NetEnt casino software provider is undoubtedly one of the kings (or queens if you prefer, or, as there’s no need to gender a corporation, monarchs!) of the online casino world.
NetEnt are the Swedish giants who produce a huge number of games, primarily slots, but also a range of other games, that you can play at a load of NetEnt casino sites, and even on stand-alone demo sites. But, they also provide software that makes casinos run, and that means they’re a huge part of the infrastructure of the online gambling world.
NetEnt is huge and they are everywhere. You’ve probably played and enjoyed their games or at one of their casinos without even knowing about it. And you can carry on in blissful ignorance if you like; not knowing much about NetEnt casino software won’t affect at all your enjoyment while using it.
Or, you can read our NetEnt casino guide and go into your gaming experience more informed, safer, more secure and ready to get a better experience out of your games.
NetEnt Slot Games – Best NetEnt Slots Play
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The History of NetEnt
NetEnt is the online off-shoot of a much older company called Cherryföretagen, which is now generally known as Cherry.
Cherry was founded in 1963 under the name AB Restaurang Rouletter (you’re getting quite the Swedish language lesson here, we hope you’re grateful). That company put slot machines in restaurants and rebranded as Cherry in the 1970s.
So far, so off-line. But this company was looking towards the future, and in 1998 it picked up shares in Net Entertainment, a new company – co-founded in 1996 with AB Kinnevik, a Swedish investment giant – that was developing online games.
By 2000 Cherry had bought out the Kennevik stake in the company. This company then brought into another big Swedish company called Betsson, probably in order to take advantage of its licensed gambling operations in the UK and Malta.
NetEnt had been founded by Pontus Lindwall, one of the sons of one of Cherry’s founders.
In 2000, NetEnt launched its first online casino. In 2007 it left the group and was listed on the NGM Equity index before joining the full Stockholm Stock Exchange in 2009.
Along the way, NetEnt made a lot of waves in the online casino world.
In 2002, it launched its first own branded site, NetEnt CasinoTM. The next year it launched Casino Modules that allowed it to start supplying its operating systems to other companies, going international with the product in 2004.
In 2005, NetEnt got a Maltese gaming license. To some Malta is just a small, sunny holiday island, but it’s also one of the best-known gaming jurisdictions in the world. While some of the reasons for this popularity may not be 100% commendable – off-shore tax for example – Malta’s gambling regulator is highly rated, partly because it does actually take up the cudgels on behalf of scammed gamers. In 2007 the company went independent.
Gonzo’s Quest Goes Live
In 2010, Gonzo’s Quest hit the market, and it’s still a massive favourite today, taking the story of a Spanish Conquistador and turning it into a very clever animated slot that still looks modern in 2018.
As regulated gaming hit Italy in 2011, NetEnt was knocking on il door to get straight into the market, offering style-conscious Italians its newly minted mobile games – presumably to be played on very small but very beautiful phones.
In 2012, NetEnt went into Denmark, another newly opened market, and started to win some very big gaming partners (you can tell clients are getting big when they get called partners – every company that sells a ream of paper to Google calls itself a partner of Google, I do not call myself a “partner” of my local corner shop when I go and get the milk). Among the big gambling companies coming on board were Boylesports and Paddy Power.
The following year saw more big customers joining, particularly in the UK, and a partnership formed with GTECH, the big slot company now called International Game Technology. NetEnt Entertainment launched their first live casino games, giving it the extraordinarily boring brand name, Live Casino – I mean, come on, guys! – and kept pumping out new titles across all styles and genres.
In 2014 Bwin, Betfair, Rational Group were among the new sign-ups for NetEnt gear, with GameAccount Network joining with NetEnt to add new functionality to their platform. And in the game world, NetEnt launched its first HTML5 game, one of the first systems that could work across mobile and desktop platforms.
The company was reported to be worth €1 billion at the end of the year.
The following year, NetEnt got a big important foot into the American market when it was allowed to launch in New Jersey. The licensing of gambling in the US has been a complicated mess for years and has seen off some pretty big businesses along the way. The country does now seem to be accepting that the Internet makes gambling de facto legal in some ways and it would be safer for consumers to have a legal, licensed and safe way to gamble online.
As the UK stopped accepting off-shore licensing, NetEnt also got a UK Gambling Commission go-ahead and was licensed in Spain too. Their games appeared in bookies in the William Hill chain in the UK, and they also scored a licence in Spain. Promotion of their listing on the Stockholm Stock Exchange was the reward for all this expansion.
In 2016, NetEnt took their live casino games onto mobile platforms (if they stayed true to their not-very-imaginative roots they’d have branded it Mobile Live Casino). They were now making 39% of their revenue from mobile games. Three more markets – Romania, Bulgaria, and Portugal – were stormed by the Scandi giants of slots!
They were still innovating too, with VR games shown off in London.
