Blood & Shadow

(Nolimit City) Slot Review

Nolimit City

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Blood & Shadow: Slot Overview

Blood & Shadow is an online slot from software provider Nolimit City, and a game with a name like that from a provider like this might well send shivers of dread running down the spine of players conversant with the studio's work. Or, it might induce an adrenaline rush at the thought of gearing up for war with one of the more controversial game designers in the biz. Blood & Shadow is a horror-themed slot, and a testament to the team's creativity, as it is packed with surprises in critical areas like gameplay and stats. Make sure the lights are all switched on, and let's see what we can unearth.

Right off the bat, Blood & Shadow feels like it's the spiritual successor to Nolimit City's earlier release Book of Shadows. Spiritual is an apt word, too, as both games delve into a darker, occult side of life. Visual cues include esoteric markings, dripping waxy candles, and lashings of skulls. Blood & Shadow never gets truly squeamish, though. It's arguably lighter in tone than games like Mental or Serial, for example. But, a jolly jaunt over rolling green hills, or farmland, with cheerful sprites and symbols this most certainly is not. If you like your games a bit darker, a bit spookier, do proceed…

Blood & Shadow slot
Blood & Shadow slot - base game

On the numerical side of things, Blood & Shadow has been rated 'Extreme' when it comes to volatility (10 out of 10), while RTP depends on the option and how you play the game. In the regular mode, betting 20 p/c to $/€280 per spin, the maximum return to player value is 96.13%, while other values are mentioned below when buying features. Any device is suitable for playing Blood & Shadow, which takes place on a game grid with a default size of 5 reels, 4 rows, and 1,024 ways to win.

Something you don't see a lot in a Nolimit City slot is Blood & Shadows' Ritual Bar collection meter. There are several ways of progressing the Ritual bar; one is when medium or high pay winning combinations hit. No matter the type, winning symbols are removed from the board, allowing symbols to fall down to fill the gaps. The high pays here are five spooky-looking characters, the mids are five less spooky-looking characters, while the lows are five occult-looking symbols. Hitting a five-of-kind win awards 0.15-0.6x for the lows, 0.9-1.5x for the mids, and 3-8 the bet for the highs. Wild symbols lend a helping hand in this endeavour by substituting for any regular pay symbol.

Blood & Shadow: Slot Features

Blood & Shadow slot
Blood & Shadow slot - free spins

Among Blood & Shadow's cabal of features are the aforementioned Ritual Bar, plus Candle Spins, Sticky Wilds, xSplits, Baphomet Rite, Cursed Spins, and the Nolimit Bonus.

Ritual Bar

The Ritual Bar sits next to the reels, and each winning medium symbol adds 1 point, each winning high symbol adds 2 points, while scatter symbols add 10 points each. The bar has 5 progression levels and resets for each level-up, though extra points carry over to the next level:

  • Level 1 – 20 points
  • Level 2 – 30 points
  • Level 3 – 40 points
  • Level 4 – 60 points
  • Level 5 – 80 points

Each level removes the lowest paying symbol from the reels and upgrades medium symbols to high pay symbols. The Ritual Bar resets for a new game round.

Candle Spins

When reaching a new level on the Ritual Bar, 2 Candle Spins are awarded until reaching level 4. Players win 6 free spins when they advance to Cursed Spins, the final level on the bar. When Candle Spins are active, the Ritual Bar performs the same way as in the base game.

Sticky Wild

Sticky Wilds are able to land on reels 2 to 5. During Candle Spins, wilds drop to the bottom of the reels, where they become sticky. Sticky wilds are removed when they are used in a winning combination.


xSplit symbols enter the game during Cursed Spins. When an xSplit lands, it either splits the row it lands in or the reel, doubling all symbols it passes through. More than one xSplit can land on the same row but not the same reel.

Baphomet Rite

Buying the Baphomet Rite progresses the bar to Level 3, awarding +6 Candle Spins. Here 3 of the low and medium symbols are replaced with 3 high-pay symbols.

Cursed Spins

When entering Cursed Spins, +6 free spins are awarded. The Ritual Bar is removed for this feature, and Cursed Spins take place on an expanded 5x5 sized grid with 3,125 ways to win and only high symbols. Landing a scatter symbol during the session awards +1 free spin.

Nolimit Bonus

The Nolimit Bonus supplies players with 4 feature buy options to bypass the base game. These are:

  • Baphomet Rite - 66x the bet, max RTP is 96.18%.
  • Cursed Spins - 500x the bet for 10 spins, max RTP is 96.1%.
  • Lucky Draw Level 1-5 - 55x the bet, max RTP is 96.01%.
  • Lucky Draw Level 3-5 - 166x the bet, max RTP is 96.04%.
Blood & Shadow slot
Blood & Shadow slot - free spins

Blood & Shadow: Slot Verdict

As mentioned, Nolimit City isn't particularly renowned for turning out symbol collecting/progress bar games, but it appears as if the team has been studying up on them. The one used in Blood & Shadows is a finely tuned example of a progress bar system that balances short-term rewards and feature triggers with longer-term ones. In some cases, much longer-term, but in saying that, Blood & Shadows wasn't a game that felt like it required a drawn-out torturous grind to draw satisfaction from - during our test sessions, at least. Though, it should be said getting the most out of the Ritual Bar may require the sort of commitment rarely seen in an online slot.

Numbers might help clarify this point better than words, no matter how poetic we try to express them. Triggering Candle Spins was no big deal; they have a theoretical frequency of 1 in 13. For Nolimit City, that's an oddly user-friendly stat. However, hold on to your tofu burgers, folks, because triggering Cursed Spins organically, according to the game sheet, is a 1 in 10,030 spins occurrence. Couple this stat with a modest for Nolimit City max win of 6,666 times the bet, and the whole deal might feel daunting to the point of being off-putting. Fair dues, it's hard to argue with that impression.

It's not all doom, gloom, shadow and blood, though. Like Print Studios' slot Reapers, it might pay to view Cursed Spins as a happy accident rather than the be all end all outright goal, so maybe try and sit back to enjoy the ride. The good news is the ride is a pretty good one, with enough regularity to the hits and feature triggers to keep the game rolling, with a rich, handsomely presented occult environment to enjoy the flow in. It feels like Nolimit City may have had a different sort of gambler in mind when making Blood & Shadow when we compare it to some of the studio's recent work. When weighing everything up, Blood & Shadow is a unique slot, and while it might be trickier than usual to pinpoint the exact gambler taste this caters for, those enticed should be thrilled, or chilled, by the result.


While it might be trickier than usual to pinpoint the exact gambler taste Blood & Shadow caters for, those enticed should be thrilled, or chilled, by the result.

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