When we talk about playing games in any casino, the first that that comes in our minds is that machine where you just pull a lever and wait to hit the jackpot. Yes, we are talking about traditional pokies that have been the most popular casino game for decades, especially due to the fact that it is simple to understand and exciting to play and win.
In the modern world, online casinos have also adopted several versions of pokies which are much more complicated and that much fun to play, along with bonuses and free spins. We have written an extensive guide below that will explain to you everything about modern online pokies.
Guide to Online Pokies
To make your casino journey a bit easier, we at Gambler.co.nz try out and review a large variety of pokies every week. We look as broadly as we possibly can to find games from all sorts of developers so that we can showcase pokies from smaller studios as well.
How Do We Find the Best Online Pokies?
In order to find the best NZ pokies online, there are a number of aspects to be taken into consideration. Game developers are getting more and more competitive in order to create the next big game which definitely increases the overall quality of new games that are released. Generally, we try to look for a combination of the following aspects:
- High Payouts
Online pokies are fun to play but you should also think about winning big, hence find a game that has huge payouts like progressive jackpots if you like to win big. The possibility for a big payout is in our opinion central when choosing a pokie. The game does not necessarily need to be extremely volatile, but you should make sure that the RTP is high.
- Bonus Features
A few pokies offer more bonus features than others and if you are looking for more number of free spins to play with, then you should look out for this feature. Most pokies that are released 2021 have some type of bonus game which usually brings the biggest wins. Some of the older pokies that are still very popular, such as Starburst, uses re-spin functionality rather than a separate bonus game. This is of course a matter of preference, but as long as the pokie has some form of bonus feature – you should be good!
- Mobile Pokies
Nowadays, people prefer to play on the go rather than being tied to a desktop, hence choose a pokies game that runs seamlessly on your mobile or tablet. It’s safe to say that all new pokies 2021 come with mobile compatibility since playing on mobile devices has almost become the norm. Even old titles have been adjusted for mobile compatibility where players can now get the same experience with both mobile and on a computer.
If you have decided to play real money slots, then you should figure out the banking options as it should be easy to deposit and withdraw if you intend to enjoy the game. Different players prefer different banking options, and the accessibility of these can vary quite a lot between different online pokies casinos. Before registering at a new casino 2021, take a look at our thorough reviews and check what banking options are available so that you know what to expect when its time to try your luck.
- Top Quality Pokies
If you wish to experience exceptional online gambling experience, then choose slots by a good software platform that provides top-quality pokies. High class developers use cutting edge technology to produce the games with outstanding software quality and design. With that said, the software quality and overall look of a game is not everything. For games to be considered high quality pokies, all boxes need to be ticked off.
Free spins are the most common bonus no matter which online casino you are playing at. Free spins usually come along with another bonus such as a welcome bonus or deposit bonus. Free spins let you play slots for free where you don’t have to pay to play and win real money.
When the casinos offer free spins as a bonus, they usually limit it to a few numbers of specific pokies where you can play using the free spins. This may be due to the fact that they choose a few popular slots where the users are allowed to play with free spins so that the users enjoy playing the games and then deposit real money to continue playing. This is a player attraction or retention strategy by the casino, but remember when you play free spins, any winnings attached will be subjected to wagering requirements that need to be fulfilled before you can withdraw any winnings.
Online pokies no deposit offers:
No deposit bonuses are pretty rare where the casino offers you bonuses without the need to make any deposits. The amount is never high if they are paying real money as a bonus. Most casinos offer free spins as a no-deposit bonus, which gets activated as soon as you sign-up in the new casino before you make a deposit or when you play regularly at the casino, hence you get a promotional bonus as a reward.
With these free spins, there is a limit to how much you can bet or claim, but it is still free money. Again, if you wish to claim the winnings using this bonus, it will be subjected to wagering requirements which you need to fulfil in order to withdraw any winnings or the bonus itself. Also, not all pokies contribute towards bonus wagering hence read the terms before you play pokies in the casino with free spins.
Try online pokies for free:
When you visit an online casino, it should always be possible for you to play the pokies for free. We do not mean that you get to spin for free and win real money but just to enjoy a game or two to understand if you like the particular slots game or you need to look further.
