Magic Red Casino Review
Launched in 2014, Magic Red Casino has a strange history in their relatively short existence.
Formerly owned by Redfinger Trading Limited, they shut down in late 2016.
Now known as Zirconium Gaming Limited - owner of Winner Casino - this company has been involved in shady incidents, which immediately sends up red flags about Magic Red.
But this casino has been re-launched under a new company called Exit 42 Limited, which is licensed by the prestigious UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) and Malta Gaming Authority (MGA).
This makes us feel much better about Magic Red's reputability after the re-launch. But is this casino far better than the one that closed down in 2016?
Find out as we look at Magic Red's welcome bonus, promotions, games, software, banking, customer service, and history. We'll also sum up the unique aspects of this casino and recommend whether you should or shouldn't play here.
The Magic Red welcome bonus offers a 100% match on your first deposit up to €200 + 100 free spins. You must make a minimum deposit of €10 to qualify for the bonus.
Here's how the 100 free spins are distributed:
- You receive 20 free spins immediately after your first deposit worth €10 or more.
- You get 40 free spins on your second-day deposit of €20 or more.
- You receive 40 free spins on your third-day deposit of €20 or more.
This isn't a bad welcome bonus offer, but the maximum amount won't satisfy high rollers.
It's standard for a casino to make players earn 100 free spins in installments. But obviously we'd prefer to get everything in one deposit, rather than making two additional deposits for the other 80 spins.
Rollover requirements on this offer are 35x the bonus plus deposit amount. Also, you have 21 days after depositing to meet wagering requirements before the bonus expires.
Here's an example of earning Magic Red's bonus:
- You deposit €50, making you eligible for a €50 bonus.
- You must now wager €3,500 [(50 + 50) x 35] to earn your bonus.
Given that the industry standard for rollover is 20x the bonus plus deposit, Magic Red's 35x wagering requirements aren't good. We've seen worse, but that still doesn't absolve these conditions.
Also note that free spins must be used within 1 day of being credited to your account, at which point they're removed. To cash out winnings from free spins, you must wager the amount 35x.
Most games count 100% towards meeting the rollover requirements on Magic Red's bonus, except for the following:
- 50% Contribution
All NetEnt slots: Big Bad Wolf, Treasure Island, Diamond Tower, Serengeti Diamonds, Frog N Flies, Medusa 2, Foxin Wins, Moon Temple, King Kong, Creature from the Black Lagoon, Frankenstein, Crime Scene, Thunderstruck II, Mermaids Millions, Alaskan Fishing, What A Hoot, Football Star, Bikini Party, Game of Thrones, Bar Bar Black Sheep, Avalon, Immortal Romance.
- 10% Contribution
All blackjack games, Magic Spinner. 0%
All video poker games, all roulette games, all Quick Play games, Hi Lo Fever, all baccarat games, 3-card poker, NetEnt's Blood Suckers, Jackpot 6000.
Most of this is standard across the industry, including video poker and baccarat being excluded from meeting wagering requirements. We also understand excluding Blood Suckers slot because it offers 98% payback, which is on par with the average video poker game.
But only allowing other NetEnt slots to contribute 50% is cheap. With payouts ranging from 95% to 97%, it wouldn't crush Magic Red to allow these games to count 100%.
Magic Red doesn't offer any other promotions at the time of this writing.
This being said, you'll want to take full advantage of the welcome bonus and 100 free spins if you play for real money here.
While it's a major downside that Magic Red doesn't offer other promotions, they do have an extensive VIP program. Here's a look at the 7 tiers of the program along with the benefits you receive:
- New Member
Birthday bonus, fast cashouts, 1 point for every €35 wagered, cash points in for bonus money.
- Bronze (Earn 10 points per month)
Same as New Member, along with Top Live VIP tournaments, 25 free games, 5 free games for Free Play Sunday, 1 point for every €30 wagered.
- Silver (60 points)
Same as Bronze, along with 50 free games, 10 free games for Free Play Sunday, 1 point for every €28 wagered.
