There's a lot of technical wizardry that goes into launching and maintaining an online casino. There are a lot of terms being used to describe different elements, and unfortunately, many of those terms are being used interchangeably.
However, we attempt to clarify:
Casino game supplier or game provider is a company that builds games for online casinos. To offer a versatile and appealing library to its players, the same online casino can feature games from dozens of different suppliers.
Casino platform is the tool for the casino to manage all areas of its operation. These include payments, bonuses, KYC, customer support and games. A single casino usually uses only one online casino platform.
Casino software is an old term that is often used as a synonym for both game providers and the casino platforms. In addition, it can refer to downloadable online casino games softwares that were all the rage in the early days of the online gambling boom.
Top 5 casino software developers
Some online casinos may stand out because of their special bonuses, gaming platform or customer support, but it's ultimately the games that can make or break a casino. Here we've listed the top software developers bringing the most exciting games to the market.
NetEnt is a name that instantly rings bells within the industry. A go-to provider that produces some of the best and most popular games, NetEnt is constantly sought out because of its quality and innovation. A staple provider in many online casinos, it would be difficult to actually think of any brands that haven't filled up their lobby with NetEnt games!
Some popular titles you may have come across include Dead or Alive 2, Starburst, and Gonzo's Quest. These slot games, plus more, have definitely held their own and continue to be fan favorites to this day.
NetEnt's dedication to improving gameplay and design means they keep raising the bar for themselves, meaning you get quality games at every new release.
Red Tiger may have only been founded in 2014, but it has already become a leader when it comes to casino game development. With a team full of mathematicians, software developers, graphic designers and audio engineers, just know that every single game has been well thought out. From the soundtrack of a slot game, to special bonus features, Red Tiger invests a great amount of time ensuring players get the best gaming experience.
You may be familiar with the likes of Dynamite Riches, Piggy Riches Megaways, Wild Wild Chest, and Gonzo's Quest Megaways. These are just a few of the heavy hitters produced by Red Tiger. Other things you'll appreciate with Red Tiger's slots are performance, compatibility and speed. Even though their games are technically and graphically complex, you still get a seamless and immersive experience whether you choose to play on your desktop or mobile device.
Red Tiger does an immensely great job at engaging players, so you'll see many Jackpots and Tournaments. Something to always keep you on your toes!
Everi is another young gaming provider that entered the iGaming world in 2015. Although relatively new, the company was actually formed as a result of a merger that included two companies that had already served the casino industry for decades. Combining the long-standing experience and a solid reputation, this ultimately makes Everi a trusted and strong brand.
Everi is known for creating compelling content based on original ideas, backed with mechanics and dynamic artwork. They are pioneers in orchestrating the ultimate gaming experience, engaging all players at higher levels. You can see it in games such as Cashnado Super Strike™ which has a Cash Grab™ bonus where players can "grab" dollar bills flying across the screen. Truly exciting!
Big Time Gaming has branded itself as an "innovative thought leader in slot machine development" that constantly drives "Big Wins" for players. If you've ever seen a slot game with the words 'Megaways™', 'Megaclusters™' or 'Megapays™' after the title, just know that Big Time Gaming is behind it! Megaways™ on its own has managed to shake up the online casino industry, enabling 117,649 possible ways to win on a slot game.
Small but mighty, this game studio has had an impact on slot games worldwide, allowing game developers and casino partners to use its license. You can expect high volatility games that pack a punch, leaving you with an all-round captivating experience. Some great slots to check out from Big Time Gaming would be Wheel of Fortune Megaways™, Star Clusters Megapays™, and Bonanza Megapays™. The infamous Megapays™ system gives each spin the potential to pay a jackpot upwards of x3,000,000 with a 10c stake. Insane!
When it comes to ground-breaking gaming technology, IGT takes the throne. Known for being the mastermind behind the software that powers lotteries, gaming cabinets and online casinos, IGT has definitely cemented itself as a world-renowed software developer. Opting for a player-focused approach, IGT has been able to build an extensive portfolio of high-quality games providing next-level excitement.
IGT's offering is endless, with countless video slots to traditional casino games, there is something for everyone to play! Some famous titles you may have come across are Wheel of Fortune on Tour, Dungeons & Dragons Treasures of Icewind Dale, and Pharaoh's Fortune. IGT has perfected their formula for what it takes to create sensational games. This is pretty evident in their catalogue as most slots have smooth graphics, great audio and several unique features.
Play at casinos with the most game suppliers
A large number of game suppliers means the casino can offer more games than its competitors. With a broad selection of games, the casino can appeal to players with many tastes. Most casinos offer a variety of:
Below, you'll find a list of casinos with the broadest selection of games from different studios.
Find accurate game supplier info on Bojoko
Casino game suppliers don't always let players peek behind the curtain and see where the magic happens. Bojoko is here to change that.
Our casino supplier listings are created by our team, in collaboration with the suppliers. The info comes directly from the studios, and it's peppered with accurate, up-to-date data. They cover topics, including:
Get the most out of our game provider reviews
A well-made game provider review helps you pick the suppliers that are worth your time and money.
