Beheaded

(Nolimit City) Slot Review

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Beheaded: Slot Overview

Shipwrecks, ay? There are a lot of reasons why you wouldn't want to find yourself in that situation. For example, one nightmare shipwreck scenario plays out in software provider Nolimit City's online slot Beheaded. After this particular ship went down, a single survivor washed ashore on a tropical island, but there was no lounging about in a hammock drinking coconut juice through a bamboo straw until they were rescued. Instead, lurking in the shadows of Beheaded is a soul-devouring Tzantza collector. Bummer. That's a pretty good definition of leaping out of the frying pan into the fire, and players get a taste of do-or-die action as Beheaded flexes its 'Insane' volatility.

First thing's first, a 'tzantza' if you were wondering, is a shrunken head, which used to be used as a trophy, for trade, for rituals, or other purposes, by various peoples in various parts of the planet. Beheaded is not a comedy, then, in other words. It's actually a very dark, soul-filled world where danger dwells around every corner. It's also an offshoot of Nolimit City's slot Blood & Shadow, which appeared to produce polarising reactions amongst certain gamblers when it was released. In such a case, Blood & Shadow is then, to an extent, a litmus test as to how you'll respond to Beheaded, too. Not 100%, though, since the gameplay found in the two games is far from being totally the same.

One thing that is the same is the 10 out of 10, 'Insane', 'Extreme' volatility. Beheaded ain't no Sunday stroll through the park consuming an ice cream-type slot, as you might imagine. The maximum RTP comes in at 95.99%-96.03% when betting 20 c to $/€100 per spin, or 96%-96.04% when using the xBet. The xBet doubles the stake when activated, making it three times more likely to trigger Tzantza Spins - it always starts at Level 1. Beheaded's setup is 4 rows of symbols on a 5-reel grid, with up to 178 connected ways to win. Winning combinations and the symbols below them on each reel fall down, allowing new symbols to fall in.

Bony 10-A card royals are Beheaded's low-pay symbols, worth 0.15 to 0.75 times the bet for 5 OAK. Then there are 5 head/skull medium symbols, paying 0.9-1.5x for five-of-a-kind, as well as 5 blue, glowing high-pay heads/skull, worth up to 3 to 9 times the bet. Wilds may be present on any reel, substituting for all regular paying symbols.

Beheaded: Slot Features

Beheaded slot
Beheaded slot - normal spins

Beheaded's first important feature to get to grips with is its Progression bar. The bar has 5 levels of progression. The bar resets for each level up, and any exceeding collections are carried over. Falling down wild, high, or medium pay symbols advance the Progression bar: Level 1 - 15, Level 2 - 25, Level 3 - 50, Level 4 - 80, Level 5 - 110. A wild symbol is worth +3 per winning symbol, high pays are worth +2 per winning symbol, and medium pays are worth +1 per winning symbol. Each level converts medium pay symbols to high pay symbols.

Landing 3 dropped scatter symbols progress the player to Tzantza Spins, awarding +6 spins. For each skipped level, players win +2 free spins. The Progression bar resets for each new game round.

Soul Wilds

There are 3 Soul Wilds with individual Soul Collectors that collect the Souls from dropped high-pay symbols after a win. The Soul Wild feature is enabled in the following order:

  • Level 1 - Happy Soul Wild, requires a total of 4 souls to be activated.
  • Level 3 - Sad Soul Wild, requires a total of 10 souls to be activated.
  • Level 5 - Angry Soul Wild, requires a total of 18 souls to be activated.

Soul Wilds are only activated if no more Souls can be collected and its collector has been filled. The number of activated Soul Wilds determines the size of the Wild Zone - 1x1, 2x2, or 3x3, and multiplies the general multiplier by 1, 2, or 3, respectively. The general multiplier resets after this event. All scatters in Wild Zones award +1 free spin each. The Soul Wilds Collector is reset when it does not collect enough Souls or is activated, until the next spin.

