The Ultimate Guide to Casinos


Online Casino Software

Online casino software powers the games that you play online and goes a long way to defining the experience you have at a casino.  There are over 1000 casinos online but many of them use the same software and if you know and understand what different software offers and is like then this will go a long way to helping you find the best online casinos for you.

Software companies set the wagering options, rules, payout rates and the random number generators that power your gambling experience.  Often they facilitate the progressive jackpots that are available across a range of different casinos that use their software.

In licensing their software these companies are in a powerful position and the terms that they allow casinos to use their software can have a huge impact on the experience.  If you experience a technical problem whilst playing online then the software firm may well be involved in resolving the issue such as confirming whether you had won anything or not.  Their power was perhaps most starkly illustrated by Microgaming deciding to leave the US market which left Microgaming powered casinos needing to either leave the US market themselves or find a different software provider for their games.

Major Casino Software Companies

Microgaming – They have long built a reputation as a fantastic platform offering some of the best interfaces, best odds and most innovative features and games available online.  MG casinos offer a fantastic range of games within their casinos which are generally available in download and no download versions.  They also offer one of the most substantial mobile casinos available.  MG also let some of their biggest games be used by some other casinos which means you can either play their games at a Microgaming Casino or at a casino offering games from a variety of software companies.  All their games are lovingly and skilfully created and few would deny that they offer the best experience to casino players online.  They go to great lengths to provide fair, player friendly gambling.  They do not go to great lengths to ensure that all people they license their software to are great casinos so you do need to watch which MG casino you sign up with to ensure that all aspects of your experience are up to the standards of the gambling software but you are in  for a first rate experience great depth, variety and player friendly payout rates at their casinos.  Microgaming casinos offer pooled progressive jackpots and through a Microgaming casino you can access the biggest and most heavily played progressives that are available online.  Why not read our review for 32Red Casino to know more.

Playtech – An excellent software platform that is available both as a download casino and as an instant play casino. They do not quite have the innovation or sophistication of Microgaming they are still a major platform that offers one of the best overall gaming experiences you will find online an excellent range of games that caters to all gamblers very well.  Some of their Marvel Slots are particularly popular.  Payout rates are not always as favourable as MG but still very fair and competitive.  Many people prefer Playtech to Microgaming in terms of interface, game choice and slots so we definitely recommend that you check them out.

Random Logic – owns RandomLogic and their software is not used by many other casinos.  As they are such a large casino their jackpots do have decent and frequent payouts and there is nothing wrong with their software but it does not rival Microgaming, Playtech or the other large software companies and it fails to offer sufficient distinctiveness to demand checking out for its own sake.  Their software is independently audited but they are less open and helpful in dealing with software related problems players may experience than other large software companies.

bwin/Party Gaming – Just like Party Gaming is a huge platform that also run their own software and just like it is not really as good as the best in the business and does not really offer anything distinctive in terms of game design to tempt players there is nothing wrong with it and the huge player base does mean its Jackpots and Tournaments are worth exploring if these areas appeal to you.

NetEnt (Net Entertainment)– Generally only available as a no-download casino their graphics and interface works superbly and really highlight what No-Download can achieve in terms of graphics and animation without any performance issues slowing or stalling the action.  They have a much smaller offering than Playtech or Microgaming but their games are filled with strong attention to detail and show real elements of innovation and creative flair.  They are well worth checking out to see if you like the platform, particularly if you are wanting to play some slot games that offer a different experience from Playtech or Microgaming.  Why not check out our Cherry Casino review to read more?

IGT – A fantastic platform offering a range of interesting and innovative games.  They license their games out to many people and whilst some casinos offer only their software others offer other games too.  They are also market leaders in providing land based gaming machines as well.  Their games always are very well designed and they do have some of the most player friendly games out there although many of their slots are far less generous.  They offer their games to casinos with different payout rate options so it is worth checking out the odds which casino you use to ensure you get the best deal.  They have a number of games sufficiently distinctive from other platforms such as Star Trek: Against All Odds and to be worth checking out even if you are a huge fan of other platforms and overall they are definitely one of the best software companies out there with a comprehensive range of quality games available.

