Virgin Games Review

Sorry, No US Players Accepted @ Virgin Games Online Casino
Virgin Games:

From airplanes to mobile phones to credit cards, the UK-based Virgin Corporation is the brain child of the now-millionaire, Richard Branson. The name's mostly famous in the UK, but the Virgin name will probably be known the world over too. As such, it came as no surprise to me to learn that Virgin has decided to cash in on their name by setting up an online casino called Virgin Games Casino or simply Virgin Casino; after all, gambling seems to becoming more and more popular by the day!

While this online casino is UK-based and advertises strongly in this country, the casino will appeal to players worldwide and as such Virgin Casino accepts members from across the globe. To aid with this, whilst the UK £ currency is naturally accepted, accounts can also be created in US $, Canadian $ and Euros. However - Virgin Casino doesn't take US bets.

The Virgin Games Casino actually operates using the Wagerworks software. This isn't a widely used casino software type, but this shouldn't put people off. In fact, Virgin Casino is still licensed, as with a number of casinos (in this instance in Alderney), and in my eyes the lack of companies using this software means there's likely to be something different to find here!

One of the big draws of Virgin Casino, and indeed any casino operating using Wagerworks software, is that the casino is only available in no-download form. Recently I have found more and more casinos are making bigger an better games, yet whilst this is generally positive, it does means that downloads are becoming colossal. For dial-up users some of the newer casinos cannot be played at all because of all the megabytes of data required at installation. Yet at Virgin, the flash games are all instantly accessible and within a few minutes, users with even the slowest connections can be playing the games they want.

With regards to games available, Virgin offer a reasonable number - at the time of playing I counted over 45 different games split in to sections such as 'table' and 'video poker'. Of course, as with any good casino, Virgin introduce new games on a pretty frequent basis, although it must be said that these are usually of a slot or slot-type (e.g. 'instant win') nature.

Of course, a player must create a new account before they are able to play any of the games, although games can be played on a 'for fun basis'. This account creation process is straight forward and as the casino operates entirely in the browser window, a player only needs to complete and submit a simple web-based form for their account to be created. While a number of depositing options are available, it should be noted that credit card details needs to be entered at signup. This is for the purpose of proof of age, and while some players may find this annoying, I thought it was good that the casino tackles underage gambling in such an effective manner.

With my new account created, the next step was to visit the Virgin Casino cashier. As stated earlier, credit (and debit) cards are accepted for deposits. However, a player can also fund their accounts using NETeller. While this does give both a 'real world' and 'e-wallet' funding option, I did think this small number of deposit options was slightly disappointing, and may even put off some new players. However, as I intended to deposit using my debit card anyway, I proceeded to make a $100 deposit without difficulty.

As a new player, depositing for the first time also entitled me to a first time deposit bonus. At Virgin, up to 50 in free credits can be claimed be all new players (100% match from 5 to 50 credits). While this isn't the hugest bonus around, the terms and conditions attached are excellent. Basically, a player has to wager their initial deposit amount (on which the bonus match amount is based) 20 times. Once this has been achieved, the money is automatically added to a player's account automatically. This is great, and means that if a big win comes along a player can cash out or, if they wish, they can meet the wagering requirements and receive up to 50 credits free!

To begin with, I decided to first check out the table games available. Although this is a no-download casino, the range of table games is good, with favorites such as Blackjack and Baccarat sitting alongside newer games such as Three-Card Poker, Stud Poker and even unique games such as Texas Hold 'Em Shootout.

From playing these games, it became clear that Virgin has not skimped on quality. The graphics used are incredibly vibrant and the purple-tinted cloth used in the table games makes a refreshing change from some of the stuffier casinos available. Betting limits are also good - $1 minimum and $1000 maximum blackjack bets should satisfy the vast majority of visitors.

Of course, fair gaming is a must for players, and I am happy to report that Virgin satisfies this requirement. All games are tested and certified and Virgin provides a guarantee on their site that their games are random. My personal experience seemed to indicate a slightly streaky game was played - over time in favor of both the player and the dealer. Of course, this could have been how the games seemed to be playing at my time of testing. It didn't stop me losing about $50 at the tables though!

I also tried out some of the Video Poker games available. Unfortunately, the range of games for VP players is not as huge. Only two games are available - a 4 hand Jacks or Better game and a 10-hand Jacks or Better game. This won't satisfy Video Poker players and quite frankly, VP-only players would probably not want to sign up here. For those that like an occasional video poker game though, these are fun - and again the graphics and sound effects are pretty cool. I particularly like the Wild West sound effects on the 4-hand game. In fact, I ended up losing my entire bankroll trying to get one over on this game!

A serious point that should be made here though is that some of the games are on the 'gimmicky' side at Virgin. While I enjoyed the video poker, some players may get fed up of the bells and whistles. Similarly, I can see that playing 'Hot Streak' Blackjack may lose its attraction after a while, although in this instance 'standard' Blackjack is also available.

Although my bank roll was now at zero I couldn't stop playing at this point, because I still had the slots to try out! As such, I made a further $100 deposit and headed over to the slot section.