Beheaded slot
Beheaded slot - Pick-A-Potion

Ayahuasca Spins

Reaching a new Progression bar level awards +2 free spins till level 4 or +6 free spins when advancing to Tzantza Spins. However, buying Ayahuasca Spins instantly progresses the Progression bar to level 3 and awards +6 Ayahuasca Spins. Three of the medium pay symbols are replaced with 3 high pay symbols.

Tzantza Spins

Buying Tzantza Spins instantly progresses the Progression bar to level 5 and awards +10 Tzantza Spins. All medium-paying symbols are replaced with high-pay symbols.

Pick A Potion

When Tzantza Spins end without achieving the max win, players are presented with 2 choices. One is the Butterfly Bottle, guaranteeing a win of 5 to 8,000 times the base bet. The other is the Skull Bottle, which gambles the accumulated win for a chance of winning the max win or losing it all. The higher the accumulated win, the better the chance of winning the max win.

Nolimit Bonus

Not so many choices this time, where alongside the xBet, Beheaded's Nolimit Bonus offers these:

  • 6 Ayahuasca Spins - 100x the bet. RTP 96%-06.03%.
  • 10 Tzantza Spins - 500x the bet. RTP 95.94%-96.08%.
  • Lucky Draw - 225x the bet. RTP 95.99%-96.17%.
Beheaded slot
Beheaded slot - Tzantza Spins

Beheaded: Slot Verdict

Nolimit City had a blinder of a run through the first half of 2024, dropping big swinging slots such as Fire in the Hole 2, Brick Snake 2000, Loner, and others. Beheaded, whilst a very clever game, felt at points like it tugged the average quality, or at least the average enjoyment level, down a notch or two. The main reason is that, initially, it just wasn't as fun to play as others have been this year. Beheaded brought back strong memories of Blood & Shadow, not great ones, a little scary ones, actually, though the game did improve as time passed and understanding of what was going on increased. Make no bones about it: Beheaded is a slot that wants nothing more than to rip the head off anyone brave enough to take it on, boil the noggin in a big pot, shrink it down to size, then display the new trophy in a collection of others it has managed to gauge out of the gambling community.

Jesting? A little bit, not entirely, though, since Beheaded is happy inhabiting the more brutal segment of the online slot scale. Its theme perfectly matches the mechanics in this case. Like Blood & Shadow, organically progressing through to the upper levels is not the easiest task ever set and might even evoke feelings of frustration should users get caught in a loop, like a treadmill stuck on the wrong speed. It might be worth considering using the xBet when taking on Beheaded. The cost is double the bet, fair enough, but the entertainment levels during the test session were far greater than 2x. In part, this was because unenhanced betting was a little dry a lot of the time. Collections didn't seem to go far; big features also felt few and far between, causing a very noticeable difference between xBet off and xBet on.

No doubt, anything is possible no matter the mode, and who knows? Patience might be rewarded no matter how someone chooses to play Beheaded. Might not, though. It helps when you've got a handle on the features so you know more or less what to expect. At best, this means expecting a pretty sweet combo of mechanics such as symbol drops, big wild symbols, collections, free spins, and win multiplier, pushing out wins as high as 15,950x the bet. Risk your winnings for the chance of hitting max win at the end of Tzantza Spins, or pick the guaranteed win of the Butterfly Bottle? Just to be clear, any wins from the Butterfly Bottle are added to those accumulated during the free spins round, making it the far 'safer' choice. So while the max win frequency looks quite decent on paper, this particular gamble option will undoubtedly burn a lot of players.

As is often the case from Nolimit City, Beheaded is chock full of clever ideas, throws out confrontational subject matter, and is jam-packed with smart gameplay. It was harder to warm to than much of what Nolimit City had released earlier in the year and before, but some gamblers might relish the challenge Beheaded presents and look forward to taking some (virtual) heads of their own.

Good

Clever gaming ideas abound in Beheaded, but its particular nature may be harder to fall for compared to a lot of the things NLC has dropped of late.

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