These days, online gambling software providers can come from just about any corner of the globe. While there are a few major hubs of development, just about any country can get into the action. That’s proven especially true in Europe, where it seems like every market has at least one or two notable developers working to bring their games to more Internet casinos.
That includes the Netherlands, where Holland Power Gaming is located. Formed in 2011, this is a young but professional firm that is based out of Bergen op Zoom, and boasts over 25 years of experience in game design and iGaming software engineering. So far, the company has been mostly focused on regulated markets, with their games being somewhat common in Belgium at the moment.
This isn’t the largest company in the business, boasting only a modest library of titles. But with a commitment to excellence and a solid all around product, they have a lot to offer players who might find these games at their favorite gaming website.
Slots Anchor a Solid Collection
Holland Power Gaming currently boasts a portfolio of about 40 games. As with many companies, the vast majority of these – about 90 percent, in this case – are slots, with just a handful of other options designed to round out their offerings.
When it comes to those slot machines, they cover a rather interesting range of themes and styles, including a few that are a bit different than anything we’ve seen around the industry before. Graphically, there’s a lot of variation: for the most part, they are pretty average for what’s out there today, but there are some exceptions, as a few of the games are quite distinctive and beautiful. Even the less attractive games are perfectly solid, though, making this a fine selection overall.
Let’s take a closer look at a few of these titles to get a better idea of what they have to offer. The first game that’s likely to grab your attention in this collection is Amsterdam: Red Light District, a title that is filled with neon lights, windows filled with beautiful women, and…well, nothing so risqué that you’ll feel uncomfortable playing it, but certainly enough to make us say that this title is adult themed. The bright colors of the reels are set against the backdrop of an Amsterdam street in the famous Red Light District, and the background music is peppered with light conversation, making you feel like you could be right in the middle of a busy club.
The object of the game is match symbols left to right across your active paylines on this five-reel, 25 line layout. At the bottom end of the prize table are the card game ranks, from jacks up through the slightly more valuable kings and aces. You can also match boats, tulips, and coffee shop signs to win larger prizes.
Meanwhile, two special symbols can appear to help spice up your gameplay. Bulldogs are wild, and will help complete any winning combinations they take part in. In addition, look for the neon woman to appear as a scatter that can lead you into a free games bonus round. In this feature, you’ll earn 10 free spins, during which bulldogs will be held on screen for the remainder of the bonus after they appear. You can even trigger five additional spins, at which point you should have a ton of wilds on the screen, leading to massive prizes. After winning spins, you can also choose to take part in a gamble game where you can attempt to double or quadruple your earnings.
Another fun creation is Real Ghost (which is sometimes titled Reel Ghost). This spooky machine features a ghostly green color scheme and a cemetery background, with blowing fog and ominous sounds adding a surprising amount of atmosphere to every spin.
This title is a little simpler than the last one: while it is still played on five reels, there are only 10 paylines to win on. Once again, you’ll be tasked with making left-to-right matches, starting with the poker ranks (tens through aces) and moving up to a variety of ghoulish characters, the most valuable of which looks more than a bit like horror legend Freddy Krueger.
When it comes to special symbols, this time you’ll be looking for just a single one: the skeleton. This icon can earn its own prizes, but it also acts as a wild and a scatter all at the same time. While it can substitute to create wins, it can also earn you 10 free spins if you hit three or more anywhere on the reels. During this special feature, one of the game’s normal symbols will be designated as a special symbol. This icon may expand to cover an entire reel after each bonus spin, and can pay even when they appear on non-consecutive reels.
And now for something completely different, we’ll take a quick glance at Monkeys on Stage, a game that features an adorable and sometimes hilarious theme: one of a group of monkeys performing in a band, each with their own instrument. There are primates on the drums, horns, flutes and guitar, all in the kind of bright, harsh coloring you might expect to see out of a pop band in the early 1970s. The game contains a chorus of money sounds in the background, adding to the ridiculous premise. There are even little animations of the animals playing their instruments each time you win.
If this sounds a bit out there, don’t worry: the actual gameplay is rather straightforward. Players win money by matching their monkeys from left to right across the reels, with eight different varieties offering up different prizes. A bandleader monkey is wild, substituting for any of the others but also providing some big prizes should you hit a few in a row. Naturally, the scatter here is a banana: hit three, and you’ll trigger a Monkey Bonus, during which you’ll pick bunches of bananas to unlock instant prizes as well as multipliers that can quickly boost your earnings.
These are just a few of the many slots in the Holland Power Gaming collection, and we have to say that most of the games we’ve tried were rather fun. A few of our other favorites include:
- Taxi Driver
- The Odyssey
- Lucky Fruits
- Easy Rider
- Gangster Classics
- Ice Fever
- Bella Italia
As we noted earlier, there are a handful of other titles included in the Holland Power Gaming collection. For instance, there are three table games to choose from. European single-zero roulette is offered, as are two versions of blackjack: American and European, which feature slightly different rulesets. In addition, there is a game called Bingo +2 Ball, which is really more of a keno product with a slight twist, where players have the opportunity to purchase extra balls depending on how many spots they’ve hit on a given round.
A Belgian Focus
If the library of games we’ve described sounds interesting to you, you’ll be happy to know that there are a number of casinos that currently offer this collection. However, there is a catch: most of these are based in Belgium. The Belgian market is very strictly regulated, meaning only a limited number of operators and software providers have gained access here; Holland Power Gaming is one of them, and they’ve used that access to become part of some of the more popular casinos in the market. That said, their games have appeared in casinos based out of Malta as well, so you may be able to track them down in other markets.
One of the odder things about this company is the fact that their website hasn’t been updated with news in over three years, despite the fact that we’re pretty confident this is still an active firm that is producing and supporting new titles. That said, the news page does inform us that HPG has appeared at some major trade shows in the past, including the 2014 International Casino Expo in London. It’s unclear if they’ve considered their appearances at this or other public conferences in recent years.
A Welcome Contributor
Our evaluation of Holland Power Gaming is similar to that of many software developers that have small but interesting collections. Because they don’t have the volume of games to sustain much of a casino on their own, it is unlikely that players have any cause to specifically seek this company out. This is especially true if you like table games, as they have very few, or video poker, as they have yet to produce any machines in this area.
That said, their slots are quite solid, and some of the titles they have made over the past few years are quite interesting and fun to play. We’d love to see more updates on what these creators are working on now, as we’re certain they still have plenty of great ideas up their sleeves. For the time being, though, slots lovers will still enjoy this small but unique collection of engaging games.