Why Play Online Pokies and Are They Safe?
Are online pokies safe? Yes.
Are there hundreds of online pokies to play online? Yes.
If you want to join an online casino to play games that pack action, fun, variety, and safety, then online pokies are the genre you’re looking for!
You will find a plethora of options, ranging from jackpot slots to TV-themed pokies.
Are Online Pokies Legal to Play in New Zealand?
In New Zealand, it is not illegal to play online pokies. The modern online slots you’ll find online follow extremely high standards.
What makes them fair is Random Number Generator (RNG) computer that powers the games and delivers a fair result each time.
In essence, the RNG is software made up of an elaborate algorithm, programmed to produce a random result. Some parameters have to be fitted in for the pokies to operate, such as volatility and RTP.
The RNG ensures online pokies are always fair.
But can an operator manipulate the RNG computer?
Therefore, all the pokies you’ll find at a licensed online casino in New Zealand, are 100% fair.
In addition to safety and fairness, modern slots must follow certain Responsible Gambling guidelines.
This is a license requirement that ensures the casino or providers do not encourage irresponsible behaviour.
What are Online Pokies and Why Play Them?
Online pokies are the digital siblings of the slot machines inhabiting the foyers of land-based casinos.
They are modern-day fruit machines that you can play online from your mobile or your desktop computer.
Did you know?
Did you know that all online pokies you’ll find at licensed online casinos have been tested and certified by third-party auditors like eCogra?
Pokie Games That Fit Your Style
If you visit any of the top-rated casinos recommended at NZCasinos you’ll find plenty of online pokies. We’re talking jackpot slots, free online slots and anything else under the sun!
Every site has its own particular character, but everywhere you go, expect to find from 100 to 1000+ slots.
When faced with so much choice, it is not hard to find the right game for you!
Bonus Buy Pokies
Before we start exploring some of the things you should keep in mind when scoring the hundreds of titles you’ll likely encounter, we’re going to talk about bonus buy pokies.
As the name suggests, these games allow you to pay a premium to gain access to the bonus round.
The cost depends on the bet. But what you should keep in mind is that you pay to go right into the bonus game.
Things to Look for When You’re Choosing an Online Pokie
As we have already established, there are thousands of pokies online. Sifting through all of them is no easy feat, especially if you’re not sure what to look for.
We have put together a shortlist of things to look out for when looking for the right slot for you!
The most striking thing about online pokies is the variety of themes.
You’ll find unique designs and even games based on movies, TV shows, and famous personalities.
The themes are as abundant as the pokies, so being selective is definitely on the table!
Now pokies might be designed with entertainment in mind, but you can’t forget you can win real cash.
Some online pokies have jackpots, which might occasionally deliver hundreds of dollars or if you’re lucky, millions.
When you’re playing for real money you have to weigh the cost of playing against what you can possibly win. Payout potential is also something to weigh!
Slots are games of chance so there are never any guarantees. No online pokie will ever pay 100%, so you should always be prepared for some risk.
However, it is easy to assess the risk. Volatility and RTP give a pretty good indication of what to expect.
4. Look Out for Volatility
As we mentioned in the beginning, volatility and RTP are two parameters that are always programmed in a slots RNG computer.
They determine a pokie’s payout potential.
However, these scores should not be taken as guarantees, since they are calculated over thousands of revolutions.
Only over time, will your results reflect the numbers.
If we had to summarize volatility; it is the frequency with which you land wins and the size of your bets.
Low Volatility Pokies
Low volatility pokies are designed to deliver more frequent wins when compared with medium or high volatility slots.
On the other hand, the prizes you should expect are on the low side.
Medium Volatility Pokies
Medium volatility slots fall in between low and high volatility pokies.
Wins land less frequently but are still more common than high volatility pokies.
Payouts fall somewhere in between too.
High Volatility Pokies
High volatility pokies are defined by less frequent wins and hard-to-form combinations.
However, when you are successful, you can expect your efforts to be rewarded grandly!
5. Pay Attention To RTP
The term RTP stands for Return To Player percentage. This score indicates how much you should expect to make back from every bet you place.
For example, when the RTP is 96% you should expect to win back 96 credits from every 100 credits you stake.
This score, however, is not a guarantee. Sometimes you’ll win 120 credits from every 100 credits you stake, other times, you might win 90 credits or less.
The RTP percentage is calculated over millions of revolutions, and only over time, your results will start to reflect this number. That is what it is so important to consider the volatility and RTP of a slot before you commit to playing.
