A Casino is Born
Casumo is the Marmite of the online casino world; players either love it or hate it. The site was founded in 2012 and has fored its own weird and wonderful path ever since. It has positioned itself as a merry-maker and fun generator; it wants its player to smile and be happy while playing their favourite online casino games. It is bold and bright, and not afraid to do things differently.
It is operated by Casumo Services Limited, and is licensed by the Malta Gambling Authority and the Gambling Commission. It was founded by Kim Larsen, Razmus Svenningson and Oscar Simonsson, with the latter currently holding the position of CEO. Casumo is operated out of offices in Malta, and currently does not have any additional brands or sites running off its licence.
Casumo revels in its oddball character. It says it was founded when a “parallel universe contacted us telling us that they were in desperate need of help.” In response, they came up with the “most fun and thrilling thing” they could, and Casumo was born. The strangeness doesn’t end there, however, and only once players have created their accounts is the full Casumo world revealed in all its glory.
Once signed in, players can access their dashboard where they will find their last-played game, Casumo favourites, latest bonuses and promotions, trophies won, and when the next Reel Races tournament will take place. They can also keep track of their progress up the Hills of Odd – the place where “Casumos” are born – which is the operator’s unique loyalty programme.
Its loyalty scheme is just one way Casumo aims to stand out from the crowd. It also achieves this via its approach to gamification – adding video game features such as missions, progress bars, trophies and unlockables – in order to make the experience as engaging and entertaining as possible. While other casinos offer this, Casumo is very much ahead of the pack.
But beneath this quirky persona lies a serious and professional online casino operator. Casumo has very robust protocols in place when it comes to responsible gambling and helping players manage their wagering activity. In addition, it is heavily licensed, works with several gambling charities, and takes additional measures to ensure player funds are segregated and protected.
So, while Casumo may be the Marmite of the online casino industry, its flavour is one a growing number of players seem to like.
Casumo has a vast library of games. There are more than 875 in total, across slots, table games and live dealer. This includes titles from power players such as Microgaming, NetEnt and NYX Gaming, as well as smaller studios like Quickspin, Thunderkick, and ELK. Its live table games lobby is dominated by Evolution Gaming, with a few games from NetEnt as well.
It is an impressive collection, and there really is something to suit all preferences. Blockbuster hits include Jungle Books, Gonzo’s Quest, Book of Ra, Rainbow Riches Hall of Gods, Foxin’ Wins, and Immortal Romance. The operator also introduces a steady stream of new games; its latest titles include Vampires, StarQuest, Reel’em In Lobster Potty, and Wizard Shop.
Both original and branded games are available. Slots under the latter category include Jurassic World, Top Cat, emoji planet, Guns N’ Roses, Terminator 2, Dracula, and Game of Thrones. Its branded games selection is not as comprehensive as some of its rivals, but there is still plenty of choice for those who like to spin the reels on games themed around their favourite entertainment franchises.
There are big wins aplenty with more than 35 jackpot slots games available. Some are networked, and players will be familiar with those offering the largest prize pools – Mega Fortune, Mega Fortune Dreams, Mega Moolah, and Hall of Gods. Other jackpot games include Divine Fortune, Cosmic Fortune, Holmes and the Stolen Stones, and Super Lucky Frog.
Casumo’s table-game offering is strong, with 50 to go at. All the staples are there: blackjack, roulette, poker and baccarat. There are plenty of variants, too: French, American and European roulette, and Single Deck and Double Exposure blackjack. Other games include Punto Banco, Red Dog, and Pontoon, as well as Monopoly-themed roulette.
The operator also offers live dealer games. The lobby is dominated by Evolution Gaming, with access to the NetEnt live dealer portfolio adding some additional firepower. Live games are offered across roulette, blackjack, baccarat and poker, as well as live money wheel via Evolution Gaming’s Dream Catcher title. There’s a decent selection of themes and rooms as well as VIP tables.
The Casumo game lobby is easy to navigate. It is split into categories – Top Lists (here players find the last games they played, new games just in, as well as recommendations from Casumo), Slot Machines, Table Games, Jackpots, Live Casino, All Games, and Search. The search tool is powerful – players can look for games by typing in its name or the developer that has made it. The only niggle we encountered was in closing the game. There is no “X” button, so players either have to click “back” in their browser – which takes them to their account homepage – or click on the Game Browser button which returns them to the browser. There is nothing wrong with having to do this, but it feels a little disjointed and unnatural.
