The casino industry is always innovating to provide more excitement and fun to the casino games lovers, whether you play and have fun with online slots, online poker or any other online casino games. A great example of this innovation are the video slots based on famous films and TV shows. These games combine style, advanced graphics, and top features with nostalgia. In this guide we'll take a closer look and then and show you what sort of games you can expect to find in this sector and which games are the best ones.
Slots Based on Films and TV Shows
TV and film licenses don't have the best reputation when it comes to merchandising and gaming merchandise in particular. In fact, some of the worst video games in history, from the early E.T. creation that destroyed the industry to titles like Superman for the N64, were created based on film licenses. The goal is to quickly and effortlessly create something that can profit from the success of the movie or TV show, and it only makes sense.
Movie studios spend a lot of money marketing their films. They go to great lengths to get their trailers out there, to ensure that film reviewers, bloggers, interviewers, late-night shows and everyone else in the entertainment industry talks about their film. All this marketing is expensive, but it's also effective. To get even more bang for their buck, they launch a video game that also cashes in on this promotion and in doing so they create a cash cow that they can milk until the box office receipts stop flowing.
This is why the industry has such a bad reputation, but it's something that simply doesn't apply to the slot machine sector. These games require a lot of complicated licensing agreements, which take time. What’s more, the ones profiting from the way these games look and play are the developers and casinos, not the movie studios, so more effort goes into creating them.
The end result means slot machines like Jurassic Park, which was created by Microgaming, probably received more time and attention than the early Jurassic Park video games that disappointed fans in their droves.
The Best Slot Machine Licenses
Microgaming, Rival and RTG and Playtech are some of the main gaming software companies that currently produce and operate movie and Film slots. They are not as common as traditional slots simply because licenses are needed and they can be expensive. They are also exclusive, which is why you’ll only see certain games being produced by a single developer.
A lot of money has been spent on these licenses over the years, with Playtech and Microgaming, the two biggest forces in the industry, spending the bulk of it. Between them, they own licenses such as:
- Marvel Cinematic Universe: The MCU is the jewel in Playtech’s crown, one that has led to the creation of their biggest and best-known progressive jackpot system and one that has produced some classic slots. This license has allowed them to create several slots based on popular films such as Iron Man, Superman, The Avengers, and more. There are dozens of titles in this series and more are being released all of the time.
- DC Universe: Microgaming’s answer to Playtech’s acquisition of a Marvel license was to acquire one from DC, although for the most part this has been limited to Batman, with two slots themed around The Dark Knight. Simply put, while DC has many great heroes and comic worlds, they simply haven’t achieved the sort of silver screen popularity seen by Marvel, so the demand isn’t as strong.
- Playboy: The Playboy license was acquired by Microgaming and turned into a single player and multiplayer slot. For a time, the multiplayer version of this slot looked like it was going to set a new trend in the online gaming industry. It did something that no other slot had done by asking players to play together and win a jackpot in a very unique bonus system, but it soon fizzled out.
- Classics: To prove just how different the slot sector is from the video gaming one, they have turned their attentions to classic films lately instead of trying to cash-in on new ones. We have seen several top films given the slot treatment, including 80s classics like Ghostbusters, modern classics like Gladiator and Bridesmaids, and older films such as King Kong and the Godfather.
Payouts and Other Details
These games are flashy, feature-rich and designed to target film fans. A lot of time and money is spent acquiring the licenses and launching them, so you could be forgiven for thinking that they have lower payouts in order to recoup some of those costs.
But that’s rarely the case. These games often pay for themselves. Think about it this way: Let’s say that you grew up in the 80s and you visit an online casino. You see dozens of slots being advertised to you, all with different styles and themes. You don’t really know what’s what, so you’re a little lost and spoilt for choice.
But then you see a slot based around Ghostbusters, a franchise you recognise and probably enjoy. So, you play it. And once you finish, you see another one for Back to the Future, another franchise you remember fondly, so you play that as well. The same could apply to everything from modern films staring James Bond, to classics you watched as a kid.
The average player has a lot of titles to choose from, but they are always going to lean more towards the ones that they recognise and the ones that spark some kind of familiarity or nostalgia for them. You have to remember that the slots in an online casino’s games room are essentially in competition with one another. There are many different developers involved and they’ll all vying for your attention. Playtech want you to choose them over Microgaming, for instance, and one of the ways they do this is by putting a lot of time and money into big Marvel film licenses.
These slots don’t have lower RTPs, but they do tend to make more money.