WMS is slightly complicated.
It is part of a company with a long history but has relatively recently become a part of an industry giant called Scientific Gaming.
WMS Gaming itself only dates back to 2001 but it has roots going back to the 1940s.
The modern slot world is full of this sort of thing, with larger companies picking up smaller businesses and mergers going on all the time. Whether this is really good for players or not only time will really tell. Economic theory would suggest that larger businesses will have more power so will have to work less hard to earn your custom and there is a certain amount of false badging going on, where companies that are in fact parts of the same larger business are branded as separate companies that appear to be in competition with each other.
Let’s tell the story of WMS Gaming, look at its history, its place in the market, and what WMS games you can currently play. Not lastly, check the best WMS casinos and play free WMS slots.
Best WMS Casinos for UK Players
Free WMS Slots Reviews
WMS Gaming History
We start under a different name entirely with the foundation of Williams Manufacturing in 1943 in Nevada.
The company started out making pinball machines. In 1964 it was bought by a jukebox company. In 1973 it started to make video games, with a version of pong and had been branded as Williams Electronics.
Williams Electronics became WMS Williams Industries in 1987 when it was floated on the New York Stock Exchange. The company bought up the Bally company (setting it up again as an independent in 1998).
It wasn’t until 1994 that WMS entered the slots market, making real-life cabinet games for American casinos.
In 2013 WMS was bought by SG (Scientific Games), and it is part of this company still.
From the start of their history in the slots industry, WMS tried to innovate. They were among the first companies to use tie-ins to broaden the appeal of slot machines, adding familiar themes from popular culture to the reels rather than the classic cards, bells, and fruits of slots.
SG must have rated the company. They paid $1.5 billion for WMS. Now, WMS is a brand of SG.
WMS had already started to move into the online world, and they did it by acquisition too, buying up a Swedish company, and an American company, that became the basis of Williams Interactive to develop online games. They were soon providing them to the likes of Betsson and Unibet.
WMS Gaming in the UK Market
WMS Gaming as a stand-alone brand are said to have 140 slots in July 2020.
These games are available to UK players at nearly 600 sites. The company’s games are available online in 29 countries.
In the UK, the industry audit site that we trust rates the company as the 35th most popular provider in the industry. This figure is not a straight-forward user number. It is calculated by using a number of inputs, including how many sites feature the games from the developer and how visible these games are.
Now we’ll have a look at WMS games titles.
We’ll start with the most popular games with UK players.
Most Popular WMS Gaming Slots
It is hard to rank slot games, and these popularity rankings are not set in stone. However, this is what we understand to be the current top 10 of WMS titles in UK online casinos.
1 – Raging Rhino
Raging Rhino is an African wildlife-themed game on a six by four grid with a top prize of 250,000 coins and volatility at the top end of the medium range. Its main bonus is a free spin s round, and it uses a multiple ways-to-win engine to deliver more than 4,000 pay lines.
2 – Spartacus Gladiator of Rome
Roman theming based on the popular TV series rather than the classic epic film of the 1960s telling the tale of the slave revolt of Spartacus, a historical hero to socialists. This game is a Colossal Reel slot, played on two sets of reels and with giant symbols. This gives us 100 pay lines and a 1 million coin top prize.
3 – Montezuma
Central American/Aztec civilisation theming in this colourful slot that’s one of many WMS Gaming Titles that have been converted to online play from casino cabinet slots. The game’s main bonus is a free spin s round with a wheel of fortune picking the number of spins and a multiplier on wins in the round.
4 – Zeus 1000
This game was released in 2015 and is one of about 25 million slots dedicated to celebrating the enormously masculine king of the Greek gods – who never wears a shirt. It uses colossal reels and a lot of bonus features, including loads of wilds, respins and free spins. A top prize of 500-times stake might be a major one if you stake at 250 coins, the top betting allowed on this game.
5 – Amazon Queen
Among the deep jungles, there is a queen, apparently! What does she want to do? Play slots of course, on a standard set-up 20-pay-line game with an RTP of 95.9%. Free spins are the main bonus with stacking symbols and wilds in the base game too.
6 – Epic Monopoly II
WMS has had a long tie-in with Monopoly, and this is an authorised game. It was released in 2016, with a 96.01% rtp, and a top prize of 2,500-times stake. Staking is from 1p (this is common on WMS Gaming games) to £50. This is another colossal reel game with an atypical reel set up, but just 25 pay lines this time.
7 – Cluedo Spinning Detectives
Again we’re hoping to not get bored gaming by playing a board game tie-in. This is a high-variance game with staking up to 200 coins. The reels are more standard, and there are 40 pay lines, with a free spins round as the main bonus round.
8 – Zeus God of Thunder
This is a 2017 release from WMS with a five-level jackpot on top of the base game. This gives a big top prize of 260,000 coins. You can bet as much as £500 on this game, which has 96.05% theoretical return to player and medium volatility.
9 – Hearts of Venice
This game from 2014 is romance-themed and much more female-friendly than most slots. It has high top stakes of 500 coins, and a big prize of 12,500-times stake for a 96.12% RTP. The reels are a five by four set with 50 pay lines. The bonus features are free spins, mystery symbols, respins, scatters and wilds.
10 – Zeus III
Another in the Zeus family from WMS with a long history, dating back to 2014. This game is interesting, with a lop-sided set of reels that have 192 pay lines on the reels. Again, the top stake is high (80 coins) and a maximum prize of 800-times stake. The free spins round, with a multiplier, is the top bonus award on this game.
In these games, you can see some of the themes that are common to WMS games. Perhaps because of their history in the casino world – they’re based in Las Vegas for crying out loud! – they are a quite hard-core betting experience – it’s often possible to bet a lot of money on these games.
