Serial: Slot Overview
Unsurprisingly, Serial is not a slot about the sugary grain-based items people commonly have for breakfast. C'mon, Serial is from Nolimit City, meaning it's a non-nonsense, black-humoured slot built on the taboo topic of serial murder and focuses on a grim character who goes by the name of the Bodycam Butcher. The Butcher is a sort of Jason Voorhees/Leatherface character who mixes the darker side of computer technology with sharp instruments. In other words, not the sort of chap you'd want to bump into in a dark alley. In Serial, the Bodycam Butcher is a hard-hitting character in a hard-hitting game that mixes up classic Nolimit City features with a bunch of newer stuff to create a no holds barred online slot.
Those whose idea of gambling fun is pulling together clusters of sweeties, lining up leprechauns, or who simply lean on the squeamish side better look away now. Serial's base and bonus rounds take place in a dark, dingy bathroom, all blood-spattered, in various lighting schemes depending on the phase of play (there's even a scene of a dude masturbating to violent porn). Through it all, it's just not a not particularly nice place to be. Serial sort of picks up where Mental left off, except its lead character is on the loose rather than institutionalised. It's classic Nolimit City, bending the envelope of not only what is possible in an online slot but taking a big old hammer to good taste. It won't be for everyone, yet for those who go for the studio's exploration of darker, forbidden themes, Serial has a powerful freak factor that's hard to look away from.
While the theme won't be for everyone, Serial's math model won't be to all tastes either. For starters, it's 'Extremely' volatile, rated as 10 out of 10, while coming in three RTP settings – 96.07% being the preferred version. It's playable on all devices and has a base bet range of 20 p/c to £/€100 per spin, or activating the xBet (max RTP 96.04%) adds an extra 20% whilst guaranteeing a scatter on the second reel. As for reels, Serial has 5 of them, each holding 3 symbols at the start of each base game spin, though they can be expanded via the features and when moving to the bonus round.
Initially, players get 243 ways to win in the base game, occurring when matching symbols land on adjacent reels starting from the leftmost side. Serial's symbols tell a story in themselves, consisting of five sinister objects as the five low pays, then bones, a frightened lady, a bloodied 'doctor', a law enforcement man, and the Bodycam Butcher as the five premiums. Hit a five-of-a-kind non-modified win to collect payouts of 0.5-0.9x the bet for the lows or 1-5x the bet for the highs. Wilds appear in numerous forms; as you will see, their common function is to substitute for all pay symbols.
Serial: Slot Features
Nolimit City is no stranger to cutting, stretching, or plugging its game grids with all manner of features and expansion devices. In fact, they are one of the industry leaders at it. Serial is no different and comes stacked with Respins, Enhancer Cells, a bunch of xMechanics, two bonus rounds, bonus buys, and the xBizarre.
When winning symbols hit, they are held on the grid while the rest of the symbols respin. Each respin that improves the win goes on to award another respin. Additionally, for each respin, one enhancer cell at the top and bottom of the grid is unlocked, from left to right, one reel at a time.
When Enhancer Cells open up, they reveal one of the following:
- xWays – 2 to 4 matching pay symbols are revealed. If more than one xWays symbol hits, all will show the same symbol. In addition, when exactly two scatters hit, they transform into xWays symbols.
- xNudge Wild – a wild symbol which always nudges to cover the entire reel. Each nudge increases its multiplier by +1. These can also land regularly on reels 2-4.
- Wild – a normal, regular wild symbol.
- Character symbols – one of the high-value pay symbols.
The xSplit Wild is a 2x wild, which lands only on the rightmost reel. It splits all symbols on its row into two symbols. This includes scatter symbols, which double the number of free spins they hold. If an xNudge is split, its multiplier doubles in value, while an xWays symbol is doubled in size when split.
Infectious xWays' revealed Ways symbol infects all other normal-size symbols on the 5x3 game area to expand to the same size.
Bonus Rounds – The Search and The Kill
Landing 3 scatter symbols triggers The Search. Each scatter holds a value and, when summed up, equates to the number of awarded free spins. During the round, extra Enhancer Cells are added to reels 2, 3, and 4, increasing the grid size to 3-5-5-5-5-3. Should an xSplit Symbol land, the round is upgraded to The Kill spins, and +2 free spins are bestowed. As well as being upgraded from The Search, The Kill is triggered when 3 scatters plus 1 xSplit symbol hits in the base game. The rules of The Search apply during The Kill with the additional benefit of having an xSplit Wild always present on the last reel, though it can jump up or down.
Serial comes with an overall max win figure of 74,800 times the base bet. However, the most winnable in the base or bonus round is 18,700x the bet. When this level is achieved, players have the chance of winning the game's full potential via the xBizarre feature. There are up to three stages, where you make a 50/50 choice. Geting all choices correct awards the 74,800x max win. Interestingly, getting the choice wrong and you still get to keep any previous winnings.
For players who prefer to buy their way to the bonus round, Serial has you covered with three buy options. One is 'The Search' costing 78x the bet (max RTP 96.27%), or The Kill for 480x the bet (max RTP 96.38%). Alternatively, laying out 279x the bet buys the Lucky Draw option, where players get a 70% of getting The Search or a 30% of landing The Kill (max RTP 96.38%).
Serial: Slot Verdict
These guys, like, wow, where to begin? Who else would base an online slot around a serial killer and not just any serial killer, one called the Bodycam Butcher? Nolimit City is like the Andy Kaufman of online slot development – what on earth will the team possibly do next? Serial is evidence that we are far from hitting the studio's limit. Then again, perhaps we have, but Nolimit City's attitude to the limit is to ram it at full speed, back up, ram it again, get the wheels spinning on top of the detritus, flick a V sign out the window and put their foot back down on the medal.
Not only is Nolimit City ready and willing to be controversial with its theme choice, but they've also got the creative talents to back it up with some outstanding features and gameplay. Games like Serial aren't just shocking for the sake of it. The team isn't just coming up with radical subject matter for the lols. The gameplay is intricately entwined with the theme and plays like a charm in Serial.
For one, we've got the building wins respins effect as seen in games like NetEnt's iconic Jack Hammer (as well as others). However, Nolimit City hasn't just left it there. They've expertly used respins to unlock Enhancer Cells, unleash modifiers, and blow the number of ways up the yin-yang. Not only do respins have the ability to launch modifiers, but they can also neatly elongate a free spins round, stretching out the thrills, or horrors, adding value to a bonus buy, or just a regular natural trigger. Chuck in some slicing 'n dicing from the xSplit Wild symbol, and you've got another Nolimit City slot which can launch from nought to everything in a moment. Following a solid result, players then get to sit through one of those uncomfortable count-up sequences Nolimit City also excels at. The final motivator, should it be needed, is that a monster like the Bodycam Butcher is paired with monstrous potential, maxing out at 74,800x the base bet. In a unique twist, it'll take some good choices during the xBizarre feature to get there. Given everything else Serial's got going on, we're not sure if the max win number relates to something out in the real world, and if it does, do we want to know…?.
Nolimit City has once again released an online slot that commands attention through its uncompromising presentation and razor-sharp execution. Clearly, serial killers aren't for all tastes, nor is a math model that can be as brutal as its masked main character. However, if you count yourself a fan of what Nolimit City does, then Serial should rock worlds up there with the rest of the studio's more memorable releases.
The brutal subject matter paired with equally brutal gameplay means Serial should have no trouble firing the imagination of those enamoured with Nolimit City’s work.