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Real Money Online Pokies in New Zealand: Pokies Games 101
Like many countries around the world, New Zealand has seen a rise in interest in real money online pokies. This is a trend that has gained momentum in recent years, partly down to the Covid-19 pandemic and partly due to technological advancements making these games more immersive and fun.
Though online pokies are the digital counterparts of mechanical slot machines in casinos, they’re much more like a computer game than anything else. These digital gambling games have evolved to offer a wide range of themes. There’s something for all interests, from ancient mythology to popular movie franchises. You also get innovative features like cascading symbols, bonus rounds, and progressive jackpots with life-changing amounts to be won.
The outcomes of pokies games are determined by a Random Number Generator (RNG) to ensure fairness and unpredictability.
In New Zealand, it is the Gambling Act of 2003 that regulates the country’s gambling industry and ensures platforms operate legally here.
Officially, online casinos aren’t allowed to operate within the country itself. However, using licensed offshore casinos is not illegal as there are no laws that target players themselves.
Benefits of Playing Real Money Pokies Online
The obvious benefit of playing online pokies for real money is the chance to win a cash prize.
However, there are plenty of other benefits of choosing these over traditional casinos:
- Convenience: A standout advantage of an online pokie is how convenient it is. Going to a land-based casino involves travel and other expenses – and it also takes more time! With online pokies, all you need is an internet connection and a device. You can snatch a few spins while the kettle boils or even in bed!
- Diversity: With online pokies, you have a huge range of options to choose from. Sometimes it feels like you spend all of your time deciding which game you like the look of! The range just isn’t available in traditional casinos because these machines would take up significant space. Online pokies offer thousands upon thousands of choices.
- User-friendly: Even if you’ve never played an online pokie game before, you’ll not find it difficult to get started. Most online casinos have intuitive interfaces that make it easy for newcomers to get started. The chances are, if you know your way around a smartphone, you’ll be able to play an online pokie game. Most online casinos also allow you to play the games in demo mode so you can familiarise yourself with how they run before you start playing with real money.
- You can win real money (& impressive jackpots): Though pokies are pure entertainment, most people do play them in the hope they’ll win a cash prize. The progressive jackpot element is alluring indeed! However, it’s worth noting that you should never play with money you can’t afford to lose as wins aren’t guaranteed.
Tips for Choosing the Best Online Pokies Sites
With so many choices, it can be hard knowing which are the best online pokies sites for Kiwis.
Here are some of the main considerations:
- Licensing and regulation: Make sure you choose a site that is licensed by a reputable gaming authority like the Malta Gaming Authority (MGA) or the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC). A license means the online casino is bound by industry regulations. Some licenses, like those issued by the UKGC, are even more robust in their practices.
- Variety of pokies and games: Before signing up, make sure the online casino meets your needs in terms of the games it offers. Check for progressive jackpots and top developers.
- Fairness: Check that the online casino uses RNGs and that it is certified fair. Look for 3rd-party certificates like those issued by eCOGRA and iTech Labs. These show the online casino is transparent.
- Security: Besides licensing, you should look at the website’s security. The address should start with “https” and have a padlock in the address bar. This indicates it is a secure connection. Also check for SSL encryption and secure methods of payment.
- Payment options: Check the site offers a payment method that suits you. Most good sites accept e-wallets, bank transfers, and even cryptocurrencies. Don’t forget to look at the deposit and withdrawal limits, fees, and times too!
- Bonuses and promotions: Look at the offers presented by the online casino to see if you find them interesting. Don’t just focus on the welcome bonus, check what the casino continues to offer its existing customers. Remember to read the terms and conditions too as these can make or break a deal.
- Customer support: See how responsive the customer support team is. If they can help you before you’ve signed up, this is a good sign.
- User reviews: Read reviews from players on independent review sites. Look on trusted forums too to see what people are saying. Stay clear of sites that are on blacklists, you’re unlikely to have a good experience.
Insider tip from Wagering Advisors: check out what we consider to be the top real money casinos NZ has to offer.
How We Rate & Review Pokies Casinos
Here at Wagering Advisors, our team uses a comprehensive evaluation process to assess pokies casinos and their online slots. Here is a summary of the criteria we use; you can see the full list here.
- Licensing and security: This is a number one priority as you might expect. Without proper licensing and security, everything is at great risk.
- Game selection: The game selection matters. Some sites only have a few hundred games. Some only have one developer onboard. And some have hundreds of developers and thousands of pokie games to try.
- Customer support: You never know when you might need to contact customer support. We look at availability and the ways in which you can get in touch. We also look at how helpful and responsive they are.
