Any players out there keen to shoot stuff up, stalk around nature, blowing animals away (or like the idea of doing so from the keyboard) might do well to check out Bucks and Doe 10K Ways from developer ReelPlay. This hunting-themed online slot has been built for ReelPlay’s expanding 10K Ways range. Usually, this wouldn’t cause much of a pulse rate quickening as these games have tended to be very same old same old in terms of features and gameplay. However, Bucks and Doe 10K Ways turns the series on its head by delivering one of the most innovative bonus rounds of the lot so far.
Even the theme was quite creative. Till now, we’ve been showered with things like Asian versions, Thor, pirates, Irish, and the like, so Bucks and Doe 10K Ways started on unfamiliar footing. The base game takes place in a cabin out in the woods, away from the rat race, with a barrel of firewood and an inviting rocking chair for company. Deer horns hang over one of the windows, so the task, presumably, is to head out, blast critters and add a few more trophies to the wall. Some people are into it, some less so. Good thing then Bucks and Doe 10K Ways isn’t real, so no animals were harmed in its creation, that we know of.
Like the others in the range, Bucks and Doe 10K Ways is played on a gaming grid with 6 reels with 4 rows each, plus a horizontal reel above it holding 4 symbols. This setup, as the name says, provides 10,000 ways to win. Matching symbols must start from the leftmost reel onwards and land over adjacent reels to create a win. With a top RTP of 96.1% (4 lower values are available depending on the market), Bucks and Doe 10K Ways is a medium-high volatile slot with a hit rate of around 1 in 4. Bets of 20 p/c to £/€40 may be selected, as can four different bonus buy options.
Symbol time and the paytable lists ten regular pays – six low and four high. The lows are 9-A card ranks, paying 0.5 to 1 times the bet for 6-of-a-kind, while the highs are a deer, elk, moose, and hunter, awarding 1.5 to 50 times the bet for 6 OAK. FYI, Bucks and Doe 10K Ways does not have wild symbols. It does have a cascade win mechanic that removes winning symbols from the reels, filling the gaps by dropping symbols down from above.
Bucks and Doe 10K Ways: Slot Features
Having covered the base game extras, let’s move straight to the bonus respins round, which is triggered when 3 or more scatter symbols land. The game symbol used in the bonus round is randomly selected when the feature triggers organically. Only one game symbol type will land. It can be the Deer with values of 1-100x the bet, Elk where values range from 1-150x the bet, or Moose where values range from 1-200x the bet. Once underway, 3 respins are awarded, and the triggering scatter prizes are collected. Each spin can land these symbols:
Trophy prizes are the Bronze, Silver, Gold, or Platinum worth 10x, 50x, 250x, or 2,000x the bet, respectively. Only one trophy can be on the reels at a time. When the reels stop spinning, a target floats over the screen. If it shoots a symbol, including the bear, its value is collected, and the bear loses one life. Bears drop off when their lives go to 0. Trophy scatter symbols remain in position until the feature ends, or they are targeted and their value collected. When respins end, the total collected prize amount is awarded.
Players are able to choose four bonus buys in Bucks and Doe 10K Ways. These are bonus respins with Deer symbols, bonus respins with Elk symbols, bonus respins with Moose symbols, or bonus respins with a random animal for 55x, 65x, 75x, or 65x the bet, respectively.
Bucks and Doe 10K Ways: Slot Verdict
Before Bucks and Doe 10K Ways, the 10K range had been a little samey samey. There are variations, but when a new one came along, there was usually almost nil expectation of seeing something we’d never seen before. All that changed with Bucks and Doe 10K Ways. This has to be the most creative instalment in the range so far. The theme is a bit out there, for one. Hunting can be a divisive topic. Some are all for it, some can’t stand it. We could bring in all sorts of philosophical arguments for and against it here, but we are dealing with an online slot, after all, so let’s stay out of the debate for now.
Instead, let’s focus on Bucks and Doe 10K Ways’ bonus round, which is easily the most creatively developed in the entire 10K Ways range to date. For starters, it offers a relatively wide range of symbols (for 10K Ways), so the point isn’t just to land money symbols or bonus prize symbols and collect at the end. Collecting isn’t as simple as that because you need the target to hover over and blast prizes to accumulate them. Then you’ve got bears eating other prizes, hanging about on screen, bullets recharging the spin count, plus the three different levels – Deer, Elk, and Moose. It’s quite clever, and it’s easy to imagine players down for some hunting, scoping animals from a distance, then blasting them, getting pretty excited by Bucks and Doe 10K Ways’ bonus round. The parting stat is max win, topping out at 6,116x the bet.
It can be frustrating, though. As mentioned, it isn’t as straightforward as simply landing symbols and collecting their values at the end. Presumably, this mirrors some of the frustrations felt when hunting? Missing the shot, or not even finding anything to shoot at? Maybe hunters can elaborate on this. Anyway, Bucks and Doe 10K Ways turned out to be full of surprises, which was a surprise in itself after reviewing a bunch of 10K Ways slots by now. It feels odd to say this but to experience a unique bonus round like almost nothing else out there, Bucks and Doe 10K Ways might be worth scoping out.
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