Big Bass Keeping It Reel

Big Bass Keeping It Reel Slot Review

Slot Provider: Pragmatic Play

RTP: 96.07% | Variance: High | Maximum Win: 10,000x

Our Score: 7.8

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About Big Bass Keeping It Reel

Reviewed by:

Published Date: 27th March 2024

How We Review Slot Games

We test and rate all slot games across 5 criteria, assigning a score out of 10 for each and an overall score that is an average of the 5. To build an accurate assessment of each game we gather information from the supplier and play in real play or demo mode. Find out more.

Big Bass Keeping It Reel is a fishing slot from Pragmatic Play, part of the popular Big Bass series. This one has an Alaskan setting but the gameplay is as familiar as ever. The aim is to trigger the free spins round where landing wilds and golden wilds collects the cash values displayed on any fish symbols visible on the reels. Wilds are collected in a meter too. When 4, 8 and 12 are collected, 10 spins are added each time and a win multiplier of 2x, 3x then 10x. Top win is 10,000x and spins start at 20p.

Big Bass Keeping It Reel Game Information

  • RTP: 96.07%
  • Variance: High
  • Maximum Win: 10,000x
  • Progressive Jackpot: No
  • Reels: 5
  • Rows: 3
  • Paylines: 10
  • Minimum Stake: £0.20
  • Theme: Fishing
  • Features: Wilds, Free Spins, Cash Collects, Multipliers

Testing Notes: Here’s What Happened When We Played Big Bass Keeping It Reel

IMPORTANT: To give you an accurate assessment of the games we review our writers play 200 spins. Whilst this is a useful tool to help us review games and to give an example of what might happen when you play, keep in mind that 200 spins is only a very small sample and cannot be used to accurately predict what might happen over another 200 spins. The outcome of all slots play is always random.

Boom Or Bust? Our Session By The Numbers

I played 250 spins on Big Bass Keeping It Reel on Pragmatic Play’s test. This is what happened.

  • Stake Size: $1
  • Start balance: $100,000
  • End balance: $99,989.00
  • Hit Rate: 10% (25 winning spins in 250)
  • Biggest Win: 116.2x
  • Free Spins Round: 3

There are few games that produce quite such a low hit rate as Big Bass Keeping It Reel. This really is a high volatility slot with all the RTP saved back for the free spins round. I went 13 spins before I even saw a base game win and that set the tone. Overall there were just 25 winning base game spins in 250. That’s 10%! Most games come in around 20% to 30%. So you get the idea. The biggest base game win I saw was a 15x. Others were around stake level.

Big Bass Keeping It Reel Free Spins Round
On the way to a 116.2x win in free spins. Note the unclaimed 82.6x in the keep net!!

The flip side to that of course is that the free spins round can really go off, and it does trigger more frequently than in other slots. In this case, 3 times in 250 spins, which isn’t bad. The first round produced a pitiful 10.2x win, but the second was better at 116.2x and the third came in at 47.2x. Of course, the exciting part is seeing the keep net load up with fish and waiting to see if a Golden Wild lands to activate the prize. Its exciting, but also hugely frustrating because despite having 72.3x ready to collect at one point, the Golden Wild never landed for me. But it’s not hard to see how this game can produce some big moments through that mechanism. And if you can keep extending the round via the wild meter, and throw multiplier into the mix, better still.

The lesson is – this game requires patience and careful bankroll management. You need to set stakes low and be prepared for 100 or so spins with little return before a shot at the big money via the free spins round.

What We Liked

  • Special Golden Wild unlocks the value of the fish in the keep net
  • Big 10,000x maximum win
  • Fun and familiar fishing theme and brand
  • 200x payout for 5 top paying premiums
  • Extend the free spins round by collecting wilds

What We Didn't like

  • Format is very similar to other Big Bass games
  • Not much going on in the base game!

