Online pokies have become a staple of online gambling in New Zealand and around the world. From humble beginnings as simple mechanical slot machines, to the advanced and complex digital pokies we know today, the popularity of the pokie has never stopped growing. If you’re in the mood to spin some reels, you’re spoilt for choice these days in New Zealand. Land-based casinos have vast numbers of pokie machines, while online casinos tend to have even more online pokies for players. Every niche is catered for as Kiwi players can enjoy classic three-reel pokies, or advanced five-reel or more games.
Top New Zealand Online Pokie Casinos Compared
Why Play Real Money Online Pokies
The main reason we highly recommend any Kiwi player to play an online pokie for real money is for the thrill, excitement and fun they provide. Online slots are very easy to play and you only need luck to win. This gives them huge appeal with huge numbers of players. On top of this, most online pokies today have plenty of amazing features like Wilds, Scatters and Multipliers. These make the games more fun but also boost your chances of winning big.
Speaking of winning, if you bet real money you can win real money and many online slots have amazing jackpot payouts. Even if you don’t get that lucky, there is still a good chance you’ll walk away with a nice win to your name. Many online pokies are packed with features and offer plenty of different ways to win. They’re a lot of fun, easy to play and give the player great chances to win. We can’t recommend trying online pokies enough!!!
Looking Back: History Of The Pokie
The online pokies we know and love today can be traced back to the 1890s. The very first slot machine was invented by an American gentleman by the name of Charles Fey. The slot was called Liberty Bell and was incredibly basic by today’s standards. It featured three reels and only a handful of symbols. However, compared to other gambling games that people knew, such as Roulette and Blackjack, this new machine at the time was amazing. It became a smash hit and began to make its way around the world, gaining popularity as it went.
These early slots or pokies were known as One-Armed Bandits and they didn’t evolve all that much. There wasn’t a whole lot that could be done with mechanical internals, but this all changed in the 1980s. This was when the world started to see video pokies for the first time, replacing mechanical internals and reels with screens, computer components and Random Number Generators. This allowed designers to start creating far more advanced games, a trend that continues to this day.
The rise of Online Pokies
The next big revolution would come in the 1990s as the world got is first taste of the online casino. Now players could enjoy online pokies from the comfort of their own home, instead of traveling to their nearest casino. Today, there are thousands of different online pokie titles available at the click of a button. Some of them are classic, some are very colourful with amazingly creative themes. The point is, no matter what you’re looking for, there’s an online pokie out there just waiting for you!
No Deposit Online Pokies
When online casinos first started appearing, no deposit bonuses were a big thing. These days, this is no longer the case. This is unfortunate because many players loved getting a no deposit bonus. The good news is, while rare, they’re not gone completely.
How To Play Online Pokies
While online pokies are remarkably simple to play, they can still seem complicated and difficult to understand for new players. We’re here to provide you with some important information and some guidelines on how to get the most out of your time with an online pokie. Follow this information and you’ll be a pokie pro in no time!
Types of Online Pokies
While most people know there are hundreds of different online pokies out there, they sometimes don’t realise that there are three main types of pokies, and all three of these are quite different.
- Three Reel Pokies – The first type of online pokie is the three-reel slot. This is typically your more basic pokie, aimed at people who don’t want all the complexities and different game modes of contemporary titles. Even the most modern three-reel slot is trying to mimic the original one-armed bandit machines that started the whole pokie industry.
- Five Reel Pokies – These are your more modern online pokies. Typically, they will have five reels, but there are some out there that have even more, six or even nine. These pokies push the limits of graphics and are bursting with content, normally offering several bonus game modes.
- Progressive Pokies – The progressive pokie is one of the most popular pokies out there, but its gameplay isn’t really different compared to the other two main types. Progressive slots can have three reels, or five, but what sets them apart is the jackpot. Normally, a number of games will be connected together and every time a player places a bet, part of that is transferred to the jackpot pool. There could potentially be hundreds or thousands of games connected to this jackpot pool, across multiple online casinos. This is why these games can offer multi-million dollar jackpots to some lucky player.
Getting to grips with paylines
One aspect of online pokies that tends to confuse new payers is what are paylines? How do they work and does it matter how many there are? Well, a payline is essentially an imaginary line across the reels. The game will check what symbols land on this line and determine if the player is a winner or not. On the first slot games, there was only a single payline running across the middle of the reels. Today, there are huge varieties with the number of paylines available, with these lines running all over the reels.
