The Importance of the Online Casino Software
At the root of the success of any online casino is the power of the software. All players want to have technology that provides them with secure and speedy banking services, and a functional, user-friendly interface. They also want the assurance of knowing that the products are regularly tested for fairness, especially if random number generators are being used during play. Another consideration for many is whether the software is downloadable, or if the website can be accessed via an instant play option. Above all, however, it’s the games that are the most important factor for the majority of members. They seek the highest quality in all aspects, and they look for this in the graphics, the animation features, the sound effects, and the background music. They also want to have a wide selection available, with new titles being added all the time. It might seem a bit of a tall order, but the leading developers have more than risen to the challenge!
The Big Names among the Software Developers
The majority of online casinos use a third party for their software. Some prefer to remain exclusive to one of the developers, while others choose to use several different ones in order to build their catalogs. There are three leading names among the providers. Microgaming uses Quickfire, which is all about speed – both in terms of access to the website and the delivery of the games. The platform caters for multiple languages, and is available for mobile as well as desktop. Playtech has the Omni-channel offering. This gives players access to content from any location, and provides seamless play across all channels and devices. The last of the top developers is NetEnt, whose cutting-edge technology powers its unique selection of titles. From the offset, the company made the decision to design for mobile as well as for desktop, and the result is a range of quality products that can be played anywhere.
A Few Other Renowned Software Providers
You may come across some other names that are known for their software as you’re browsing through the online casino sites. The Scientific Games Corporation, which already has Bally, Barcrest and WMS under its umbrella, recently acquired the NYX gaming group. There’s also the Swedish company Play’n Go, which is best known for its unique titles. The range includes slots, table versions, as well as a few bespoke ones, such as Super Wheel. In this variant, you have to guess which of the five numbers the wheel will land on. Betsoft has a collection of 3D games, which have proven to be very popular among players. Novomatic has a series of highly recognizable titles, including the Book of Ra and Dolphin’s Pearl. There are lots of other smaller providers that you’ll see featured in the listings too, and although their collections aren’t as large as the main developers, they do provide something different.
- Play’n Go’s Super Wheel
- Novomatic’s Book of Ra
Cassava Enterprises and the Dragonfish Team
As part of the 888 Holdings group, Cassava Enterprises provides the software platform for its online casino sites, as well as for a host of bingo operations, too. The games development side of the business is handled by Dragonfish, on a B2B basis. In its collection, Dragonfish has over 300 games, all of which are exclusive titles. More than 100 of these are suitable for mobile play, with both iOS and Android options available. Additionally, the company produces a poker platform which is licensed in several states in America, and some jackpot games.
Software Providers and the Live Dealer Games
There are a few of the developers that concentrate on the live dealer versions. This is a different kind of challenge as the focus isn’t all about the software download, but is more on the quality of the streaming. The best-known of the providers is Evolution Gaming, whose products can be found in many of the leading online casinos. The company has invested heavily in its technology, so that the real-time action can be streamed directly to players without any buffering or delays. The multi-channel service also provides operators with 24/7 support, so you can be confident that you won’t encounter any serious issues during the live transmissions. The range of games available is very impressive, and there are several unique variants among the listings, as well. There are other providers who only focus on this area of development, too. Two of the more notable names are Extreme Gaming, which is part of the Novomatic group, and Ezugi, which is particularly well-established across Asia. There is also Vivo Gaming, which covers all the main categories, but offers some more unusual titles, too.
The Slots Specialists among the Developers
A few of the software suppliers solely develop online slots. One of these is NextGen Gaming, which is now part of the Scientific Games group. The company has an in-house team of developers, and over 2000 titles in its casino listings. This collection covers a huge range of themes, and so you’re pretty much guaranteed to find something to play. If you like something based around fantasy, you will love Dragon Wins. It’s a five-reel slot with lots of wilds and free spins. The aim is to fill the meters, and you have four colorful dragons to help you with your quest. IGT is another slots provider of both desktop and mobile games. The library includes the atmospheric Nordic heroes, which has elements of the role-playing gaming of the past. During play, you are able to change your character and the realm. There’s also a level-up feature, in which you can gather experience points to defeat the monsters.