They put a lot of effort into finding novel ways to set-up the gaming surface too, with a lot of these games playing on unusual reel setups that you won’t see anywhere in the online video slots world.
WMS Slots New Releases
Now we’ll take a look at the most recent titles to come out from this innovative gaming software company.
These six titles, dating back to 2019, are their most recent titles.
6 – Zeus III
With a high RTP of 96.769%, this March 2019 game is a good value proposition. It has 50 pay lines to deliver a possible top prize of 150-times stake.
5 – Monopoly Grand Hotel
Monopoly was designed as a game to illustrate how rigged the capitalist system is. The man in the top hat is a villain. It is either a tribute to or a damning indictment of modern capitalism that its iconic symbology has come to be seen as a celebration of the system! Oh well, better luck next time!
WMS love their Monopoly tie-ins and players do too. The 3,000-times stake top prize is a good offer, and top prizes are to be found in the free spins round and with a load of bonus features that are cleverly themed to the venerable board game. A jackpot sequence is also worth hitting.
4 – Elvis Lives
WMS Gaming has changed its tech a lot to make its games – both off and on-line – more attractive to the younger players who are now using online casinos, but this game could be aimed straight at the older players who were the first market for Vegas slots.
Whatever your age, the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll has an enduring mystique and appeal and this May 2019 release makes the most of it. The icons include a number of Elvis-friendly symbols, including three-ages of the King. It’s got four bonuses, with prize picker games and a couple of free spins bonus rounds. The six by 12 reels are massive.
3 – Enchanted Kingdom
From August 2019, this game is a magical-themed title with free spins as the main bonus feature and a big Mega Drop jackpot feature. It’s a cute game, with nice wildlife theming and a nod to Disney perhaps. Very nicely done in the aesthetics department, the big jackpots with their must-drop pay-outs are also likely to attract in customers.
2 – Heidi and Hannah’s Bier Haus
This game is delivered on a six by six grid, and features two German barmaids, for a seasonal and European-culture themed title that’s based around big pay-outs. It was released in October 2019 and ties in with the famous Oktoberfest drinking orgy in Germany! It’s got an RTP over 96% and 50 pay-lines for a big top prize of 72,000 coins.
1 – Montezuma Megaways
The most recent release from WMS Gaming is this title, their first Megaways game, featuring the world-conquering game engine from Big Time Gaming. Megaways comes with a load of great features built-in, so it’s no surprise that there’s a long bonus game list here, with cascading wins, multipliers, respins, free spins, and the right to buy bonus features.
Ancient civilisation-themed, with a focus on the Aztec civilisation, this game is a follow up to a title that’s been a hit both off-line and in online casinos for the company, so it’s no surprise they should make it their first Megaways title.
The top prize can be as high as £250,000.
That last release came out late in January 2020. WMS has a relatively slow release cycle compared to some slot companies. However, it should be noted that the world was in the middle of a pandemic of historic proportions at the end of this period and plans may have been delayed or altered as a result.
The Future for WMS Gaming
WMS has already trailed a number of future releases.
You should expect to see these widely distributed in UK casino sites.
From 20th July, 2020 you can play Bier Haus Oktoberfest, part of the company’s series of beer-themed and Germany-celebrating titles.
The game will be a medium variance slot with a top prize of 1388.88-times stake on a six by six grid. (The non-standard grid layouts that WMS Gaming love to use makes a lot of the mathematics on their prizes and wins unusual – for example, this game has betting from 18p to £180, an unusual set of numbers dictated by the reel set.)
Secret Mission is due for release in August 2020. The game features a female secret agent, and you can already play demo versions of it. It’s got 40 pay lines and a 300-times stake top prize awarded from a five by four grid.
Slightly later in August, Sabertooth should be released by WMS Gaming. Less is known about this game, though it’s a 5 by 4, with a super nudging wild feature and a bonus round of free spins. The theoretical return to player is 95.92% with medium volatility. The top prize is 250,000 coins and betting runs from 50p to £500 in UK sites.
Can You Play WMS Gaming Slots for Free?
You can, though in the UK you will need to verify your age in some way.
WMS don’t have a great website for players, you can see that they are an industry giant who focusses on their clients within the industry rather than the end-user in their publicity.
So you may need to use a site like ours or another review site or you might want to log into your online casino site of choice and check out their games in demo mode there.
The games are easy to learn, with standard features in terms of gameplay.
Where Can You Play WMS Gaming Slots for Real Money?
To play for real money you will need to have access to – and an account at – a site licensed by the UK Gambling Commission.
Once you’ve signed up at such a site you can start playing.
WMS Gaming games may be listed separately: this is made slightly complicated by the branding of games and company ownership.
Make sure you only use sites you trust.
The sites listed at our favourite auditing site as the best for WMS Gaming slots are:
- Pots of Luck,
- Mansion Casino,
- 888 Casino,
- Play Ojo,
- Mr Green and many many more.
In fact, our site lists 220 sites as hosts of WMS Gaming slots.
WMS Gaming – In Conclusion
WMS Gaming has a great history. Older players will love to see the Williams logo that they used to see on their favourite cabinet video games showing up on new online video slots titles, and by branding some of their new games with a Williams Studio brand it’s clear that WMS Gaming know this very well.
You can expect good quality, legal, and licensed games from WMS Gaming no matter how they are badged (some may well be branded jointly with SG).
We’ve found that the company loves to shake up the fundamentals of gameplay, though has tended towards more standard layouts lately. Their games are available across play platforms and in hundreds of casinos.
WMS are a Vegas company and their roots are deep in the traditional gaming industry, so while they continue to innovate and break new ground you can expect their games to major on big wins and some high-risk gambling.
Enjoy WMS Gaming slots safely and for fun.