Novomatic is a software developer in the gaming industry that’s been around the block once or twice. Founded in 1980 by industrial professor and billionaire entrepreneur Johann Graf, Novomatic has become one of Europe’s largest gaming technology companies.
Although renowned for its slot machine cabinets, Novomatic has produced many of the video pokies that you’d recognize at your favorite online casinos. Their games can be found on gaming platforms such as Viks, Energy, Grosvenor and Genting Casino.
Despite such a crowded digital market, especially in the area of online casino game development, the company is well-established and boasts an enormous user-base throughout the world. Read on as we now provide some background about this Austrian behemoth.
The company was founded in Austria in 1980 as the Novomatic Automatenhandels GmbH. Its first offering was the Admiral Gaming Machine which went into full production the same year. On the back of this early success, the company quickly began to build a reputation for itself within the gaming sector.
In a relatively short period, Novamatic managed to assert itself as a front-runner in the creation of video pokie terminals, thanks largely to its use of state-of-the-art processors. By 1981, it had expanded into Europe, Germany, France, the Netherlands and Switzerland.
MPU 01 Processor Technology
The introduction of the MPU 01 processor in 1984 helped the company make further strides in the development of cutting-edge slot game machines, in particular the dual screen terminal, which was considered revolutionary for the time.
Fall of the Iron Curtain
The fall of the Iron Curtain in 1989 resulted in the formation of new EU member states which opened up new markets for the now thriving developer. In 1989, the company opened its first-land based establishment, Casino Admiral in Montreux, Switzerland. As well as this, new production facilities were built in the Czech Republic.
Continued innovations in casino game development saw the release of American Poker II in 1990 – a fast-paced poker variant that became a major hit with gamers. Four years later, Novomatic released the ASIC (Applied Specific Integrated Circuit) platform – a cutting edge piece of kit that would provide the basis for the company’s next generation of high-tech slot machines.
This was followed in 1997 by the introduction of the Coolfire Risk Processor. This new platform constituted a huge step forward in terms of game development, paving the way for the creation of interactive casino games. Within months, TouchBet multiplayer machines were unveiled including Live Roulette which allowed for up to 250 players.
As the casino gaming industry became more regulated during the 90s and 00s, Novomatic began to acquire licenses for all of their primary markets. These included Canada, Switzerland, North America and South Africa. By 2001, they were licensed to serve their games to the United Kingdom which was and remains the most lucrative gambling market in Europe.
Since that time, a wide variety of acquisitions and high-profile deals have strengthened the Novomatic brand even further. Because of this, the scale of its operation is staggering. The company employs over 25,000 employees and has offices in 45 countries around the world and serves cutting-edge gaming equipment to more than 70. What’s more, the group operates more than 260,000 VLTs (Video Lottery Terminals) in over 2,100 electronic and regular casinos.
As testament to the company’s success, Novomatic regularly occupies the largest floor space at conferences such as ICE. In 2017, their product portfolio took up almost 5000 square metres and was showcased by 25 different companies.
Novomatic Pokies & Games
In addition to land-based gaming equipment, Novomatic continues to produce quality online video pokies that are highly-respected in the industry and loved by players. Its current back-catalog includes ports of classic land-based titles as well as dedicated online pokies. All of the games operate at Novomatic casinos on five pioneering platforms: Novo Line Interactive, Novo Line Novo Unity, Octavian Game Technology, Cool Fire II-s and Impera Line HD. Some of the most illustrious of these titles are as follows.
Lucky Lady’s Charm
Featuring an intriguing, mysterious blonde figure holding a levitating crystal ball, this is an alluring and enduring video pokie. It garnered considerable attention at land-based casinos where it began life as a bricks-and-mortar slot machine. However, the game is now available online and follows a five-reel, 10-payline format. The Lucky Lady herself is the wild symbol and a hands rendering represent the scatters. Three, four, or five hand scatters will trigger 15 free games where the wins are multiplied by 3.
