Written 2nd April 2019
Book of Dead Slot Review
Book of Dead slot quickly became one of the most popular online casino games around when it burst onto the scene in 2016. Created by Play’n GO, Book of Dead is themed around ancient Egypt, and the slot’s central character is a brave explorer named Rich Wilde. His mission? To uncover the ancient book and the secrets it may hold. This is a another great example of how a classic adventure tale can be utilised for the online slot format, but there’s some fact behind the fiction here.
One For the History Books?
If you feel like you’ve heard of this Book of Dead before, that’s because you have. Book of Dead slot game is inspired by the ancient Egyptian Book of the Dead, a funerary text dating back to around 50 BCE. The mysterious hieroglyphics written across the pages of this ‘book’ have been translated over the years, and are thought to contain magic spells and incantations. Pretty cool, right? This little piece of history certainly adds another layer to the slot theme, and makes the Book of Dead slot a little more interesting than your average casino game. That being said - ancient Egypt has long provided the setting for many a slot over the years, so on the surface, Book of Dead doesn’t really seem to stand out. It’s only when finding out about the history of the actual book that this game holds a little more appeal than others in its genre, especially for any historians or adventure fans out there.
Simple Setup, Huge Potential
Played on five reels and three rows, with only ten paylines, Book of Dead slot is not the most advanced in terms of its setup. This makes it easy to follow for the novice slot player, and for those who like a more traditional-style slot, Book of Dead will not disappoint. What Book of Dead slot lacks in concept, it makes up for in aesthetics, as this slot looks rather spectacular. Expect HD animation and smooth performance. With this being a more recently developed Egyptian themed game, it’s leaps and bounds ahead of many others in the same genre in terms of graphics and display. You could say that this game is part of the next generation of Egyptian casino slots. The reels contain a number of ancient Egyptian images featuring pharaohs and gods, which provide the higher paying symbols in Book of Dead slot. The most valuable symbol of all however is your companion Rich Wilde, paying 5000 for five on a payline. The lower paying symbols are the typical slot game icons A, K, Q, J and 10, which are depicted in a hieroglyphics-style font. The reels are set against the backdrop of an ancient tomb complete with stone pillars with mysterious carvings etched into them.
Book of Dead Special Features - Free Spins With a Twist
If you’re looking for a slot with an abundance of advanced bonus features, Book of Dead may not be to your taste. However, if you enjoy simpler slots that still offer great winning potential, the Free Spins Bonus may appeal to you. With up to 250,000 coins up for grabs, there’s tons of potential here from just a few seemingly simple features.
The Book of Dead Scatter Symbol
The Scatter symbol in Book of Dead slot is of course the infamous book itself. This symbol performs not one but three different functions, so this is one to look out for. Firstly, it acts as a Scatter symbol, meaning that if three, four or five land on a payline, you’ll receive 32x, 20x or 200x your bet, paying anywhere on the reels. Interestingly, this symbol is not only a Scatter but also a Wild, meaning it can substitute for other symbols on the reels to create winning combinations. Whilst these are both classic features of a slot game, it’s unusual that both of these functions would be performed by the same symbol. The final function is that the Book of Dead triggers the Free Spins Bonus, should three or more be landed on the reels.
Free Spins Bonus + Expanding Symbol
Ten free spins will be awarded to you if the Free Spins Bonus is activated - not a huge amount, we do admit. However, there’s a twist: an Expanding Symbol is randomly selected to increase your potential payouts. This symbol will expand to cover entire reels at once, and may appear anywhere along an active payline. This could lead to better payouts as it creates bigger winning combinations. The way this bonus is presented to players is fun and creative - watch on as the Book of Dead symbols combine to create one large book, which will then open to you, displaying the number of Free Spins won and the symbol selected to expand.
The Gamble Feature is available to players every time a winning combination is achieved. Two buttons will begin to flash - one labelled ‘Collect’ and the other, ‘Gamble’. The aim is to correctly guess the suit or colour of the next card drawn from the pack in order to increase your win. Any previously drawn cards will be displayed on screen. Simply choose the outcome you would like to gamble on and watch the card be revealed to you. A correct colour doubles your winnings, whilst a correct suit quadruples them. You can continue to gamble until you are incorrect or choose to collect. Please bear in mind when using this feature that an unsuccessful gamble will result in the loss of all winnings accumulated thus far, and will end the feature. Many other slots contain a similar feature, which can add an extra layer to gameplay, but we advise only using the Gamble Feature in moderation.