- Next Gen’s Dragon Wins
- IGT’s Nordic Heroes
Some Other Providers that Specialize in Slots
Thunderkick is an independent software supplier, with offices in Malta and Stockholm. The company has only been on the scene since 2012, and yet it has already made quite an impact with its imaginative slots. The focus of the development is on seamless play, so the graphics, animations, and the audio are all blended beautifully. The themes are great fun, too. Another name worth checking out is Quickspin. The Swedish studio specializes in video slots, and has a rich catalog of games available. The team’s target is to design products that are both engaging and highly-polished. For this reason, many of the original titles have been given a makeover and re-engineered, so that the quality is just as good as the newer releases.
Slots Providers with Exclusive Offers
There are a few other noteworthy software developers. Yggdrasil is highly-respected within the industry for its superior quality games, and was named the innovator of the year at the International Gaming Awards in 2017. The company has a somewhat unique offering. As well as developing its own creations with its in-house team, it also allows casino operators to create their own games by assigning them a dedicated producer. Another you’ll undoubtedly come across is Elk Studios. The company is based in Stockholm, and has adopted a mobile-first approach to development. Additionally, the slots have optional betting strategies built into them, which automatically changes the wagering levels, according to the rules. A final mention has to go to Rabcat. The Austrian company has produced an exquisite collection of online slots with lots of quirky features, which are available to download or for instant play.
Some of the Newer Independent Providers
Not all of the independent software developers keep to one kind of category. A few produce games that cover a variety of others, as well. Malta-based Playson has more than 40 products on offer, and although the majority are slots, the company also has roulette, blackjack, and video poker in its collection. Pragmatic Play also has predominantly slots in its catalog, but offers a selection from the other main genres, too. Among these are Baccarat and Keno. There’s a really fun racing game too, which is Go! Monkey. The rules are simple – five little monkeys climb quickly up their ropes, and you have to wager on which ones will reach the top first. Lastly, if you like playing the instant wins, you should take a look at Big Time Gaming. They have a series of TapCards, which are all fully compatible with mobile play. To initiate play, you click the card, and if you can match three of the icons, you get a prize.
Rival Powered at the Height of Innovation
Rival first joined the online gaming community in 2006, and its software platform is used by over 52 casino operators worldwide. The company currently has over 160 unique games available for both download and for mobile play. The table ones consist of the more traditional card options, such as blackjack and poker, along with a couple of less usual alternatives, like Pai Gow and Red Dog. Craps and roulette are available, as well. There is a selection of video poker on offer too, and some progressives too. When it comes to slots, there are the classic 3-reel versions listed, plus those with multiple paylines, and they all cover every theme imaginable. You’ll also spot some specialty instant wins on the site, like bingo and Sudoku.
Rival and the Interactive i-Slots Versions
Rival’s i-slots bring a whole new dimension to the genre. These emulate the soap operas, and follow a series of characters as they weave their way through their lives. There are even sequels for the more popular ones. Throughout the game, the player gets to influence how the story line develops, as spins made at certain stages will determine what happens next. Each plot has several different endings, so it’s possible to play them time and time again. In spite of their innovative style, there are still the standard features that you’d expect, such as expanding wilds, scatter symbols, and bonus rounds. Depending on the title, there will be a bit of love, a dilemma or a mystery as the plot unfolds. In Bank Heist, you’ve got to evade the cops, and in Fixer Upper, you are renovating your dream home. The most popular is probably As the Reels Turn, which is set in a casino and has a very humorous tone throughout.
- The Map of the Game
- The Game Board
A Couple of Other Factors to be Considered
There are a few things that you might like to consider before you choose which of the providers will be the best one for you. One of these is the return to player rates (RTP) of the games. This is a calculation of the average sum that is paid out to players over a specified period. These rates can differ quite a bit, so it’s worth checking the percentages and making some comparisons before you make your final decision. The online casinos should have this information listed on their websites. The second point to think about is whether you want to download the software or if you would prefer to go for an instant play option. It would also be worth looking for a mobile or a live dealer version, if that’s your particular preference.
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A Final Overview of Online Casino Software
Technology has made enormous leaps forward in recent years, and the software that is used in the online casinos is now extremely sophisticated. With all of the leading providers, you can be assured of getting the highest quality in terms of graphics and audio, as well as a whole host of innovative features. The smaller developers aren’t far behind, though. Moreover, they bring something new to the scene, which is always very welcome. It will be the games themselves, however, that are the deciding factor for most players. For this reason, the advice is to try out a few of the demo versions if you get the chance, before you make any firm commitments. That way, you can be certain that you’ve chosen the perfect one for you.