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Anyone who feels nostalgia for games like Ecco the Dolphin will find much to like about Great Blue. This online video slot has been produced by the awesome Playtech games studio that is packed with great bonus features, a return to player (RTP) of just above 94% and plenty of paylines to make winning combinations across the reels. The main theme of the game will see you immersed in an underwater adventure, with various aquatic characters making up the symbols and you hunt for seashells and the like to give you free spins. So, without further ado, let’s dive right in with Great Blue and find out if this older game still produces waves of joy.
Players based in the UK shouldn’t find any trouble hunting down Great Blue at a variety of online casinos. This is because Playtech is one of the biggest and most respected games suppliers with multiple deals in place all around the world. So, once you’ve found it, get yourself ready for a deep sea dive into retro video slots. As soon as the base game has loaded after the title sequence, take a look at the bottom third of the display. Here, you’ll find the pay table and game rules information by clicking on the Info button over on the left hand side. Above that, you can adjust your Coin Level and opt for the Autoplay feature (if that appeals) just to the right of that. From there, you can adjust your number of active Lines, how much you want to Bet Per Line and, if you want to go for broke each time, choose to Bet Max. The Spin button is on the right hand side, and the Gamble button we’ll cover later on in the Features & Bonus Rounds.
As you might imagine from a game called Great Blue that features a Killer Whale rising from the sea on the cover, this online video slot is based underwater. Therefore, all of the symbols are made up of sharks, schools of fish, turtles, shells, starfish, urchins and many others. Even the standard symbols of the 10, Jack, Queen, King and Ace are covered in coral and will animate with bubbles on occasion. Best of all, whenever you land a win, the characters will swim into a line across the centre to show what you’ve won that round. Therefore, while the graphics are a bit long in the tooth now, they are pleasantly nostalgic in a classic fruit machine kind of way.
As you would expect from an ocean faring adventure, all of the sounds are based on what you might experience in the Great Blue and Playtech has done a fantastic job of immersing players in the adventure. Therefore, you hear the waves, bubbles of air and other sea based sound effects as you spin the reels. Taking inspiration from the BBC’s Blue Planet and more than a hint of Disney’s underwater animations, the music that accompanies bonus rounds and big wins does a great job of evoking the sheer size, wonder and magnitude of the world’s oceans.
The Killer Whale we mentioned earlier (or Orca as some people call them) is the main Wild symbol in the game. Landing one of these in your net will stand in for any of the other symbols to help you make more winning combinations. What’s more, it will boost your wins by two times whenever it is used to get a win. The only symbol that it doesn’t stand in for is the Pink Oyster Shell Scatter symbol. Get three or more of these on a payline and you’ll be flung into the free spins rounds – and, again, a two times multiplier will be applied throughout this bonus round. It gets even better than that, however, as before you start the free spins, you get to pick two of five shells in a separate side game. Guessing correctly can land you up to 33 more spins with up to 15 times multipliers active throughout. And, as if all of that wasn’t enough, there’s that option to Gamble your winnings that we mentioned earlier. Pick the correct colour of a card to double up!
While Great Blue is showing its age somewhat, the amount of bonus features and the pleasing nostalgia of it all is more than enough to convince you to give it a shot. So, next time you want to play a retro video slot with a great theme, look no further than Playtech’s Great Blue.