Upon your first-ever visit to an online casino, you’ll probably be amazed at how many slot games are available there. Most sites have at least 100 slots, with some have in excess of 1,000. When you visit a second online casino, you’ll probably be amazed too – as you’ll recognise many of the slots that you encountered at the first casino.
This may puzzle you. How can one online casino create a game called ‘Starburst’, while another online casino can create a game that is called exactly the same, and plays exactly the same way? How do they get away with it?
Very few online casinos create their own games – they source them instead
There are only a very limited number of online casinos that create their own games, and even then such casinos source their games from other places too. The vast majority of online casinos obtain their games from specialist casino software companies.
A few of these software companies, such as Microgaming and NetEnt, began life creating online casinos themselves, but then found they could be much more successful by allowing other companies to use the games they’d created for their own sites too. Other vendors, such as Play’n GO and Yggdrasil Gaming, have only ever made games that they source to other sites.
Many companies specialise, but the biggest have multiple facets
There are plenty of online software vendors who specialise in one particular area of the online casino realm. For example, Evolution Gaming only create live casino games, linking the TV-style studios they provide up to the software they create. Wazdan are a company that typically make more traditional casino games than they do slots, while when it comes to Red Tiger, NextGen Gaming and NYX Interactive it’s very much a case of slots, only.
The biggest companies are those that diversify, though. NetEnt are one of the biggest and best online casino software providers. They have, throughout their time in business, created dozens of slots, plus casino games including live casino games. Other leading software providers such as Microgaming and Playtech have taken the same path.
How do online casinos obtain games from software companies?
There are two ways that an online casino can obtain games from a casino games software developer. The first is by arranging a licensing deal with the software vendors themselves. Once a licensing deal is set up, the online casino is then free to place the companies games on their casino website. The online casino company pays either a fixed fee to do so, or a percentage of the revenue that is generated by the games.
The second, and more common way is for an online casino to sign a deal with a company that provides an integrated casino platform. This is a ‘ready-made’ casino platform that already has deals with several software companies. The online casino that then signs up with the integrated platform provider immediately has access to dozens or hundreds of casino games.
EveryMatrix is one of the biggest providers of an integrated casino platform, or a ‘white label’ as it also known. If a company signs a deal with EveryMatrix, they can choose software from many leading casino software companies, such as 1X2 Gaming, Blueprint Gaming, Eyecon, iSoftbet, NetEnt, Microgaming, Playson and others. Indeed, the EveryMatrix platform contains over 8,000 casino games from around 140 content providers.
Which online casino software vendors are considered the industry leaders?
There are three online casino software vendors whom are generally considered to be the leaders in the online casino software realm, as follows:
Sweden’s NetEnt (previously Net Entertainment) are generally considered to be one of the leading suppliers of casino software, and in particular slots. They changed to face of the slotting world with ‘Gonzo’s Quest’ in 2010, and have followed that title up with dozens of other great titles, including Starburst, Aloha! Cluster Pays and Finn & the Swirly Spin.
NetEnt also create excellent casino table games like blackjack and roulette, and have their own live casino studio.
Based on the Isle of Man close to the UK, Microgaming were one of the earliest creators of online casinos, and online casino games. They created their first online casino as long ago as 1994, and now concentrate solely on casino games, including slots and table games.
Another company based on the Isle of Man, Playtech are somewhat of an oddity in the casino realm as they do not allow their titles to be licensed to integrated platform creators. There are even a few online casino sites that only use Playtech’s games, and no others.
Playtech provide slots, casino games and live casino games. They even provide bingo games via their VirtueFusion network.
Hopefully, that’s you enlightened about the world of online casino software vendors, and you may soon develop a list of your personal favourites!