Online Casino Guide – Payment, Licensing, Software and Promotions

To help new players into the world that is online casino, we have compiled this handy online casino guide that will teach you about some of the more integral factors that are involved in the development of a casino found online. This is not just an online casino guide for beginners, as the topics of banking, software and legal judication may be helpful to all.

The essential gambling ABC’s

In prepping this online casino gambling guide, we looked at some of the real fundamentals that go into making an online casino. Admittedly, this is not a guide that focuses on juicy subjects like games and strategies for winning. Instead, this casino guide is here to help teach players all about the areas and subjects of gaming development, banking online and licensing bodies.

These are the foundations of a casino, they make the platform become what it is (the licensing), they support the player’s finances to play and secure winnings (banking) and they make the entertainment possible (software developers).

At the end of this guide, we’ll touch on the promotions casino use to hook players in, just to help give you essential information that needs mentioning.

Hopefully, you’ll consider this guide as essential info and the best online casino guide on the subject matters.

Your online casino guide to software developers

To the new players that may not know this, casinos don’t actually make any of the games you play, not even the bespoke ones! Casinos are merely a platform, a self that is stacked with titles of games that are made by software developers. Without them, a casino would be bare. Software developers are licensed game makers, they have to conform to the industry rules of fair play, and they need to know how to make kick-ass games for our entertainment and pleasure.

Those making the games you play online

In the current online market, there are roughly 50 gaming developers sourcing all the casinos online with their developed products.

The developers will fuel all the gaming online and to put this into perspective, to help you understand the odds of gambling online, if you take the game Mega Moolah™ by Microgaming. This game is the biggest online progressive slot machine in the world (so far). If 100 casinos offer this game, be it New Zealand, Canada, the United Kingdom and across Europe and each of those casinos had 100,000 members, The Mega Moolah™ slot by Microgaming is being played by hundreds of thousands of players globally and all playing to win the one single Mega jackpot (or its three lower jackpots), all at the same time!

This is the importance and power of the developer. They fuel players everywhere across hundreds of casinos online.

Now, there are approximately 50 of these developers, thankfully! Each one has a catalogue of 300+ games, some in the region of 500+ games. These numbers allow the balance of winning to be possible. So, don’t be alarmed into thinking that you stand no chance, it’s quite the opposite when you start to factor in live casino games and the success and scale in popularity of online sports betting.

 The Developers

Here is a brief insight into some of the most popular developers in the industry. Award-winning on every level, from Games of the Year to Innovation. It is highly recommended, in professional circles and by us, studying the way developers make their games, it will help you to rely on assured game enjoyment, knowing how they play and the odds of winning. You will love some and hate others, depending on how you play and what you want from a game, so do find the time within our free games to play and learn about each one with a hands-on approach.

  • Bally: Started making land-based casino games in America since 1968. They moved into online games in 1997 and has since made slots that include official Titanic™ movie slot.
  • BetSoft: Developing since 2000, they have been one of the front-runners in gaming innovation. Their 2018 game Max Quest™ literally took slots where they had never been before
  • Blueprint Gaming: When it comes to the biggest and well-known titles of the modern age, Blueprint are masters of striking the biggest of licensing deals. Examples include Deal or No Deal™, Top Gun™, Austin Powers™, Family Guy™ and 100s more like this.
  • Big Time Gaming: The biggest Aussie brand in gaming. They are responsible for creating the Megaways™ slot feature that has been used on nearly every game made by other developers.
  • Elk Studios: Having only been in the business for a handful of years, the world took notice with their innovative Game of the Year, Wild Toro™ which scooped the award in 2017.
  • Endorphina: One of the longest-serving developers in the industry, they have seen and created it all. No longer as productive as they once were, but when a game is released, other developers take note!
  • IGT: They are American, and they are big! They have won every award going; 16 for best gaming and 35 for best slot, they have even appeared in the Forbes top 500!
  • Lightning Box Games: The ingredients for any Lightning Box game is hundreds of paylines, big jackpots, unique themes and styles and engrossing gameplay. Always thinking outside of the box.
  • NetEnt: Without hesitation or question, they are the biggest brand in the entire industry and responsible for progressive games Mega Fortune™, Divine Fortune™ and Dream Fortune™.
  • Play’n GO: Highly regarded by their competitors, they are a forward-thinking and at times, hugely innovative brand. The 2017 game Viking Runecraft™ changed a lot of things thereafter.
  • Quickspin: If they make a certain type of game, 20 other developers will copy them, they are essential to the creativeness of the industry and you’ll be thankful for them also.
  • Evolution Gaming: Simply put – the world’s #1 live streaming developer!
  • iSoftBet: Another developer that manages to get big deals done, with the official 24™ TV-series slot and the Paranormal Activity™ movie slot joining their impressive list.
  • Microgaming: Some would argue the GOAT in gaming, the evidence shows Mega Moolah™ (the most successful progressive slot of all time and the first!), Game of Thrones™, Tomb Raider™ and Playboy™ amongst their envious catalogue.
  • Playtech: They have created lots, but it can’t be missed that they have made the biggest gaming series ever! Age of Gods™ is a 20-game jackpot series that dominates European casinos with impunity!
  • Red Tiger: One of the most important developers in the past 10 years. ‘Must Win Jackpots’. All their games come with this feature of three jackpot that must be won and must drop before rolling over to the next day or before a certain value is reached. Masterful gaming and attraction.
  • Real Time Gaming: Another US company that services in over 100 casinos online and is famed for only using RNG software in all of their virtual machines.
  • WMS: Existing as a company since 1940, WMS are the grandmasters and amongst their work, you’ll find official slots for The Flintstones™, Star Trek™ and Elvis™.

