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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.
Over the years, Barcrest has been responsible for several iconic titles that will resonate with players across the world, including Monty's Millions, Ooh Aah Dracula and Rainbow Riches. These games have been played on land-based machines and are now doing exceptionally well in the online domain.
As the company and the market have developed, Barcrest has launched more specific online titles featuring some excellent bonus content, including Merry Money, King of the Aztecs and Rob da Bank.
It has always been seen as ahead of its time, and Barcrest has launched many firsts in the sector over the years, including breakout bonus games featuring board game-style rounds to boost your winnings. It was also the first games developer to make use of five-reel slots as opposed to the traditional three-reel format.
The titles now on offer from Barcrest incorporate solid gameplay features that do not need the latest high-tech graphics or complex bonus features to attract players. It also keeps the soundtracks to a minimum, with themed music when the reels are spinning and welcome silence between spins to give you the chance to pause and assess the situation.
Three of the titles that showcase the capabilities of Barcrest are Ooh Aah Dracula, Elvis Top 20 and Merry Money.
Ooh Aah Dracula started life as a live slot game and is now available online. The game is based on a Dracula theme and features free spins and a high-roller option to create a slot that entertains even when playing with the lowest possible stake.
The retro Elvis Top 20 has a solid base game, three bonus features that are simple but rewarding, and a catchy soundtrack that ensures players keep coming back for more.
Merry Money, which shows how different Barcrest can be, was developed with online play in mind. It has a Robin Hood theme, and you have to steal the loot before the sheriff wakes up in the bonus feature.
Barcrest has a focus on creating classic titles with a great gaming style, all of which are worth playing. Its extensive history gives it a strong position in the market and has enabled it to produce some of the best games around.
Barcrest in land-based casinos
Barcrest doesn't just produce online slots - its thrilling content is also available in land-based casinos and bookmakers across the UK. Its innovative high-stepper cabinets deliver dazzling animations via a high brightness transmissive display while retaining classic fruit machine features like the traditional mechanical arm. Capable of extremely fast reel spins, Barcrest's cabinet games like Shark Raving Mad, Gimme Gimme Gimme and Triple Golden Cherries with Sprinkles On Top have become instant classics.
Barcrest first made its mark in pubs and clubs in the UK in the 1960s, and it's that wealth of experience that it brings to its online slots under the Scientific Games umbrella.
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.
Launched in 2006, this iconic slot has become one of the UK's most popular games, and it has spawned a host of spin-offs including Leprechaun's Gold, Reels of Gold and Pick and Mix. 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.
Barcrest slots features
Past masters at adding skill-based elements to land-based games, Barcrest uses that expertise to add exciting elements to its online slots. Although you won't find progressive jackpots on offer from this studio, some other innovations keep players coming back for more.
Breakout features like the treasure hunt in Merry Money or the Asteroid bonus game in Money Mad Martians are designed to tie in with the game theme. But the feature that catches most players' eyes is the Big Bet mechanism that allows players to take a one-off shot at a high roller reward by playing a single side bet that unlocks additional features. Big Bet slots like Legend of the Pharaohs and Monopoly Big Event also push the RTP sky high - above 98% - making this feature extremely attractive to players hoping to land that big win.
Barcrest on mobile and tablet
Since moving online, Barcrest has also focused on creating slots for the mobile market. Using HTML5 technology, popular slots like Thai Flower and Hit Frootastic play seamlessly on any mobile and tablet powered by compatible software like Apple iOS and Android. Designed to play in-browser, Barcrest's mobile games offer a flawless playing experience on the move, and the sounds and visuals reproduce well on an HD screen.
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.
Do Barcrest make Rainbow Riches Slots?
Yes, Rainbow Riches is Barcrest's flagship slots brand.
When were Barcrest founded?
Barcrest made land-based slots and arcades initially and were founded in 1968.
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