Book of Ra
This is another Novomatic casinos staple. Although fairly simple, the game features the smooth animations players have come to expect from titles developed by the Austrian giant. Consisting of 5 reels and 10 pay-lines, the Book of Ra symbol acts as the wild and substitutes all other symbols. This is apart from the special expanding Book of Ra which serves as a scatter. Landing three or more of these and you’ll be treated to 10 free spins.
Sizzling Hot Deluxe
Sizzling Hot Deluxe is another online casino pokie that’s proved fiendishly popular among players. Comprising the standard five reels, which are bedecked in an assortment of fruity images, the goal is of course to land identical symbols across each of them. There are five left-to-right pay-lines with wins awarded for landing at least three symbols or successive cherries.
Pharaoh’s Gold Deluxe II
Pharaoh’s Gold II is yet another pokie with an Egyptian theme. Despite the ubiquity of such titles, they seem to go down very well with players. This is because most of the best ones manage to combine mythological features with sharp, polished visuals. Gold II includes 9 pay-lines and follows a typical 5×3 format. In keeping with most slots, it includes a wild symbol which substitutes to form winning combinations. There’s also a bonus feature which gives players the chance to triple their winnings.
Ok, so Egyptian themed pokies are now more prolific than an Arabian camel tick (see above). Nevertheless, they often make for excellent game play (see above). This particular offering includes 20 pay-lines and can be played from 40p to £100 per spin. A pharaoh acts as the wild and, as ever, expands to substitute all symbols to form money-making combinations. But the most highly sought after symbol is the Pharaoh’s Tomb scatter. When you land three of these, you’ll be rewarded with 12 free spins.
Reel King epitomizes some of the best qualities of Novomatic online casinos slots such as simplicity and ease of use. While it doesn’t boast some of the feature-laden game play found with other slot games, the simple 5×3, 20 pay-line format lends itself extremely well for mobile casino gaming. Offering a pretty decent jackpot that’s instantly triggered by landing just one Reel King symbol, the game has understandably been a favorite among Novomatic fans for quite some time now.
Comprising a cutesy supernatural theme, Fairy Queen can be played with as little as 40p and includes a standard 5×3 base game with ten pay-lines. It’s a highly-volatile slot game so a degree of caution is advised when playing. The Fairy Queen special feature is activated when three or more Portal of Light scatters appear on the reels. An extra 10 spins are then awarded with a guaranteed win for each one.
Mega Joker is old-school to its core. While this might not be to everybody’s taste, retro-heads should be well pleased with this bricks-and-mortar port of the land-based classic. Complementing the traditional five reel base game with its fruity symbols are 40 pay-lines. Fittingly, a Court Jester signifies the wild symbol which substitutes all other symbols apart from the scatter. If you land five wilds you’ll be paid out the handsome sum of 2000 coins. But should you land five scatters, you’ll be awarded with 16,000.
With a pleasing RTP of 97.00%, Columbus Deluxe is based on the eponymous explorer who happened upon North American a few years back. Its five-reels and 10 pay-lines doesn’t too much to differentiate the base game from other Novomatic casino pokies. With that said, there are three different scatter symbols and a bonus game that can re-trigger many, many times. Also worth mentioning is the Christopher Columbus symbol. If five of these land on the reels, you’ll win 50,000 coins – a pretty compelling reason to try your hand at this particular game.
This is another standard 5-reel slot with 10 pay-lines. Like many of Novomatic’s titles, it started out as a land-based game before being converted for online play. In spite of its background, the aquatically-themed visuals and animations are well-polished. In addition, there’s a free spins feature that awards up to 15 free spins as well as a 3x multiplier for those lucky enough to beat the low-to-medium variance. The most valuable symbol of all is the dolphin which pays out 900 times your stake, when it appears on the reels five times.
Best Novomatic Casinos
Below we have a list of our favored Novomatic casinos so please select one and start playing some of their fantastic and classical titles.