In 2017 they went into Czech Republic, Mexican, and Serbian markets, and got a foothold in Canada courtesy of a licence from the authorities in British Columbia.
We’ll catch up with their most recent news at the end of this guide.
NetEnt has shown itself to be among the most innovative casino companies in the whole sector. It’s actually in the company’s DNA. A lot of games from big casino operating companies can be very samey and safe, but NetEnt keeps on trying new things and producing games that look, sound or perform differently.
You can probably thank Pontus Lindwall for this.
You see we haven’t told NetEnt’s full story yet. Imagine you’re a Swedish slot machine company, and suddenly, your one product is banned by the state! That’s what happened to Cherry in 1986. The company had no choice but to start to expand outside its home and started pushing its machines into Eastern Europe, but Lindwall took this expansive mind-view a stage further when he saw that businesses were started to operate online. This was 1996, not quite the early days of the web, but ahead of the game enough to guarantee NetEnt a place in the vanguard on online gaming.
NetEnt Slot Games
The roots of NetEnt is in games. And they continue to produce a massive number of titles every year.
It’s impossible to keep completely up to date with these figures, as titles come and go from the market all the time, but at the end of 2018, NetEnt had 182 titles available in UK casino sites. They had about 21% of NetEnt slot games in UK casinos – that’s more than a fifth, that’s amazing – and 14% of their games were featured in casino lobbies, the front page where the most popular titles go.
NetEnt boasts about the diversity of its games, and they’re not joking. They cover every genre in the online slots business – movie tie-ins, historical, classic slots, interactive, and more – and do so in great style, with a particular focus on “graphics, sound and mathematics”.
That mathematics might sound dull, but it’s what makes your games work, and among the most important figures are the 95% to 98% theoretical return to player of all of their games.
According to NetEnt this “has a beneficial impact on player lifetime value”. Now, that’s what NetEnt says to its casino customers, and it’s good for players to see this sort of publicity because that’s the reality of the casino business.
That RTP figure looks very generous. In fact, it certainly covers the average in the current marketplace – most games seem to be around 96%. Remember that these companies aren’t amateurs, taking a punt on this, they are using the most sophisticated equations and the best information. And you are the product here, the “player lifetime value” to the casino is the amount of money you will give to them.
Not the amount you’ll spend in total, but the amount by which they will profit off your play. They have calculated that being generous makes players more likely to stay for longer and therefore to lose more money. That is the reality of casino play for the majority of gamblers, and it’s a good way to remember to play safely and cautiously.
NetEnt Casino Slots Top Titles – Best NetEnt Slots
The current most popular NetEnt slots in UK casinos are:
1 – Starburst – the classic space-tinged fruit machine that’s truly sophisticated.
2 – Gonzo’s Quest – an interesting theme of Conquistador history is backed with superb gameplay and wonderful animations for a game that is one of the all-time most popular games in slots.
3 – Jingle Spin – This survey was taken at Christmas, and this heavily themed Santa and his Elves game has some cracking bonus features and beautiful gameplay.
4 – Vikings – NetEnt’s Swedish roots are showing in this title, that brings to life the dark foreboding air of the TV series.
5 – Aloha! Cluster Pays – 100,000 coins are the top prize in this game that uses NetEnts cluster pays system to deliver light-hearted gameplay with a tropical lilt.
6 – Twin Spin – The classic fruit machine gets a NetEnt twist with a pair (at least) of identical, linked reels adding big win potential.
7 – Jungle Spirit: Call of the Wild – out there gameplay is beautifully framed by some genuinely lovely visuals in this jungle-themed five-reel game.
8 – Dazzle Me – linked reels are the biggest attraction in this game that lives up to its name with bright, light looks.
9 – Swipe and Roll – 1,620,000 coins is the top prize in this game that ties a retro base game with an amazing bonus round.
10 – Wild-O-Tron 3000 – brand new for December 2018, Wild-O-Tron is robot themed and very squarely aimed at mobile players, who love its smart graphics, regular payouts and improvisational wilds.
Some other big NetEnt slot titles are Finn and the Swirly Spin, Coins of Egypt, Halloween Jack, Guns N’ Roses, Double Stacks, Berryburst, Berryburst Max, Dead or Alive, Jumanji, and Divine Fortune.
There’s winner after winner in that list, which covers all genres and styles triumphantly well.
NetEnt Entertainment Progressive Jackpots
Big money is always a big attraction. It’s probably why most players – if they’re honest – are staring away at that screen. And NetEnt delivers some of the biggest wins in the business, including two Guinness Book of World Records entries.
Those wins came on the Mega Fortune Jackpot machine, which rewarded two players with €11.7 million and €17.8 million pay-outs.
Progressive jackpots work by networking a load of sites together. The money that players stake on games contribute a small amount of money towards a pooled jackpot fund that builds up and up across all those sites, with players all competing to get into a bonus round that will trigger the big payoff.
