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Dead or Alive (DOA) slot from NetEnt

Dead or Alive (DOA) slot from NetEnt
The period is obvious – the end of the 19th century. The place is evident - west of Mississippi, in the land of the frontiers. The subject is clear - demonstrating callousness and trying to survive, reinventing yourself in this wild era. The protagonists: Gunmen, Cowboys, Indians, Pioneers, Desperados, Bandits, and Fugitives - crowded together by hopes and determination and rapid scaling up and overwhelming greed, sheltering from prohibition or vindication.

The 2009 released slot by NetEnt Dead or Alive has already become a cult title for being a game with splendid yet modest graphics and animations, elevated by the Old West soundtrack. The Swedish developers bring us to dusty western surroundings with a stormy, lightning sky, where whistles, harsh creaks, cowing birds, and the wind blowing are propping up the ambiance. Finally, there is nothing left for you but to grab your pistol and a glass of whisky and enjoy the game!

The slot has High Volatility with an initial RTP of 96.82%, which allows getting a positive mathematical expectation of winning in the casino.

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Personal testers’ opinion (Review and recommendations from the testers’ team)

We established a great winning potential during our test sessions during the base game and the bonus feature.

Regarding the base game

One good feature of the DOA slot that can keep you “alive” even when payouts in the base game are shy or completely escape you is that 2 Scatters anywhere on the reels generate a payout. The payouts are bigger for 3, 4, or 5 Scatters, of course, but instead of 2 Scatters being a loser, they pay to double your stake. So, for example, if you bet 3.60 CAD, 2 Scatters show up, will pay you 7.20 CAD, which is not bad at all.

Regarding the bonus game

Dead or Alive is one of the riskiest slots of NetEnt with extremely high potential. It is widely played and loved by all players due to its higher-priced winning combinations (5 Scatters and 5 Wilds) and the thrill to get Wild symbols lined up in the free spins feature, which provides extra win and extra free spins. The slot can easily give 1000x and 2000x total bets, and even 5000x.

The biggest bonanza is getting a Wild line during the free spins. The disappointing part is that the game is slow, in some moments even boring.

NetEnt announced the following probabilities.

  • The total return to the player percentage (RTP) is 96.82%. The usual game is 53.7%, payouts for scatter symbols -17.4% and 25.7%, in the free spins feature.
  • The probability of getting any winnings is 31%, on the pay line is 24%, using scatter symbols - 7%.
  • The probability of dropping 3+ Scatters and triggering the bonus feature is 0.66% (every 152nd spin).
  • The probability of collecting five Wild symbols (one on each reel) and get an additional 5 Free Spins is 2.2% (approx. every 50th feature, but it does not mean that wilds will be in the line).
  • During the usual spins (per pay line), maximum winnings are 6 000 coins; during free spins - 12 000 coins, the total maximum winning is 54 000 coins.

Hidden parameters and settings of DOA slot (data from testing)

  • Statistically dropping 3+ Scatters and trigger the Free Spins has a frequency of 0.65% (every 154th spin). Here you can see many "empty" Free Spins features, or such, with winnings of only 10x-20x. 
  • The probability of getting any winnings is 30.43%. Here you can see a lot of winnings that are lower than your initial bet.
  • The distribution of the winnings is 69% during usual spins and 31% during the bonus feature. Here one-third part of all bets is accumulated in a separated pool-to be used for super and mega winnings when some player hit a "wild-line" during lucky Free Spins.
  • The maximum winning during our tests was 4181x. 
  • The average winnings from the bonus were 47x.
  • Volatility is 16.6 out of 20 (very high)—one of the top high volatility games by NetEnt.
  • The cycle length of the game is long. This is because to pay out the massive winnings, DOA needs to collect that amount from many players. That is why the cycle is long, and the DOA slot is often cold.
  • The rating of the slot machine for the wagering is extremely low, 0.81 out of 10. Therefore, trying to complete the wagering here will not end up with success.
  • The RTP of 96.82% allows getting a positive mathematical expectation of winning at a Canadian online casino.

Slot’s symbols and features

Dead or Alive (DOA) is a slot with 9 fixed pay lines and a 3x5 simple layout. All symbols of the DOA slot are fully attuned to the Old West theme of the game. 

  • On the low-paid end of the paytable are the regular cards, followed by a couple of whisky glasses and a pair of cowboy boots. Finally, at the high end of the paytable are a white cowboy hat, holster with a gun, and the top paid is the sheriff’s badge.
  • As usual, 3 or more adjacent same symbols (even Wilds) on a pay line from left to right make a winning combination.
  • The exception here is the Scatter symbol because even 2 of them landing anywhere on the reels is a paid combination as well.
  • There is a big difference in payouts among the symbols: 
  • 5OAK Scatters pay 2500 times the bet, 
  • 5OAK sheriff’s badges on a pay line pay 1000 x “coin” x “level,” while 
  • 5OAK “J”s on a pay line pay only 40 x “coin” x “level.”
  • The “Most Wanted” poster is a Wild symbol, substituting for all other symbols except Scatters. 
  • A Wild symbol that drops on any reel during the bonus round becomes a Sticky Wild.
  • A pair of crossed pistols is a Scatter symbol. 
  • 3+ Scatters give an award of 12 Free Spins adhered with a 2x multiplier.

DOA Bonus round

  • If a Wild symbol drops during the Free Spins, it will display the wanted character's name and become locked to the reels - Sticky Wilds - for the whole Free Spins period.
  • If Wilds land on all 5 reels 5 additional Free Spins with 5 Sticky Wilds are awarded.
  • Moreover, if 3+ Scatters land again during the Free Spins, they will re-trigger the bonus round, and additional 12 Free Spins will be awarded. Any Sticky Wilds already on the reels from the previous Free Spins will remain during the re-triggered spins.

How to win at Dead or Alive (DOA) slot? (Conclusion)

  • As usual, our first advice is to test the game in DEMO mode before starting to play for real money. 
  • We do not recommend this game to bonus hunters for wagering the bonus requirements because of the extremely high volatility and long cycle. 
  • We recommend this game to players for real money but only after testing the slot mood –hot/cold. Players for real money are strongly advised to consider well their beginning capital and to mind the bet.
  • We do recommend at least 500 x bets in your balance. For example, if you plan to play on a 1.80 CAD bet, your recommended balance is 900 CAD. It is much better to have money for more spins than to bet more on fewer spins. We believe that the slot “prefers” the small bets better and is reluctant to perform well with the higher ones.
  • However, even with a 1.80 CAD bet (0.20 coin value on level 1), your winning can reach several thousand.

Where to play?

  • The best place in Canada to launch Dead or Alive slot for free or real money is Fastpay Casino. They offer over 5300 casino slot games as well as super-fast and no-hassle withdrawals. In addition, you will be pleased with their bonus program and a VIP bonus program for all loyal players.

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Written by Kamen Valev
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