- Gold (350 points)
Same as Silver, along with 50 free games, 50% deposit bonus, 20 free games for Free Play Sunday, 1 point for every €25 wagered.
- Platinum (1,000 points)
Same as Gold, along with €50 bonus (Day 1), bonus on all deposits (Day 2), exclusive cashback offer (Day 3), express cashouts, monthly cashback, personal VIP accounts manager, 40 free games for Free Play Sunday, 1 point for every $20 wagered.
- Premium (Invitation only)
Same as Gold, along with €100 bonus (Day 1), upgraded bonus on all deposits (Day 2), personal offer from VIP accounts manager (Day 3), 40 free games for Free Play Sunday, two monthly cashback offers, 1 point for every $15 wagered.
- Prestige (Invitation only)
Same as Premium, along with 50 free Prestige Games, three monthly cashback offers.
You can see specific information on your account by visiting the My Account section, then choosing My Rewards.
Other important points to remember about the program include: new benefits come the day after your upgrade takes place; Sunday Free Play bonuses are only issued to players who've made a deposit in the last 30 days; you're only eligible for 1 bonus per day in the VIP program; cashback is based on losses for a full calendar month; you must contract your account manager to claim monthly cashback.
We like how many benefits this program offers, especially with regard to earning free spins and free play at the Bronze and Silver levels.
As with any program that features 7 different levels, it gets confusing as to what extra benefits you earn when moving up the ladder. But overall, Magic Red does a good job of rewarding frequent players.
When visiting Magic Red's homepage through a PC, you'll see a couple different prompts to open an account. The mobile version also features two different buttons, one in the upper right-hand corner and another in the middle.
Upon clicking a signup button, a drop-down menu will appear, prompting you to enter basic details like your name, email, username, and password, before agreeing to Magic Red's terms and conditions.
The registration process is easy - as it should be at any casino - and won't take you more than a couple of minutes.
We couldn't find what countries are restricted from playing at Magic Red, so we contacted live chat to find out. If restricted countries are on the site, they're harder to find than we'd like.
The live chat rep didn't know the answer, so they made us send an email.
Through this roundabout way, we found that the following are restricted: Afghanistan, Antigua and Barbuda, Bulgaria, China, Cuba, Cyprus, Estonia, France, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Libya, Macau, Netherlands Antilles, Republic of Serbia, Sudan, Syria, Philippines, Turkey, and the US.
Magic Red's casino games are provided by Amaya, Amatic, Lightning Box Games, Microgaming, NetEnt, NeoGames, and NextGen.
With this large list of software providers, we expected a lot more games in Magic Red's selection. This is especially the case when you count Microgaming and NetEnt, which are two of the largest suppliers.
At 220+ games, Magic Red has more variety than most online casinos. But they don't have as many games as many other operations using Microgaming and NetEnt.
Another downside to this selection is that it doesn't offer Microgaming's Mega Moolah or NetEnt's Mega Fortune. Mega Moolah is the industry's biggest jackpot slot, while Mega Fortune also offers one of the largest payouts.
It's not a deal-breaker that Magic Red doesn't offer these jackpots. But it's another area that prevents this casino from having a great game selection.
Here's a brief description of each provider at Magic Red:
Launching the first online casino in 1994, Microgaming was the first into the internet gaming industry. They're arguably still on top of the industry today thanks to innovative slots, numerous table games, and the Mega Moolah jackpot.
This Swedish company has quickly risen to become a serious rival to Microgaming. NetEnt is the best we've seen at creating 3D games that grab your attention and hold it.
Once a small gaming company in Canada, Amaya exploded after buying PokerStars for $5 billion in 2014. Their slots aren't as good as Microgaming or NetEnt's, but they do have some decent games.
Amatic's games look dated in comparison to many of the ones on this list, but the themes are still good.
- Lightning Box Games
This company offers a small collection of games that blend classic elements with unique formats and bonuses.
We're not big fans of NeoGames' slots due to the poor graphics, but they do offer some good scratch cards.
A B2B supplier, NextGen has worked with Amaya, Aristocrat, and Bally to supply some of the industry's biggest hits.