And you’ll get to discover many others when registering with the greatest casinos listed on our site.

How online casino games are made

Many of the games found within the walls of an online casino are virtual machines. These cover regular slots, progressive slots, video poker, table games like roulette, blackjack, craps, poker and games like bingo, keno and scratch cards. They all play on virtual machines and are made using the two algorithms which exist in the gaming industry.

These are the RTP algorithm and the RNG algorithm.

  • RTP: Return to Player. This is the algorithm that determines how wins are made based on the money which is placed into the games.
  • RNG: Random Number Generator. This is the algorithm that determines wins through random number sequences.

With the exception of sports betting and live dealer casino games. These two algorithms are the settling factors when winning real money inside of any online casino on the Internet and within any land-based casino machine or cabinet.

Your online casino gambling guide to payment services

As we state throughout all our online casino reviews as a reminder, having the right banking features are essential to the completion of your registration process with all casinos online.

Now, there is a myriad of processes and methods that you can choose from when dealing with finances on the Internet. Casinos are not all the same and this has to be mentioned when considering where you decide to join. There are some casinos that accept NZ dollars. The payment support can vary from site to site. If a casino holds a payment agreement with VISA, for example, you’d instantly assume that all transactions can be carried out, it’s VISA after all. This is not the case.

Meeting the casino’s requirements

Casinos must pay for the use of banking services. These are merchant costs that are the same for any business, land-based and online. Now, if a casino uses VISA as one of their banking options, you can have VISA handle all your transactions, or perhaps, just the facility to deposit money into the casino(check casinos with a minimum deposit so it means these with a low deposit threshold), but not to enable the casino to deposit money into the player’s account (the withdrawal process).

You will find through our reviews just what the casinos can and cannot provide in terms of their banking set up. Be aware that not every casino online can support all transactional services, some can, but take note to look at the details of both deposits and withdrawals prior to committing. Most of the casinos are trying to do as fastest payouts as possible.

Alternatively, there is always the option to change your own banking provider. With the variety that is now available in the online market, setting up a whole new account takes no time at all, especially with 3rd party services such as Skrill and Neteller.

The online banking services

Here are the available banking options that can be found through the number of casinos recommended on our site. Please note, not every casino will hold all of these banking services.

  • Casino Poli
  • PayPal
  • Paysafecard
  • Bitcoin
  • Visa
  • Neteller
  • Neosurf
  • MasterCard

More on these options and the changing of service can be read within the payment reviews that you’ll find on our site. Inside the payment reviews, we will tell you the pros and cons of the services, information of the banking service itself and you will be able to locate what casinos in New Zealand use the service so you can easily connect what sites suit the process of payment you wish to use going forward.

Your casino guide to licensing authorities

When it comes to detailing online casinos, the most important factor is indeed the licensing. This is essentially the foundation on which the casino stands. No license and you’re dealing with an illegal service.

The license is the first thing a casino operator must seek, even long before actually making the site to service its future clientele. There are six major licensors that control the global market of online gambling services. The company applying for the license will often be registered within one of the countries which are associated with the licensing body. For example, if you live in the United Kingdom, you can register your company in the UK and get a license from the UK Gambling Commission.

So, can the same be said for New Zealand casinos? Well, this is where it becomes a little more difficult and not so clear cut…

A brief outline of the online gambling laws in New Zealand

New Zealand has its own gambling commission, they compiled the Gambling Act 2003. We will break down the finer details of this to make clear the legalities of gambling and gambling online (two very different matters).

  • Gambling in New Zealand is illegal unless it has been authorized or complies with the Gambling Act 2003.
  • The Gambling Act 2003 covers both land-based and online casinos.
  • The Gambling Act 2003 is there to prevent the growth of betting and gambling. To prevent harm and problems attributed to gambling. Ensure responsible measures. Limit the opportunity of crime and if money is made from gambling that it benefits the community (I.e. lottery funding).

