Dead or Alive 2
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If there’s ever been a more highly anticipated slot sequel than this one, then I’ve certainly never come across it. A full decade after the original NetEnt classic "Dead or Alive" hit cyberspace the Swedish developer finally granted a thousand wishes and released the follow-up.
Dead or Alive 2 by NetEnt released on 24.04.2019 is a 5-reel & 3-row online slot with 9 paylines and a 96.82% RTP. This is a Western-themed game offering players a max win of up to 111,111x their stake. Dead or Alive 2 can be played on all devices from €0.099 per spin and is considered a very high volatility video slot.
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Design & Symbols
Well, there’s certainly no mistaking that this is a DOA slot as the symbols, characters, game board frame, and logo all remain the same. However, every aspect of the design has been given a 2019 overhaul. Sharp HD graphics, slick animations, and kick-ass sound effects and backing tracks add layers of class to this sequel.
The symbols may have remained the same, but the detailing in the artwork is on a whole different level. Various settings are used throughout the game depending on whether you’re in the base or bonus game.
The main game takes place looking out onto a dusty road with wood-framed buildings built against rocky outcrops lining the street. Free spin rounds take place either inside an early locomotive or in a smoky saloon.
In fact, if you’re interested in learning more about how the artwork and soundtrack evolved then we’d strongly advise you to check out our exclusive series of VLOGs detailing the making of DOA2 which we produced in partnership with NetEnt in the run-up to this release – links to all episodes can be found at the bottom of this review.
The low-value symbols are the standard royals 10-A, while the higher value symbols are represented by whiskey bottles, cowboy boots, cowboy hats, revolvers, and sheriffs badges. The sheriffs’ badges are the highest value regular symbols, with 5 across a pay line awarding 100x the bet size.
Once again the wilds are represented by wanted posters, with each reel having its own outlaw depicted in the posters (The Apache Kid, Belle Starr, Billy the Kid, Della Rose, and Jesse James). The scatter is a bull skull above 2 crossed guns. One thing we’re glad to report is that NetEnt in their ultimate wisdom decided to keep the huge 2,500x win in place for landing 5 scatters in one spin.
Dead or Alive 2 benefits from 3 different free spins rounds with varying degrees of volatility (high, very high, or MAX high). The player gets to choose between Train Heist free spins, Old Saloon free spins, and High Noon Saloon free spins. 12 free spins are awarded.
Train Heist Free Spins
Train Heist Free Spins offer the lowest variance (perhaps better to call it the least high variance) of the three choices. However, this certainly doesn’t mean that it lacks potential. During Train Heist Free Spins, every wild which lands adds both a 1x win multiplier and an additional free spin. When the win multiplier reaches 16x an extra 5 free spins are awarded. Get on a roll here and the sky is the limit.
Old Saloon Free Spins
Next, upon the volatility-meter are Old Saloon Free Spins which mirror the free spin round from the original Dead or Alive slot. All wins during this bonus round are multiplied by 2. Any wild which lands becomes sticky, and if during the course of the free spins a wild symbol lands on each of the 5 reels then an additional 5 free spins are awarded.
High Noon Saloon Free Spins
Choose High Noon Saloon Free Spins and you could either walk away with empty pockets or if Lady Luck is firmly on your side you could end up with a 111,111x win. Maximum volatility is the name of the game here, so beware and choose wisely. Once again wilds are sticky, but when 2 lands on the same reel they both take on a 2x multiplier. Furthermore if 3 wilds land on the same reel then they all take on a 3x multiplier. As with Old Saloon Free Spins, landing a wild on every reel awards an additional 5 free spins.
Our Thoughts on Dead or Alive 2
We have to hand it to NetEnt here as the pressure was really on to come up with a game which at least rivalled the original slot. Considering the original is one of the most celebrated slots ever that was always going to require something special. Thankfully NetEnt pulled it out of the bag –then went on to hit it out of the park!
The attention to detail here is unrivalled. The HD artwork is next level, the incidental music and sound effects are superb, and the gameplay is first class. As well as the audio and visual facelift, all of the best features of the original have been preserved. Then, of course, additional features have been introduced, and they fit seamlessly into proceedings.
To all new players note that Dead or Alive 2 is a VERY volatile game, so please be careful. Play too high for your bankroll and this slot will eat you alive. However, as you can play from €0.09 a spin, there’s plenty of scopes to start low and find your limit. With that volatility, though, comes some incredible potential. We know legions of fans are going to love it, as, no doubt, will a whole new fleet of admirers.
How A Slot Is Made: The Making of Dead Or Alive 2 Mini Documentary
- Part 1 - Math and Mechanics
- Part 2 - Design
- Part 3 – Sound
- Part 4 – Certification
- Part 5 - The Play-Through
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