A good number of slots are available at Virgin Games Casino and many use themes borrowed from board games or from television. Monopoly, for example, becomes much more fun when playing for real money! One of the slots that particularly caught my eye though was the Wheel of Fortune slot. This game follows the TV program theme with a bonus round that, once activated, allows a person to spin the 'Wheel of Fortune' to build up a huge bank of cash!

The wheel of fortune slot game itself is a video style game with 5 pay lines. Accepting 9 coins per line, this makes the slot a 45-coin machine in total. However, the small 5c minimum means that just $2.25 needs to be staked (at maximum bet) to have a pop at this one. Of course, high-rollers may like to bet more to grab a huge jackpot!

The chance of winning a jackpot is always attractive when playing slot games, and with a maximum 50,000 per line win available, Wheel of Fortune could be a real draw for jackpot hunters. While playing I wasn't able to grab any jackpots, but I did spin in a few good winners - including a win over 600 coins in size for lining up 4 melons.

Unfortunately, the bonus round was harder to activate and it actually cost me over $150 to line up the three bonus symbols required. However, when activated, the bonus round is where the real fun begins! Basically, the Wheel or Fortune wheel is presented on screen, and contains a number of prizes (shown in coins). This includes three jackpot amounts - during normal play accumulator symbols randomly appear continually pumping up the jackpots to huge amounts! A player simply then spins and hopes for the best. However, once one spin has taken place, bankrupt signs are added to the wheel. A player can then decide to spin on and risk hitting a bankrupt or take their prize! I span the wheel three times before chickening out, but with a total prize of $100 I was pretty satisfied!

This was enough fun for me, but I have to say I really found this game attractive. Great graphics and sound effects, particularly when big wins spin in, definitely keep the player entertained. Of course, some of the other slot games at Virgin are great too. The 'Price is Right' is another TV-themed game and it was on playing this and the cool Cluedo game that I was actually able to get my balance back up to $200. This was what I started with, and as such decided to leave the casino with my money in tact. Even though I didn't make a profit, I love walking away knowing I've tried for a jackpot and not actually lost a penny!

So, with $200 in my account - exactly what I started with - I headed back to the cashier to make a withdrawal. I knew that the Virgin group put real emphasis on service, and as such I didn't expect problems with the withdrawal. I wasn't disappointed, and was able to withdraw the full amount without problem. Even better, my cash-in was instantly processed, with the funds being sent back to my credit card. This showed up on my card statement within 2 days which is excellent. Similarly, I am sure that NETeller withdrawals are processed with the same speed and efficiency.

The same high standard approach has been taken with the support offered at Virgin Casino, although it must be stated this is somewhat UK-focused. A toll free number is available 24/7 for UK players - for international players, an international call would need to be made. However, what impressed me was the speed with which emails sent were responded to. I emailed Virgin with a simple account closure request and was impressed to receive a response within 10 minutes. I was required to submit further details to have my request fulfilled, but again, within 10 minutes of sending the further details my account had been closed. Incidentally, nothing negative happened to make me close my account - sometimes I just like to put temptation out of the way!

To conclude, I was impressed with the offering Virgin has put together. A good range of games are available and, for a no-download casino, I was particularly impressed with the quality of graphics and sound effects. Bank processing works excellently, although the limited number of deposit methods is a slight letdown. However, the excellent customer support is a definite plus. I particularly liked the slots linked with well known brands and TV programs and as such, for a casino that's a little different but where quality is clearly present, Virgin Casino definitely hits the mark.

Click Pictures to Enlarge

3-Card Poker is just one of a number of table games available at Virgin Casino - here I play 3 hands at once!

A player 20 beats a dealer 18 for a player win, although this was after a dealer winning streak!

A very nice 1070 coin win whilst playing the cool Cluedo game

Everyone Win Bingo is a clever game where every single bet is guaranteed to win something

I only get back $2.55 of my $5 bet for matching 2 numbers at Keno

A nice round at the Lucky Draw Video Poker machine where $20 becomes $70

I activate the Press Your Luck bonus round on only my 4th spin!

The Press Your Luck bonus round in progress

The optional side bet can pay out big if the numbers in the same area keep on appearing at the Roulette table

My two pair beats the dealers pair at the Stud Poker table

Texas Hold'Em Shootout is a casino game based on the popular Texas Hold'Em game

90 coins are added to the jackpot which can be won in the bonus round whilst playing the cool Wheel of Fortune slot

wheel of fortune slot game

Whilst trying to activate the wheel of fortune slot bonus wheel, I win 675 coins for lining up 4 melons!

online wheel of fortune slot picture

Finally I manage to active the Wheel of Fortune Round

wheel of fortune slot online - bonus wheel activated

Wheel of Fortune Slot - A player can keep spinning to maximize their prize, but watch our for the ever increasing number of Bankrupt signs!

wheel of fortune slots - Jackpot Wheel

Virgin Games Strong Points:
  • Excellent withdrawal processing speeds
  • Nice $50 sign-up bonus with very attractive terms and conditions
  • Good customer support function, although toll-free number only available for UK players
  • Excellent slot games with extremely fun themes
  • No-download will appeal to many players
Things Virgin Games Could Improve:
  • Range of games on the low side, particularly for Video Poker players
  • Limited number of deposit methods
  • Some of the games are 'gimmicky' in their presentation
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