Our surprise about the average game variety mainly comes from the slots selection. While Magic Red offers over 100 games, it doesn't match our expectations when seeing how many providers are featured here.
You'll find both Slots and Video Slots categories in the casino lobby.
Here are some of the Classic Slots: Castel, Dragon's Gold, Pub House, Sakura Garden, Sky of Love, and Triple Carnival.
Some of the games in the Slots category include: Adventure Jack, Aloha! Cluster Pays, Avalon, Chili Gold, Conga Beat, Cosmic Fortune, Doctor Love, Gonzo's Quest, Jack Hammer (1 & 2), Foxin' Wins, King Kong, Koi Princess, Medusa, Starburst, Superman Last Son of Krypton, Thunderstruck II, and Wild Panda.
The good thing about these slots is that you get a wide range of graphical styles, gameplay, and themes.
If you've ever played at a NetEnt casino before, then you're familiar with Gonzo's Quest and Starburst, two popular games that are often included in free spins promotions.
Magic Red may not have the biggest jackpots, but Thunderstruck II has become famous for its top payout worth 2.5 million coins.
Slots like Doctor Love and Wild Panda are good for those who like simple games that are easy to play.
Magic Red offers a small table games section with the following: 3-card solitaire, blackjack, European roulette, Roulette Lounge, and Roulette Pro.
This is another area that surprises us because Microgaming is known for their table games, yet we find Magic Red only using a few options.
Magic Red offers a live dealer casino with baccarat, blackjack, and roulette.
The game selection is standard for a live casino, and you won't find many available tables. But on the plus side, Magic Red is in the minority by including a live casino in their game selection.
This casino only offers three video poker variations in Deuces Wild, Jacks or Better, and Joker Poker. Much like the table games, video poker is another area where Magic Red offers the bare minimum.
The one area we're impressed with is Magic Red's scratchcards. They offer 70+ scratchcards, which is nearly as big as their slots selection - a rarity in the gaming world.
Here are some of the scratchcards you'll find: 100m Champion, 7 Bingo, Bingo, Candy Tale, Christmas, Elvis Forever, Euroball, Fantasy Forest, Forces of Terra, Genie, Gone Fishin', Knights Battle, Lucky Charms, Lucky Eggs, Roulette, Starlight Dazzle, Super Hippodrome, The Fairy Tale, The Lost Maya, Wild Win Double, and Zodiac.
These aren't your normal lottery-style games because they feature detailed themes and good graphics.
Here's an example: Forces of Terra offers you into a fantasy medieval world that sees 3D barbarians, dragons, queens, soldiers, and trolls appear when you scratch your card.
Here's another example: Euroball takes you to an authentic football (soccer) stadium, where every card you scratch reveals a different country/team.
These are just a couple examples of what you can expect from Magic Red's vast scratchcard selection. Basically, Magic Red feels like a scratchcard destination first, and online casino second.
We don't like how Magic Red doesn't have a specific area in their games section for jackpot slots and table games.
Part of this could be because they don't have any impressive jackpots to offer. But it's still nice to know where a casino's largest jackpots are offered, even if they're only 4 and 5-figure amounts.
When visiting through a PC or Mac, you can see a scrolling area on the right side entitled Latest Winners.
None of the winners are anything special, with a lot of payouts ranging from €300 and €3,000. But we did see two players who managed to win €16,475 and €35,780.
We're sure that Magic Red has seen bigger wins than this, but they're nothing like many of the other Microgaming & NetEnt casinos that have 6 and 7-figure jackpots.
Looking through what's offered, the Thunderstruck II prize worth 2.5 million coins that we covered earlier is the biggest payout here.
We see that Magic Red is audited by iTech Labs, but we couldn't find a specific report online that lists their overall RTP.
Judging from how NetEnt slots offer reduced bonus contributions, you can expect to play many slots offering 96% RTP or above.
Some of the highest-paying NetEnt slots at Magic Red include: Blood Suckers (98% payback), Jack Hammer (97%), Jack Hammer II (97%), Go Bananas (96.9%), Cosmic Fortune (96.9%), and Aliens (96.4%).
