Update: Slotwow.com’s DNS address cannot be found – the site has been offline since at least Sept. 8
There is no evidence to suggest that slotwow was ever authorized by any of the companies mentioned in this article.
TwinSpires.com, the official betting app of the Kentucky Derby and other legal online horse betting in the U.S. appear to be the sponsor of a new online sweepstakes casino for U.S. players. The slots are real and made by Habanero Systems; players can deposit and withdraw their winnings via credit cards or through their PayPal accounts, and the website’s fine print states that “All promotional sweepstakes- for which real money prizes are available- may be entered via a free, alternate means of entry. No purchase necessary.”
The Slotwow.com website was registered on August 18 and lists a U.S. phone number and contact person. All slots have their theoretical return to player percentage (RTP) listed and are available for mobile play. The website first came to light when a member of LCB’s “No Deposit Casinos” forum posted a link offering free money to play with.
Slotwow uses proprietary software and our preliminary research indicates that they may be working with Greentube and GAN (Game Account Network) to deliver some of their games but this has not been independently verified.
Churchill Downs Inc (CDI) acquired the unrelated Big Fish Games in December 2014. Big Fish is billed on the CDI website as “The world’s largest producer and distributor of casual games, delivering fun to millions of people around the world,” according to the website.
Big Fish has reportedly risen to the #1 spot in mobile publishing worldwide with 2.5 billion game sessions under its belt and customers in 150 countries. Their Big Fish Games portfolio includes Big Fish Casino and Jackpot City Slots social games.
The Slotwow website cautions: “Practice or success at social casino gaming does not imply future success at “real money gambling.”
The Slotwow casino seems to be based on a sweepstakes model which doesn’t require a cash purchase to play. Winnings from games like blackjack, video poker, Caribbean stud and slots like Cashosaurus and Sparta can be used to purchase branded clothing and name brand shoes or cashed out directly to a PayPal account.
In the course of registering at the new real money “sweepstakes” casino, potential players can opt-in for a Slotwow player rewards card and are asked if they were referred by MGM Grand, Foxwoods, Caesars Palace, or Mohegan Sun among other choices.
There is also an announcement of an upcoming slot tournament “Sponsored by Churchill Downs”.
Reports indicate the gaming site may not be ready for a massive influx of players due to minor technical issues and the current lack of a smooth flowing user interface. This may be backed up by a section on the website that refers to “Upcoming Passes” that are currently very limited in number. All in all, after testing several buttons and links, the site does not seem to be ready for players to descend en masse, nor does it seem fully staffed to function fully. However, this would appear to be down to the casino being exposed in Beta mode rather than a poorly executed launch.
TwinSpires.com offers legal horse race betting to fans in several states. The Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006 (UIGEA) made specific carve outs for wagering on the events. Online sweepstakes-based casino gaming is legal in most states and the sweepstakes element (no purchase required) would seem to place it beyond the legal reach of UIGEA.
Slotwow only accepts players from the U.S. and may restrict play from certain states. People in Alabama, Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Montana, New Hampshire, New York, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Tennessee, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming can bet on TwinSpires.com.
This article has been updated to reflect the fact that the slotwow.com website is no longer operational and to add a link to another article. As well as to add, “There is no evidence to suggest that slotwow was ever authorized by any of the companies mentioned in this article.”