Some of the most popular numbers of paylines available include 3, 5, 9, 15, 20, or even more. There is even a slightly different formula that doesn’t rely on paylines, but rather what symbols land next to each other. These types of slots can have 200+ ways to win, with some even having over 1000 ways to win. Typically, pokies with more paylines will pay out more often than if there are less, but with the wins will be more frequent, they’ll also likely be smaller.
Bet sizes in Online Pokies
Betting options in online pokies can also be quite confusing at times for new players. In the past, a coin would have a set size and that was the end of it. However, today it is far more accommodating. Players can choose how big they want their coin to be, this can range from as little as 0.1 coins up to 1 coin. Players will also be able to decide how many coins they want to be on each payline and how many of the games paylines they want to be active. This really helps to give players a wide range of betting options, making online slots suitable to players of all budgets.
Best Online Pokie tips and tricks
Many players out there wonder if online pokie strategies really work. The truth of the matter is pokies are run by a Random Number Generator that is designed to be completely random and ensure that players can’t benefit from observing any patterns. So no strategy that claims it will make you win more often is going to work, however, there are some things you can do that might help limit any loses, as well as make your pokie gaming experience more enjoyable.
First and foremost, set yourself limits. These limits should be set for every aspect of the game. Set a limit on how much money you’re going to spend, how many consecutive losing spins you’ll make, before walking away, and how much times you’ll play the game. This ensures that you keep any loses in check and don’t get yourself into trouble.
Next, make sure you choose a pokie that works for you and your budget. Ensure that you enjoy the game and like the visuals and the theme, but also make sure it works with your bankroll. If you only have $50 to play with, you’re probably not going to have a good time playing a pokie with a $10 minimum wager requirement.
Understand the game
Make sure you have a good understanding of the game before you start spending real money on it. Does it have Wilds, Scatters or Bonus symbols? How do the bonus game modes work? Make sure you understand all of this first before playing for real money. Most online casinos will allow you to play for free so use this feature to learn the game first.
Know the rules
We also highly recommend you get familiar with the game’s rules. This is a similar point to the one above but is slightly different. For example, many progressive pokies require you to place the max wager on all paylines in order for you to be eligible for the full progressive jackpot. If you don’t know this, you could land up winning the jackpot but not being eligible for the whole thing because you didn’t know all the rules.
Use the free play option
Make sure to use the free play option that many online casinos offer. This will allow you to try out many online slots without having to spend any of your money. By doing this, you’ll be able to find a selection of pokies that you like and start learning their secrets.
Keep your mind clear. We recommend that you stay away from alcohol while gambling. Getting a bit drunk or tipsy could lead to poor decisions and a significant loss of money. Also, take regular breaks from online gambling. Get up, stretch your legs and try and keep your mind fresh.
Online pokie free play
When we recommend playing an online slot for free, we always get some people who don’t see the point. After all, what’s the point in online gambling if you’re not actually gambling? Well, there are several good reasons to play any online casino game for free.
Firstly, this is a great way to learn a new casino game. You’ll be able to get used to how the game is played, its bonus features and rules without risking any of your money. Once you feel more comfortable with the title, then you can start wagering real money.
Playing for free is also a great way to develop new strategies. Maybe you want to see how long you can make a set amount of money last if you increase your wager after ever win. Experimenting with wagering strategies can be costly if you do it while playing for real. Playing for free gives you the freedom to try things out and see how they work.
Finally, for many people out there, playing for free can be just as fun as actually gambling for real money. Some people really enjoy just hopping onto their online casino of choice and having a few spins at their favourite online pokie.
Top online pokie developers
They say that ‘variety is the spice of life’ and this is certainly true when It comes to the vast selection of online pokies that are available at online casinos in New Zealand and around the world. This is largely thanks to the wide selection of developers that create these games. Each and every developer has its own style and flavour. Some are known for the amazing quality of the gameplay, others have amazing visuals and some even manage to combine all aspects together to create an amazing innovation. Below you’ll see a list of some of the very best casino game developers around, so we highly recommend you find an online casino that offers products from these dev teams.
- Net Ent
- Next Gen
Each of these developers have a fantastic selection of games available, including countless pokies and other casino games as well. MicrogamingTM is perhaps the best known developer of them all with the largest game library. But the others offer different styles and shouldn’t be overlooked!
Common pokie lingo
If you want to be a pokie pro, you’re going to need to know how to talk the talk. These are some of the most important terms relating to pokies, both online and in the real world.