- Overall bonus value: A deal is only as good as its terms and conditions. If the wagering requirements are impossible to meet, it’s not going to be a great offer overall, for example.
- Welcome bonus package: Is it a matched bonus over multiple deposits? Are there free spins included? We weigh up everything.
- Number of free spins: The more the better in our world!
- Minimum deposit amount: Some pokies sites are catered towards high rollers while others are more appealing to low-stakes players.
- Wagering requirements: These can make or break an offer. If they’re too high or the time frame to meet them is too short, the offer won’t be as good as it seems.
- Payment and withdrawal methods: The more the merrier with this too! Don’t forget about fees and time frames too.
- Minimum and maximum withdrawal amounts: We look at these for both general withdrawals as well as bonus winnings withdrawals.
- Casino game providers: Is there only one provider or are there lots of different ones available.
- Usability of the website: If it’s clunky and bad to use, it’s not a good impression and it will irritate you when you try to do things.
Wagering Advisors Recommendations for Top Online Pokies Sites in New Zealand
Here are the Wagering Advisors’ recommendations for New Zealand online casino pokies sites:
This is a renowned casino that caters to Kiwis who love online pokies. It offers a great slot experience with a generous welcome bonus to boot. The offer is a 100% match bonus of up to $100 with 70 Free Spins. Players only need to make a $10 initial deposit to access this bonus deal so it’s great for all types of players.
SkyCity offers a range of payment methods. These include Visa and Mastercard, Paysafecard, Neteller, Skrill, and online bank transfers.
Richard Casino has an impressive welcome package, offering up to 5000 NZD + 300 free spins over your first three deposits. This makes it a great choice for online pokies and players who want to maximize their gaming value with substantial bonuses.
Richard Casino accepts a range of banking methods, including bank transfers, Bitcoin, Mastercard, Visa, Skrill, and Neteller. The minimum deposit here is $20.
iLucki is a fantastic choice for online slot games aficionados in New Zealand. There is a multi-tiered welcome bonus offering up to $300 and 150 free spins. The first deposit gives you a 100% match bonus up to $100 with 100 free spins on Aztec Magic Deluxe. The second deposit has a 50% bonus up to $200 with 50 free spins too.
In terms of payment methods, iLucki accepts Mastercard, Visa, Maestro, Paysafecard, Neteller, Skrill, Tether, bank transfer, and more. The minimum deposit is $20.
This online casino offers some of the best online pokies NZ has to offer. It also has an enticing welcome bonus of up to $3,000 with 350 free spins. With its diverse game selection and this substantial bonus offering, this is a top choice for pokies fans. The minimum deposit is slightly higher than some at $30. Players can choose to pay with Visa, Mastercard, MiFinity, Neosurf, and more.
This is a pokies paradise! New Zealand players can access a generous $2,500 plus 250 free spins as the welcome bonus. With a $20 minimum deposit, this is accessible to all types of players and pokies fans will love the range on offer here. Deposits can be made by credit and debit cards, e-wallets like PayPal, Skrill, and Neteller, and bank transfers. Slotozen often has no-deposit bonus offers too.
Insider tip from Wagering Advisors: check out the latest online casinos available on our website.
Types of Real Money Online Pokies in New Zealand
Over all the different slot games sites, there are thousands upon thousands of NZ online slots to try. Here are the different types you might come across:
Often called ‘fruit machines’ these pokies are reminiscent of the traditional, mechanical slot machine of physical casinos. They have three reels and have symbols like cherries, bars, and lucky 7s.
These are straightforward with limited paylines and are perfect for nostalgic players who like simplicity. They’re designed to feel like the real mechanical slots of times gone by. They don’t have bonus features, however.
These are a modern pokie evolution. They have engaging graphics and animations, and generally numerous paylines. These tend to have immersive themes on a whole range of topics like ancient civilizations to TV franchises, and everything in between. They also have bonus features like free spins and multipliers. With video pokies, anything goes!
There are some with multiple paylines, paylines you can change, and more. The most popular video pokies include Wheel of Fortune by IGT, Wizard of Oz by WMS, Starburst, Age of Asgard, and Guns N’ Roses.
These offer players a chance to receive a life-changing amount of money. They are connected to a network and so are available on many different online casino sites. Every time someone plays the game, their wager goes towards the prize fund until one lucky winner makes the right combination. Popular progressive jackpots include Mega Moolah, Jackpot Cleopatra’s Gold, Queen of the Pyramids, and Monster Madness.
