Released in September 2021, Bigger Bass Bonanza is one of the new releases from Pragmatic Play, inviting online anglers to come and fish for prizes. But this is no tranquil retreat as you’re not far from the shoreline, with the bright city lights illuminating the horizon. With a veritable treasure chest lurking beneath the surface, your job is to hook the x4000 big money payout.
Regular slots players might have a sense of deja vu…and they’d be right. Bigger Bass Bonanza is the rather unimaginatively named sequel to the 2020 release Big Bass Bonanza. Blink and you might miss the difference in the title, but there’s plenty more to catch in this fun follow-up.
The new slot has an immediate impact, with an extra reel being added to create the 5x4 board. The paylines have also increased, going up to 12, which is still relatively modest. The min bet starts at just 0.01 per line and rises to a max bet of 240.00. The game has a high level of volatility, making it ideal for those trying to net the big fish.
The original had an almost eerie feel with what appeared to be nothing but deep water all around. In Bigger Bass Bonanza, there's a much more casual vibe, with cheesy, upbeat music, palm trees and the shoreline within easy reach. There's been a radical transformation in your fisherman pal too. Gone are the seriously uncool waders, and the knitted beanie, replaced by a bright Hawaiian shirt, sunglasses and a baseball cap! Maybe he's a fisherman that likes to go fishing while on holiday?
On the reels, there's the fairly standard mix of low and high pays. There are five low pays which are represented by the playing cards, not what you'd usually find in the water but standard for slots. The premium symbols are more creative, with a pile of fish, a tackle box, a lure, a fishing rod and a boat. You'll need to match three of the symbols for a payout, apart from the boat, which only requires two or more.
The pile of fish is unusual as it's also known as the money symbol. Each time it lands, it will adopt a different value at random. If you match two or three, you'll win a regular prize but land five, and you'll scoop the total value of all the money symbols in the line.
The fish about to chomp down on a hook is the scatter, and if you land three, you'll unlock the free spins round. The number of free spins you win depends on the number of scatters, but there's a maximum of 20 up for grabs.
During the free spins bonus, you won't be on your own out in the waves. Your angler chum will put in an appearance on any of the reels as a wild, and he'll prove that he really does like to haul in the fish. Every time he appears, he will scoop up any of the fish money symbols visible on your behalf.
As well as helping to increase your prize tally, the wilds are also collected in a meter that appears above the reels. After four wilds, you'll retrigger the feature and increase the multiplier too. This multiplier only applies to any fish money symbols your fisherman friend collects. The free spins round can be retriggered up to three times via this mechanism, with multipliers climbing up to a maximum of x10.
If at any point you reach the maximum payout of x4000, the bonus round will finish no matter how many spins you have left.
We all know that there's no shortage of fishing-themed games around, so it begs the question: did Pragmatic Play really need a sequel to this slot? While it's fair to say it's not a completely original theme, there's enough here to make it feel significantly different from the first. Sure, it's a tried and tested genre, but when it's well-executed like this game, we think most players will fall hook, line and sinker for it!