6. What’s Your Budget?
If you don’t have the budget to sustain online gambling, then don’t! It’s as simple as that! You should never spend money you don’t have.
If you are new to the online gambling scene, you can play free online slots.
On the other hand, if you have money to spend, you can try to spin new online pokies, which come with adjustable bets and paylines.
The trick is to find games that allow you to wager what you can afford.
There is only one general rule to follow; you should have at least 500 rounds, which on a budget of NZ$100, should cost you NZ$0.20 each.
What Types of Pokies Are Out There?
While the theme of a slot might pull you in or push you away, the structure of the game can also be a determining factor.
Most modern online pokies have 5 reels, however, you’ll find classic options with 3 reels, as well as, sophisticated titles with 6 or more reels.
If you want to truly enjoy yourself, you need to know what’s available and what suits you best.
1. Number of Reels
Just how many reels can an online slot have?
3-reel pokies are often described as classic or fruit machines because they are based on the slot machines that were popular during the 70s and 80s.
The 3-reels are usually accompanied either by one pay line or by five.
5-reel pokies are the most popular variation you’ll find in New Zealand. In fact, approximately 90% of all online slots are 5-reel pokies.
This setup enables developers to add more paylines and features with ease, as opposed to 3-reel pokies. You’ll find 5-reel pokies adapted to take progressive jackpots and every theme imaginable.
6-Reel and 7-Reel Slots
Developers have gotten creative over the last few years. From the initial 3-reels, they’ve developed pokies with 6, 7, 8 or more reels.
The Megaways mechanic has made the development of these many setups easier.
Today there is no limit to how many reels an online pokie can have.
2. Game Type
What we’ve covered so far, however, does not tell us what type of online pokies you can play. So let’s take a look together!
Classic Slots and Fruit Machines
Classic is another word used to describe traditional fruit slot machines. The term derives from the symbols that inhabit the reels: cherries, grapes, watermelons, lemons, and oranges.
Traditionally you’ll also find bells, bars, and 7s. Paylines might vary from 1 to 5.
The best online pokies usually belong to this category.
This type of slot can accommodate any theme, setup, paylines, and features, qualities that define video slots.
The most common characteristic is the reels. Most come with 5-reels, together with wilds and a bonus round.
3D pokies can be anything from classic slots to video slots to jackpot pokies. This is a subgenre of any of these pokies, which is defined by the different perspectives it provides.
A 3D slot shows more than the reels; it gives you a view of the entire machine.
Progressive Jackpot Slots
Just like 3D slots, progressive jackpot pokies can be anything from classic to video slots. The only difference is that a small percentage of every bet is retained and added to a pot that is usually shared amongst casinos.
This prize grows and grows, sometimes to millions of dollars, until one lucky player hits the right combination and bags the whole pot.
For this reason, progressive jackpot pokies are more lucrative than any either slot you’ll find in the market.
Developed by Big Time Gaming, the Megaways mechanic is now used by many game developers to either spruce up existing slots or to create new ones.
The Megaways system is all about the random number of paylines that become active at every spin. It could be anything from 1 to 117,649 ways to win.
Megaways pokies often come with 6 reels and medium or high volatility.
Cluster Slots Online
Pokies usually have a number of paylines, across which you have to land a number of matching symbols to win a pre-established payout.
Cluster pay slots work a little differently. Paylines don’t exist here, instead, you have to land the same symbol in a cluster to earn a win.
Under this tag-line, you’ll find every pokie that has more than one pay line.
As we have already established, some classic slots have one pay line, however, the majority of pokies come with more, which are either fixed or random.
Did you know?
In the UK, the remote gaming GGY is made up of pokies at 69.3%, followed by Roulette at only 13.5%.
How to Increase Your Chances of Winning?
There are some casino games where skill is needed to win more. For example, if you a sound understanding of mathematics, you’ll have an advantage at the Blackjack table.
When playing pokies, however, there is not a lot that you can do. The results at every spin are always random and there is no way you can gain an advantage.
There is only one thing to do: control things before you spin! Choosing the right slot means you make the most of your experience and the most of the game.
1. Read Our Reviews
Any aspiring slot player should start by reading our online pokies reviews. In this way, you learn which are today’s top pokies online.
Learning the facts and gaining valuable insight from our casino experts, will help you choose the sites and games that suit your personal preferences.
2. Watch Pokie Streamers Play
Some slot fans have taken playing online to new levels, fusing together strategy and entertainment.
They can share tips and strategies, but there are no guarantees since pokies are random. Still, it is fun to watch others play.
