Stakelogic are taking a leap back towards one of their earlier releases, and the first game they released under the coveted Big Time Gaming license, with their latest release Black Gold 2 Megaways, the sequel to the original, feature laden, western rig adventure that was Black Gold Megaways. Offering 7 separate modifiers within the base game, alongside a host of bonus round modifiers, and mystery choices, Black Gold 2 Megaways also offers players more than one way to achieve big wins through two separate bonus features, completing this into a package bursting at the seams. RTP is a fair 96.01% in this high volatility release.
Visually, Stakelogic have improved massively upon the graphics since the original, and this time things are less on the cartoon-y side, and take on a more serious approach. Actual symbols remain similar, with lanterns, hats, rigs and bosses all making a comeback. Light western music rings through in the background, with the occasional sounds you'd expect from an oil rig, such as steam hissing and machinery moving. Let's take a look at what else is on offer…
Taking place across 6 reels, wins are formed by matching symbols from left to right, on at least the first 3 reels. Each reel can land between 2 and 7 symbols, for any amount of ways to win between 324 and 117,649. Symbols reflect this western style mining adventure well, with 9, 10, J, Q, K and A making up the lower-half of our pay table, styled simply, but in a fitting way. On the premium end, green lanterns, blue and gold hard hats, and donkey symbols offer wins between 1.5x and 7.5x in size for 6 of a kind. At the higher end, there's a male figure, presumably the boss of this rig, offering wins for 2 of a kind, right up to 50x bet win values for 6 of a kind. Finally, wild dynamites substitute for all symbols except Scatters.
Stakes between 0.20 and 10 are on offer, although these are doubled when Super Stake is active, a Stakelogic signature. Super Stake allows players to “double their bet and enable a bonus that delivers extra prizes”, however the double bet does not double the pay table values. Instead, the Super Stake is used to “fund a Super Stake Feature that returns the same RTP as the base game”, and triggers modifiers more frequently. In Super Stake mode, there is a chance a Super Stake Feature will activate.
Black Gold 2 Megaways Base Features
Black Gold 2 Megaways adopts the cascading mechanic that we always appreciate from a Megaways release, meaning symbols involved in a win are removed from the reels, allowing new symbols to drop down in their place for the chance of more wins. This continues until no more winning combinations are formed.
At the top of the reels, there's a noticeably additional reel, known as the “8th reel”, which works to activate the features available in this release. Containing only modifier symbols, the reel continues to spin alongside the reels on every spin, but if it lands a modifier within it, the respective modifier is then activated for that spin, after the reels have stopped spinning. In a nice twist, modifiers triggered are added to the reels by oil squirting onto the reels from underneath. Modifiers available include:
- Random: A random number of wild symbols are added to reels 2-6.
- Multiplier: 2 multiplier wild symbols are added to reels 2-5.
- Stacked: 1 or 2 wild stacks are added to reels 2-5.
- Destroyer: After any cascades, all symbols are removed from the reels.
- Free Spins: 4 Scatter symbols land on the reels, triggering free spins.
- Mystery: Transforms 3 or more symbols into mystery symbols, which then reveal the same, random symbol.
- Gold Rush: 4 Bonus symbols land on the reels, triggering Gold Rush.
Black Gold 2 Megaways Bonus
Landing 4 Scatters on the reels triggers Free Spins, with any additional Scatter symbols awarding 1 or more extra spins. Upon triggering free spins, players have a choice of spins & multiplier:
- 12 free spins, +3 extra spins for every additional Scatter in view, beginning with a x1 win multiplier.
- 8 free spins, +2 extra spins for every additional Scatter in view, beginning with a x5 win multiplier.
- 5 free spins, +1 extra spins for every additional Scatter in view, beginning with a x10 win multiplier.
- Mystery Option: players choose a random amount of spins (5, 8 0r 12), and a random multiplier (x1, x5 or x10).
During free spins, the multiplier increases by +1 after every cascade, and the topmost 8th reel is still active, allowing any of the aforementioned modifiers to be activated. Landing 3 Scatter symbols during free spins retriggers the feature, awarding 5 more free spins, +5 for any additional Scatters in view.
A second bonus game is available – Gold Rush, triggered when 4 or more bonus symbols land on the reels, represented by money bags. The feature starts with 3 respins, and may increase to 4 with the help of one of the modifiers available. During Gold Rush, only bonus symbols appear on the reels, which display multiplier, representative of x-win values (eg: 2x is 2 times the active stake), and each time a new bonus symbol lands on the reels, the respin counter resets. The following modifiers may land:
- Adder: Adds 1 to 5 to the multiplier of all bonus symbols on a random number of reels.
- Multiplier: Multiplies random reels' money bags by x2, x5 or x10.
- Expander: Expands random reels by 1 (up to a maximum of 7)
- Collector: Adds to a random reel, and collects all values from bonus symbols in view.
- Gold: A bonus symbol is added to each reel.
- Extra Spin: Increases the respin counter to 4 from 3.
- Lucky Streak: Makes these mentioned modifiers on the 8th reel more likely to activate.
Gold Rush ends when all reel positions have been filled, or the respin counter runs out. At this point, all multiplier values are added together, and awarded as an x-win value amount.
Players in appropriate regions can fast-track their way to either of the bonus features available, with a feature buy at a cost of 100x bet. Once triggered, players can choose between Gold Rush and Free Spins, where the 4 spins/multiplier options are still available. Finally, players can gamble wins on Black Gold 2 Megaways, however this is just a standard colour/suit gamble, with the chance to double or quadruple wins.
Black Gold 2 Megaways is a sequel, and as far as sequels go, Stakelogic have hit the nail on the head. Packed full of features, there is an abundance of excitement for players of all stakes to be had in this release. Whilst not giving across the impression of being an extreme volatility, “change your life” style of game, Black Gold 2 Megaways appeals to a variety of players, including the casual gambler. Where Megaways usually fall behind, in the base game “grind”, Black Gold 2 Megaways waves goodbye to the boredom, and offers us smaller, regular features to help break up the monotony. Audiovisuals are enjoyable, keeping strong with the theme without becoming too much, and the technical stats are solid: high volatility, a fair RTP at 96.01%, and a decently priced feature buy, for those interested.
On the slight downside, the addition of features after the reels have stopped spinning tends to take some excitement from us, as it's almost like we already know if we're about to be hit with a dud. However, with such frequent features to watch out for, it won't be long before we get to give them another chance.
With two bonus features to choose from, Black Gold 2 Megaways offers tried and tested techniques. We know personally how players love to be presented with the “mystery” option for free spins/multipliers, and the Money Train 2-esque addition of Gold Rush keeps things interesting, even for players who choose not to activate Super Stake.
Stakelogic have kicked things up a notch with Black Gold 2 Megaways, increasing the maximum (cash) win available, and increasing volatility, which we love to see from a sequel. Overall, a solid addition to an already interesting catalogue.
*The screenshots taken of games reviewed on this site are taken from Demo Play, as reviews are often written before games are released for real play.