Scroll of Dead: Slot Overview
Coming across the word 'of' in a slot title is a pretty reliable clue as to what sort of gaming you can expect to find. Namely, expanding symbols, chunky paytables, volatile gaming, and in most cases, Egyptian visuals. There are so many of these games now they have more or less formed their very own category. In fact, if they were officially assembled, they would easily be one of the biggest groupings in many casino lineups. Standing head and shoulders above others is Play'n GO's classic Book of Dead, which is the 'book' slot par excellence for many enthusiasts.
Scroll of Dead utilises Play'n GO's expertise in this area, offering everything you would expect from this type of game – plus a twist. Scroll of Dead's twist is one of those alterations that seem obvious in hindsight and makes you wonder why it hasn't been more extensively used. When in motion, the new addition not only makes the game bigger but also increases the potential returns in the process.
Set within a brazier-filled temple, two things instantly register. One is the extra 6th reel, sitting in a locked state until the requisite number of scatters break it open. Secondly, Rich Wilde has been dropped from the picture. Perhaps he's back at the institute lecturing or dusting antiquities at an undisclosed location. Either way, his exclusion is no major loss as Play'n GO seem to be phasing him out in favour of his vivacious daughter Cat as a replacement. Other than these two changes, the game has a very Book of Dead look and feel, reinforced by the striped reel dividers and similar-looking symbols.
Scroll of Dead continues the honoured tradition of being a highly volatile adventure, with a rating of 9 out of 10. As per usual, the RTP is variable, where the most generous value is 96.28%, dropping to 94.28% or less in some circumstances. As you'd expect, any device is fine for taking on the temple, where stakes of 1 p/c to £/€100 may be selected. The reason penny stakes are possible is because players can set between 1 and 10 paylines.
Symbols are both old and new, the old being 10 to A card royals, which have a familiar design, while high-pays include Ankhs, birds, snakes, plus Cleopatra type ladies. During the base game, lines of five premiums are worth 50 to 500 times the bet - that figure increasing to 100 to 750 times the bet when the extra reel is active, making six of a kind wins possible.
Scroll of Dead: Slot Features
Instead of a book playing the role of wild/scatter, Scroll of Dead uses another popular Egyptian icon, the scarab. As the wild, scarabs land on any reel to replace regular pay symbols to complete line wins. As the scatter, 3, 4, or 5 scarabs in view award 8 free spins plus a payout of 2x, 20x, or 200x the bet.
Two things happen before free spins begin. The first thing is the 6th reel is unlocked and becomes active for the duration of free spins. Secondly, 1 pay symbol is randomly selected to be the special expanding symbol. Chosen symbols expand to cover all positions on their reel when they can form a win, which is possible even when they are not adjacent to each other. Expanded symbols also pay all ways. Note that wilds do not replace expanded chosen symbols.
The game also features an optional gamble round following wins in the base game. Correctly guessing the colour or suit of a hidden card doubles or quadruples the win value. Gamble rounds can be played up to 5 times in a row.
Scroll of Dead: Slot Verdict
Scroll of Dead's raison d'etre is a relatively simple change, but the inclusion of a 6th reel certainly adds a new dimension. Book enthusiasts are no doubt aware having an extra reel isn't completely new. Greentube beat Play'n GO to the punch by about six years with Book of Ra Deluxe 6, which also had a 6th reel. The difference then was you had to increase the bet using the 'Extra Bet' option to have it active in all phases of the game, rather than just unlocking it when free spins triggered.
On the subject of potential, providing an extra reel does have a positive effect, beating the payout of regular 'book' slots by 50%. Whereas a game like Book of Dead maxed out at 5,000x the bet, Scroll of Dead ups that total to 7,500x. In theory, at least, hitting the game's full potential is as straightforward as ever – just land the top expanding premium symbol on each reel during free spins.
Aside from more reels, it is business as usual when playing Scroll of Dead. Solid line win values keep the base game interesting, and the production value is high. In many ways, Scroll of Dead is a simply designed game, yet it performs in the usual Triple-A Play'n GO fashion. This means attractive graphics and slick animations tying everything together to produce a class act.
Within the ultra-saturated 'book of' category of games, there have been so many twists that it's hard to create something new. Scroll of Dead might not be totally original, but its 6th reel and larger than normal potential do set it apart from most of its competitors. Couple that with a well-established pedigree, and Scroll of Dead certainly has the goods to thrill players entertained by this style.
Scroll of Dead is a slickly executed Book of Dead+ game that is bound to blow the hieroglyphs off fans of this style.