What are the most popular pokies games in New Zealand?
Kiwi players have their favourite pokies, and they’re also worldwide favourites too. Here are the top 5 online pokies NZ players favour the most:
- Mega Moolah: This is a progressive jackpot pokie that is known for its massive, life-changing prizes. It has an African theme with wild animal symbols. This is the game that has the largest prize of all, which is why it’s so popular. It was developed by Microgaming and was one of the first pokies with a progressive jackpot element. It has set several Guinness World Records for its payouts.
- Starburst: This is a visually stunning pokie with vibrant colours. It’s fast-paced and engaging. Its cosmic theme, expanding wilds and re-spins are part of its attraction for Kiwi players. It has 10 paylines but they pay left-to-right as well as right-to-left, making 20 in total. The wild is expanding and sticky, so will give you respins.
- Book of Ra: This is an Egyptian-themed pokie that combines adventure with big wins. It is a kind of Indiana Jones-inspired pokie with hidden treasures and free spins. There’s a special expanding symbol too. It was developed by Novomatic and has 5 reels and 3 rows. It’s great for new and experienced players alike.
- Gonzo’s Quest: This is an adventure-themed video pokie about a Spanish conquistador called Gonzo. It is engaging and has cascading reels. It was released by NetEnt in 2011 and has become one of their most popular pokies. It has medium to high variance and an average RTP.
- Bonanza: This is a highly volatile pokie, which means wins aren’t as often—but when they arrive, they’re bigger! It has an impressive number of paylines and a Megaways system, meaning that it can lead to massive wins. It was created by Big Time Gaming and has exploding wilds and cascading reels. There’s a potential top prize of 10,000x your stake.
What are the most popular pokies game developers in New Zealand?
Pokie software developers are plentiful but not all have the most exciting variety of games. Here are the top 5 developers that Kiwis say offer the best online pokies:
- Microgaming: This is a household name for pokies lovers and is one of the longest-standing developers in the industry. It is known for Mega Moolah as well as other popular pokies.
- NetEnt: This developer is behind both Starburst and Gonzo’s Quest. Their pokies combine exciting themes with interesting and unique features. The company was established in 1996 so it’s been around as long as online casinos!
- Play’n GO: This developer is renowned for its high quality pokies. New Zealand players look Book of Dead, for example, with its immersive storyline and exciting bonus features. It was founded in 2005 and grew from a small Swedish team to become one of the largest suppliers of pokies in the world.
- Big Time Gaming (BTG): This is the original creator of the Megaways mechanic that has taken the pokie world by storm. Titles like Bonanza and Extra Chilli are thrilling and offer countless winning combinations.
- Aristocrat: This is an Australian pokie developer that’s also made a significant mark in New Zealand. They produce both classic and video slots, an example is their Queen of the Nile series, which is loved by NZ players. The company has been developing casino machines for both land-based and online use for over 60 years!
More FAQs on Real Money Pokies Games
- Are online pokies legal in New Zealand?
- Pokie games in New Zealand fall into a grey area. It’s illegal for online casinos to operate within the country but New Zealanders can play them on offshore sites.
- How can I deposit and withdraw money on online pokies sites?
- You can deposit and withdraw through various means. This includes credit cards, debit cards, e-wallets, bank transfers, and cryptocurrencies.
- How can I ensure the fairness of online pokies?
- Look for games from reputable developers and check that the casinos are using certified random number generators (RNGs). This ensures transparency and fairness.
- Are there any strategies for winning at online pokies?
- Mostly, winning online pokies comes down to chance. No specific strategies can make you more successful. However, by choosing games with a higher RTP (Return to Player), you increase your chances of winning.
- Do online pokies sites offer bonuses and promotions?
- Yes. Many pokie sites have promotions like welcome bonuses, free spins, and loyalty programs to both attract and retain their players.
- Are there mobile-friendly online pokies options?
- Absolutely. Most online pokies are mobile-friendly. Some casinos choose to have mobile apps too, so you don’t need to load up a website through a browser.
- Can I play online pokies for free before wagering real money?
- Yes. Most online pokies are available as demo versions at online casinos. This means you can familiarise yourself with how they work before you play with real money.
Key Takeaways on NZ pokie sites
To summarise, real money pokies are a popular form of entertainment in New Zealand. They offer convenience, variety and accessibility from wherever, whenever.
Though the legal status of online gambling in the country doesn’t officially allow online casinos to operate, New Zealanders can access offshore online casinos readily to play real money pokies at their leisure.
We encourage our readers to explore these to make the most of their online gaming experience.