Do not listen to any tips on how to trigger progressive jackpots, because it should be entirely random – each spin has the same chance as the next.
The big NetEnt progressives are Mega Fortune, Arabian Nights, and Hall of Gods.
NetEnt Casino Games
NetEnt also offers casino games. To make the distinction clear, we know that modern casinos are full of slots games and that now might include “cabinets” that are loaded with NetEnt online games – but most people mean “table games”.
These include card games (NetEnt blackjack, NetEnt baccarat, and to a lesser extent poke), dice games (primarily craps), and NetEnt roulette.
There are endless variations on these games, including a number of trademarked new versions of old classics.
And NetEnt have been in this market for a while too.
Table games now come in two varieties: standard games, which are simulations of the games they represent; and live games, which involve a real person acting as a dealer, croupier, dice thrower, and so on, while the player sets bets and makes the decisions that are in their hands. Live games are filmed and streamed online. They should be actually live, and will usually involve a live chat room of some sort too.
NetEnt divides its games by staking, into standard games that allow bets between 1 and 40 coins (always check actual limits and coin values at the actual site at which you are playing).
Low limit games are great for beginners and limit stakes to between 0.10 coins and 5 coins. High limit games are for those with a stronger gambling constitution and allow players to bet between 25 and 500 coins.
Remember these coins are usually £1, so in the UK, you could be wagering £500 on the turn of a card.
NetEnt offers a similar RTP for its casino games as it does for its slots, with rates for its various titles coming in at 95% and 99.6%. You should be able to check this figure at the actual table you are playing at.
NetEnt Games Rules
Slots virtually play themselves for most players, but casino games can be a bit more complex in gameplay. Fortunately for players, NetEnt usually uses the standard casino rules in its games. That means you can read a general guide, use a simulator, or visit a casino and play baccarat punto banco, roulette, poker, blackjack, and so on and understand the NetEnt version.
Our advice is: If in doubt, always check the rules with the “?” help option.
These games are now available on all mobile platforms. In fact, NetEnt went mobile first – prioritising the experience on smaller screens, in 2011. All that work has really paid off, with games like roulette and blackjack being branded with the Touch name for mobile players.
NetEnt Live Casino Games
The most exciting recent developments in the casino world have probably been in live gaming.
Casino games work best when they are played in real-time with real people. And mixing it with other players adds an element of skill to the appeal of these games and an extra frisson of excitement.
Now, in their true, not very original style, NetEnt has a range of games called NetEnt Live.
These games are a very rich experience for players, filmed by NetEnt and streamed through casino sites. I’ll be honest, I don’t know what Chroma Key technology is, nor am I minded to find out, but NetEnt has it, and it seems to be providing a compelling and rewarding experience for players, because they keep coming back to NetEnt live games.
NetEnt Entertainment dealers are also among the best in the business. This has opened a new front in casino marketing for game developers. And they’ve jumped in with both feet – and an awful lot of cleavage. Whenever we report on live games we always counsel our readers not to let personal appeal to cloud their judgement about which games to play.
Casinos now have to employ dealers, and, while the job is very repetitive, it’s quite a skilled role and demands a lot of knowledge of these people. That’s just one of the reasons that we always demand that our players show respect live dealers. Of course, we have absolutely no way of enforcing this request of you, but we know that your own moral compass will make you treat people who are serving you for not very much money should be treated decently at all times!
At the moment you can play a number of roulette versions, played in portrait and landscape format to suit your screen and a choice of table views. Late bets are also allowed – in multiple languages.
NetEnt Live Blackjack comes with a lot of choice of betting ranges and throws a comprehensive package of statistics at players to help them make sense of the game. Some NetEnt blackjack tables have no limit on the number of players.
Play NetEnt Casino Games Safely and for Free
We’re always keen to warn our players to play safely, so it’s good news that the 300-and-something casinos that use NetEnt are pretty securely guaranteed to offer players a safe and honest gambling experience.
It’s one that should reliably deliver a profit to the casino, but it will do so on the terms that you are told about when you sign up, and it will do so with honest games.
NetEnt is a big company now, and totally legit. The last thing it wants is to be sued for cheating, so seeing its name on a site, or its games is always a good sign.
NetEnt games are also available for free play at many demo and review sites, and can usually be played for free – including NetEnt table games – at casino sites on demo mode.
Another way to enjoy free play is to sign up to a casino offering a NetEnt casino bonus, whether in the shape of free bonus cash, or free spins. Then head to your favourite machines and try them out with no risk to your own money.
NetEnt casinos and NetEnt games continue to lead the way across the industry and attract a genuine and dedicated following who want to play only these games.
We think to limit yourself in that way – for example by downloading casino software or a casino app – can be a problem for players, but we do say that the launch of any new NetEnt game or casino site is good news for players and the industry and we hope you’ll continue to follow them and check them out.