Big Bass Keeping It Reel Review Scores

  • Theme and Design 8
  • RTP and Variance 8
  • Maximum Win 8
  • Symbols and Paytable 8
  • Features and Gameplay 7

What Our Reviewer Says ...

"Pragmatic's popular fishing series has a super volatile edge in this Alaskan version. You won't see much return until you hit that free spins round where things can go crazy if you land the Golden Wild!"

Overall Score: 7.8

Theme & Design

Our Score 8

An Alaskan Setting For Another Jaunty Adventure With Your Favourite Fisherman

It’s time for another Big Bass adventure and you know the drill by now. This time we’re out on what looks like an Alaskan lake with snow-capped peaks in the background and icy blue waters under which the reel set sits. There is something very cosy and familiar about the Big Bass brand and that friendly fisherman who plays a key role in the gameplay, as well as the jaunty soundtrack to your spins. It’s one big reason behind the success of the brand. There are many fishing slots out there but none have quite the charm of this one.

Big Bass Keeping It Reel by Pragmatic Play
Big Bass Keeping It Reel – an Alaskan adventure this time around

RTP and Variance

Our Score 8

What is RTP?

RTP (Return to Player) refers to the amount a game will pay out in cash prizes expressed as a percentage of all the money wagered on that game. For example, a 96% RTP means a game will pay out £96 for every £100 wagered. This is an average number and will vary from one session to the next.  Read more here.

What is Variance?

Variance refers to how far a game will deviate from its RTP over time. High variance games deviate a lot and produce uneven win distributions and unexpected windfalls. Low variance games provide a more stable and even distribution of wins. Read more here.

Keeping It Reel has 3 available RTP settings – 96.07%, 95.07% and 94.07%. To find out which setting your casino has chosen, hit the ‘I’ button under the reels then scroll through the pages until you see ‘Game Rules’. Browse down the page until you see ‘Theoretical RTP’.

Ideally you want to play at 96.07%, but not many slot sites will offer that. In our testing, MrQ from Lindar Media has consistently run Pragmatic Play slots at the highest RTP rates so I recommend playing there.

Of course, this is also a high variance game. All Big Bass slots are. Therefore, expect high volatility in the pay out distribution. As our test session showed, the hit rate is low and it’s all about waiting for that big bonus round moment where the keep net fills up before a Golden Wild lands to unlock the riches.

Maximum Win

Our Score 8

What Is Maximum Win?

Maximum win refers to the maximum amount a player can win from one spin. It is expressed as a multiple of the stake. For example, where the maximum win is 100,000x, from a £1 stake, the maximum win would be £100,000.  

Onto the maximum payout and this is 10,000x which is good enough. The only Big Bass slot with a higher max win to date is Hold and Spinner Megaways (20,000x). You can find games with higher potential in our list of Pragmatic Play’s highest max win slots.

Symbols and Paytable

Our Score 8

There is a standard paytable format for Big Bass games, and it goes like this: there are 5 reels, each with 3 rows. There are 10 paylines to score wins on, requiring 3 or more identical symbols to drop from left to right, starting at the left most reel.

Big Bass Keeping It Reel Paytable
Paytable with 200x for 5 floats

And there are 10 pay symbols in the table. The low payers are the cards, 10 through to Ace. These are valued at from 0.2x for 3 10s up to 10x for 5 Aces. The premiums are the shoal of fish, tackle box, may fly, rod and reel and float. These come in at 1x for 3 shoals up to 200x for 5 floats.

And again, the Wild symbol is your friendly fisherman with beard. He will substitute for any pay symbol to complete a win and helps you to collect cash values from the fish in the free spins round.

Features and Gameplay

Our Score 7

The format for Keeping It Reel will be familiar to Big Bass fishing fans. There are some minor alterations, but as usual, it’s all about hitting the free spins round for the big wins.

Land 3 Or More Scatter To Trigger The Free Spins Bonus

The scatter is represented by the leaping fish. You need to land 3 or more to trigger the free spins round. Spins are awarded as follows:

  • 3 Scatters: 10 free spins
  • 4 Scatters: 15 free spins
  • 5 Scatters: 20 free spins

As in other Big Bass games there is a second chance feature that may randomly trigger when you land just 2 scatters. Then, a hook may appear over the game area and pull up a reel to reveal the extra scatter.

Money Symbols Are Worth Up To 1,000x

In the free spins round, fish symbols land with money values attached to them. They can be 1x, 2x, 3x, 5x, 10x, 15x, 25x, 50x, 100x, 250x, 500x or 1,000x.

Wilds and Golden Wilds Collect Fish Values

A new Golden Wild becomes active in the free spins round. And the value of fish symbols is only activated when the Golden Wild or Regular Wild lands at the same time. However, in this instance, fish symbol values that are NOT collected don’t just disappear. Instead, they are stored in a landing net and when a Golden Wild lands then it will also collect the value of what’s in the net.

But watch out, because with each free spin one of the fish symbols in the next will escape and swim off, so the total value diminishes each time.

Wild Symbols And Progressive Multiplier

During the free spins round, all wild symbols – gold and regular – are collected in a meter. Once 4 have been collected, the round is extended by 10 more spins and a 2x win multiplier comes into play. Once 8 have been collected then the round is further extended by 10 spins and the multiplier goes up to 3x. Finally, once 12 wilds have been collected, then 10 more spins are awarded and the multiplier goes up to 10x.

Second Chance Features

Again, Pragmatic Play introduce a ‘second chance’ feature here, one that is found in other Big Bass slots. It increases your odds of collecting the cash.

When wilds land but no fish – dynamite explosions cause fish to drop in randomly on the reels OR a boat appears and drives across the reels with a net behind it, randomly replacing standard symbols with fish as it does.

When fish land but no wilds – a hook appears and randomly pulls a reel up with a wild on it.

The Final Verdict

If there is a secret sauce in slots production, Pragmatic Play have found their recipe in Big Bass. Despite its simplicity, this game hooks and reels you in every time! This version is built for high volatility fans of course and it will frustrate you many times as you chase down those wins, but the configuration of that free spins round is clever. It teases you with the cumulative collection of fish in the keep net, though of course it rarely gives you the Golden Wild to trigger the win. But because the bonus round drops more frequently than in other slots you’ll want to keep playing because the next chance to land a big one is only just around the corner! It’s smart work by Pragmatic indeed. Enjoy, and play safely.

Useful Tips When Playing Big Bass Keeping It Reel

Remember, online slots are games of chance, there is NO strategy that can improve your odds of winning. However, reading our review and following these tips will help you get the most out of your time playing this slot game.

1. Look To Land Scatters 

These games are so simple: the aim is to land scatters and unlock the bonus round as frequently as possible. Not that easy of course, but there is very little of note in the base game (in my opinion). So look out for those Big Bass scatters!

2. Play Sensibly And Set A Low Stake

Big Bass games are known for their volatility so use our Bankroll Management strategy and set your stake relatively low compared to your balance to avoid burning out too quickly.

3. Keep Your Eyes On The Wild Meter

Things get really interesting if you can keep extending that free spins round by landing wilds to earn more spins and higher multipliers. All big wins in this game come via that route. So watch the meter fill up as each new wild lands. Remember, 10 more spins are awarded at 4, 8 and 12 wilds!

4. Play At Our Recommended Slot Sites

We have hand-picked the sites on this page because they all scored well in our review process. They are also all licensed by the UK Gambling Commission which means they operate under UK law and offer fair, safe and secure slots play. Find out more here.

Who Made Big Bass Keeping It Reel?

  • Name: Pragmatic Play
  • Established: 2015
  • UK License: Remote 046683-R-325951-014
  • Total Games: 500 +
  • Known For: Wide range of themes and styles, live casino including gameshow formats, and bingo
  • Popular Slots: Fruit Party, Dog House Megaways, Big Bass Bonanza, Release the Kraken
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