Guide to the Slots of International Game Technology (IGT)
IGT recently hit the headlines of the financial press, after being acquired by global lottery giant GTECH. It is a tribute to how popular the live casino and online slots from IGT have become that GTECH chose to continue with this brand name following the deal.
At one point International Game Technology was responsible for 70% of all the live slot games in US casinos. In addition to this they have offices dotted around the world and supply titles to casinos worldwide.
When it comes to innovations, IGT are up there with the best. Today we take features like tumbling reels (where wins explode and allow new symbols to fall into their place) and break-out bonus games for granted. You only need to go back 20 years, and these extras did not exist.
Another area which IGT pioneered was the licensing of brands to turn into slot games. There are several game show franchises in their portfolio, including Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy! International Game Technology are also well known for bringing Monopoly themed slots to US casinos. There are now many slots themed on this board game – many with break out bonus rounds that include the famous board.
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Brief History of International Game Technology
The documented history of IGT starts in 1981, when the company decided to go public. Before this the people behind this company had already successfully launched video poker products. In the years that followed many innovations appeared in the world of slots. These included the first linked progressive jackpot (Megabucks, which was shared between Las Vegas casinos), and the first player point collection systems too.
International expansion, starting with Europe and a listing on the main New York stock exchange occurred in the 1990’s. This decade also introduced popular slots including the Wheel of Fortune and Elvis games. Their portfolio was further boosted by the acquisition of Barcrest.
The most notable acquisition was of WagerWorks in 2005. This allowed IGT to start to bring their formidable portfolio of games online. The innovations have continued up until this day with live multi-player slot games and tie-ins with big movie and TV franchises taking center stage.
IGT was sold to GTECH in 2014 – the innovation (both live and online) and the IGT name continue.
Getting Started with IGT Slots – A Selection of the Best Online Games
With 100’s of slot titles to choose from, it can be hard to know where to start with IGT slots. If you are located outside of the US, you can now access many of their top titles online. Many of these are games that were hugely popular in live casinos. The selection listed below will give you an idea of the range of titles that IGT have available – try them out for yourself soon!
#1 – Cleopatra: This classic slot was a huge live casino success and many other software houses have tried to emulate it. Themed on the Ancient Egyptian queen, this is a 5 reel video slot with a lavish design. The free spins round is the main attraction, along with the potential or a big win by lining up 5 of the Cleopatra symbols. More recently, a second version had been released – this includes a free spin round with a multiplier which increases for every spin.
#2 – Davinci Diamonds: The juxtaposition of sparking gems and classical paintings (including the Mona Lisa) seems like a strange theme for a slot game. This did not stop Davinci Diamonds becoming a huge success both live and online. This slot was the first with the ‘Tumbling Reels’ concept, where the wins explode – allowing new symbols (and maybe new wins) to fall into their place.
#3 – Double Diamond: This is a traditional 3 reel slot which has been faithfully recreated online. For those who enjoy the solid and simple style of games this is a great example. The ‘Double Diamond’ logo will double any wins it becomes a part of.
#4 – Jeopardy!: Another slot which has enjoyed a recent upgrade in terms of graphics and game play. Jeopardy! recreates the famous TV game show of the same name, with the topics as the main symbols and a bonus round which involves picking the cards. Sound effects and even a host for the new version give added realism to this slot – which is one of several game show tie-ins for IGT.
#5 – Lobstermania: The break out bonus game for this video slot involves choosing lobster pots and having a fisherman retrieve the lobsters (each of which win you coins), becoming a true Lobstermania. This is an entertaining and fast-paced slot, though is now starting to show its age a little.
#6 – Monopoly Slots: This is not a single slot game – but a long list of them. These games started off in brick and mortar casinos, and are now available online. They include a ‘MegaJackpots’ game, which is tied to the huge progressive jackpot offered by IGT online casinos. Many of these games include bonus rounds which are based on the famous Monopoly board and come with different themes making them the perfect combination of Monopoly Slots.
#7 – Wolf Run: This is a retro video slot game with a Native American theme. The innovation with this slot is the stacked wild symbols. These can result in many simultaneous wins over multiple lines. You will also find a free spins round which can be re-triggered making Wolf Run a good game to play.
Latest Live Slots from IGT – The Innovation Continues
IGT have certainly not slackened off the pace as far as innovations and new releases are concerned. The latest games found in brick and mortar casinos are multi-player. These have huge 102 inch screens above 4 seats, and combine individual play with joint bonus rounds. Payouts are based on the stake you are playing for – allowing people to play for different amounts.
Titles like Sex and the City and Avatar are really pushing the boundary of special effects and interactive bonus games. These are just 2 examples of a huge portfolio of game which have yet to find their way online.