Best Pokies to Play on a Budget
Aussies and Kiwis love playing pokies, with roughly 200,000 of them in Australia and 20,000 in New Zealand, not even counting the ones available online. With so many to choose from it can be difficult to find one that you enjoy, but that can also be played on a budget. Many pokies from the likes of game designers like NetEnt, Microgaming and Aristrocrat have a larger pay-out if you are placing a higher wager, but there are plenty that give you a great shot at winning without breaking the bank.
NetEnt’s 3D pokie is an absolute beauty, based on the life of conquistador Gonzalo Pizzaro as he explores ancient South American ruins. Instead of using standard reels, the game designers shook things up with a tumbling design. These are shown as stone blocks that fall into place and crumble away if you strike a winning payline, letting the symbols above topple into place in an avalanche effect. The game has a huge number of bonus features to help players on a budget, including free spins, multipliers and wilds. It also has an RTP of 96%, so you’ll hopefully discover your fair share of gold on your adventures with Gonzo.
Planet of the Apes
Planet of the Apes is another NetEnt pokie, this time based on the popular movie series of the same name, with actors from the series appearing as symbols. The pokie actually takes the first two movies and combines them into one game, with Rise of the Planet of the Apes on the left side, and Dawn of the Planet of the Apes on the right. This offers players two sets of reels for the same price as one.
Each set of reels operates separately with its own wilds, stacked wilds and bonuses, but these can also be duplicated on the opposite side as well, further helping players win. With a high RTP value of 96.3%, you don’t need to be an ape to go bananas over this one.
Microgaming’s progressive jackpot pokie has been providing punters with a way of winning millions from a small bet since 2009. The game itself has an African safari theme, featuring giraffes, elephants, lions and zebras. It has aged extremely well compared to newer games with snazzier graphics, but the main draw is the four jackpots which can be triggered randomly by any player on any bet. Just ask Rawiri Pou from New Zealand, who won $10,144,395.82 in June 2016. Speaking about the win, he said:
"I still can't believe this is real. I've been in shock since I won and it is literally going to change my life. There is so much my family and I can do with this money and it couldn't have come at a better time. We are so overwhelmed and happy."
This vampire-themed game from Microgaming is so much more than a pokie version of Twilight. Instead of the standard paylines, Immortal Romance offers an enormous 243 ways to win, making it much easier to land a payoff. This is reflected in its generous RTP rate of 96.86%.
Players will want to aim for the Wild Desire feature, which can turn entire reels wild at random. If you are lucky enough to turn all five reels wild, you could win a huge jackpot. The gothic game also has four bonus rounds based on each of the four main characters – Amber, Sarah, Michael and Troy. Triggering one of the bonus rounds gives you access to the Chamber of Spins, where players can learn a little bit more of the story that the game revolves around.
Microgaming’s other progressive jackpot pokie has a simple cartoony army theme, but don’t let that fool you: there is plenty of fun to be had. To win the progressive jackpot, which starts at $250,000 up to $1 million, players need to land five Major Millions symbols on the 15th and final payline. This can happen at random, but players can also win big thanks to a heap of bonus features during the standard game, including free spins and bonus games. The scatter symbol can multiply the initial wager by 50 times if you land the maximum number.