At this stage, it is worth mentioning. Governments don’t want to be seen to endorse or promote the taboo of gambling, it doesn’t exactly score you election votes. So, the law is there to separate them from involvement and to make it fair and responsible as possible to the benefit of the many, not the few when gambling is permitted.

  • The Gambling Act 2003 does not permit remote online casinos.

This means that no-one within the borders of NZ can make or start their own business as an online casino and make money through the Internet. Again, the laws distancing the government from encouraging people to make casinos online within their own borders

This is all that the Gambling Act 2003 states about the fundamentals of gambling online. This was even revised and updated in 2019! So, how is online gambling even possible?

It all comes back to the term remote online casinos. Nowhere within the Gambling Act 2003 does it state that players cannot play within overseas casinos. In fact, Section 2. Part 16 of the Act, overseas casinos are mentioned once, and this refers to the ‘prohibition of advertising overseas gambling’.

The government admittedly has no control of the internet and this is why they cannot stipulate within the laws that members of the public are prohibited from accessing a free service.

If you have more interest in the subject, we encourage you to discover the facts for yourself from the dia.govt.nz website.

So, what the hell does this all mean and how are these sites on our site classified as New Zealand casinos?

The six online gambling licensing authorities

What makes these casinos available to Zealand players, is the fact that they are not remote online casinos. They are all registered overseas and have met the approval of online regulators and licensing bodies.

By being licensed by one or more of the six main governing bodies, regardless of them all being abroad, the casino operator can then advise the NZ Commission and seek approval, and if compliant with the Gambling Act 2003, which they invariably are, the site is approved and is not blocked by the NZ Commission!

The catch? Every online casino must pay the government what is essentially taxation for being a business and very high annual fees. (funny how it suddenly works for the government in the end.)

Because of the acceptance of the license by the NZ commission, these casinos, therefore, become marketed and New Zealand Online Casinos.

Now breath, we finally got to the end of all that.

The six bodies involved in all this are:

  1. UK Gambling Commission
  2. Panama Gaming Control Board
  3. Malta Gaming Authority
  4. Curacao eGaming Authority
  5. Kahnawake Gaming Commission
  6. Gibraltar Regulatory Authority

Your online casino bonus guide to promotions

Now, we are briefly going to discuss the hook that all online casinos have and that is the promotional offers that essentially bait for would-be customers. Let’s call it what it is catching advertising, and this is specifically aimed at the Welcome Bonuses.

Get it right and a casino can outsmart their rival competitors to land more member numbers and boost their online profile. Get it wrong, and that casino is hanging on by their metaphorical nails.

What you need to know about the Welcome Bonus

Welcome Bonuses are an optional promotion, by and large, they really do give you extra cash to splash once inside and free spins will bring a return especially with the higher number of 50 free spins or 100+ free spins. So, why be understanding of what they offer?

It is imperative that you read the terms and conditions of these offers before you opt to accept them. These rules cover specific wagering requirements, eligibility of the bonus on certain games, when they expire and what the possible cash-out status is by using them.

Types of Welcome Bonuses

Every online casino has its own way of presenting these luxurious offers available not only for vip casino players. This means they all offer different packages and with them, different terms and conditions.

Here are some common examples of the Welcome Bonus and what they entail:

  • Matched Bonus (AKA Percentage Bonus): An example of this may look like 100% Welcome Bonus. This is a deposit bonus that requires you to make a deposited payment which will be returned with a 100% mark-up on your payment. The value of your deposit could be as little as $10 or up to $1,000 depending on the terms and conditions. You will also need to note the wagering requirements that need to be met before the 100% return is made.
  • Free Spins: Free Spins are clear enough, but what isn’t clear is the fact that the bonus can be used on more than just the standard slot games. The number of spins can vary with a Welcome Bonus, they can be as few as 5 and as high as 1000! But read the terms and conditions and you may find the Free Spins refer to a specific game or set of games. Also, you might discover that spins can be used on other virtual games like video poker, scratch cards and even roulette.
  • No Deposit Bonus: There is indeed the offer of a bonus that requires no payment to instigate it. The No Deposit Bonus does come with minimal returns. Cash rewards are very little compared to the Deposit Bonuses and the same can be said if the offer is Free Spins. The No Deposit Bonus, however, is not without rules! Check the terms for the cash-out opportunity and if there are any restrictions on what games can be played with the offer.

For more on bonuses, you can read complete bonus reviews of the offers available, both as a Welcome Bonus and as stand-alone bonuses through internal promotions and loyalty rewards.