Slots without Gamstop are one of the most favorite amusements among the British gamblers. How lucky GB gambling enthusiasts are to enjoy a wide array of the non Gamstop slot machines kindly provided by various online casinos. Gamstop is a self-exclusion scheme that can be used by UK players. It allows players to restrict access to online slots sites for a longer period of time. Gamstop Is Launched By Nonetheless But UKGC Gamestop is the invention of the UK Gambling Commission.17:04
It's a fact that today, in the United Kingdom, any adult can easily find casinos not on Gamstop, or not licensed in the UK, with just a few clicks of their mouse. And yet the UK has some of the most stringent and far-reaching regulatory requirements in the world. So how can these two seemingly contradictory facts exist simultaneously?
The UK generally allows its citizens free access to the internet, including non-UK casino sites, so there are no technological barriers in place to prevent them accessing such sites. The licensed online landscape in the UK features some of the biggest and most established gambling brands in the world, so why then are so many UK gamblers choosing to go elsewhere for their kicks?
Surprisingly, the answer may actually lie with the steps taken by the United Kingdom Gambling Commission (UKGC), the regulatory body established to help protect UK gamblers.
The UKGC has introduced many measures to work towards making online gambling safer and more controlled, but arguably some of those measures are encouraging some UK gamblers to move their play to casinos where they are likely to face fewer restrictions on their play, with fewer responsible gaming tools available.
These measures can include restrictions and limitations on the way users play the games available at UK casino sites, such as limited bonuses, restricted stakes, and even slower reel speeds for slots games.
These restrictions are not present at casinos not on Gamstop, and there's one other big draw for select online casino gamblers – and worryingly, especially those with a history of gambling problems: non UK casino sites are not signed up to the Gamstop scheme.
UK Casinos and the Gamstop Mechanism
It's a word you may see again and again with reference to UK casino sites, so what exactly is Gamstop?
Gamstop is a UK industry-wide scheme that aims to help problem gamblers take a break. Anyone who voluntarily signs up for a Gamstop self-exclusion is automatically barred from all UKGC-licensed gambling sites for a time period of their choosing – up to and including a permanent ban.
It's a useful system that has helped a great many people take steps to regulate their play, and adherence to the scheme is a requisite of any UK casino site. These sites are able to share player data in order to ensure any Gamstop ban is upheld, so even if a user has not made an account at a certain site before, they will still be banned from playing there when they do if their Gamstop exclusion is still active.
Casinos not on Gamstop – which is every online casino site not licensed by the UKGC – have no access to this data and cannot apply Gamstop exclusions. What's more, these non UK sites not on Gamstop usually offer fewer built-in responsible gaming tools, creating a naturally more risky environment for vulnerable players.
This might not be a problem, but as we've already seen, finding and joining non Gamstop casino sites is an extremely easy process for UK players – even those currently serving a Gamstop ban.
Casinos not on Gamstop Accepting UK players – Technology facilitates the risk?
Thus we have a situation where measures taken to protect vulnerable players may actually be putting them in harm's way (or at least, allowing them to place themselves at greater risk).
While casinos not on Gamstop are not permitted to advertise or market to UK customers, they are not prohibited from accepting them as players. And while gamblers in the UK will not see adverts or commercials for these sites, anyone with a simple knowledge of search engines can easily find a wide range of non-Gamstop casinos from which to choose.
UK spend at casinos not on Gamstop is growing year on year, with a recent PWC report showing that around £2.8bn was spent in 2020 – double the £1.4bn spent just two years prior. And perhaps most concerningly, the report also flags a high percentage of player indifference to playing at non UK casino sites, with many players actually citing the UKGC's safety measures as reasons to play at non-UKGC sites.
As William Hill CEO Ulrik Bengtsson says, “a person on a legal betting site is only a few clicks away from a black market option”. Technology such as Gamstop is being used to try and protect UK gamblers, but technology is also the key to easily unlocking the world of non Gamstop casino play. And cracking down on internet freedom in the UK is not a preferred route forwards for anyone.
Can players on Non Gamstop Casinos really take care of themselves?
So if technology is not the solution, can we trust players to act in their own best interests? After all, Gamstop is a voluntary scheme that users must initiate themselves, and other responsible gaming tools, such as weekly deposit limits, cooldown periods or specific game bans, are almost always entirely player-controlled.
