The mobile gaming industry is moving at break-neck pace these days. Since the start of 2016, iPad pokies have been introduced by the truck loads, with a number of software development firms setting the output at maximum speed.
That’s both good and bad news for fans of the games. On the one hand, the more titles we have access to, the more likely we are to find games that really pique our interest. Unfortunately, the faster these new games are being churned out, the less time developers spend engineering them, which tends to translate to lower overall quality.
I can’t speak for everyone, but I’m a firm believer in quality over quantity. And by that, I mean I’d rather have a few dozen really good, unique titles to choose from, than several hundred lame, cookie-cutter print outs, all delivering the exact same experience with a varying graphic overlay.
With that in mind, I’m going to share what I’ve found to be the top iPad pokies released in 2016, based on originality, aesthetic appeal, munificence and overall entertainment.
When Pigs Fly – NetEnt
When Pigs Fly was released by NetEnt in July, 2016. It features the most curious reel-set, starting with a cross shape, and expanding throughout the game up to the traditional 5×3 grid. As such, the paylines can skyrocket from as few as 45, to as high as 3,125. It also has an automatic free-spins countdown, so you’re sure to enjoy some bonus features along the way.
This is one of my absolute favorite games of the year. I love the originality that went into the creation of this game. It has a cute and humorous theme, a very unique reel design and is a great diversion from the monotony found in the vast majority of today’s iPad pokies.
Legend of the White Snake Lady – Yggdrasil
Also released in July 2016 was Legend of the White Snake Lady by Yggdrasil. I’m not normally a fan of oriental themes, as they’ve been overdone entirely too much, but this one really caught my attention. It has stunning graphics and they even managed to infuse an appealing musical score that didn’t put me to sleep. That’s super important, because my favorite aspect of this game is it’s high variance.
What’s high variance, you ask? That means it won’t pay out often, but the pays are generally higher when it does. Simply put:
Low variance = a lot of tiny wins
High variance = less frequent but bigger wins
These are the types of iPad pokies I look for when I have a strong bankroll, and despite this game only being out for a few months, I’ve already struck a trio of 4-figure wins (all on separate occasions).
Frozen Diamonds – Rabcat / Microgaming
Rarely would Microgaming make such a list as this one, but Frozen Diamonds was actually created by Rabcat, a developer that infuses its games on the Microgaming Quickfire platform for online and mobile. While is still contains the drab, generic number symbols Microgaming is notorious for, Rabcat’s team definitely put their time to good use in other areas when developing this title.
Frozen Diamonds was an August 2016 iPad pokies release, and it instantly took the iGaming world by storm. In contains standard 5×3 reels, but their movement is anything but typical. Instead of spinning, the frozen blocks that carry each symbol drop down into place.
That in itself may not seem very inspiring, but each time a winning combination occurs, the symbols involved in the win explode, dropping new symbols onto the reels in their place and potentially creating unlimited wins. Due to its unique re-spin (re-drop) function, the game does have a mid to high variance.