Back in the days of Barcrests prime, The Big Cheese was a £25 jackpot fruit machine. These days however, things have changed, and Barcrest now dominate the £500 jackpot machine industry. The Big Cheese is a £500 jackpot slot machine, currently found on Ladbrokes fixed odds betting terminal machines. The only thing in common with the aforementioned Big Cheese is the name, everything else is different.
Barcrest is very good at making playable games, and this is no exception. With nice graphics, smooth play, and good sounds, it is certainly a nice game to play.
The game has multiple stakes; 20p, 50p, £1 and £2, which tend to suit most budgets. It also includes the budget unfriendly £10 and £20 ‘super’ spins, and features a progressive multiplier in the free spins bonus. The £20 super spins offer sticky wilds which work in the same way as the super spins on Rainbow Riches Pure Pots, whereby they will remain on the reels until the end of the spins.
Aside from the jackpot and progressive pots, this is what the majority of players will be aiming for. The free spins are activated via three, four or five Big Cheese symbols in a row. This will then open the bonus screen, offering a choice of five cheeses to pick from. All of the five have a value hidden, which is only shown after selection. Three free spin bonus symbols tend to offer between eight and fifteen free spins. During the free spin game, a mouse sits at the bottom of a staircase. He can progress up the stairs one step at a time via a small mouse anywhere in view on any of the five reels. Each of the reels can bring in a mouse, so he can climb up to five steps per spin.
Scattered along the steps are win multipliers, with a 10x multiplier at the very top (note; the pots are not at the top, they just appear to be).
Unsurprisingly, these multipliers can add significant value to the feature, and the more free spins you have, the higher the chance of progressing. The free spins can be re-activated at any time during play, and the Big Cheese symbols also act as wilds which further enhances the bonus.
Once the free spins have expired, you can either collect or gamble. The gamble offers a chance for more free spins or cash. If you gamble the free spins option and it wins, all three gambling positions offer different odds for more free spins. This entire process can be repeated unlimited times, until you either collect, win the jackpot or lose.
Recently I played through the free spin cycle five times, until I won £331 on 50p stake. What happened next is on the video below. I did achieve the 10x multiplier which brought in a £250 win.
Like every Barcrest £500, this one features a progressive pot bonus. The standard bronze, silver and gold are all here. The bonus is achieved through three pot symbols on the centre reels. This can happen during normal play, or during the free spins bonus.
The gamble is a slightly different version of the standard pie gamble found on most Barcrests. There are three odds available, 40%, 50% and 60% chance of winning. Each successful gamble can be collected or gambled again. A win of £7.50 or above offers the chance of gambling for free spins. This is the lowest odds gamble, but it will open the bonus if you hit it.
The current paying percentages are:
- 20p – 84%
- 50p – 88%
- £1 – 92%
- £2 – 94%