Yggdrasil partner Reflex Gaming are back again, and this time they're visiting some old acquaintances – the three biggest, baddest, and most desperate dawgs around. That's right, we're heading back to 2021, when the team released Desperate Dawgs. If you need a reminder, Desperate Dawgs was a low to medium volatility release, with a maximum win of 3,902x bet, and an RTP of 95.03%. Now, Reflex are applying the flagship Yggdrasil mechanic to bring us Desperate Dawgs 2 Gigablox, and this one has been revamped in a number of ways – with a medium to high volatility maths model, a fixed RTP of 95.50%, and win potential up to 9,872x bet.
Visually it's Desperate Dawgs, but better. It's hard to tell whether the team intentionally kept most aspects the same to prove the improvement they've made in the past year to critics, or whether they just didn't really fancy changing things up too much for a sequel. Either way though, it's looking good. We're outside in a cactus filled desertscape, with a bird to the right of the reels, resting on some barrels. My ornithology knowledge isn't great, but it's a bird and that's really all you need to know. It's all very western, which makes sense considering the original, with a western soundtrack to tie everything together.
Desperate Dawgs 2 Gigablox Base Features
Taking place across 6 reels, wins are formed on Desperate Dawgs 2 by matching at least 3 symbols on adjacent reels, beginning with the leftmost reel, across 1 of 40 fixed win lines. Symbols available begin with non premiums, with spades, diamonds, clubs, and hearts, awarding wins 0.20x bet for 3 of a kind, increasing to values between 1.60 and 2x bet for 6 of a kind. At the premium end, we have cowboy hats, pistols, and sheriff's badges, awarding wins between 0.40 and 0.80x bet for 3 of a kind, increasing to values between 4 and 8x bet for 6 of a kind. Rounding off the premium symbols are Desperate Dawgs 2 logos, which also pay for 2 of a kind. Land 2, 3, 4, 5, or 6 of a kind to see wins of 0.40, 1, 4, 8, or 10x bet, respectively. Finally, Wild symbols are available, awarding wins of 1, 4, 6, 10, or 20x bet for 2, 3, 4, 5, or 6 of a kind, respectively. Wilds substitute for all symbols except Bonus symbols.
The first thing to cover in the base game is the Golden Bet. By betting an additional 50%, there is a higher chance of triggering a bonus round. It isn't clear just how much higher this chance is – just that it's higher.
Aside from this, the only real thing keeping the base game moving forward is the Gigablox mechanic, where reels can fuse together, producing symbols anywhere from 2×2 in size, up to 6×6 in size.
Desperate Dawgs 2 Gigablox Bonus
There are 3 bonus rounds available in Desperate Dawgs 2 Gigablox – the Gunslinger bonus, Bad Boy bonus, and Train Robber bonus. First up is the Gunslinger bonus, which is triggered by landing 6 or more yellow Gunslinger Bonus symbols in view. The number of Bonus symbols in view is equal to the number of shots awarded for this feature. Before the bonus begins, players must choose between two sets of multipliers:
- Lower Volatility – x1, x2, x2, x3, x3, or x4
- Higher Volatility – x1, x1, x1, x1, x1, or x10
The applicable number of shots are then awarded. For each shot, a cash value is selected along with a multiplier. The multiplier is applied to the cash value before being awarded as a win.
Land 6 or more green Bad Boy Bonus symbols in view to trigger the Bad Boy bonus. The number of Bonus symbols in view is equal to the number of spins awarded. During this feature, each winning spin will add an extra row on top of the reels, adding an additional 15 pay lines each time this happens. An additional +2 spins are also awarded. A maximum of 4 additional rows can be added on top of the reels, awarding 100 pay lines in total.
Finally, landing 6 or more red Train Robber Bonus symbols in view will trigger the Train Robber bonus. The number of Bonus symbols in view is equal to the number of spins awarded. During this feature, three outcomes will be revealed on every spin. These can be any of the following:
- Gold Bars – 5x bet
- Silver Bars – 2x bet
- Cash – 1x bet
- Dynamite – awards 1, 2, or 3 dynamite
- Empty – awards nothing
Dynamite are added to the Safe Trail, and work to unlock the Silver or Gold safe. Silver safes are unlocked after 2 dynamite strikes, and award cash values up to 30x bet. Gold safes are unlocked after 5 dynamite strikes, and award cash values up to 200x bet.
The maximum win available in Desperate Dawgs 2 Gigablox is 9,872x bet. If the sum of a single game round exceeds this, the game round will end and 9,872x bet will be awarded.
Desperate Dawgs 2 is, as you'd expect from a sequel, a decent improvement upon the original. Everything has had a bit of an upgrade here – nothing that's going to shock you really, but improvements nonetheless. Gameplay in the base game is more or less what you expect from a game utilising the Gigablox mechanic – it's all about fusing reels together to form big wins. There is a bit of an annoying thing that Gigablox symbols seem to cut off at the top of the screen even when they should fit on, but nothing that would badly affect your experience.
Bonus rounds are where most of the action is in this once, particularly with 3 features capable of triggering. In our experience, it didn't seem difficult to trigger any of the bonuses – although we did have Golden Bet on, so maybe it increases the chance more than we realise. Players will decide for themselves which feature is their favourite – the Train Robber Bonus is the one we saw the most potent results from in testing, but the Bad Boy Bonus is more classically entertaining, given that it actually offers regular Free Spins. No matter your favourite, wins are possible up to 9,872x bet when the right combinations land.
Maths is medium to high volatility – a slight increase from the original, but nothing compared to what we're seeing on the market currently – and RTP is fixed at 95.50%. Overall, if you enjoyed the original you're sure to get a thrill from this one. If you haven't been temped yet but you're looking for a bonus heavy, medium volatility release with a decent max win, this one would suit you perfectly.
*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.