Barcrest was established in the UK in 1968, which gives it a long and extensive history in the gaming sector. It started life as a developer of land-based fruit machines and has now expanded into the digital gaming sector, providing some of the most popular and engaging titles available today. Click here to read more.
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During its high point from the 1970s to the 1990s, Barcrest operated a large percentage of the slot machines available – first in the UK and then across Europe. This led to International Game Technology (IGT) acquiring the business in 1998.
It was later bought by Scientific Games in 2011; however, Barcrest remains a subsidiary and continues to have success in the gaming sector, now offering multi-channel systems to mobile, internet and interactive digital TV gaming providers.
Top Barcrest Slots
These are some of the top Barcrest slots, which showcase some of the provider’s unique features.
Rainbow Riches Megaways
The game features the classic leprechaun, of course, but the Megaways mechanic means there’s up to 117,649-ways-to-win active on each spin - and a unique symbol transformation feature. In Rainbow Riches Megaways, You’ll also find a classic Megaways bonus round built into the game, with an increasing win multiplier applying against any wins formed during the bonus.
Thai Flower first came to fame in UK bookmakers - and players were quick to be attracted to the exciting bonus round, during which three symbols are chosen at random. All other symbols are then removed from the reels, and up to 12 free spins play out with just three symbols on the reels.
This is a popular slot machine from Barcrest that’s built around a 6-reel, 40-payline format. During the bonus, the Snow Leopard becomes wild - and while you won’t walk away with humongous wins from Snow Leopard slots, you can find yourself hitting regular 2-300X stake payouts!
Rainbow Riches Pick n Mix
Rainbow Riches Pick n Mix is another installment in Barcrest’s Rainbow Riches series of games, and this new and updated version of the game offers a few differences including the addition of Big Bet options and a brand-new set of bonuses and features.
Mighty Black Knight
Mighty Black Knight is one of the most successful Barcrest slots ever, probably behind only Rainbow Riches and Monopoly: The Big Event. The game uses the software provider’s famed expanding reels mechanic, where landing a wild symbol fully in view unlocks an additional reel grid, increasing the number of paylines from 50 to 100.
Action Bank is another of Barcrest’s older releases - but, as we’ve already seen, that doesn’t in any way mean it’s not popular among players, and this game is favoured mainly for its bonus round which can last ages thanks to near-unlimited re-triggers.
Big Bet Feature in Barcrest Slots
Barcrest’s Big Bet feature has become somewhat iconic in both the land-based and online gambling industries - and many players cite the Big Bet mechanic as paving the way for software providers to start incorporating bonus buy mechanics into their games.
So, what exactly is Barcrest’s Big Bet mechanic - and how does it work?
A Big Bet allows you to pay a larger amount of money - usually between £10 and £50 - for an enhanced set of spins - again, usually five. To give you an indication of how this works, we’ll pick a couple of games to walk you through, below.
Big Bet in Monopoly: The Big Event
Arguably one of the most successful Barcrest slots ever made, Monopoly: The Big Event allows you to choose from two different Big Bet options:
- The £20 spins option awards you with five spins, with an increasing multiplier present on each of the spins. If you manage to land the main bonus round during these spins, the multiplier that’s currently in play will carry over to the bonus round.
- The £30 Big Bet option allows you to spin a wheel, with three possible outcomes. There are now two more options, where one applies a 5x multiplier to all wins while the other has locking wilds.
The Rainbow Riches Phenomenon
Ask most online slots players to name a Barcrest game, and they'll reply Rainbow Riches. The original five-reel, ten payline slot caught the imagination - not just with the luck of the Irish theme and jaunty sounds and visuals, but the epic bonus features that saw players win big with Pots of Luck and the pick me bonus.
Loads of Spinoffs
One of the most popular of the series is Rainbow Riches Free Spins which adds one gameplay element that the original slot lacked. Add in stacks of wilds, and you have a hugely rewarding slot that appeals to players right across the board.
There are even several Rainbow Riches slots that aim to present more modern slot features. Take Rainbow Riches Megaways and Cluster Magic, for example. These games present players with some amazing new innovations that you would never find in land-based slots.
Top RTP Slots from Barcrest
While many players may associate Barcrest with relatively poor RTPs within their video slots, the software provider has actually released a fairly large number of high-RTP games - many of which offer better return to player percentages than those released by the game developer’s rivals like NetEnt and Quickspin.
Average RTP from Barcrest Games
As a general rule of thumb, Barcrest slots are typically built around a math model that’s designed to give an RTP of around 95%. While this may be acceptable at land-based casinos and arcades, in the online world, most players agree that’s just too low.
Higher Paying Slots
However, titles like Ooh Aah Dracula and Monopoly: The Big Event, offer surprisingly high RTPs. The former, for example, offers a 96% RTP during regular play, but when playing the Big Bet options, this RTP can increase to as high as 99%!
It’s a similar story with Monopoly: The Big Event. The base-game has a standard RTP of 96%, but, again, the slot’s RTP increases significantly when playing the Big Bets, increasing, again, to 99%!
Other Barcrest slots that offer above-average RTPs include:
- Moon Shadow (up to 98.01%)
- Mighty Black Knight (98%)
- Rainbow Riches Fortune Favours (97.5%)
- The Legend of Big Foot (98%).
Acquisition by Scientific Games
In 2011 Barcrest was bought by Scientific Games for a price of £35m. At this point, Barcrest was integrated into the SG Global Draw and Games Media division. The acquisition has been a success with Barcrest becoming a major force in the online world since the buy-out.
Why play Barcrest slots?
Barcrest has consistently produced titles that have entered into slots legend, not least the iconic Rainbow Riches and its spin-offs. These games are consistently fun to play with a range of bonus features that provide entertainment, action and huge winning potential.
Are Barcrest owned by Scientific Games?
Yes, they were bought by SG in 2011. However, the Barcrets brand still exists, so you can still experience games developed from this developer's unique point of view.
Do Barcrest make Rainbow Riches Slots?
Yes, Rainbow Riches is Barcrest's flagship slots brand. There is now a huge range of slots in this series. Older games like Rainbow Riches Pick n Mix continue capture the attention of players while newest slots like Rainbow Riches Megaways aim to appeal to newer players.
When were Barcrest founded?
Barcrest made land-based slots and arcades initially and were founded in 1968. This makes Barcrest one of the oldest online slot developers in the world, and the brand continues to create top-quality games.
Do Barcrest slots have fair RTPs?
Barcrest slot games tend to have payout percentages of around 95%. This is considered lower-than-average in today's online slot world; however, games with the Big Bet option can have payout percentages as high as 99%!