As such, when looking at the top developers, it is important to consider both groups. The giants of the industry are still producing hugely exciting games with new features, but it would be a huge shame to overlook some of the smaller companies, which have plenty to offer players. Keeping that in mind, here is a look at some of the most exciting casino software developers currently around.
Anyone who follows the online casino industry needs no introduction to Playtech. They have been producing top quality casino games and software since 1999 and have an outstanding reputation. While Playtech could easily coast along on the back of the work it has already done, it still strives to produce new and exciting games for its players.
For example, over the last year it has been releasing a new series of slots called Kingdoms Rise. There are around ten games in the series, each set in a different area of a fantasy world. The games all give players the chance to win progressive jackpots, but what sets them apart is the unique loyalty rewards feature that is built into the games. Players will collect tokens as they spin the reels, and these tokens can then be spent in the Kingdoms Rise shop on bonus features. It is the first time that this kind of feature has been offered in an online slot, and it has been a huge success with players.
However, it is not just slots where Playtech has been hard at work. The company has also greatly expanded its live dealer casino with new variants of casino favourites, such as blackjack and roulette, as well as the introduction of a number of new gameshow titles. In short, Playtech has done more than enough to ensure it remains one of the leading and most exciting casino developers.
2020 has been an incredibly busy year for NetEnt with a huge number of developments. The company is best known for its stunning online slots, and there has been no shortage of releases, each one upholding NetEnt’s incredibly high standards of graphic design. Furthermore, NetEnt has recently begun licensing Megaways technology from BTG. This unique real structure can result in well over 100,000 ways to win on each spin of the reels, and it has become extremely popular with players.
Towards the end of 2019, NetEnt acquired slots developer Red Tiger Gaming, and this year saw NetEnt fully integrate the company. This resulted in some exciting developments, such as the development of Gonzo’s Quest Megaways by the Red Tiger studio. However, the biggest news for NetEnt in 2020 was its acquisition by Evolution Gaming. Evolution is a leading supplier of live dealer gaming, and its acquisition of NetEnt takes it firmly into new territory.
NetEnt games can be found at more than 100 of the top casino platforms, and despite being under new ownership, it looks set to remain a player favourite for a long time to come.
Evolution Gaming is considered by many to be the best provider of live casino games (although there is strong competition from Playtech). Since it was founded, Evolution has grown to dominate the live casino sector and along the way, it has won numerous awards, such as the “Innovation in Live Casino Award” at the Sports Betting Community (SBC) awards in 2018.
That particular award was in recognition of the game Lightning Roulette, which is just one of many exciting game variants that Evolution has developed. The entire catalogue of games includes numerous variants of roulette, as well as blackjack, baccarat, casino poker, Asian games such as Sic Bo, and more.
One area where they have done particularly impressive work is in Game Shows. These are casual games that are designed for those who want the live dealer experience but do not enjoy traditional card and table games. There are a number of game shows based upon well known entities, such as Monopoly Live and Deal or No Deal Live. There are also games such as Mega Ball, which is a lottery style game, and Dream Catcher, which is based around a huge fortune wheel.
There is no doubt that Evolution Gaming is going from strength to strength. Its operating revenues in the first three quarters of 2020 increased 48% year on year to €383.5 million, EBITDA increased by 86% to €235.9 million, and profit for the period totalled €204 million. Furthermore, in addition to the acquisition of NetEnt and Red Tiger towards the end of 2020, the year also saw Evolution Gaming open two additional state of the art live casino studios, one in Pennsylvania and one in Lithuania. It also won the Live Casino Supplier of the Year award for an incredible eleventh consecutive year at the EGR B2B awards, and it launched eleven new titles.
Pariplay is an incredible supplier of casino software and an excellent developer of casino games. The company is best known for its content aggregation platform Fusion™, but it also provides tools for games developers and has its own fantastic portfolio of games.
At present, its platform is available in more than fifteen regulated markets, it has over 100 live integrations, it brings players a library of more than 4000 games to enjoy, and more than €500 million in monthly bets are placed through it. The company has a number of high profile partners in the gambling industry, such as Microgaming, NetEnt, 888, GVC Holdings and more. While most players will not be aware of the Pariplay’s platform, there is no doubt that it has made a significant contribution to the online casino industry.
However, players will be aware of Pariplay’s excellent slots, and it releases new titles on a monthly basis. Recent releases include Faith, which is based upon the Valiant Entertainment comic book character. In fact, Pariplay has recently signed an extension to its partnership with the comic publisher, which will result in the release of even more branded slots, which already include Bloodshot, Bloodshot Rising Spirit and X-O Manowar.
While Pariplay may not be one of the big name developers, its work behind the scenes and its excellent games means that it more than deserves to be on this list.
It is impossible to discuss casino software developers without mentioning Microgaming. Microgaming were behind the very first online casino all the way back in 1994, and the company has been leading the industry ever since. Microgaming is behind a huge number of industry firsts, such as the first slot to have a hundred paylines and the first mobile casino. It also holds many records, such as for the largest ever progressive jackpot, which was over €18 million!
Today the company offers players hundreds of games and it is also produces a huge number of operator tools. Many of the games have become long-term player favourites, such as the slots Immortal Romance and the Book of Oz, and they also have exciting branded games, such as Jurassic World™, Game of Thrones™, and Lara Croft®.
More recently, Microgaming has begun working with a number of smaller development studios and releasing their games through its platform, bringing them to a far wider audience. In recent months, one of the most exciting releases from the company has been the Real series of games. These combine live dealer gaming with traditional RNG games. They are card and table games, such as baccarat and roulette, but they feature real footage of dealers, which makes the games incredibly life like and immersive. Of course, Microgaming has not been neglecting online slot fans and it continues to release multiple titles each month.
Play’n Go comes from humble beginnings, but in recent years it has truly emerged as a leading developer of online slots. It has built a portfolio of over 200 games, which it is able to deliver to players around the world thanks to its Omny® Channel Magic platform that allows operators to offer its games on almost any digital or land-based platform.
The company is based in Sweden, but today has employees spread across numerous countries, such as Malta, the UK, and Hungary. The company releases a number of new slots every month, and they always have a wide variety of themes, ensuring that they appeal to as many players as possible.
While there are many developers of quality online slot machines, Play’n Go stands out for a number of reasons. Their games are always superbly designed and recently, the company has put a great deal of effort into 3D graphics and animations that help bring the themes to life on players’ screens. At the same time, the games very often have truly innovative and imaginative bonus features, which further enhance players’ enjoyment.