On Twitch there are some noticeable slot streamers, such as:
3. Is there such a thing as a Pokie Strategy?
As we have mentioned before in this article, strategy can never guarantee a win since online pokies are totally random.
However, there are some things you can before settling down to play, like learning to manage your money. As we’ve said earlier, plan to have at least 500 bets.
You should also consider the volatility and RTP of an online pokie. How often will it payout? Are the payouts substantial or small? What’s the potential? Does it follow your personal preferences?
The answers to these questions will give you all the strategies you need!
How Do Pokies Games Work?
Online pokies mean fluctuating results. Knowing how they work will keep you from getting emotional or frustrated if the game does not deliver the expected results.
Keeping all of that in mind, let’s see the basic working of an online slot:
- Adjust the value of the bet and hit the spin button.
- The reels will spin several times before they come to a halt.
- Symbols will inhabit the reel, spread randomly throughout.
- Invisible lines crisscross the reels to form paylines. If 3 or more symbols fall on these paylines, you land a win.
- To help you make winning combinations, the game might feature wilds that substitute any symbol with the exception of the scatter.
- If you line enough scatters, you might unlock special features or earn a bunch of free spins. Scatters lead you to a separate part of the game
- If you are playing a progressive jackpot slot, the top prize has no fixed value but will continue to grow until it drops.
Practice for free
At the right online casino, you can play free online pokies.
In some cases, you don’t even need to register for an account.
Game developers add a demo mode to each one of their games, enabling players to try the game for free before playing for real money.
They offer a fun outlet where you don’t have to worry about budgets while teaching you all the basics of the game.
Online Slot Providers You Should Check Out
There are many online casino game developers, each one bringing something different to the mix.
The recommended casinos we list offer games by multiple game providers.
To narrow down the choice, we’ve chosen 3 top game providers which have earned an excellent reputation as slot suppliers.
NetEnt is hailed as the top slot provider in the world.
Aside from releasing the largest number of slots, it has succeeded in balancing style, payouts, and theme.
Three games that are favourites amongst players are Starburst, Gonzo’s Quest, and Guns n’ Roses.
Yggdrasil has earned the top place as the most innovative provider in the industry.
Their games are highly stylized with rich storylines, animations, and neat features. They are best known for incorporating levels into their pokies, which are reminiscent of actual video games.
Three titles to watch out for are Vikings Go Berzerk, Jackpot Raiders and Champions of Rome.
Big Time Gaming Pokies
Big Time Gaming is the mastermind behind the Megaways mechanic. This payout system has revolutionized slot setup.
The mechanic has become so popular that the provider has franchised the engine, enabling other developers to use the system for both new and existing slots.
It is common to find revamped versions of existing and popular titles bearing the Megaways mechanic. A few examples are Bonanza Megaways, Gonzo’s Quest Megaways and Vikings Unleashed Megaways.
Did you know?
The top providers who make the most revenue are Aristocrat, Microgaming, Novomatic, NetEnt and IGT.
Glossary – Learn the lingo
|Payline||The horizontal, diagonal or other lines mapped across the reels of a slot game that pay out wins if identical symbols land along those lines.|
|Reels||The rotating barrels of the first pokies inspired the layout of the online versions.|
|Jackpot||The highest payout a player can win from an online pokie|
|Free Spins||Free rounds are allocated by the casino or by the game itself to be used on an online slot.|
|Wild Symbols||A symbol that can substitute any other symbol (with the exception of the scatter) to help you form more combinations.|
|Scatter||A special symbol that triggers the bonus and/or free spins round if players land 3 or more of them following a spin.|
|Base Game||The ‘normal’ mode of a slot game, as opposed to the bonus round.|
|Bonus Game||The free spins or bonus game triggered by landing on certain special symbols|
|Multiplier||A feature that multiplies winnings from certain combinations by a number (e.g. x2, x4, x10, etc)|
|AutoPlay||Just like autopilot, it enables the game to spin unattended|
|RTP||The Return To Player percentage indicates how much you should make back in the long term.|
|Volatility||Also referred to as variance, this is the frequency by which a slot pays out and the size of the bets.|
Online pokies enthusiasts in New Zealand will find hundreds of titles to choose from. And in today’s innovative world, they can be enjoyed from both your desktop and mobile.
These modern online pokies come with all manner of themes, features, bonus rounds, and sometimes, even surprises. Game developers outdo themselves by coming up with innovative ways to spice up these old games and attract more players.
The best online casinos offer bonuses and free spins to enhance players’ gaming experience and give them an opportunity to play games for free. If you ready to dive right in, let us guide you through the online pokies world!