The theme of a slot plays quite a significant (often critical) role in deciding whether a player will choose to give the game a run for its money. Slot themes are as diverse as anything you will find in the online casino world, and not all themes appeal to everyone.
Fortunately, some slot themes are so popular and widespread that players can afford to be picky with what they play. A slot from one developer with an Ancient Egyptian theme, for example, may be a somewhat lacklustre release. However, the same theme may appear in a different game from an alternative software provider, and that may be something players find appealing.
It is time we looked at some of the most popular slot themes out there on the net, as these are the games which are most likely going to offer you an ample array of choice. Here, then, are the ten most popular slot themes you can find online.
Kicking things off is the Ancient Egyptian theme mentioned above. It isn’t just in the online casino world that Ancient Egyptian-themed slots get a lot of press coverage. They are also hugely popular in the land-based casinos of the Las Vegas Strip. Most Ancient Egyptian slots will commonly showcase the same symbols. There are likely to be references to Cleopatra and Tutankhamun (the two most famous pharaohs), and imagery which includes ankhs, scarabs, the flail and crook, as well as various gods and goddess, such as Anubis and Isis.
Almost all major casino software providers have dabbled with this theme. The most renowned game is arguably IGT’s Cleopatra series, especially since the Mega Jackpots version offers a progressive prize. However, other notable releases include Rich Wilde and the Book of Dead, Ramesses’ Riches, Book of Ra, Desert Treasure, Hidden, Legacy of Ra, Pyramid: Quest for Immortality, Queen of the Nile, and Valley of the Gods.
Animals are frequently found as themes in the online casino world, too. Often, it is African savannah animals which impress the most, such as slots themed on elephants, lions, wildebeest, crocodiles, or rhinos. However, cats and dogs also frequently appear in such releases. Animal-themed slots may either be cute and cuddly or far more realistic. The latter includes some great releases, such as the Untamed series of slots from Microgaming.
Arguably the most renowned animal-themed slot on the net is Microgaming’s Mega Moolah. It happens to be a progressive jackpot slot (one of the best-paying on the net). Other animal-themed games worth a punt include 1 Can 2 Can, Big Bad Wolf (admittedly, a fairy tale-themed release), the kangaroo-themed Big Red, Birds, Buffalo Rising: MegaWays, IGT’s Cats, Claws vs Paws, Dolphin’s Pearl, Fat Rabbit, NextGen Gaming’s comedic Foxin’ Wins series and major releases such as Raging Rhino, Stampede, Kitty Glitter, Not Enough Kittens, Siberian Storm and more.
Asian-themed slots are all the rage now. They tend to be most popular with casino players around the time of Chinese New Year. While Asian slots based on mythical Chinese tales and history are popular, they tend to fall behind more exciting themes which are based on koi fish, Asian luck, and pandas. The latter is particularly popular with slot players, casinos and software providers right now, most likely as a result of the Kung Fu Panda film series.
Many Asian slots tend to have the same imagery, such as those mentioned above, as well as lucky coins, dragons, samurai and other warriors, Chinese characters and geishas. Notable casino games which are worth looking at for any player who likes Asian slots include 108 Heroes, 1421: Voyages of Zheng, 50 Dragons, 88 Fortunes, Fa Cai Shen, Choy Sun Doa, Fa Fa Twins, Fortune Cat, Fucanglong, Ho Ho Tower, Imperial Opera, Journey to the West, Koi Princess, Lucky 88, Sakura Fortune, and the comedic So Much Sushi slot from Microgaming.
Christmas only comes once a year, and like Halloween slots (which just failed to make our list), these games tend to be avoided when it isn’t that special time of the year. New Christmas-themed slots are produced every year, even if many players return to play their old favourites. Christmas slots can sometimes be very modern; some choose to focus on Father Christmas, his elves and his reindeer, others on generic wintery scenes, and some on traditional Christmas settings. Wreaths, snow, trees, baubles and gifts are common to most of these games.
You are guaranteed that new Christmas slots will debut each year, but for the time being the most popular ones tend to be games such as Jingle Spin, Naughty or Nice, Santa Surprise, and Taco Brothers: Saving Christmas. Other seasonal slots include The Naughty List, Secret Santa, Santa’s Wild Ride, Merry Xmas, Leprechaun Carol, Foxin’ Wins: A Very Special Christmas, Flowers: Christmas Edition and Deck the Halls.
Classic Imagery, Retro and Fruit
Some slots have a theme which doesn’t really fit any genre. However, even though they lack a theme, they do offer symbols which can be used to group them all together. These are slots which generally feature retro, fruit or classic slot imagery. Offering a blast from the past sort of experience doesn’t necessarily mean that these games are classic slots or one-armed bandits. On the contrary, they can often be modern video slots albeit with old-school symbols represented on the reels.
The list of these games is near endless, and far too long to publish here. However, any player who is after a retro fruit machine gaming experience may wish to check out titles which include Berryburst Max, Fruit vs. Candy, Fruit Zen, Jackpot Jester 50000, Jackpot 6000, Jammin’ Jars, Sizzling Hot 6, Stickers, Super Hot 7s, Wild Play: Super Bet and others.