There are no reason casinos should not offer unlimited free play on their slots after you log in to the site and also on the mobile interface. You can also go to the particular provider’s website to play the majority of their catalogues for free. This way you will know if you would like to play that slot machine with actual money or move on to the next.
Online Pokie providers
NetEnt is probably one of the largest casino software companies serving the majority of casinos worldwide. The reputed software company has built over 250 award-winning gaming solutions that players enjoy. Some of their slots such as Frankenstein, Jumanji, Planet of the Apes were developed in cooperation with filmmakers to make the overall casino experience more entertaining. Their games are known to give high performance and run smoothly that provides players with the ultimate gaming experience. Their games are known to be fair and random, which is why most users prefer this brand as it is widely known by almost all casino players.
This is a Swedish company that was acquired by Playtech in the year 2016. They have about 50 desktop slot games and 40 mobile slot games and they are committed to delivering new pokies every year. Casinos that provides pokies of this company run interesting tournaments and promotions as it has an amazing promotional tool where each video slot comes along with an Achievement module that takes players success and awards as they progress in the game.
This is a known name in the gambling industry as any reputed casino hosts several games from Microgaming such as video slots, pokies table games and live games. Microgaming is famous for its versatile slot themes, features and reel configurations. Microgaming is also famous for providing top progressive slots like Mega Moolah and Mega Million.
Big Time Gaming
This company was launched in 2011 and set out to create non-jackpot slots with maximum wins of over 20,000 coins. Their slots are innovative, which is why it is popular with a lot of gambling sites. Their famous games like Queen of Riches and Bonanza has its very own fan following and the casino library gets bigger and bigger which is why most of the popular casinos are becoming interested in partnering with the company.
This is a relatively new software company founded in 2014, but the team behind it has done an amazing job. As a new gaming company, they have done really well as you will find their games in several casinos. The gaming company understands the importance of player retention but its loyalty is also towards the casino which keeps things balanced and the wheel moving.
Selection of Casinos with Best Pokies
Online Pokie terms
Scatter symbol is a special feature of real money slots also known as online pokies. In fact, they can be more rewarding than wild symbols and they are the highest paying symbols in the game. The graphics that correspond to Scatters are as per the theme of the slot. In earlier days, when only 3-reel slots existed in land-based casinos, the red cherries represented as scatter symbols.
These symbols are not required to align on a specific payline, it can simply appear anywhere on the reels and you can unlock the bonus games along with a predetermined number of free spins.
When more than one scatter symbol lands on the reels, it unlocks a round of free spins and in some cases an interactive bonus game that guarantees prizes for the players. The number of bonus spins the player wins depends on the number of scatter symbols that have landed on the reels.
Scatter symbols also double up as multipliers in some online slots that can boost the amount of the players winning. Make sure to read the game information and terms before you play any online pokies for real money. This will help them be clear about the symbols that function as scatters and how many of those should land on the reels in order to multiply winnings or trigger a round of free spins.
Wild symbols are one of the most important features to look for when we talk about an online slot. In fact, wild in the slot is as important as a joker in a deck of cards. The wild symbol can substitute for any other symbols on the reels except the scatter and bonus symbols. Wild symbols help players complete the winning combinations. For example, if an identical symbol appears on the first, second, fourth and fifth reel and a wild symbol appear on the third reel, this will still be a winning combination.
Players should remember that there is no way they can control the occurrence of this wild symbol. This appears randomly, and it solely depends on the player’s luck. In some slots, the wild symbols are considered as the highest paying symbols and in others, they are considered void of any value. In many online casinos, the wild symbols appear only on specific reels like a second, third and fourth reel which are positioned in the centre of the screen.
So, if you are lucky to land more than one wild symbol on reels, your prize money will keep increasing and if by chance you land the wilds on all five reels, then you will win a hefty price. The prize depends on the slot you choose as in some slots when you win using a wild symbol, you at get free re-spins or you get the option to multiply your winnings by a predetermined multiplier.
Payline refers to the lines based on which you will get paid out for winning combinations. In other words, the more paylines the slot features, you have a chance to win from a greater number of combinations. When you play online slots, the grid on which you get the combination of matching symbols is known as payline. In plain words, you win due to paylines.
There are slots where you get to select the number of paylines you want to play with. It is called the bet line in this case as altering the bet lines, you can either increase your bet or decrease it.
The first slot machine invented had only one payline but now you can stumble upon slots with 10, 25 and even over 1000 lines to bet. Paylines in modern slots are not really horizontal but they can be vertical, zigzag or diagonal. Players are needed to select the size of coins they wish to wager on each active line to choose the ones they wish to activate.
As you increase your bets on the number of paylines, your chances of winning improve and you can also hit a combination of several lines in one spin which will help in getting paid better. Players need to check the available paylines along with the payouts and the way they appear on the reels by opening the online slots payable to get this information. You will also get the information about the lowest and the highest paying symbols in the games.
You may choose to deactivate a few lines and if you land a winning combination on that payline then you will not win the payout.
Types of Online Pokies
We have listed below the different types of pokies you will encounter in the casino world:
3-reel pokies are traditional types of pokies that consist of only three reels which means far fewer paylines than its 5-reel version. This is a simpler version of pokies if you are playing for experience and fun. As the reels are less hence, the game does not offer the depth of 5-reel slots, but it offers the purest pokies experience which hardly has any gimmicks. They are definitely not as interesting as the 5-reel pokies, but it is interesting to play it at least once to check out why it has remained famous for years.
Most slot games you find online are 5-reel pokies and it consists of 5-reels, which means a far-greater number of paylines than their 3-reel versions. 5-reel pokies come with heaps of different themes, features, bonuses and gameplays.
It consists of Wild, Scatter, free spins and re-spins which make the game even more interesting to play. The paylines of 5-reel slots are not just horizontal but vertical, zigzag and diagonal so that the possibilities increase and the game becomes exciting.
Majority of mobile slots have also adopted 5-reel pokies as it is the most popular slot games that people prefer.
Progressive Jackpot Pokies
While these typically are 5-reel slots but progressive jackpot, pokies offer a much higher payout than regular pokies. Most of the online pokies are standalone games, but progressive jackpot slots are networking games where the jackpot size increases as the number of players increase. Naturally, it is extremely difficult to win the biggest jackpot, but it is not impossible. The most popular progressive slot Mega Moolah has paid the largest jackpot worth, £13.2 million to a British which has been recorded in the Guinness World record.
Video pokies refer to poker machines that feature video graphics. We are talking about games that feature animations and videos, which makes it more interesting and interactive for the players to enjoy. The themed video pokies machine can portray characters from popular movies or television series, including actual videos, and sound clips along with multiple bonuses to keep players engaged.
3D pokies are advanced video pokies manufactured by Betsoft and use 3D graphics to create pokies that have a storyline and engaging characters which make playing slots much like watching a movie. These games possess some of the most interesting features that you will find in any other pokies in NZ.
Mobile Casino Pokies
This is not really surprising displaying games in mobile has surpassed desktop due to the fact that people love to enjoy games on the go. Slots provided by major software providers like Betsoft, Microgaming, NetEnt, or Quickspin definitely have higher chances that you will enjoy seamless gaming on your smartphone or tablets.
What the mobile slot really does is change the layout so you can enjoy the same game on a smaller screen. Other than that, you be rest-assured as these are the same games you love, and as fun as their full-sized version.
Playing pokies in the real world is alluring with the lights and sounds and the chances to win big but the online world of pokies is also not far behind in terms of experience and with the additional benefit of letting you play from the comfort of your own home when most of us are too busy to visit a casino. Additionally, as you can experience hundreds of casinos from just a single device, we believe it has surpassed the land-based casino on many levels.
The best online pokies software developers in NZ are NetEnt, Quickspin, Microgaming, Big Time Gaming, and Redtiger.
Online gambling is absolutely safe as long as you play on a reliable and secure gambling website. Most NZ online casinos take security very seriously and protect the player's personal data, payment, and gaming history.
Progressive jackpot pokie is a jackpot that increases by a given percentage each time the game is played but the jackpot is not won. When the progressive jackpot is won, the jackpot is reset to a predetermined value and resumes increasing under the same rule.
3D slots are jackpots with a high animation game resolution where video clips, graphics, and gaming themes are quite lifelike.