The online gambling industry is fortunate to have a number of smaller game developers who, despite offering a limited inventory of titles, are focusing on state-of-the-art technologies that are pushing casino games into the future.
Pragmatic Play is one of those companies. It is a relatively new company that is definitely making a name for itself.
Company leadership markets Pragmatic Play as "one of the fastest growing mobile and desktop providers of digital casino games for the online gaming industry." The Pragmatic Play team is driven by a passion to create premium entertainment that is unrivaled and, in so doing, create the most "engaging and evocative gaming experiences" for online Casino guests.
The company's headquarters are located in Malta, an island situated in the Mediterranean off the coast of Italy. They serve primarily casino operators in Europe, though their games can be found on sites hosted around the world. You may recognize some of the titles reviewed below.
Pragmatic Play's history
While some gaming companies have histories dating back to the 1950s and 60s, Pragmatic Play is new in comparison. It was founded in 2015 with a vision of helping to drive mobile gaming forward. Although three years (at the time of this writing) doesn't seem like a long time, mobile casino gambling was still in its infancy back when Pragmatic Play got started. They have been an important player in developing the platform.
Pragmatic Play was acquired by the IBID Group in 2016. The IBID Group is an international investment development company that specializes in internet and technology-based businesses. Their main goal for the businesses they acquire is to develop those companies, improve their operations, and provide the funding necessary to sustain long-term growth and profitability.
Despite the acquisition, Pragmatic Play continues to operate fairly independently. Their leadership team remains intact as they continue to meet the objectives set out in the company's mission and vision. Those objectives are as follows:
As it strives to reach the goals set forth in the company's mission and vision statements, Pragmatic Play is also working to acquire other gaming companies. The most recent acquisition is another gaming company known as Extreme Live Gaming.
Pragmatic Play's products
Pragmatic Play is mainly a game developer. They do license their games to online casino operators, but they do not put as much focus on helping those operators develop their own businesses. Whereas some larger companies work alongside site operators to help them develop their own businesses and brands, Pragmatic Play takes a more hands-off approach.
To date, their products include more than 100 HTML5 and mobile games covering all the usual online casino categories:
The video slots category is the largest in the company's inventory. Today, it includes dozens of well-known titles offered by casinos throughout Europe and the rest of the world. If you regularly play online casinos in Europe, you might be familiar with titles like Leprechaun Song, Jade Butterfly, Fairytale Fortune, and Chili Heat. Pragmatic Pay does not have any live games in their portfolio at the time of writing.
Examples of Pragmatic Play games
No game developer review would be complete without describing some of the company's best titles. Here we present six of the most popular games from Pragmatic Play. Each comes highly recommended.
1. Ancient Egypt
New slot players will appreciate Pragmatic Play's Ancient Egypt, a 5-reel, 10-playline slot game themed around ancient Egypt. This theme is a popular one among game developers, but Pragmatic Play has found a way to make it fresh. For example, animated flames appearing at the two bottom corners of the reel set provide constant animation that keeps things active on the screen at all times.
The symbols in Ancient Egypt are just what you would expect from a game of this type. There are high and low-paying symbols along with Bonus, Scatter, and Wild symbols. There is even a bonus picking game that invites the player to pick from one of three treasure chests. Players can win free spins, cash prizes, and more.
Multiple reviews have labeled Agent Egypt as a medium to high-volatility game. That means decent payouts if a player is willing to wager a bit more. In terms of play, the game is very smooth and visually appealing.
2. The Champions
This video slot is one of the more well-known titles from Pragmatic Play. It is a 5-reel, 25-payline slot themed around football. There are only 3 rows, making for faster play and more compressed pay lines. Somehow though, Pragmatic Play makes it work.
The appeal of The Champions are the two bonus features. One is a Penalty Shots feature that lets players take their shot at penalty kicks. The bonus awards five penalty kicks with various cash prizes, depending on how many goals the player scores.
The other bonus feature is a progressive multiplier that generates extra winnings. Activating the feature applies a multiplier for the next 10 spins. Every time the feature is activated, the multiplier increases. Reach the final level and the player will enjoy a 20X multiplier for 10 straight spins.
3. Diamonds Are Forever
This game is marketed under Pragmatic Play's Classic Slots category. It is classic in the sense that it has only 3 reels. But unlike the one-armed bandits of the 1950s, this game has 3 pay lines rather than just one. What is most interesting is that the reel action simulates the mechanical wheels on which the game is based. That's a very nice touch.
The symbols here are classic in every sense. You play with 7s, bars, bells, and diamonds. Some of the bars appear as doubles, giving players extra opportunities to win. One last feature that players are sure to appreciate is that they can choose the number of active pay lines. Even though there are only 3 pay lines, a player may decide to only wager on one or two. It is entirely up to the player.
4. Joker's Jewels
Joker's Jewels is another video slot game. It offers 5 reels and just 5 pay lines. However, it does offer a jackpot. It also has a nice feature known as 'turbo spin'. This is a feature that adds a bit more excitement to the game by speeding things up.
The appeal of Jokers Jewels is the speed at which the game plays. There isn't anything here by way of bonus features or extra games, but there is plenty of fast-paced action for players who like non-stop spins. The game is made even faster with an auto-play option.
5. American Blackjack
Pragmatic Play's only blackjack game is a fairly straightforward blackjack simulation following American rules. Blackjacks pay 3 to 2, the dealer must stand on 17 and draw to 16, and successful insurance bets pay 2 to 1. It is all pretty simple if you're familiar with American blackjack.
Game-play is kept as simple as possible with a graphical user interface that requires only a few clicks to operate. Players can play up to three hands at a time if they so choose. If not, they can stick with a single hand. They have all the usual options including standing, doubling, and splitting.
As far as video blackjack games are concerned, this one is quite good. The user interface is aesthetically pleasing without being obtrusive. Players do not have to navigate complicated menus to play either. Simplicity and great graphics combine to make this a very playable game.
Pragmatic Play's Keno game works like any other. It is based on an 80-number grid with numbers randomly chosen by the software. Each play allows the gambler to wager on up to 20 different numbers per round. Players can choose their own numbers or have the software choose them.
Once numbers are chosen, the player decide how much to bet on each one. Then the player clicks the Play button to start the game and the software automatically draws its numbers. If any of the player's numbers come up, he or she wins on those numbers.
This is a decent Keno game that should provide most players an enjoyable experience. Its only downside is that the software draws numbers very quickly and a single play can be completed in mere seconds. For some players, that is too fast. They prefer the anticipation of seeing the numbers drawn a bit more slowly.
Pragmatic Play summary
It is clear that Pragmatic Play is a game developer to be reckoned with. Despite its young age and lack of name recognition, the company is putting out some very impressive titles covering everything from slot games to table games. This is a company we expect to hear more from in the future. They already have enough exposure and reviews of their games are starting to appear online. That is helpful for gamblers who prefer to read reviews before trying new games.