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Online slots based on horse racing
From John Stokes: December 2018

Do we enjoy other forms of gambling because we like betting on horses, or do we enjoy betting on horses because we like other forms of gambling? It's a difficult question to answer. If we were pushed, we'd say it's the latter. Very few of us who don't have access to stables actually know all that much about horse racing. There are those dedicated souls who study the form guides and follow horses throughout the season, but they're the exception rather than the rule. Most of us are just looking at the odds, picking a name we quite like and hoping for the best. There's nothing wrong with that, it sometimes comes up with winners. But if we're doing it, we're doing it because we enjoy gambling!

That doesn't mean that horse racing isn't fun to watch, though. When you've quite literally got a horse in the race, watching them run is quite a thrilling experience, and on the occasions when they actually win it's fantastic. Because of that, as gamblers, most of us have got a positive connection in our minds between horse racing and gambling. Now, because the people who come up with online slot games are geniuses, you can play slot games whilst (sort of) betting on horses at the same time. Horse racing themed slot games are now a thing, and here are the four very best of them!

Past The Post

Made by Eyecon games, who as you may know have a reputation for quality going back many years, 'Past The Post' is a slick and modern looking slot game with some solid bonus features and plenty of winning lines. It isn't available anywhere, but sites like Egyptslots.com, which have a great selection of titles and a variety of themes, feature it among their roster. If you can divert your attention away from the great looking Ancient Egypt themed games for long enough to go looking for it, you should be able to find it! When you do, it's a rewarding experience.

The setup is simple enough; it's five reels and three rows, with a racecourse serving as the background, and symbols featuring horses, jockeys, spectators and champagne. Your aim is to find the winning horses, and steer clear of the losing ones. So far, so good. Where the game excels is its number of ways to win, which clocks in at 243, along with free spins and multipliers. The game is nicely formatted for mobile slot play, with simplified buttons so you're not accidentally hitting the wrong thing when you're placing your bets.

Day At The Races

"Day At The Races" is another good looking game, although it takes a more obviously cartoonish approach to its subject matter than 'Past The Post' does. It's also a little less generous with its prize offerings; there are five reels and three rows again, but there are only twenty paylines. That doesn't mean that you can't have fun playing it, though.

There are fewer special symbols here to look at; the classic 9, 10, J, K, Q and A are all here, but it does make the feature symbols feel more special when they do appear. The "Race Day" feature is where you'll have the most fun; that's when you get to pick your own horse and watch it race, with prizes awarded to you if it places well. There's also actually a 'gamble' button on the screen, which makes the whole thing feel a bit meta.

Champion Of The Track

You don't need to hit a bonus feature to catch a sight of the racecourse when you're playing 'Champion of the Track' it's front and center the whole time, and integral to the game. The screen can look quite cluttered, looking more like a top down view of a game of Monopoly than it does a slot machine, and that might be a little off putting if you've never played it before. Don't worry, though; it's not as complex as it looks.

At its heart, this is a five reel, thirty payline game like so many others, but one that shows a genuine love for its subject, and throws in some innovative bonuses. Instead of making your way through a race, one of the bonuses actually takes you all the way through a jockey's career. It's an extensive task; so much so that you're not necessarily expected to complete it in one sitting. The game will save your position on the board for a full 48 hour period if you want to go away from it for a while and come back. That makes it more like a video game than a gambler, although of course completing it also requires you to put quite a lot of money in. There is a basic 'race day' bonus as well, but compared to the career challenge it feels quite small time!

The Grand National

As arguably the most famous steeplechase in the world, it's only right that the Grand National has its own officially licensed slot game. There's some nice use made of the license, too; some of the symbols are based on the most famous Grand National winning horses of the past, including the legendary Red Rum.

With five reels and four rows, the game offers forty paylines, and it's a chunky, solid looking game, if a little basic in style and execution. There are no bonus features available other than free spins, and there isn't much in the way of content based around the race itself. That's a shame; it would have been nice to be able to play a horse around the famous course in the way 'Champion of the Track' offers, although we realize that the object of the game is to win money, not race horses! The RTP is 95%, though, so we can forgive it if it's missing out in a few features.

We know of a few other horse racing slot games out there, but when it came to getting included on this list, we're afraid they fell at the first hurdle. We only back winners here!

 


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