Cryptologic – They were one of the first firms to offer casino software and they remain one of the best in the business.  They have changed their focus from providing a dedicated casino platform to licensing individual games and many of their most popular games are available at a huge range of online casinos.  Their interface for their table and card games is excellent and their slot games such as Bejewelled offer a great addition to the games that other software companies provide.  Read our review of Intercasino to learn more.

Real Time Gaming – This software has risen in prominence as it is one of the few major casino software firms that is still willing to license their casino software to casinos serving the US market.  Their software is available in download and instant play versions and they offer an excellent range and depth of games all delivered with excellent graphics and provide a first class user experience.  Visit our review of Club World Casino to read more about RTG software.

Other Software Companies

Some companies focus on creating individual games that casinos can license where as others provide dedicated platforms offering a good range of casino games.  If you play in casinos such as Virgin Casino that offer games from multiple providers then you may find yourself playing games from different suppliers and if you are looking for more variety or the software that works best for you or if you are trawling the internet for the best bonuses then you may well come across some of these software companies

NuWorks – An off-shoot of RTG software that offers variations of their games.  Well worth checking out.

Ash Gaming – A solid platform producing excellent games such as their Batman and War of the Worlds slots.

3Dice -3Dice is a casino that uses exclusively their own software which provides a download only casino and is one of the few casino options for US players.  They provide an excellent example of what proprietary software can be and provide an excellent gaming experience.  There software and the games they have on offer provide something sufficiently different to justify checking out and with sufficient quality to keep you with the site and software.  They also have a built in social element so you can see what other players are doing and interact with them.  Read our 3Dice Review to read more.

WMS – Visually this software is not as sharp or slick as some other but it is fun filled with games often with bright and cheery graphics.  As with 3Dice they have a built in chat feature that many players will enjoy.  This software does have a different feel to it from other casino software and this was most evident in their slots games of which many have some very well thought out and atmospheric themes and there are a good range of unusual and innovative features available in games such as Glitz and Mojo Rising.    Some slot players will love these games but it is unlikely to be to everyone’s tastes so for some it will be a brief diversion from some of the major software platforms where as others will keep returning for the distinctive feel and features of their games.  There is a good breadth of games available on this platform although it does not offer the same range as is available on Playtech and Microgaming platforms.

Leander Games – A new software firm that only has a very small offering and few casinos offering more than one or two of their games but already have some slot games that are amongst the most interesting on the web.  Megadeth and Reely Poker are two of the best slot games you can play at the moment full of interesting and features.    Small can be very beautiful and you can play some of their games on sites such as Mr Green and Virgin Casino.  Check out our Solera Casino Review to learn more.

Pariplay  – WinTingo uses Pariplay software which does not offer substantial depth but may be worth checking out if you are looking for something different or are after new casinos for deposit bonuses.

Viaden –  Monaco Aces use Viaden software which currently offers over 50 games.  It is a decent platform although the Belerusan programmers could have hired better English translators as is evident with titles for games including “House of Scare”.  If there is a good bonus or you are looking for some fresh slot games then you might want to check them although the major casinos offer higher quality and none of their games have the distinctiveness of Leander Games or 3Dice for us to recommend them strongly.  They are investing substantially in developing mobile gaming and they may be worth keeping an eye on if you are interested in this.

Sheriff Gaming –They boast offering “unique 3D animated slots” and these games certainly offer a high quality and sufficiently different playing experience than other casino software that we would strongly recommend you give them a try.  There are not many major casinos using their games and this is reflected in the Progressive Jackpots which have very small payouts compared to what large software firms can offer.

Rival – They offer a broad range of games but you would need a good bonus offer or be a gaming completist to specifically check them out.

Betsoft – Betsoft are getting a name for themselves in producing excellent 3D slot games including The Slotfather.  Many casinos offer a good range of their games including Mr Green Casino.  No-one else makes slot games like these which are ideal for the casual player but enjoyable for all.

At the moment this list is not comprehensive but over time we will develop this list as well as providing full software reviews of individual platforms that will provide more information that you may find helpful and interesting.