This island themed game wins points for bright colour, nice sound and a good RTP (96.20%). However don’t get your Hawaii shirt and lei out yet as the low volatility turns us off an otherwise solid slot.
Aloha! As the name suggests the theme of Big Kahuna is the Pacific paradise of Hawaii, in particular its tropical fruit and tribal aesthetic.
There are also a few monitor lizards, and a big kahuna himself along with his totem pole (kahuna is the term for a Hawaiian shaman).
It is a bright and pleasant set up with tropical colours and island sounds to make you feel like you’re on holiday while you play!.
The graphics are nice to look at; the bright, primary colour palette works with the theme and ensures all the symbols are nice and easy to read. The reels are animated simply but well, and overall it is a solid piece of design work.
The sound is a twist on the usual, in that there is very little background music. In place of a tune, the aural backdrop is the chirping of cicadas. The only music plays when you are spinning the reels and during the bonus rounds. This adds to the atmosphere of the game and immerses you in those island vibes.
The gameplay is pretty straightforward. There are 1 to 9 winlines on five reels. Beyond that the main innovations are in the various special symbols which we will deal with in the next section.
One small innovation to the gameplay is that you can choose not just how many lines to play but which of the the lines. Chose the lines you want just by clicking on them. This doesn’t change the odds or RTP, but is a nice way to get the player involved and allows you to decide what level of volatility you want to take on.
There are also plenty of options for autoplay.
Overall the gameplay works well, if a little unimaginatively.
There are four special symbols to look at: two bonuses (Volcano Bonus and Mask Bonus), a wild symbol with the Big Kahuna logo on it and a scatter symbol with a monkey on it.
The game has two different bonus games, each triggered by hitting three or more of the relevant bonus symbols. The Volcano Bonus is a minigame in which you pick once from a group of fruit with bonus prizes behind them to determine what you win. The value of the possible wins is higher the more symbols you managed to hit.
The other bonus game: the Mask Bonus, allows you to pick multiple times from ten masks until you pick the mask with ‘Collect’ behind it. The other masks provide bonus amounts or multipliers. Like the Volcano bonus the more symbols you hit the Volcano Bonus with, the higher your possible prizes value.
The wild symbol is a standard wild symbol but only completes fruit payout on the lines. The final symbol to look at is the scatter which will simply pay out no matter whether it falls on a winline or not.
The RTP is a respectable 96.20% on Big Kahuna, and has a med to low volatility.
The version we tested allowed coins between €/£/$0.05 and €/£/$5.00 making a maximum bet of €/£/$45.00.
The highest single line payout is x8000, and that comes with hitting five Wild symbols. So if playing €/£/$0.50 per line, you could turn your overall bet of €/£/$4.50 into €/£/$4,000 in one spin. A respectable payout but unlikely to tempt our readers who we recommend sticking to higher variance slots.
Big Kahuna is a fun, well made game by Microgaming, with a nice variety of bonus games.
We like the decent RTP and quality build, but struggle to recommend a medium to low variance game like this.