Many iGaming firms have a long and storied history that goes back well beyond the advent of online gambling. They may have developed pinball machines, arcade games, or other entertainment devices previously, only to later develop casino products or venture onto the Internet in search of more customers.
That’s part of the story behind the company that is today known as Bally Wulff. Founded in 1950 in Berlin by Gunter Wulff. In the early years, they made arcade games and some types of slot machines, including the first German game to feature a wild “joker” in 1963.
The company’s success was noticed overseas, and in 1972, they were purchased by the Bally Manufacturing Corporation, one of the biggest gaming manufacturers in the world. That allowed the formerly regional firm to see their games offered worldwide. Their fortunes were now tied together as Bally Wulff, where they not only made casino products but also pinball machines and arcade games for audiences worldwide. The company has also created fitness equipment and other machines in recent years.
Today, the company is part of the Schmidt Group, an arrangement that has been in place since 2007. Most recently, they have focused on Italy and Spain along with their home market, as well as a new challenge: online gambling.
Dozens of Slots for Online Players
While Wulff may have a long history of expertise in a variety of different areas, their online ventures are much more limited. At the moment, players can choose from about two dozen machines that are offered at sites utilizing this software, all of which are slot machines.
One of the first things you’ll notice when looking at this collection is that the games feature a distinctive artistic style. Heavy on detail and featuring plenty of colors, it still manages to be a bit soft and muted, which means that you get to enjoy an more classic art style along with the kind of quality we expect to see in modern games.
For a bit more perspective on what they have to offer, let’s take a closer look at a few of the company’s better titles. First, there’s the classic medieval theme at work in King & Queen, a five-reel, 30-line slot machine. Set against a royal castle backdrop, this title actually offers up a bit of customization right from the start, as players can choose between 10, 20, and 30 lines using simple buttons located on the left side of the screen.
Players are tasked with matching symbols from left to right, with just a few options available beyond the familiar low-paying card rank symbols (tens and up, in this case). There’s also a bracelet, a fantastic winged beast, and – naturally – the king and queen themselves, who pay out in the highest amounts. A logo serves as a wild symbol, and a crown acts as a scatter that can earn you seven free games, each of which is played with “super blocks” featuring one of the game’s better paying icons.
If you’re looking for a more modern theme, you might want to take a look at Texas Tycoon. Build on an oil baron framework, this game takes place on the oilfields of the Lone Star State, complete with everything you might have seen on old television drama Dallas: alluring women, ruthless executives, and all the trappings of wealth.
Once again, the symbol options are a bit bland: the same card ranks, followed by watches, fine drinks, and the men and women at the center of the drama. But there is one exciting exception: the oil derrick, which serves as a wild. This symbol is big enough to cover all three positions on a reel, providing a stack that can lead to some huge rewards.
Finally, there’s one game here that is based on the classic literature of America: Tom Sawyer & Huckleberry Finn. This fun and light theme is expressed in the art for the game: there’s not a lot of detail, but everything feels relaxed and lively on the game’s 10 paylines. No surprise, this game also starts with the poker ranks, with bigger wins coming from corn cobs, pipes, apples, and Tom Sawyer himself. Huck acts as the wild, though he can also earn prizes by himself if you hit two or more in a row. There’s also a fence that acts as a scatter; hit three or more, and you’ll earn yourself a dozen free plays.
As you may have already noticed, all of these games are rather simple in design. You won’t find much when it comes to special features; you will usually get a wild, and you might see a free spins game attached as an added bonus, but that’s about it. These themes are also rather ordinary, and often derivative: these are all ideas we’ve seen before, and in some cases, you might even notice that the characters and ideas are similar to those of famous franchises, though this is hardly the first company to pull off that trick.
Overall, these games are of solid quality, even though they tend to be very basic in terms of their gameplay. Here are a few more titles you might find interesting:
- Crystal Ball
- Fort Brave
- King of the Jungle
- Magic Book
- Queen of the North
- Magic Stone
- The Land of Heroes
A Solid History Lends Trust
Because these games don’t particularly stand out on their own, and this isn’t a firm that is winning a lot of awards for their online efforts, many players will overlook Bally Wulff when seeking out games to play on the Internet. However, there are a couple of good reasons why you might want to give these machines a try.
First, there’s the fact that the group has a long history of quality manufacturing, both for live machines and online gaming. That’s doubly true when you consider the fact that they are associated with Bally, one of the true giants of the industry. That provides a level of trust that is hard to match, especially since most iGaming developers are relatively new to the game.
Some players might also appreciate the studio’s approach to building slots. Virtually every other company out there is making games with more features and special bonuses, while these titles tend to be very simple. But there might just be a niche for that, as these are also high quality creations; many of the other “basic” games out there are aging and feel out of place in modern slots collections.
Unremarkable, But Well Made Games
For most players, Bally Wulff will be a name that won’t make much of an impact on their day-to-day play at online casino sites. For one, this isn’t a developer that has put together a software platform that entire sites can be built on; that means that there’s really no such thing as a Bally Wulff casino. Instead, these slots are mostly used to supplement an already existing collection with a few extra games.
As we’ve already mentioned, these titles aren’t really designed in a way that aligns them with other popular machines being made today. There are few features, leading to very straightforward gameplay that many players will find boring.
Surprisingly, though, we think this will actually make this collection fit in well at many reputable casinos. There’s always room for something a bit different, and while these titles might have seemed run-of-the-mill a decade or two ago, they are now different from what players are generally seeing today. While most will ignore their back to basics approach, there are some gamblers who will prefer this laid-back style of gaming, and those players might want to seek these games out.