Yet addiction is rarely a problem which can be successfully dealt with by the individual alone. Help should be provided, we can all agree, but what form that help needs to take for it to work most effectively – without penalising others and without driving problem gamblers to less regulated sites – is still to be determined.
Are UK Casinos not on Gamstop really the problem?
Casinos not on Gamstop are not going away. These are often operated by companies based in jurisdictions around the world like Panama, Costa Rica or Curacao, and can be licensed there or by any number of international regulators. To expect them to simply disappear would be naïve in the extreme.
Likewise, a proportion of the UK public enjoys gambling, and a minority of those gamblers will be vulnerable to gambling addiction. Measures such as Gamstop place tools in the players' hands to help themselves, but while the responsibility lies with the individual there will always be those who fall through the cracks.
The solution adopted by the UKGC, however, is an uncomfortable fit for the industry: by introducing what are effectively 'spoilers' to the UKGC-licensed gambling sites, such as enforced delays between slots spins, or restricted deposit bonuses, they are making the player experience worse. And in cases such as this where there is a ready alternative, in the form of casinos not on Gamstop, many players will obviously take it.
The Future: Self-Sanity or a less rigid law?
In January 2021, the UK recorded over 100,000 internet searches relating to non Gamstop casino sites, so this is not an issue which is going away.
The current system, whereby casinos not on Gamstop remain easily accessible for all UK gamblers, providing an experience which for many is actually preferable to that of licensed UK sites, runs counter to the intention.
So what is the way forward: greater personal responsibility, or increased regulatory reach? Neither is a perfect solution, and both have inherent problems. It's difficult to predict in which direction the industry will head, but whatever the way forward there must be room for individual freedom and personal choice: two things highly valued by anyone in a free society, but perhaps valued by gamblers most of all.
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Info provided can also be people who found themselves no longer welcome at UK based casinos after the self-exclusion period has ended. Every casino listed operates under a legal license and has been thoroughly tested by us to meet the required standards of being player friendly.
More recently, Megaways slot machines have begun to appear in casino gaming lobbies more and more. This is a slot machine mechanics patented by Big Time Gaming, which allows hundreds of thousands ways to win! Since Big Time Gaming allowed other manufacturers to use the Megaways mechanics under their license, we have been able to see, for example. Blueprint and Red Tiger Megaways games, among others. The games are very popular for a reason – several special features, thousands of ways to win changing on each spin, and extensive coverage of various themes have contributed to the emergence of the biggest slot game trend recently!
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How Are Megaways Slot Games Played?
Megaways are a series of slot games, so of course they don’t all work in the same way. This is a licensed mechanics by Big Time Gaming slots that has been applied to a variety of slot machines not only by BTG, but by other software providers as well. The concept is, in a way, comparable to progressive jackpots, for example: the common core idea of games is the same, but individual games are still different.
Megaways games usually have six reels, but the number of rows is not constant. In Big Time Gaming’s slots, the number of lines varies with each spin. One spin can thus become an example of the situation that the first reel has two symbols, the second seven, the third four and so on.
Winning combinations are calculated so that the same symbols on the adjacent reels create a win. Since there are no regular pay lines you are used to in slot machines, to firm a win you need matching symbols anywhere on the reels. As long as they are on adjacent reels starting from left to right, you get a win. This is how you get the ‘pay lines’ of the game, or megaways.
At first glance, Megaways slots may seem quite confusing and downright complicated. However, you will get into the game mechanics and game play quickly so don’t let the first impression scare you!
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Special Features of Megaways Slots
Megaways slot machines come with special features that make them even more exciting and fun to play. Most Megaways games have a free spins feature or bonus game that goes off when a certain number of scatters appear on the reels just like in the majority of slot machines.
But what is special with the Megaways slots free spins is that the majority come with unlimited increasing multiplier. And the increasing multiplier is caused by another special feature, that is, cascading reels, present not only in the free spins, but in the base game, too.
In the majority of games, the winning symbols are removed from the reels, causing the new ones to drop from the top to replace them. This is how Megaways games can chain wins into super wins-especially in games with that increasing multiplier factor, such as Bonanza Megaways that comes with 117,649 ways to win!
The Best Megaways Slots Not Blocked GamStop
The Megaways function is licensed. This means that game manufacturers who have acquired the license can apply it as they please. Big Time Gaming slots follow pretty much the same format, but in other creative hands, Megaways slot machines are brought with all kinds of special features. While Megaways games have been published in dozens of additions, new ones are coming to market every month. Below are some of our favorite Megaways slot machines not blocked by GamStop.
