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When it comes to ancient history, nobody beats the Egyptians. You could argue that the Greeks and Romans have had more of an impact on the world, but the allure of a completely different language that took thousands of years to crack, the pyramids of old that dazzle people to this day, and a culture that no longer exists..
NetEnt’s latest title is more than happy to use this for its advantage, as well. Secrets of Horus offers gamblers a 5x3 playing field with 20 flexible paylines, with a free spins bonus and several multipliers to spice things up.
The user interface is functional, but it’s also ugly as sin. Everything is cleanly labelled, but the silver colour clashes hard against the simplistic graphics. There’s no seamless transition between backdrop and interface, no sleek, modern design.. and you’d be hard pressed to find it, given that Secrets of Horus came out in 2009, when games still lived in the shadows of their physical copies and sought to emulate them.
A small convenience we did like was the ability to click the payline number on the side of the playing field, and the game would immediately activate that number of paylines, instead of having to press the bet lines button twenty times.
And yet, despite the clunkiness and old age, the symbols are all entirely unique, featuring hieroglyphic images, scrolls, statues, ankhs, scarabs and eyes of Horus. Most of the icons still look good – it’s mostly the animation and the sound effects that show their age. The only exception to this is the deity Horus himself, who is portrayed as a human-like bird, and just looks downright creepy instead of like the majestic avian-human hybrid that he would otherwise be portrayed as.
As for special features, you can collect three or more Scatters for fifteen free spins. During these extra turns, all wins are tripled. In addition to this, Any wins that include the Wild are doubled, and these two features can come together for a x6 increase for a single win.
It’s not the most smooth experience gameplay wise. There’s no feature during the main game, and it’s mostly orientated towards numbers rather than feeling good to play. A x6 increase is big if everything lines up, but you still need to retain player attention for things to get to that stage. Back when all titles offered the same fare, gamblers sat through it and endured, but when we were given better options and more interesting features, we were all too happy to ask for more, which dramatically changed the landscape of slots over the last few years.
This is why, at the end of the day, we really can’t recommend playing Secrets of Horus. For its time period, it was good. Even now, the winning potential is great, and the freedom to choose your own paylines is something we thoroughly miss. With a medium volatility and a 96% RTP, you can get away with some fantastic wins. But the gameplay and graphics are outdated and boring, so do so at your own risk.