Playing Book of Dead Slot
We played Book of Dead in demo mode for ten minutes (available when logged into your 21.co.uk account) to get a feel for the game and what it’s like to play. With all paylines active and the number of coins set to 1, our bet was £1 per spin. We did not use the Gamble Feature at any point to allow us to play out more rounds. The buttons are positioned just below the reels, and within this control panel you’ll find the current number of coins and lines in play, both of which can easily be adjusted using the plus and minus arrow buttons. The overall coin value can be changed by pressing the ‘Coin Value’ button until you reach your desired value. All monetary values are displayed in ‘coins’ in Book of Dead slot, which can make it difficult to know how much money you are actually betting and winning. You’ll find a black display bar below the main control panel, and here you can see your balance, bet and latest win in pounds - we’re glad that Play’n GO have included this, but it is rather small and hard to see. This is our only complaint when it comes to the game interface, as overall it’s attractive and the buttons are clearly labelled.
When you enter the game with sound on, you’ll notice an Egyptian-esque soundtrack which really enhances the gaming experience and elevates the theme. The reels will rattle into action when the spin button is pressed to give them an ancient quality fitting with the game’s concept.
The first win came within the first few rounds but was a small victory at 50p. When a winning combination is landed on the reels, the symbols involved will flash which adds a nice touch to gameplay and also makes it easy to see how the win was formed. We achieved a few, more significant payouts, for example £2.50 for four Js and £3.50 for two different line wins achieved simultaneously. When the reels are in motion, the ‘Spin’ button becomes a ‘Stop’ button which helps to speed up the process for players who like a fast-paced experience. The reels will stop spinning immediately so you can begin the next round without having to wait. Eight minutes into play, we landed three Book of Dead symbols and triggered the Free Spins Bonus.
The famous book then dominated the screen to tell us we had ten free spins and that the pharaoh icon had been chosen to act as the special expanding symbol throughout the bonus, which we were certainly pleased about as it’s one of the highest paying symbols in the game. The Free Spins Bonus will begin when the ‘Spin’ button is pressed, but after this, the remaining free spins will be played out automatically. This is when we got really lucky, as halfway through the bonus, three Book of Dead symbols were landed and the bonus was retriggered. This gave us another ten free spins but the expanding symbol remained the same and was not be reselected. Free spins is when Book of Dead slot really gets interesting - each time the special symbol lands on the reels, it will multiply to cover the entire reel. This means that if this symbol appears on several reels at once, big wins are possible. Our total win when the bonus eventually came to a close was £118.50 - a great prize for a game played with £1 stakes.
Remember that nothing is ever guaranteed when playing slot games and outcomes are determined by a Random Number Generator, so no two games will be the same. This review is just one experience to give a little insight into what can happen during gameplay.
Book of Dead Slot - The Verdict
At first glance, you may be scratching your head as to why Book of Dead slot is so popular in the online casino industry. On one hand, it’s a fairly simple concept, with only one bonus round and a common theme. The ancient Egyptian theme for slot games is well-trodden ground, so it’s becoming more and more important for gaming providers to offer something different, especially as technology continues to evolve. However, Book of Dead is well-designed, with a very intriguing backstory which may give you a new appreciation for the game.
It’s clear that the real potential is in the Free Spins Bonus. Though simple, the incorporation of the expanding symbol feature could see players land some substantial cash prizes. Play’n GO have managed to combine simplicity and traditionalism with huge winning potential, and this is not an easy thing to do. This, in our opinion, is what makes Book of Dead a slot game worth playing, and it’s definitely one that may appeal to a wide range of people. Novice players needn’t be intimidated by a complicated reel set up or confused by numerous complex bonus rounds, whilst experienced players can enjoy the high-quality graphics and animations, and potentially play through a bonus in which big money can be won.
If you’re looking for a slot with that puts a slightly more modern spin on a traditional concept whilst still being easy to follow, Book of Dead may be the casino game for you. For another in-depth review of one of the biggest slots around, check out our Da Vinci Diamonds Masterworks Review.
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