Software and Navigation
We first visited Magic Red through a PC, and the first thing we saw is the logo and a large space with rotating ads for free spins, signup prompts, and featured games.
This is an odd setup in comparison to the industry because most casinos feature a navigation bar at the top, and a rotating banner underneath. But we're not complaining about the setup because it looks good.
When you scroll down, you'll see the navigation bar and featured games underneath. The navigation bar is helpful since it not only has the basics like promotions and games, but also live chat and language links.
When visiting through a smartphone, the interface offers a menu box and signup prompt at the top, a rotating ad bar underneath, and featured games.
Both the PC and mobile versions feature a beige background that's free of clutter. And the only embellishment you'll see beyond game advertisements is the Magic Red logo - an upside-down top hat with stars coming out of it.
An interesting side note is that this is the same logo the casino had under Redfinger Trading Limited. We're not sure why Exit 42 Limited chose to launch the same failed branding, but it makes for a good look on both laptop computers and smartphones.
Magic Red is available on PC and Mac computers, as well as Android, iOS (Apple), and Windows Phone devices.
Magic Red's navigation is similar to most mobile casinos we've played at, with a menu box in the upper left-hand corner that allows for easy navigation.
This box features the following sections: Home, Join Now, Game Search, Change Language, Registration Help, About Us, and Contact Us.
What we really like about this is the Change Language feature being immediately available, instead of having to hunt for it.
On the homepage, you can look through the games by scrolling down, and swiping left or right to change the game categories. We like the swiping action because it lets you quickly move from sections like All Games, Most Popular, Slots, and Live Casino.
Much like the mobile navigation, playing at Magic Red through a laptop or desktop computer is also easy.
Once you scroll down from the large space we covered before, you'll see a handy navigation bar that lets you choose Games, Promotions, Chat, and Language.
Again, we love how Magic Red makes it easy for people to quickly find the language option and change the English default. Other options include Finnish, German, Norwegian, and Swedish.
You can use another bar directly underneath this one to choose game categories like Video Slots, Casino, Live Casino, Games, and All Games. On the right side, Magic Red offers a scrolling box that shows that latest jackpot winners.
Our only big problem with the navigation is that we can't find the restricted countries anywhere. Even after reading pages for the Terms, Help (FAQ), and Security Policy, we were unable to find anything.
With everything else about the navigation being good, it's a shame that Magic Red doesn't offer an option for this.
Although not unheard of, Magic Red forces you to visit the Help page to find available banking methods. Here are the different options for depositing and withdrawing:
Note that many of these methods are available in different currencies, and you can check Magic Red's Help section to see what currencies each banking option allows for.
On your first deposit, Magic Red asks you to submit documentation proving your identity. The Help section states that players will only be asked for this info once, unless they switch to different banking options.
The three ways that you can send requested identification include email, fax, and the post office.
You can use the following 7 currencies at Magic Red: Australian dollar, Brazilian real, British pound, Canadian dollar, euro, kroner (DKK, NOK, SEK), and the US dollar.
You can contact the Magic Red's staff using email, live chat, and phone.
We used email and received a response within 3 hours. We also used live chat twice and it took them 2-3 minutes to respond each time.
Each customer service rep was polite when we contacted them. Our only problem is that they didn't seem very knowledgeable.
We asked the first person about how many points it takes to maintain the Silver level, and they responded 28, which is actually the number of euros you need to earn 1 loyalty point.
We asked the second person what countries were restricted from playing at Magic Red. They asked us to hold, then came back and directed us to an email address.
All in all, this casino's support isn't bad, but we wish the reps had better answers. This is especially the case with restricted countries, which aren't listed on the website.
Chat support is listed as being open during the following hours:
- 11:00 to 18:00 Australian EDT
- 00:00 to 07:00 GMT
- 01:00 to 08:00 CET
- 22:00 to 05:00 EST
Language support is provided in English, Finnish, Norwegian, and Swedish.
Magic Red offers a link for their Help section in the mobile menu, and at the bottom of the PC interface.