Bonanza Megaways serves as a spear point in the Megaways series and is clearly the best game in Big Time Gaming. The theme of the game is gold mining, which is now quite common. So how does it stand out from other games? First, the graphics are top notch, both in the game background, symbols, and animations.
In addition to great aesthetic design, the game has a huge number of bonus games and special features, which means the chance to grab a decent jackpot. 4 additional symbols are available in the extra horizontal reel in addition to basic reels. They symbols on the extra reel in mining wagons, enhancing the symbols of that reel and offering the possibility of additional profits. Among the symbols are the letters GOLD. When you get them all on the rolls, you’ve earned the free spins function where the real fun begins with the increasing multiplier!
White Rabbit Megaways
White Rabbit Megaways is an Alice In Wonderland-inspired video slot game with up to staggering 248,832 winning ways. Not bad! If great and lucrative features are your thing, you should definitely take this game for a ride. Follow Alice on her extraordinary journey and be ready to receive mesmerizing wins. The Queen of hearts, the white rabbit, and the caterpillar are ready to play with you and bring some extra stuffing into your balance.
Have you ever wondered what cupcakes and caterpillars can do to your balance? Well, you need to try the game and experience for yourself. But with the Free Spins Bonus round you can get some amazing wins thanks to the re-triggers and increasing number of ways to win.
Who Wants to be a Millionaire Megaways
Big Time Gaming managed to acquire the rights to turn the popular TV show into a great slot game. Who Wants to be a Millionaire has gained huge popularity internationally and the show has been among the most popular TV shows for over 15 years. This Megawyas slot machine has great winning potential and, who knows, you may even become the next millionaire!
Who Wants to be a Millionaire Megaways slot machine follows the TV show model when it comes to colors, theme tune, and background. Want to play free slot machines. Special features of this slot include re-spins, free spins bonus, and special Hot Seat Bonus round. The maximum winning potential is 50,000 times your bet.
Fishin’ Frenzy Megaways Slot Machine
Fishin’ Frenzy Megaways is one of the most loved Blueprint Megaways slots in the UK. And also, Blueprint Gaming is one of the software providers that brought us numerous amazing Megaways slot machines. And Fishin’ Frenzy is definitely one of them.
Fishin’ Frenzy comes with six reels with two to five symbols appearing on each reel. And the number of ways to win can reach 15,625 on any spin. The slot comes with the familiar graphics and animations from the original Fishin’ Frenzy slot and of course, the fisherman fishing for all those extra wins on the reels is still in the game. Fishin’ Frenzy Megaways slot also comes with the popular Blueprint Bonus Buy option where you can purchase the Free Spins round for 100x the total stake.
Rainbow Riches Megaways
Rainbow Riches Megaways slot machine is a great addition to the Rainbow Riches slot series by Barcrest (Scientific Games). This time, the cheerful leprechaun will take you on the adventure with up to 117,649 ways to win across six reels and one extra horizontal row. With the winning potential peaking up to €250,000, Rainbow Riches slot is definitely worth playing.
Once you land those pots of gold scatters on the reels, you will enter the Free Spins Bonus round with unlimited increasing multiplier that can bring you quite juicy wins. Since this is a Blueprint slots, you can also purchase the Free Spins with the special Bonus Buy option for 100x total stake. Rainbow Riches Megaways RTP is 95.90% and it is a high volatile slot machine.
Other Popular Non GamStop Megaways Slots
Short History of Big Time Gaming and Megaways Mechanics
The very first Megaways game is Dragon Born, which Big Time Gaming brought to the market as early as 2015. There are 117,649 ways to win, and the casinos had never seen anything like it before. Fortunately, Big Time Gaming did not stop making Megaways slots.
After a few more mediocre games, Big Time Gaming ended up releasing Bonanza Megaways, which has since become a classic Megaways slot machine. In Bonanza, Megaways mechanics were handsomely combined with special functions, making it an immersive game with a chance to win big.
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After Bonanza, Big Time Gaming has released Megaways series including: White Rabbit, Extra Chili, and Holy Diver games with up to staggering 586,971 ways to win if Bonus gets unlocked. All of these have become players’ favorites. As a relatively small gaming house, Big Time Gaming has managed to strike a gold vein.
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However, the company’s decision to license its Megaways invention is its smartest move yet. Instead of Big Time Gaming continuing to release one or two Megaways a year, now players are allowed to try new Megaways games from different software providers.