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While playing your favourite slot, have you ever wondered where it came from? Who made the casino software? How did it end up on your favourite casino? How come the same slot can be found on numerous online casinos?
The reason the same slot can appear on multiple online casinos (have you ever seen one that doesn’t have Starburst on it?), is because the casinos do not create the games themselves. They leave it to the experts – the software developers who design and develop the games, package them into platforms and sell licences to the casino operators.
Some casinos stick with one developer’s platform, throw a bit of branded jazz over it (“a skin”) and chuck it out. However, the best online casinos tend to offer a comprehensive range of games that are also in keeping with the feel and the brand of their online platform. When playing your favorite online slots, it’s worth noting the developer, whose name will often appear as the game is loading. You may even begin to see a pattern developing. Once you’ve latched onto your favourite casino game developer, it’s going to be that much easier to keep track of its latest releases.
So who are the most respected online casino software developers? We provided them all for you here. You can find your preferred casino software developer and find which casinos use them.
The technologies behind online casino software have undergone some major changes in recent years. The most significant of these relate to Flash and its successor HTML 5. Before we delve into the intricacies of casino game design, here’s some background.
The origins of casino game development can be traced back to 1992 when Cryptologic and Microgaming launched the first gambling platform. Consisting of a small collection of games, the platform was designed to securely store online transactions and personal details. Although groundbreaking, the software wasn’t made available for commercial use until online gambling was legalised in 1994.
Towards the end of the 1990s, Adobe Flash was released. Able to run slick animations and video content on large screens, Flash was also capable of operating interaction-based, graphically intensive games. It was also portable and came bundled with internet browsers which made it accessible to around 98% of all internet users.
Flash was best viewed on web pages and included server-sided integration features which were ideal for online deployment. The ability to create vector graphics and compress sound files also meant that Flash-based casino games were extremely lightweight. So it was of little surprise that developers started to exploit the platform’s full capabilities. However, Flash was not without its problems.
For one thing, the platform was underpowered in a big way – this was because of Macromedia’s preoccupation with keeping the plug-in as compact and small as possible. While this didn’t present too many problems in the early years, it became a major headache as the demand for more sophisticated real money casino games grew.
Then there was the craze for ‘gaming on the go’, with players looking to play online slots and traditional casino games on smaller devices. While Flash worked on mobile devices, it wasn’t exactly smooth – an issue that caused Apple CEO Steve Jobs to declare it obsolete. In an open letter, Jobs criticised Flash citing its poor mobile performance, security problems and lack of touch support. He also identified HTML5 as being the future standard for the creation of online multimedia entertainment. Despite being derided by many industry commentators, Jobs was eventually proved correct.
HTML 5 was launched in 2014 and is the fifth iteration of the famed mark-up language used to create web documents. Offering improved performance, easier integration and refined visuals, it provides the ideal platform upon which developers can write online casino software.
As with Flash, HTML 5 allows users to play audio and video within web pages and can also be used to create scalable vector graphics. With regards to online casino software development, one of the major advantages is that it doesn’t require the installation of a plug-in for mobile casino apps. It’s also much easier to develop casino games.
Unsurprisingly, HTML5 has become the standard for the creation of online casino games and will remain so for many years to come. While there remain a few issues to rectify, it’s ideally suited to casino gaming, whether on desktop computers or smart devices.
Trust and fair-play are absolutely crucial for the success of casino software. Thankfully, to ensure that players are protected there exist a variety of regulatory bodies which oversee the industry and which require all games to be thoroughly-tested.