus is activated when matching 3 or more B symbols. If you land 3, 4, 5, or 6, you will claim 10, 15, 20, or 25 free spins. In addition you get a progressive multiplier that increases with each Avalanche Win.

Now there are two more enhancing icons added to the mix. These are an Extra Drops icon that addes between 2 and 5 free drops to your total, and a win multiplier icon that increases the win multiplier by 1, 2 or 5x. NOTE that the win multiplier at the start of the free spins round is 1x. It does not re-set between avalanches.


The X-iter feature is a. bonus buy in which has 5 different modes which cost from 5 – 500 x the total stake. Here is what you get:

  • X-iter 1 costs a 5x stake and delivers a winning spin
  • X-iter 2 costs 25x stake and brings a spin with 3 clinched wilds
  • X-iter 3 costs 100x stake and grants entry to Free Drops Bonus with a 1x multiplier
  • X-iter 4 costs 200x stake and provides the entry to Free Drops Bonus with a 5x multiplier
  • X-iter 5 costs 500x stake and grants the entry to Free Drops Bonus with a 10x multiplier

Our Verdict

Tropicool is everything we have come to expect from the ELK Studios production line of slots. It is quirky, fun and highly entertaining, and does a great job of mixing up a grid slot design with traditional slot gameplay. It will also have a broad appeal thanks to its high top payout and medium variance pace, but potential to go off big time in the bonus round where consecutive avalanches with big multipliers could create some epic events. In short, this is a game that all players should consider, and one that has a bag of tricks to keep you entertained throughout any tropical winters and summers!