The Help section covers information on the games, banking, submitting documentation, technical problems, bonuses, and the FAQ section.
As for the FAQ area, this offers questions on broader topics like banking, bonuses, and privacy. Here's a sample of some of the listed questions:
- How do I send my documents?
- Why did I not receive my bonus?
- Did I wager my bonus enough?
- Do I get a choice of how much bonus money I can get?
- What types of [documentation] files are accepted?
- How do players register for rewards points?
- Why can't I play in practice mode anymore?
- Can I play in any tournament I want?
As mentioned in the introduction, Magic Red is licensed by the UKGC and MGA. Here's a closer look at these licensers and why they improve Magic Red's image.
The MGA launched in 2001 as the Malta Lottery and Gaming Authority (MLGA).
As one of the earliest gaming jurisdictions in Europe, the MLGA suffered through early struggles in responding to players and overseeing their licensees.
But over the years, the MLGA got better and improved their reputation.
In 2015, they rebranded as the Malta Gaming Authority and command plenty of respect in the European market.
Established under the Gambling Act of 2005, the UKGC began operating in 2007 and took over for the Gaming Board for Great Britain.
Although the UKGC played a major role in regulating the country's offline gaming industry, they weren't as prominent in earlier years.
But the UKGC gradually gained more power, including when they absorbed the National Lottery Commission in 2013.
In 2014, the UKGC began regulating the country's newly formed online gaming market. They're now responsible for issuing licenses and, through outsourced departments, handling player complaints.
The UKGC is known as one of the strictest and toughest licensing jurisdictions, which is another reason to trust Magic Red.
The history of Magic Red is a confusing one that reminds us of Bodog and Bovada - only with less reputability than these casinos.
To understand Magic Red's history, we go back to their old parent company, Redfinger Trading Limited, which formed in Nicosia, Cyprus in 2009. The same year, Redfinger launched their flagship site, Winner Casino.
While Winner has never had difficulty attracting players to their site, they've had many serious complaints regarding customer service and account management.
This was especially the case in 2012, when multiple players posted complaints on the affiliate AskGamblers about being denied bonuses and having their balances changed.
Winner must have recovered because they're still around and one of the industry's larger casinos.
In early 2014, Redfinger Trading Limited launched Magic Red.
Unlike Winner Casino, Magic Red doesn't appear to have any serious complaints. But we assume that they weren't doing very well either because Redfinger Trading shut them down in 2016 and began transferring the traffic to Winner.
Another strange twist in this history is that all of Redfinger's assets were transferred to a company named Zirconium Gaming Limited. Zirconium also owns Winner, Winner Club, 7Regal, Bets, and RummyRoyal.
In 2017, Exit 42 Limited revived the Magic Red brand under legitimate licensing and a fresh company. Zirconium holds licensing in the lax Antigua and Barbuda jurisdiction, while Exit 42 holds prestigious licensing with the MGA and UKGC.
The relaunched Magic Red is still young, but we see it having a better chance now thanks to reputable licensing.
Little is known about the Gibraltar-based Exit 42 because, according to Dato Capital, they launched in August 2016.
Exit 42 states that their games and credit card transactions are powered by Aspire Global International Ltd., a Malta-based company that also runs Peters Casino.
Launched in 2016, Peters Casino shares the same neutral look and navigation as Magic Red.
We're not sure why Exit 42 decided to relaunch Magic Red, rather than starting a brand-new sister casino to Peters. But what's clear is that the new owner is a big upgrade over Zirconium until proven otherwise.
Magic Red is still a new casino at the time of this review, so all of the complaints and negative reviews we found are related to the Redfinger operation.
The complaints we did find about the old Magic Red were minor things, such as the minimum deposit (€25) being too big and customer support being slow.
But again, it was Magic Red's parent company and association with Winner Casino that hurt its reputation. One complaint we saw on CasinoListings claims that Winner was hacking Wordpress blogs and displaying advertisements on these pages, which were hidden from owners.
And while this doesn't relate directly to players, it shows the shadiness that Magic Red's name was tied to.
