When a new online casino opens, I am always curious to see how the first year is going to go; this industry is highly competitive, and getting a foot in the door can be very costly. So many casinos fail for a long list of reasons; this is particularly the case of casinos that have tried to launch in the last few years.
When I started to research Royal Panda for this review and saw that they were launched in 2014, I immediately had some doubts. However, those doubts were quickly driven away when I saw the long list of top software providers, as well as the gaming licenses. Royal Panda is owned by the Royal Panda Group based in Malta, and these folks have been approved for licenses by both the Malta Gaming Authority and the UK Gambling Commission. These two jurisdictions are particularly difficult to receive licenses from; this shows me that the company is set up correctly and has everything in place to have passed the due diligence process.
Truth be told, I am not a big fan of animal-themed casinos. I understand their appeal, but they just aren’t for me. I’ll look past that though for this very honest review of the Royal Panda offering.
If you have read any of my reviews before, you probably knew what this section was going to read as soon as you saw that this casino has a UK Gaming license. With that license comes a heavy set of restrictions as to who is allowed to play for real money, and in the case of Royal Panda, residents of the United States are not allowed to play for real money.
While Royal Panda is definitely a legit casino, until there is a change in legislation, Americans are not able to access the games, and for that reason, it is not legit for U.S. players
We are going to cover the following in our detailed review:
For their casino, Royal Panda has chosen to work with multiple vendors. While Microgaming does most of the heavy lifting, you will also find games from Net Entertainment, 1×2 Gaming, and Evolution Gaming. This is an impressive list for a casino that is only a few years old; it is evident that the ownership group want to send the message that they should be taken seriously. You should note that not all these games will be able to be seen in your country; their vendor partners have some restrictions on who can play their games. Don’t worry, you will still find enough games to enjoy yourself, I promise.
Let’s have a look at the games in more detail:
Royal Panda uses Evolution Gaming for their Live Dealer games. If you haven’t tried Live Dealer games, you may find them a nice change from the standard digital Table Games. These tables feature real people in a studio dealing the games, which also give them a little more of a land-based feel to them. Evolution is a Live Dealer specialist, which means when you log on to Royal Panda and play their games, you know you are playing with the best. Here’s the list of games you will find in their lobby:
The Table Games portion of the Royal Panda casino features all the traditional games you would find in a land-based casino, along with some interesting new variants. For example, if you have never tried Double Ball Roulette, but enjoy the standard version of the game, then I think you will love it!
With multiple Blackjack and Roulette variants along with all these other games, you are going to love what you find when you log on to Royal Panda:
Microgaming has some of the best-developed slots games in the industry; they are always coming home with international awards for their quality. At Royal Panda, the management team clearly takes advantage of all that their partner has, with over 300 different slots titles in the casino lobby.
One thing you should definitely take advantage of is the progressive jackpot games. At the time of writing this review, there were over $15 million in jackpots waiting to be won; you could change your life with one spin of the reels. The Microgaming Network has made several millionaires from their progressive games, and you can see a link to those games right from their homepage:
Right now the Mega Moolah slot jackpot is ready to burst at almost $4 million! You can try the game for free right here (but I suggest you jump in right now and try for real money!):
Another really cool feature of the Royal Panda Slots section is their Hot and Cold Slots page. If you are logged into the Royal Panda Casino, and head over to the “More” tab of the lobby, you will see a link for Hot and Cold Slots. Click on this, and you will be directed to a page where you can search for Hot Games (those that have been paying a lot) or Cold Games (those that are due for a payout). Not only that, you can set the search parameters for what you define as a hot or cold game.
Here are just a few of the titles I found interesting when scrolling through the Royal Panda lobby:
Having reviewed many Microgaming licensees in the past, I know how extensive their collection of video poker games is; that is why I am a little shocked not to see them all listed in the Royal Panda lobby. I am sure the casino has a good reason for this; perhaps they want you to focus more on fewer options. Having said all that, I can tell you that you will love playing the video poker games that are offered. I am a huge fan of Aces and Faces – I like the pay tables as well as the different ways you can win. You can check out the Royal Panda Aces and Faces here:
Here are all the video poker options that I found in their lobby:
When I started this part of the review, it quickly became a head scratcher for me. For some reason, the Live customer service team is not available 24 hours a day. While that might be okay for European players (they are open until 12:30 am CET), for someone in a very different time zone like Canada will not be able to reach the site during their primetime hours. This is pretty aggravating.
I hope, of course, that you don’t ever need to reach out to the Customer Service team. However, if you do have an issue, it is something I am sure you would like dealt with in real time. I am hopeful that the company will move to round-the-clock Live Chat and telephone customer service; in the meantime, if you need something from Royal Panda, be aware of when someone will answer your call.