On Bojoko, experts write reviews of game providers and share the experience of playing their games. This way, you don't need to trust only what the providers tell you.
How to find casinos with specific game providers?
1. Find a casino from our list
Here on Bojoko, we have a massive list of casinos. You can search it by game developer and add either ready-made or personal filters to narrow it down. Fine-tune your search to find the best casino for you.
2. Read the expert reviews
When you have chosen a casino, you can read what our experts have said about it. Their first-hand experiences will help you see what it's like to play there.
3. Go to the casino
You can find a big green ‘PLAY HERE' button on every review page. This button will take you straight to the casino and activate any special bonus offers we might have for that casino.
4. Register and play
When you get to the casino, you need to register an account. Follow the instructions, fill the required information and verify your email if asked. After that, you can deposit and play the games you want.
In the US, each state with legalized online gambling has its own approach to game supplier licensing. The gaming regulator in each state usually has a dedicated unit for making sure all casino games available in the state are licensed and above the board.
The game providers usually need to apply for a vendor license to offer their games in a specific state. The state regulator then processes the application and either grants or denies the license.
Below, you'll find a list of relevant government bodies that check and license game providers in each state:
In addition to the license for the game provider, each game needs to be submitted and checked too. For this, the regulators have specialized labs that vet both online and offline casino games.
In the game supplier listings on Bojoko, you'll find a list of licenses. If the game provider is not available in your state, you're not available to play its games.
Game providers and responsible gaming
Online casino regulation covers more and more aspects of gaming. UK casino sites have become more responsibility-minded, and game providers are following suit.
We sat down with Henrik Fagerlund, the Managing Director of NetEnt, and asked him how suppliers are meeting the responsibility and compliance expectations of players and regulators alike.
We want to make sure that players realize that when it's no longer fun, it's time to walk away. We simply don't want players to spend more than they can afford.
Henrik Fagerlund, MD, NetEnt
What are the key differences in casino operator and game supplier licensing?
HF: "In a nutshell, the casino operators licensing conditions come with much more requirements and focus around the players and payments. For the game suppliers like us, they come with more requirements around the games (obviously) and around guaranteeing game integrity and fairness."
How much do licensing conditions vary from one regulator to another?
HF: "On the surface, the overall licensing conditions are very much the same and are very much centered around player protection and responsible gaming. Having said that, every regulator have their own requirement twist and flavor to it and this is something that causes both the operators and suppliers to have to spend a lot of effort in ensuring compliance (where we as and industry could spend more time on innovating instead) in the different markets we operate in.
A dream scenario would be to see more standardization, like we e.g. have in the telecom industry. As an example, that many people don't think about, we have GSM, 3G, 4G, 5G etc. that are global standards, stipulating the requirements for all telecom suppliers and operators globally."
Why are NetEnt and other suppliers investing in responsible gaming? Wouldn't it just be better to have players lose more money?
HF: "At NetEnt, we want players to play for the right reason: to have fun. It's important to realize that while for most of the population gaming is a fun activity, for others it can become problematic.
At NetEnt we want to be transparent about this and we want to make sure that players realize that when it's no longer fun, it's time to walk away. We simply don't want players to spend more than they can afford, according to their entertainment budget. This is why we invest in supporting all the major responsible gaming measures coming from the regulators, eCOGRA etc."
What is the game provider's role in responsible gaming? How has this evolved?
HF: "We play a big role in responsible gaming together with the operators. It's evolving for the better all the time, largely driven by increased regulation in general, more markets regulating and just a maturing industry in general. There is simply less and less space for the "rogue guys", which is a good thing, of course."
How do you share responsibility for player safety with the operators? Are there areas of overlap?
HF: "Not as much as we perhaps could and should do. I think we can do more together. Having said that, data sharing is key in order to combat this but therein lies also a bit of a paradox with how much can be shared, due to e.g. GDPR and just in general the natural resistance in sharing of sensitive information between us."
Which tools does NetEnt give players and casinos to set limits and recognize problem behavior?
HF: "NetEnts BackOffice supports all the measures that are stipulated by the regulators, eCOGRA etc. These include setting loss limits, self-exclusion, reminders, reality check etc."
What responsible gaming tools do you see becoming mainstream in the 2020s?
HF: "AI and Big Data fueled tools and algorithms will be it, for sure."
Are there any elements in NetEnt games themselves that could be considered problematic from the responsibility perspective?
HF: "Because the foundational mechanics of a slot machine is to build anticipation and excitement, there will always be a small percentage of players that slot games can be problematic for. Our main goal is, however, to provide entertainment to the player - we want our players to never play with money they can't afford to lose.
As far as game mechanics go, the most important thing is that players understand how the games work so they realize that these are fun games of random chance and not something which can be "beaten". For this reason we recently came out with a new player FAQ, to make sure our players understand the games, and play in a safe and fun environment."
Has the stronger focus on responsible gaming changed the way you make new games? E.g. the game mechanisms and the use of characters?
HF: "Yes, it has. We make sure all of our staff keep a responsible mindset when they make new games. Our games teams work very closely with compliance to make sure they are meeting the strictest industry standards. Graphics and characters have evolved in a more responsible way over the years."
Criteria for game provider ratings
To a large extent, picking a game supplier is a matter of personal opinion. However, we have taken the bold step to measure and quantify the gaming experience.
The very best online casino software providers should score full marks on all of these six aspects:
The game's design is how the game looks on your screen. Poor design can make even the most brilliant concepts tank. Conversely, a well-designed game has the ability to hide weaker aspects and still provide a fantastic gaming experience.
Design preferences vary amongst players. However, outdated designs and flawed graphics will stick out in the same way that fresh, imaginative designs capture your attention.
Game supplier's games are exceptionally designed and visually engaging.
The appearance and visuals of the games are of a good standard.
Game graphics and design are neither particularly enticing nor off-putting.
Significant number of aesthetic issues with the games.
Poor graphics are the major reason you choose not to play this supplier's games.
Gameplay includes game features, user interface, and overall technical playability.
Players expect a high level of usability from today's casino games. A game should be built in a way that makes playing a pleasant experience. There's a big difference between a user interface that looks mediocre and runs poorly and a highly polished, responsive game.
Every element works and runs smoothly, the game's interface is extremely easy to use and very appealing.
Game interface is player-friendly and makes for a pleasant gaming experience.
Gameplay and user interface are acceptable but could do with some improvement.
The functionality of the game is slightly impaired or not fully convincing.
Many user interface issues with the games. Very poor usability that makes it difficult to play.
Players want their favorite casino games to be available on all devices. Games should run without issues on smartphones and tablets. In best cases, playing the mobile version should offer some extra value.
Exceptional mobile gameplay, diverse selection of games for mobile devices.
Missing or defective elements from otherwise acceptable mobile gaming, such as a low number of games for mobile devices.
Mobile gaming has obvious technical shortcomings that hamper the gaming experience.
Very primitive mobile gameplay lacking significant features found in the desktop versions of the games.
Game supplier offers no mobile games at all.
Bonus game features
The in-game reward system is the key to a satisfying and entertaining game experience. Bonus game features can be anything from free spins to re-spins, bonus games, random wilds etc. All of these special features will alter the outcome of the game and present bigger windows of opportunity to win cash.
Generally, players prefer more varied, original and thematic bonus game features. However, badly explained, hectic and unclear bonus features may create a confusing game experience. This can be a turn-off for many players.
Bonus games have original features which offer a thrilling complement to regular gameplay.
Games have great bonus game features overall but they lack originality or ability to entertain.
Bonus game features look common and quite average.
Very few bonus game features without any entertainment value.
Game supplier's games have no bonus features.
Sound design and game audio have become an essential part of the casino game experience. Audio that complements the gameplay immerses the player fully into the experience. Lackluster music and sounds leave a negative impact instead.
Game music and sounds help orient the player within the narrative. With good-quality accompanying audio, players can follow the action easily. Audio is also entertaining on its own and creates an enjoyable gaming experience.
Brilliant use of music and sounds that complement and elevate the gaming experience.
Game supplier uses music and sounds well.
Game music and sounds need improvement.
Games have very basic sounds and might lack music completely.
Games offer a very poor sound environment.
Originality in gameplay can never be underestimated. Games that introduce new ideas do better than recycled concepts and mediocre themes.
New rules and game systems help in exciting and engaging players. People are swayed by original games. You'll always be looking for a fresh perspective when you try out a new casino game.
Pioneering game supplier with its own distinguished style, pushing the boundaries of game creation.
Game supplier occasionally comes up with new creative games and game features that are a success.
Game design, audio and bonus features are quite easily recognisable, but the games offer more or less the same experience every time.
No serious effort to differentiate from competitors. Follows safe, old patterns set by itself or other game suppliers.
Creates bulk games with no new features or unique style.
Game suppliers, also known as game providers, are firms that create online slots and other casino games. They constantly experiment with ways to delight their fans. When they succeed, more players try their new slots or live casino games.
There are big differences in quality and volume between game makers. There are plenty of them, so you always have something new to try.
There are some household names that most US players recognize. Although not every game provider is licensed in every state with legal online casinos, these suppliers can be found on most sites:
An online casino platform is software that makes the casino run. It determines how the casino appears to the user and enables the casino staff to handle all the key functions of running the site. These key functions include:
Player data management
Game supplier integration
In markets with hundreds of brands, many online casinos use a turnkey solution that many of their competitors use too. These are known as white label platforms.
However, the gambling regulators in the US effectively limit the number of online casinos operating in each state. That's why most US casinos have built a proprietary casino platform used only for their brands.
Casinos usually have only a single online casino gaming platform. However, the same site may run its sports betting and poker on separate platforms.