Barcrest and WMS Gaming are both hugely successful casino software providers, and both have a long and proud history of developing land-based games for gamblers. They also have another thing in common - Scientific Games owns both.
Barcrest was founded in 1968 and made their name developing arcade gambling machines for various gambling venues. They were acquired first by IGT in 1998 before they were sold on to SG (Scientific Games) in 2011. WMS Gaming made their debut as a land-based gambling games provider in the 1940s. They didn’t enter the iGaming casino market until 2010, but they were nonetheless quickly acquired by Scientific Games in 2013.
The umbrella company themselves have been around since 1974 but focused primarily on lottery software. By the late 2000s, SG was interested in breaking into the iGaming industry. Lacking their own games, the acquisitions they made (which also included other leading land-based games providers such as Bally and Shuffle Master) allowed Scientific Games to compete with many larger, rival providers instantly.
Today, Scientific Games boasts an exceptional array of top slot games. A casino which features games from one of the providers under their charge will likely feature games from most, if not all of them. As any player will imagine, this gives SG an impressive portfolio of leading slots, with many different themes, gaming structures and wagering ranges present throughout their arsenal.
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WHAT MAKES SCIENTIFIC GAMES SLOTS SO POPULAR WITH ONLINE PLAYERS?
SG slots can be found all over the world, and many of their games (particularly those from WMS Gaming) contain incredibly complex and unique gaming engines. WMS Gaming is classed as one of the founders of the colossal reels engine, as well as cloning or transferrable wilds. These are wild symbols which can spread from a smaller set of reels to the colossal reels, boosting a player’s chances of landing a win. It is not uncommon to find WMS developed slots which feature many thousands of paylines.
Barcrest is not without their own unique characteristics. Their slots often contain complicated bonus rounds, and they are not above offering players the chance to purchase bonus rounds right from the off. This is a feature which has found a lot of favour amongst some slot fans and has alienated others. Barcrest is one of the developers which has recently experimented with the MegaWays payline structure in some of their later, more modern releases.
Scientific Games hasn’t really developed many slots on their own. After acquiring the aforementioned slot developers, they have been content to allow WMS, Barcrest and others free reign to develop their own games under their own brands - albeit owned by SG. Like any casino software provider, some WMS and Barcrest games are major hits and others not so much. The popular land-based games from these providers have all been ported over to the digital casino industry with much fanfare.
WMS Gaming slots tend to be more widespread at major casinos than Barcrest’s and include notable games such as Monopoly-themed slots, Bier Haus, the adorable OMG KIttens, legendary Black Knight and Zeus series of slots, as well as a handful of Wizard of Oz-themed slots. Branded slots such as KISS are also worth a look.
As for Barcrest, players are most likely to find their games in many leading UK bingo sites, as well as smaller-scale casinos. Less well-known than their WMS Gaming sister slots, Barcrest is most synonymous with one hugely successful franchise of games - Rainbow Riches. The Rainbow Riches series now encompasses eight Irish luck-themed games, each with slightly different twists and alterations on gameplay. Varying paylines and wagering ranges, buy-in options, instant win and free spin features have made this one of the most recognisable and enjoyable slot series of all time.
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