Another strange situation with Royal Panda is the general lack of promotions at the casino. For a company that spent so much time on their brand and are very proud of the panda, I would have thought they could have put the same amount of time or more into bringing you excellent promotions that would want to make you deposit and play more. Now, the company does have a great page outlining how their promotions work, which you can check out by going to their promotions page.
I’ll cover a couple examples of the promotions here:
The Welcome Bonus is a standard 100% bonus up to a maximum of $100. While this isn’t particularly aggressive, it is a bonus that many players would theoretically be able to clear. However, a deep dive into the Terms and Conditions leaves me wondering why they have this bonus at all. Have a read, and you will see what I mean:
In the interest of fair gaming and fraud prevention, wagers placed using bonus money are subject to a maximum bet per game round limit. In most games, the maximum bet permitted when playing with bonus money is $7.50, €7.00, £5.00, or its equivalent in another currency. In the case of the following games, these operate with a deviating maximum bet of $1.50, €1.40, £1.00, or its equivalent in another currency, when playing with bonus money: 1429 Uncharted Seas, The Rift, Dead or Alive, Bloodsuckers, Kings of Chicago, Hellboy, 300 Shields. In the case of a breach of this rule, the player agrees that his bonus and any associated winnings may be void.
While I understand that many casinos have betting limits for earning bonuses, when the maximum bonus is so small, I think they could be a little more relaxed. They have the option of restricting the withdrawal of bonus funds as an alternative; this is more commonplace in the industry. At the end of the day, I wouldn’t want to be a player who plays only to find their bonus has become invalid; that would leave a bad taste in my mouth.
After that bit of confusion, how about a straightforward offer: play blackjack on the 21st of the month, and get at least one blackjack while playing. Your name is then entered into a draw, and the winner is announced the next day, walking away with an extra $210! Simple, clean and easy to qualify; these are the kinds of promotions I would like to see more of at Royal Panda.
The Casino offers a different tournament like this each month; they all usually follow the same rules, so if you don’t see this one when you log on, you will find something similar. Here is how this promotion works:
Enter the Starburst tournament between 4-6 August, and win one of 10 stellar prizes. Simply:
Play with cash balance bets to qualify, and compete to win one of these 10 terrific cash prizes!
|Final ranking||Cash prize|
|3 and 4||$150|
|5, 6 and 7||$100|
|8, 9 and 10||$50|
Get the best winning streaks
Everyone stands an equal chance of winning because your bet size doesn’t matter! Simply get one of the 10 highest 20-spin streaks relative to your bet size. So, it doesn’t matter if you’re playing for $0.10 or $200 per spin, your chances of winning are the same.
A UK and Malta licensed casino is going to get access to the best payment providers out there, and this is evident when you check out all your deposit and withdrawal options at Royal Panda casino. The company takes great pride in processing withdrawals quickly and without any fees; that is definitely a positive, and I haven’t heard any complaints to make me believe otherwise. Of course, some of these methods won’t be available in your country, but a quick check in the casino cashier will show you exactly how you can get your money to and from the site.
Here is a full list of the banking methods available at Royal Panda Casino:
Loyalty programs are a must at an online casino; when I review a site that does not offer at least a Comp program, it immediately lowers my rating. The industry is too competitive, and players are too smart not to offer these programs; while the Comps are usually quite small, they provide that extra bit of value that can change the overall player experience.
The Royal Panda Comp Program (Loyal Panda) is prominently displayed on their website. As with most comp programs, you earn points by playing real money games; here is the breakdown of how points are earned:
When you earn enough points, you can redeem them in their Loyal Panda Store. There you will find all the free spins and chips you can play with, but also should you feel so inclined, you could redeem for some branded merchandise. Personally, I would recommend you stick with the cash.
The Loyal Panda Program does have 4 different status levels to it, which is considered their VIP Program. Here is how you can qualify for each of their levels:
Now, there really isn’t much more information available on their site about what each level’s rewards are; this is usually so that the casino can be a little more subjective with what they offer you. You can expect things like free spins, special bonus offers and small free chip days as part of this program; obviously, the higher your status, the more lucrative the offers become.
Overall, I am very impressed with what I see at Royal Panda Casino. The owners have taken the time to get it right in so many areas, from banking options to software partners. Having multiple gaming licenses add to the trust level players will have with the brand, even though they have only been in business for a few short years. I do have some issues with their promotions department, but am hopeful that they will find their way into being a little more creative in the future. As for my overall feeling about this casino, I can say that I would recommend it to you on the strength of the casino games alone.
This review was made by: LegitCasinosOnline.com Rating: 0 out of 10