Developer Nolimit City must have had so much fun with the Infectious xWays feature designed for East Coast vs West Coast that it's back for round two. This time, the team has moved away from the fluro, graffiti, hip hop, beat ridden urban areas of downtown 1990s to a world of the not too distant future where only superheroes can thrive in a toxic environment. The studio has tightened its focus on the Infectious xWays feature in Infectious 5 xWays, which is accompanied by a variety of free spin bonus games, and of course, substantial returns.
Welcome to a vision of the future where morality, survival, and humanity have blurred under the strain of just getting by in a world turned upside down. A Marvel/DC vibe is injected by superhero character symbols as they land on the 5-reel, 1,024 ways to win game grid. An industrial setting is where Nolimit City has laid the scene made up of cranes, chains, sparks, and blurred towers in the background, hinting at some industrial hive world. Along with that, we get an epic, bombastic soundtrack to enrich the heroic atmosphere. It's not the riot of living colour East Coast vs West Coast was, but it's a well atmospheric scene and not something Nolimit has really done before.
The comic book ethos is reinforced by the use of Harvey Dent's ominous words, 'You either die a hero, or you live long enough to see yourself become the villain'. That's a nicely poetic way of describing the all or nothing nature of Infectious 5 xWays' 'Extremely' volatile math model, rated 10 out of 10 by the maker, so gear up for that. As per usual, the RTP is variable, where the value comes in two forms - 96.02% is the most desirable, though it can be found lower at 94.27%. Other important numbers are a hit rate of 31.43%, while stakes from 20 p/c to £/€50/100 per spin may be selected – on any device.
Players score a win in Infectious 5 xWays when three or more identical symbols connect left to right from the first reel. Higher value symbols are the character tiles, named Havoc, Mind Flayer, Torch, Misery, and Toxicity, worth from 1.50 to 4 times your stake for 5 of a kind, followed by 10-A low pays which are worth from 1 to 1.25 times your stake for 5 oak combinations. Three more symbols comprise the paytable, two of which are covered in the next section, leaving the regular wild symbol. This one appears as a chunky yellow 'W' tile that replaces any regular pays to complete a winning combination.
Infectious 5 xWays: Slot Features
As mentioned, xWays and Infectious xWays have popped up famously in East Coast vs West Coast, where they play the central role in Infectious 5 xWays. Complimenting these two extras are three free spin bonus games.
When xWays symbols hit, they transform into any symbol except wilds or scatters. When they do, they reveal 2 or 3 of the same symbol type, expanding the reel height and increasing the number of win ways. At the most, it is possible to have up to 110,592 ways in action.
If an xWays symbol lands simultaneously as a wild symbol, the Infectious xWays feature is triggered. As well as the xWays symbol splitting to reveal more symbols, any other instance of that symbol type on the grid is infected, expanding them in the same way.
Landing 3 or 4 scatter symbols triggers the free spins round where you can pick one of two options;
- Toxic Hazard comes with 9 or 10 infectious spins, where 1 to 5 random wilds are placed on the middle reels for every spin. This means that xWays symbols instantly trigger Infectious xWays every time.
- Lock n' Load comes with 7 or 8 infectious spins and is the more volatile option. Here all wilds lock in place for the duration of the feature while also awarding +1 free spin when they appear on the reels. Wilds may also be awarded an x2 or x3 multiplier, and landing an xWays symbol means guaranteed Infectious xWays.
Should 5 scatter symbols land in the base game, or be collected during the previous two bonus games (by collecting a total of 5 scatter symbols), then Infectious Spins: Mayhem mode is launched.
- Toxic Hazard Mayhem: comes with 12 infectious spins - all infectious 5 symbols will turn into 1 golden infectious 5 symbol. Any infectious xWays during this mode only reveal the golden infectious 5 symbols.
- Lock 'n Load Mayhem: comes with 10 infectious spins - all infectious 5 symbols will turn into 1 golden infectious 5 symbol. Any infectious xWays during this mode only reveal the golden infectious 5 symbols.
Infectious 5 xWays also offers players a list of bonus buy options. Players can go straight to any of the three bonus games, with price tags ranging from 75 to 555 times the total base bet.
Infectious 5 xWays: Slot Verdict
From a lesser studio, reusing the same feature in another game while the new smell hasn't worn off the previous one yet would feel like a cynical move. Not so with Nolimit City, who somehow blast out a game of the year slot on a monthly basis. Instead of feeling like a rehash, focusing on the one feature has given the studio a chance to push it into new and exciting areas not seen previously. There are already great clips of Infectious xWays popping off solid wins in East Coast vs West Coast. In Infectious 5 xWays, we are sure to see a repeat, and then some.
If you thought Infectious xWays were potent before, combining them with locked wilds, or better, locked multiplier wilds are next level. Doing so adds a crazy level of volatility and reward to Lock n' Load spins, even more so to Mayhem Mode. The game doesn't have the fabulously rich theme use of East Coast vs West Coast, which tore you out of reality and plonked you into the best parts of the 1990s, but it was going to be hard to match that. To compensate, Nolimit has ratcheted the winning potential up to 55,555 times the stake, occurring once every 28 million spins, which is relatively frequent compared to many games. Big numbers get thrown around in slots all the time, yet Nolimit City games are some of the few we've seen repeatedly smash their win cap. From Bushido Ways xNudge to Fire in the Hole xBomb, to the mind-melting 200k of San Quentin xWays, all are proven big win games.
They're also extraordinarily volatile machines, and Infectious 5 xWays is no different. Like its siblings, it will infuriate, exasperate, and torment, especially when what would have been an all-time Infectious xWays hit doesn't manage to connect. But, when it does, it's exciting as anything else Nolimit has done this year and almost guaranteed to pop up on a highlight reel sooner or later.
Infectious 5 xWays is an extremely cool superhero adventure slot that does just about everything right.