Dr Reactive Mega Drop (Red7/WMS): Overview
Dr Reactive is a new slot fresh from WMS partner studio Red7 and is their very first grid slot. It can be found in two forms. One is as a standalone game. The second is tied into the wider Mega Drop progressive jackpot network which really is the one to go for. We reviewed another Red7 slot recently that is connected to this network, Tetris Extreme. Both slots offer players an alternative game system, using symbols that tumble into a grid. Past that, they are very different experiences. It has been a fruitful few weeks for grid slots fans with a bunch of great games to play. Dr Reactive faces some stiff competition, has he formulated the right mix of elements to ward them off?
First up, the title is a little misleading. Dr Reactive does make an appearance from time to time, but in general, he is conspicuous by his absence. This is especially the case since the game is set in his laboratory which has a dark purple appearance. This might be a stretch, but it feels ever so slightly like the nuclear power plant in the Simpsons. You could imagine Homer popping up at any moment and doing something ridiculous like blowing the place up. What we get isn’t too far from that. The regents and potions on the grid do react with each other from time to time, causing explosions and electricity to fly. You will want this to happen. They don’t call him Dr Reactive for nothing, and his reactions can lead to some of the game’s best features.
Until then, let’s look at the engine that powers the game. Taking a popular grid slot layout, Dr Reactive drops 64 symbols into an 8x8 grid on each spin. Gone are win lines; instead, clusters of similar symbols return a reward when 5 or more of them touch horizontally or vertically. Winners are removed from the screen and replaced by new symbols which tumble into the empty spaces. As you’d expect, chain reactions of winners can result from one spin. Bet levels can be set from 20 p/c per spin up to £/€100 at the most. RTP comes in two levels. When the game is jacked into the Mega Drop jackpots, we get a respectable 96.11%. If not, it has a not so respectable 94.11% as a unconnected slot.
The paytable/information section contains no less than 24 pages which we will try and condense. There are 6 regular pay symbols, all brand new and theme related. In ascending order are 4 potions – red, purple, green, and orange, followed by a Lightning Bolt, and DNA symbol which is worth 50 times the stake for a cluster of 15. The remaining symbols all exert a more interesting effect on the game via the extra features.
Dr Reactive Mega Drop (Red7/WMS): Features
During the base game the wild symbol substitutes for any of the regular symbols and can also come with a multiplier of x2-x5 attached. If more than one wild is part of a winning combination they stack and their Multipliers are multiplied together. Red7 claim up to 1,000x at the most which seem very high.
The atom symbol is a bit of a wild card entry and can trigger the Lightning Bolt or DNA symbol when it lands next to them. The DNA Reaction feature causes all symbols except wilds in the same column and row to explode off the grid to let others fall in. There is a reward of 1x the bet for each DNA reaction. If the Atom lands next to the Lightning Bolt both symbols explode and cause bolts of lightning to flash over the grid clearly the lowest paying symbols to let new symbols tumble in.
The next feature is the Free Falls. When new symbols fall into the game, whether that is from Lightning Reactions, DNA Reactions, or winning combos, the Free Falls meter increases by 1. If the meter reaches 5, or 7, then 10 or 15 Free Falls are awarded. The rules of Free Falls are similar to the base game except for the wild, which has its multipliers doubled. Wilds also stay on the screen and decrease by 2 with each new tumble. When they fall to zero, they disappear. The Free Fall meter remains in play, and if it hits 5 then 5 more Free Falls are added.
Lastly, some info on the Mega Drop. Each three jackpot must be won before they reach their maximum size. For the Minor this is 1,500 credits, Major it is 20,000 credits, and the Epic it is 200,000 credits. They can be won at any bet level, though the higher the stakes, the better the chance of winning one.
Dr Reactive Mega Drop (Red7/WMS): Verdict
For a first grid slot attempt, Dr Reactive is an ok effort. It has moments when plenty of winners chain together, as well as stacks of multipliers to ramp up the payouts. Red7 claim the multipliers can go as high as x1,000 which is a phenomenal figure and one crying out for some video footage. Potential wise without the jackpots, figures of around 2,000 times the stake are realistic.
When it comes to other slots in the grid slot category, Dr Reactive fairs pretty well. Its gameplay doesn’t quite rank with others we’ve seen recently like Dragonfall or any of the titles from Play'n GO. If you are going to play Dr Reactive, make sure it is the progressive jackpot version. With several percentage points higher in RTP and, of course, a significant top prize, it's a far superior option. In fact, as standalone game without being part of the network, it would be better to pass up.
There are more fluid grid slots, with better potential out there, and the low RTP is a deal breaker. Bottom line, there are some good gaming moments here, but if you're craving for some grid slot action, there are far better options available on the digital shelves.
Dr Reactive is serviceable, if utterly unremarkable.