- Coin Hopper – This is something that we don’t really see anymore. Back when most pokies would dispense coins when a player won, this was the container that held them.
- Fruit Machine – This is an older term used to refer to pokies. Typically, the term Fruit machine refers to an older type of slot game, normally one with three reels. They were called this because many used images of fruit for the symbols on the reels.
- One-Armed Bandit – Another term that isn’t used much anymore. One-Armed Bandit was a name for old slot machines, which required the player to pull a lever to spin the reels These days, the term has largely disappeared as players just need to push the ‘Spin’ button. Many players miss the tactile feel of having to physically the pull lever though.
- Payline – This is perhaps one of the most important terms in the pokie industry. A payline is an imaginary line that is placed onto the reels. The game will check which symbols have landed along this line and determine if there is a winning combination or not. These lines can be straight, or zig zag along the reel. Online pokies today offer a wide choice when it comes to how many paylines a game offers. It can be just one, or as many as 25 or more.
- Rollup – This is the sound that a pokie machine will make when a player wins, in order to make the event more dramatic
- Scatter – This is a special symbol within the pokie that will normally give players access to free spins or bonus rounds. Normally, players will have to land a set number of these on an active payline in order for them to reward the player. It goes without saying that Scatter symbols don’t always appear as often as you’d like.
- Stakes – Another term used to describe a player’s wager
- Symbols – Symbols are the images that players will see on the reels. These symbols have different values, with the more common symbols being worth less. Symbols can be anything the designers want them to be. Most of the time the symbols will directly relate to the theme of the online pokie.
- Wild – A Wild is another special symbol that will appear on the reels. Wilds have the ability to substitute for almost any other symbol to help create a winning combination. The pokie will automatically determine if the Wild will be able to provide any wins for the player. Naturally, the more Wilds you land, the better your chances of some big payouts.
Winning at online pokies
There’s still plenty of mistrust when it comes to online casinos. Many people still wonder if you can actually win real money when playing an online pokie. The answer is yes; you definitely can win real money. As long as you’ve chosen a reputable online casino, one that is licensed, regulated and tested by third-party organisations like the Malta Gaming Authority or eCOGRA, the pokie will be fair.
These days, online pokies use sophisticated Random Number Generators, which ensure that the results are fair, unbiased and completely random. This means that every time you spin; you have consistent odds. However, these are still games of chance and luck is needed to win. Don’t be one of those people who lost a bit of money at an online casino and now thinks it’s a fraud.
What to look for when choosing an online pokie
With such a wide selection of games to choose from, many players have no idea how to go about choosing which online pokie to play. We thought we’d come up with a handy list of things players need to keep in mind when choosing a pokie and hopefully, this will help narrow your selection.
The pokie’s theme
Most online pokies have a set theme and we’ve found that players tend to enjoy a pokie more if the theme is something that interests them. Make sure you find one that has an interesting theme. These themes can be based on animals, mythical gods, or even your favourite movies and television shows.
The right structure
Besides the theme, you’ll also need to choose a game that has a structure that works for you. Do you want a simpler pokie? Perhaps one with only three reels is for you then. If you’re looking for something more complicated, five reels or more will likely tickle your fancy.
Another important aspect is the features the pokie has. For example, how many paylines does it have? Does it come with Wilds, Scatters, Bonus rounds, or multipliers? Many players like their pokies to be packed with awesome features because it increases their chances of winning.
We all want to win big, so it’s natural for players to gravitate towards games with larger jackpots. But then you also need to decide if you want to play a pokie with a set jackpot, or a progressive jackpot. Many players love the progressive option because one lucky spin could change their life forever.
While we’re all hoping that next spin is the one that makes us rich, make sure you play a pokie that you enjoy. After all, that is what this is all really about.
Enjoying mobile pokies
With the rise of the smartphone, there has been new revolution in the gambling industry. Now, people can enjoy gambling where ever they go by playing their favourite online casino games on their mobile phones or tablets. This includes a wide range of mobile pokies that have been optimised to play on small touch screens of smartphones. While most mobile casinos won’t normally offer as many games as their online counterpart, there is normally a very healthy selection of mobile games to keep you occupied. There will be some mobile casinos that will require you to download their app before you can play, while others will allow you to pay directly from your phone’s web browser. This means that no matter where you are and what device you’re using, you should have no problem enjoying your favourite mobile pokies on the go.