The crazy world of Casumo is also available on mobile via both in-browser and native application (iOS and Android). The operator offers one of the largest mobile game portfolios on the market, with more than 650 slots, table and live dealer games up for grabs. This is seriously impressive, and is a major tick in the box for those who like to play via mobile and tablet devices.
The native application offers the same bold and vibrant design as the desktop site, and is very easy to navigate. The home page is split into three sections – account, wallet and game lobby – and offers the same functionality. Games can be played in both portrait and landscape mode, but are best experienced in the latter. To close the game, players simply pinch the screen.
The native application boasts live chat and Touch ID log-in. While in-browser offers the former, it does not offer the latter. All told, there is very little difference between accessing Casumo via browser or app. The app loads slightly quicker and feels more sleek and seamless, but games still run smoothly in-browser. Regardless of platform, players receive the same features (tournaments, trophies, etc.) as on desktop.
The only negative is that when signing in on mobile – and desktop, for that matter – players are occasionally asked to verify they are human by selecting certain squares on an image that contain a particular item – we kept getting cars. While it is important for Casumo to verify players, it is the only online casino we have encountered that uses this rather annoying method.
While it doesn’t take much away from the overall mobile experience Casumo offers, it seems a bit archaic for an online casino that is so cutting edge in its brand, voice and proposition. And while doing things differently is what Casumo does well, this is one area where we would like to see it take the more conventional path trodden by most of its rivals.
A Hill to Climb
Casumo’s different approach to online casino is no more apparent than in its innovative player loyalty scheme. So different is its programme, and the story it is set against, some players have gone so far as to suggest it was devised by someone who had munched through a large quantity of LSD. But, behind its psychedelic creativity lies a very smart system that players have come to love.
When a player creates their account, they become a “Casumo”. Casumos – the little white creatures dotted around the site – are born at the Hill of Odds and begin their journey towards the rainbow. To reach the rainbow, players must rise through various levels (there are 20 in total). They do this by earning points and trophies, which are generate on every spin and by completing tasks.
These tasks are split into categories such as “activity”, “depositing and withdrawing” “wins”, “spins and bets” as well as actions completed in each game. So, things like sign in every day for a week, and win three times in a row, three times. Players receive trophies for each activity completed, and there are 1,101 of them to collect in total.
In addition, Casumos wear belts (like in Karate); you start with white and work your way through yellow, red, blue, purple and finally black. The belt represents the Casumo’s level of skill, and the more skilled you are the better rewards and perks you are offered as you clear levels and at random. It is very much what you would expect to find in a video game, but a market-first for online casino.
For some players, however, the Hill of Odds is a step too far and does not offer the same value and return as more traditional loyalty programmes. But Casumo has never tried to be all things to all people, and has certainly found success with those who play on the site regularly. It is not for everyone, but it is definitely worth giving it a go in order to decide for yourself.
More Bang for Your Buck
The one thing Casumo takes a more conventional approach to is its welcome bonus. Players receive up to £1,200 in bonus money spread across their first five deposits. Before that, however, they are granted 20 free spins on Starburst (30x wagering requirement). The first deposit is boosted by 200% up to £50, plus 20 new free spins per day for the following nine days.
Second and third deposits receive a 50% bonus (up to £150 and £200 respectively), and the fourth and fifth deposits a 25% bonus up to £400.
The welcome package comes with a wagering requirement (deposit plus bonus money) of 35x. So, while Casumo says its package is “crazily good”, its wagering requirements are certainly at the top end of the scale. That’s not to say it is not a good offer, because it is, but it does carry significant wagering requirements that will mean some players prefer not to take it.
Aside from the welcome offer, players receive regular bonuses and promotions. These can be found in their player dashboard (read: player account) under “Valuables”. There are weekly offers, too, the value of which depends on your belt – likewise, players receive rewards each time they pass through another level based on whether their rope is white, yellow, red, blue, purple, or black.
Race to the Top
Casumo offers tournaments in the form of its Reel Races. They take place every 30 minutes, 24 hour a day, seven days a week. There is a daily £1,000 tournament that takes place at 7pm, with other Reel Races dishing out prizes usually in the form of free spins. The tournaments are fast and fun, and run across a wide range of slots games and themes.