As one of the most extensive collections of online slots around, Irish luck-themed slots can be found in seemingly any casino. However, many of these releases can be drab, dull and boring, on account of them featuring the same leprechaun, Guinness, shamrock, harp and pipe imagery. A few rarities do exist, and they stand out from the pack. Irish luck-themed slots are always popular, but given the sheer number of them available, players are advised to shop around before committing to play them. There are some crackers out there amongst the boring ones.
Any player who is eager to give Irish luck-themed slots a go should try their hand at Barcrest’s Rainbow Riches or any of the ten-plus sequels in this franchise. They set the benchmark high for all others to follow. Other notable titles which are worth a look include Slot o’ Gold, Wish Upon a Leprechaun, Irish Riches: MegaWays, Finn and the Swirly Spin, Irish Eyes 2, Leprechaun’s Fortune, Luck o’ the Irish, Lucky Leprechaun’s loot, and Rainbow Ryan, amongst others.
Money and Wealth
Most casino players dream of landing a progressive jackpot and living the lifestyle of the rich and famous. It is only natural that this theme is popular with those players in the online casino world. Most of these themed slots will generally have rolls of bills, flash motors, stunning yachts, glistening diamonds, and scotch and cigars splashed across the reels. However, for all their lavish imagery, not all the games in this genre can deliver the big bucks.
One money and wealth themed slot which certainly can is Net Entertainment’s Mega Fortune, and its sequel, Mega Fortune: Dreams. The former currently holds the record for the biggest ever progressive jackpot prize paid out to a player, at over £13m. Some of the other wealth-themed games which can turn your head include The Finer Reels of Life, Stacks of Cash, Life of Riches, Tycoons, Mega Glam Life, and Piggy Riches. You might even say that NextGen Gaming’s Foxin’ Wins series is also a money-themed title.
When are sports-themed slots not popular? Whether you happen to favour cricket, rugby, football or motor-racing, there is something for everyone. While the sheer number of footy-themed slots won’t come as a surprise to players, the fact that there is so many wrestling-themed games might. To date, there still hasn’t been a really engaging football-themed slot, but their wrestling counterparts offer excitement in abundance.
Any player who wants to play a sports-themed slot won’t find them in short supply. However, there are a few stinkers in this category, too. Games you may wish to try, though, include the football-themed Shoot and Sensible Soccer games, Playtech’s Frankie Dettori’s Magic Seven, the fishing-themed Lucky Angler slot, and wrestling titles such as Luchadora, Lucha Libre, and Nacho Libre. Yes, most of the wrestling slots out there do tend to focus on Mexican wrestling.
Viking-themed slots are much in demand and have been for a couple of years now. There can be little doubt that the resurgence in popularity of Viking slots is no doubt down to the epic television series which airs on the History Channel. If the show happens to be the reason you are into these games, the Net Entertainment’s Vikings – which is based on that series – is likely to be your first port of call. However, the same Scandinavian developer has also produced a progressive slot known as Hall of Gods which is well worth a look.
Truth be told, Hall of Gods, as well as the legendary Thunderstruck II slot from Microgaming are more Norse mythology slots then Viking-themed games, but that’s just nit-picking. So many of these games now exist that the genre is a touch crowded, but not all are winners. Leading titles with either Viking or Norse mythology themes include Play ‘n Go’s Viking Runecraft, Yggdrasil’s Vikings Go Berzerk, Vikings Go Wild, and Vikings Go to Hell slots, BTG’s Viking Quest, and BetSoft Gaming’s Viking Age, to name but a few.
Vampires and Zombies
Just like we combined Norse mythology and Vikings into the same genre, we can do the same with vampires and zombies, and why not? Vampire-themed slots were all the rage a few years ago, but now they seem to have been supplanted by zombie games. Unlike other monster-themed slots (ghosts, goblins and the like) which tend to do well at Halloween, vampire and zombie-themed casino titles tend to be popular all year around. Some, Microgaming’s vampire-themed Immortal Romance, and zombie-inspired Lost Vegas lead the way, alongside NetEnt’s vampire-themed Bloodsuckers slot. All three represent lofty benchmarks in the genre.
If players don’t fancy playing one of those three top titles, but still have a thirst for top vampire and zombie-themed slots, other games with a bite include Iron Dog’s Blood Queen, NetEnt’s Zombies, IGT’s Day of the Dead, and Play ‘n Go’s Wild Blood. On a separate note, lovers of spooky slots may also wish to try Endorphina’s Voodoo, as it represents one of the darkest games around.
Also Worthy of Merit
There are plenty of other slot themes out there which are hits with players, too. Branded slots, those based on television shows and movies, for instance, are always popular with players at casino sites. Slots based on video games, such as Tomb Raider, as well as those with historical, romance, food and drink, heist, gangster, magic, music, space, pirate, fantasy and action/adventure (Indiana Jones-esque) themes are also popular. Sadly, there aren’t enough hits or isn’t enough diversity in those genres for them to warrant a place on our list.