Television shows like Kitchen Nightmares and Iron Chef have brought the world of high-level cooking to players all over the world. The Big Chef online slot by Microgaming is centered around a similar high-action French kitchen, and you'll find lots of food and members of staff on the reels in this game.
This game has a medium overall volatility, so while the swings won't be out of control, you will want to be mindful about the bet size you choose so that you aren't dealing with swings that are more than you're comfortable with.
The Game Format.
This game uses a five-reel, three-row format like what most people are probably comfortable with when it comes to video slots. There are 15 paylines used in this game, and since they're fixed in place, you aren't allowed to drop down to any fewer than this.
Coins start off at $0.01 for an easy $0.15 per spin betting minimum per spin, but you can also bet with coins worth up to $0.50 for a total of up to $7.50 per spin. While super high stakes players aren't going to find the stakes they prefer in this game, everyone else will be taken care of when it comes to the bet sizes that are available.
The Symbols on the Reels.
You'll find lots of food items on the reels like soup, steak, turkey and more. These are all big entree items for the most part like what you would see as a part of a huge meal. Head chef and his assistants are also on the reels, and they're the highest-paying symbols aside from the wild.
The Big Chef logo is wild, and five of it on a payline triggers the top normal payout, which is worth a whooping 5,000x. This is a sizable top jackpot, and there are a number of medium-sized wins to round out the payout schedule as well.
The cloche symbol shows up on the fifth reel, and it's pretty important. When you get this one symbol on the reels, you get a free spin right then and there. This is only one way to earn free spins in this game, but what's important is that the special wild feature is activated during this free spins, and that adds a lot of value.
Another Free Spins Feature.
On top of the cloche feature, you can also get free spins with the menu scatter symbol. Pick up three or more of them, and you'll be given 10 free spins with a 2x multiplier on all of your wins. This runs the top jackpot up to 10,000x, an enormous amount for a non-progressive game.
During either of the free spins features, you can take advantage of the Rising Wilds feature, and that's what we're going to look at now because it's a new feature that is a little tricky to understand if you've never seen it in action.
The Rising Wilds Feature.
In the free spins, getting a wild symbol activates the Rising Wilds feature. The way this works is that wilds trigger a re-spin feature where the wild expands to one symbol higher than where it started. This continues until they touch the top of the screen where you'll get one additional re-spin.
The wins with this feature can add up really quickly, so it does add a bit of volatility to the game since it makes these payouts a bit top-heavy. However, most of these payouts come from multi-line wins, so you're going to run up a lot of winnings in a short period of time if you nail this feature during the free spins with the 2x multiplier.
The Microgaming Testing Strategy.
Big Chef is a good example of Microgaming's overall strategy when it comes to releasing new games. What you'll notice is that they come out with new games on a regular basis, but they only come out with their major branded slots a few times each year.
They use frequent releases like Big Chef to stay ahead of the curve with excellent graphics, sound and visual presentations. However, they also use it to test out new ideas for features.
Once they have a good idea of how players like these new features, they tweak them a bit for inclusion in the larger releases that happen a few times each year.
In this way, Big Chef is a part of something much bigger, and this is all a part of their overall strategy for giving players the best games possible and staying on top of the industry when it comes to innovation and giving the players the best games.