We're sure that, given time, complaints will arise with the relaunched Magic Red. In fact, we can guarantee that the 35x wagering requirements are drawing players' ire.
But with licensing in the UK and Malta, it's hard to see Exit 42 being anywhere near as untrustworthy as Redfinger Limited.
Magic Red uses the latest 128-bit Secure Socket Layer (SSL) encryption technology to protect your sensitive account data.
All credit card and debit card transactions are processed by Aspire Global Ltd, which is both located and licensed in Malta. British players have their credit/debit card transactions processed by AG Communications Limited.
Magic Red looks to protect players' withdrawals by asking for documentation before the first cashout. From here, you'll be asked for verification documents again if you change banking methods.
Magic Red has the iTech Labs seal at the bottom of their site. Known as one of the industry's premier auditors, iTech checks casino operators' RNG's to ensure that fair gaming is being offered.
Unique Aspects of Magic Red
Here are the aspects that make Magic Red stand out from the industry, both from a good and bad perspective:
- Bonus Offers 100 Free Spins
Magic Red isn't the first casino to offer free spins through their welcome bonus. Nevertheless, 100 spins is a significant amount.
- All NetEnt Slots Offer Reduced Bonus Contributions
NetEnt slots are some of the highest paying in the industry. But outside of Blood Suckers (98% RTP) and the Jack Hammer series (both 97%), we think it's stingy to have NetEnt slots offer reduced bonus contributions.
- No Promotions
Once you get past the welcome bonus, you don't have any non-VIP rewards to look forward to.
- Extensive VIP Program
Magic Red offers a 7-tier VIP program that begins rewarding players immediately.
- Several Gaming Providers
Magic Red is at the high range regarding gaming providers, featuring Amaya, Amatic, Lightning Box Games, Microgaming, NetEnt, NeoGames, and NextGen.
- No Big Microgaming, NetEnt Jackpots
Many online casinos that offer Microgaming and NetEnt slots offer the Mega Moolah and/or Mega Fortune jackpots. Magic Red doesn't, though, and they're low on big jackpots from an overall perspective too.
- Numerous Scratchcards
The most-impressive thing about Magic Red beyond their oddball history is the scratchcard selection, with over 70 available options.
- Countless Banking Options
Magic Red has 18 different banking options by our count. While some of these are regional options, this is still an impressive amount.
- Strange History
Closed not too long ago, Magic Red has a weird history in its short existence. For some reason, Exit 42 chose to make their entrance into online gaming by reviving this brand.
The main thing that sticks out about Magic Red is its scratchcard lineup. Given how average this casino is in many other areas, we were blown away by the volume and type of scratchcards available.
As we described with Forces of Terra and Euroball, these aren't run-of-the-mill scratchers, but rather detailed 3D games that make for an unforgettable lottery experience.
Another thing we like is the multiple software providers, highlighted by Lightning Box Games, Microgaming, NetEnt, and NeoGames. The 200+ games here is merely above average, but what we enjoy is how many different styles of games are offered.
The VIP program here is also good since it offers plenty of benefits, even at the lower levels. Other favorable aspects of Magic Red include reasonable wagering requirements and 100 free spins for new depositors.
Our biggest issues with Magic Red involve annoyances with their website. While the navigation is good, they don't offer a list of restricted countries or a clear link for banking options.
The other downsides are on a lower level for us, including customer support, restrictive chat hours, and an average volume of slots and table games.
Starting with customer support, they were friendly but didn't do much to answer our questions. It also doesn't help that live chat is only open during standard office hours.
While the game volume isn't bad, we were disappointed with the slots and table games, given the potential with so many providers.
One final thing we don't like is the fact that NetEnt slots either offer 50% bonus contributions, or none at all. Many other casinos include these games, despite their 96+ percent payback.
If you read damning reports of Magic Red, don't let it turn you off from playing here because they're under brand new ownership now.
That being said, we recommend this casino to scratch card lovers who enjoy playing casino games on the side. Magic Red's scratch cards are among the best in the industry, both in terms of quantity and quality.
The rest of Magic Red's aspects won't blow you away, but they do everything else adequate enough to make them worth a try.