Players have a set amount of time to collect as many wins, big wins, mega wins and wins in a row as possible on a predetermined game. A win counts for 2 points, a big win 20 points, three wins in a row 5 points, two big wins total 35 points and a mega win totals 100 points. Points are accumulated and players are ranked on a leader board; big prizes go to the top three, with smaller rewards paid out to up to 25 places.
Money, Money, Money
Casumo’s payment options are a little thin on the ground compared with some of the more established online casino operators available to UK players, but the most popular options are there – Visa, MasterCard (both credit and debit), Skrill, Neteller and paysafecard. Players can also deposit and withdraw via bank transfer. Deposits are quick and easy, with payment details remembered across desktop and mobile.
There are limits on individual withdrawals, which are:
Despite this, players can make as many withdrawals per day as they wish. There are no withdrawal fees, but debit and credit cards are slapped with a 2.5% charge. Jackpot.co.uk is firmly against operators charging deposit and withdrawal fees, and this is a major mark against Casumo’s approach to payments. That said, withdrawal speeds are fairly rapid.
Casumo holds player funds in a bank account that is entirely separate to, and isolated from, operational cash flow and bank accounts. Its setup meets the Gambling Commission’s requirements for segregating player funds at the level of “medium”, which is higher than most, including established operators such as PartyCasino and bet365 casino – which are compliant with “basic” requirements.
Health and Happiness
Despite its playful persona, Casumo is a casino that cares about its players. It takes responsible gambling very seriously, and has a dedicated page to help players understand the risks associated with prolonged play, how they can mitigate them, and some of the signs that could suggest their levels of play are starting to become a cause for concern.
All of this comes under its Play Okay section. Here, players will find a very useful self-assessment tool to better understand if their patterns of player are potentially problematic, and what to do if they are. Players are also given the option to set spend, deposit, wager and loss limits. They can also set in-game reality checks to kick in at intervals of their own choosing.
The operator also works with gambling addiction charities GamCare and Be Gamble Aware, and offers players information on, and links to, website-blocking software, such as GamBlock and BetFilter, for those who wish to self-exclude and prevent themselves from being able to access online casino sites in the future. All told, it is a very thoughtful and caring approach.
When it comes to security, Casumo uses an SSL encryption to ensure player data and financial transactions are protected. This means they are not exposed to hackers or fraudsters. The operator has also appointed eCOGRA as its Alternative Dispute Resolution Body (ADR). Players with a complaint must first log it with Casumo’s customer services team, who will investigate and reach a resolution.
If a player is not happy with the outcome, they can then log their complaint with eCOGRA who will carry out their own inquiry. They will come to their own conclusion and resolution. This is usually final, but players that are still not satisfied can take their complaint to court. It must be remembered, however, that legal fees can be very costly.
There for You
Casumo supports its players with friendly and helpful customer service agents via live chat and email. Both are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, but live chat is the fastest and most efficient way of making an enquiry and getting your issue resolved. Players can upload documents via live chat, and the agents we spoke with were polite, friendly and very knowledgeable.
No telephone support is a minus, but players are well covered with live chat and email. The only occasion where this might be problematic is if discussing a serious issue such as disputes over winnings and withdrawals. In these circumstances, being able to speak to a human being is often reassuring and something Casumo should consider.
The inspiration for Casumo may have come from a parallel universe, but in this world, it is one of the most bold and vibrant online casino sites available to UK players. It is unique and unusual, revelling in its quirks to offer players something a little bit different. It certainly stands out from the crowd, and for all the right reasons – it is definitely not a case of style over substance.
The operator offers a portfolio bursting with more than 875 slots, table and live dealer games, from some of the industry’s top suppliers including Microgaming, NetEnt, NYX Gaming, and Evolution Gaming. This ensures all player preferences are catered for, with a nice mix of original and branded slots, plus a decent selection of jackpot games with massive prize pools.
Its loyalty scheme is a stroke of genius, using points, progress bars, levels and tasks to really engage players. It certainly appeals to fans of video games and the mobile generation, but it may deter traditional online casino players who prefer a more straightforward way of rewarding their play. That said, the saying ‘don’t knock it until you have tried it’ applies here. There are very few areas where Casumo drops the ball; no telephone customer service and deposit fees for debit and credit cards are about it. That aside, its voice, branding and style are what makes it the Marmite online casino. But it seems that more players like its flavour than don’t, and the operator is fast becoming one of the most popular in the UK market.