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Rival – or Rival Powered to give the company its full name – is a world-leading B2B developer and supplier of online casino software. It has been around since 2005, and has continually provided most of the best online casinos with table games, card games and online slots since then. Among the most well-known Rival games are Frogged, Arabian Tales and Mystic Wolf.
Rival’s initial intention was to provide a complete end-to-end casino solution for online gaming companies. The first organisations that took advantage of Rival’s solution included DaVinci’s Gold Casino, Cocoa Casino and This is Vegas. In testament to the durability of Rival’s software, all these three casinos remain open today.
Buoyed by this success, Rival then began to release slots games using their i-Slots gaming platform.
Rival initially arrived into the online casino realm from Canada, but has since upped sticks and moved itself to the more online-casino-friendly jurisdiction of Cyprus, with its main office in the capital, Nicosia. Rival withdrew all its services to Canadian players in February 2009 when it looked likely that Canada was about to ban online casino gambling, just as the USA had done.
However, long before then Rival was already becoming successful via their range of ‘iSlots’ – these were interactive slots games that were a definitely step up from the ‘normal’ three-reel and five-reel slots being offered by software companies at the time – using software to create something different, as opposed to apeing video slots that were found in Las Vegas and other places at the time.
Sadly for Rival, other major gaming companies such as Microgaming and Playtech noted the success of ‘iSlots’ and began to craft interactive slots of their own. Interactive slots of the five-reel variety soon became the norm rather than the exception.
In the early 2010s Rival hit their first snag. As the online casino market expanded, so did the number of parties who wanted to open online casinos purely to swindle their players. Rival were a little too keen to hand out casino solutions without performing suitable background checks. As a result, a number of rogue casinos were quickly up-and-running using Rival’s software. These were quickly reported as bad places to play and shut down, but not before Rival’s reputation had suffered damage.
Despite the success of their iSlots range, Rival’s software output has never been dominated by online slots – far from it. The company has also released countless casino games – baccarat, blackjack, casino war, craps, keno, let it ride, pai gow poker, red dog, roulette, scratch cards and video poker.
Rival is possibly the only casino software brand that has developed a game that’s based on Sudoku – although any passing resemblance between this game and the game most people will know of as Sudoku is minimal. In Rival’s Sudoku, a three-by-three grid is randomly filled with numbers and players are paid if they achieve three-in-a-row and other winning combinations.
The slots developed by Rival over the years were rated excellent upon their release, but the company’s iSlots range has never been updated with sufficient regularity. As a result, newly-established online casinos tend to go for suppliers with a more diverse selection that is ever-expanding – think NetEnt or Microgaming.
One of Rival’s early 2016 releases – a Day at the Derby – is a good example of this. While top online software makers use graphics that wouldn’t seem out of place in Pixar’s latest cinematic release, the graphics in this game are old-fashioned and even look amateurish by comparison. The game does have a few bonus features, but still looks as if Rival has sat on its release for five years.
Some Rival titles are a great deal of fun, though. If you’re a child of the late 1960s you’ll definitely remember ‘Frogger’ – a video console where you were required to guide a hapless frog home across a busy road, then a treacherous river, avoiding cars, trucks, crocodiles and other nasties. Rival has released a slots version of this, and although you don’t get to play the famous game, the wild symbols do expand up the reels in a typical ‘Frogger’ fashion.
Rival’s most popular slot though is probably the golf-themed ‘Hole in Won’ slot. This game has a neat intro video that leads you out onto the links. The symbols used are all golf related – tees, buggies, golfing shoes and balls. This game has one real, distinctive feature – it includes a mini golf game. Land three or more scatters and you get to play one of nine holes, and you must sink the ball in as few shots as possible to win the greatest amount of cash.
Rival games are featured at just under one hundred casino sites across the web. Some of the most popular and safe online casinos you will find Rival games at are Winward Casino, Superior Casino and 888 Casino.
While many online casinos that feature Rival games offer promotions such as free spins, hardly any offer free spins or welcome bonuses that are exclusive to Rival’s software. Unless otherwise stated, you should be able to use your free spins or bonus money on Rival’s titles.
As of yet, Rival has not expanded its range of titles to offer live casino games.
The mobile aspect of Rival’s platform was only launched in 2014, when the company made the switch from Flash to HTML5 in order to provide games that were certain to work on smart phones and tablets as well as they did on desktops. Prior to that, it was hit-and-miss as to whether a mobile version of any Rival game would work on a mobile platform. All of Rival’s games released since 2014 are guaranteed to work on iOS and Android platforms, and several of their pre-2014 titles have been converted so they too are made mobile-ready.
Here are some of the major developers of software for online casinos: