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If ever there was a genuine legend in the slot machine world, it has to be Buffalo. This game has been the most popular slot in Vegas for so many years now, it's incredible. Buffalo eclipses other hugely famous slots like Cleopatra and Wheel of Fortune, in terms of the number of machines in the casinos and the number of people playing them.
The popularity of Buffalo isn't limited to Vegas, it is massive in casinos all over the US as well as in Canada and Australia. The game is also starting to break into Europe, where Aristocrat games have historically never been particularly prevalent.
It is very easy to find Buffalo slots in every casino in Las Vegas and some casinos have huge areas dedicated to just this one game. One of the best places to play this game is Harrah's, where they have a big area in the middle of the slot floor which has mostly Buffalo.
How many versions of Buffalo Slots are there?
One of the most amazing things about Buffalo, is that every single one of the new versions they produce seems to be a massive success. These new games all retain the best aspects of the original, whilst at the same time, adding new and exciting bonuses and features, which improve on the previous versions and keep the gameplay interesting.
After the original, the next version made was the 'deluxe' version. In that game, the basic play was the same as the first one, but you could choose the multipliers of the Buffalo icons in the bonus game. If you pick a higher multiplier (up to 5x), then you get fewer free spins, but if you pick a lower multiplier (up to 3x), then you get more free spins.
After the Deluxe version, the next really big version (there were a few minor updates in the meantime) was the Stampede game. This is the one with the elongated screen, where the Buffaloes run up the screen. This game still feels like it is quite new, although it can look a little dated in some casinos, is the screens have started to fade.
Following the Stampede version, came the Buffalo Gold and Buffalo Grand games (they came out quite closely to each other), with their huge screens, amazing sound and a lot of innovative new features like spinning wheels (Wheel of Fortune type thing) and new bonus games.
Taking a look around the Vegas casinos, whichever type of casino you go to (big or small, Strip, Downtown, or off Strip) the most popular of the 'newer' versions seems to be Buffalo Gold. In some casinos there are literally dozens of them on the slot floor!
Buffalo Gold is particularly attractive because you can win a huge amount on the bonus game, even if you only play 40 cents per spin. It has been known for players to win over $4,000 in the bonus round on Buffalo Gold. To do that, you will need to hit all the 15 golden Buffalos during the free spins and then keep re-triggering the game after that.
Online, the only version available is the classic game, albeit an updated one with nice shiny graphics. The mathematics of the free online version (and the real money one, if you happen to live in a country where it is available) is identical to the original Vegas one.
Buffalo Gold Slots
Afer the deluxe version was released, the next version to come out was the Buffalo Stampede game. Buffalo Stampede looks very different at first sight, but the game play has kept all the appeal of the original, so it is still great fun. Possibly, it is even better than the original, although it is more expensive to play - 70c per spin minimum!
Buffalo Stampede slots also has lots of new features, which are really exciting. One of these is where the buffalo seems to run straight at you, approaching like it is coming out of the screen, laving the lassoos on the screen.
Another great feature is the one where the buffalos stampede up from the bottom, elongating the screen as they run. As they do this, the number of rows increases, meaning that you can win on a far greater number of pay-lines during the stampede.
Just like Buffalo original, the stampede and deluxe games give you a great chance of re-triggering the free spin bonus when you are playing. This is because you just need two bonus symbols to re-trigger the games, whereas in the main game you need three of them to start the bonus playing.
Buffalo Stampede Slots
Out of all the versions of Buffalo, the Grand edition is possibly the most fun in terms of sheer entertainment value, but probably not in terms of value for money. The game seems to benefit players that bet more, because it has a jackpot that can only be won if you play max bet (unlike the jackpot on the Buffalo Stampede slot, which can be won by any bet)
So, if you play this game on a lower stake, then you will have to put up with a lower payout rate and so you would be likely to lose your cash a bit more quickly, on average. On the other hand, the game has amazing graphics and actually gives players a chance to win really big in normal play and not just the bonus.
The reason you can win big on Buffalo Grand during regular play, even on minimum bet, is because the screen is so huge and has so many paylines. If you line up a whole load of Buffalo on the same screen, you could find yourself getting a huge multiplier.
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Buffalo Grand Slots
Less Well-known Versions
At the same time as those three hugely successful games have appeared, there have been some other versions of Buffalo which are also really good, but quite hard to find in the casinos.
For example, there is a game where you can choose the mathematics of the game, in that you can pick the volatility. This version is interesting, because the game actually has different math in different places around the US and in different countries, but with this one you can choose the one you prefer.
There is also a new, but old-fshioned style of game, with 3 reels. This one is very much like the original Wheel of Fortune game in style and appears to be more of a limit game, than a penny slots. Like many 3-reel games, the three-reel Buffalo slots is one you really need to play max bet per line ($3 per spin, or more) to get any type of value from your play.
There is also a massive version of the original in many casinos. This one is so big it's actually hard to focus on the game when you play. It also features a love-seat for two people, so it's a great one for couples and lovers to enjoy.
In addition, a game called Buffalo Max - this game rewards you for betting more and does not appear to be very popular. Possibly, players have rejected it because it feels like you are being punished, if you just want to play for 40 cents per spin, instead of 400 cents.
Most recently, Aristocrat has launched a 'Diamond' version, which features a 4k screen, to celebrate 10 years of the game. Although the game was launched in 2018, to celebrate the decade since it was released in 2008, most casinos will not see it on their slot floor until 2019.
The Buffalo Diamond game has an unusual 'honeycomb' style format to the reels and is bound to be another big hit. Whether it stands the test of time, like the original and many of the latest versions, remains to be seen. Only time will tell.
Real Money Buffalo Slots
To play Buffalo slots for real money online, you will need to be in a country where Aristocrat games are available in online casinos. This includes the UK and some other European countries, but does not include the US, Canada, or Australia, Unfortunately.
That said, there are quite a few 'copies' or close 'emulations' of the game available (unofficial versions) in several online casinos. Gambling license price. To find these games, please visit our real money slots page, where you can find the best casino to play.
Fans of the Aristocrat games in Australia and New Zealand will generally know and love them as Pokies, rather than a 'slot machines'. Pokies are the term used for slots and video poker - see our online pokie casinos page for more details
The same terminology is also used in New Zealand casinos. and you will find the same games in New Zealand as you find in Australia.
Buffalo online pokies is definitely one of the most popular games out there and you will be sure to see this one along with other Aristocrat classics, like Zorro, Big Ben, Wild Panda, More Hearts, More Chili, Wicked Winnings and Where's the Gold.
In Canadian casinos, the Buffalo slot game is as much loved as it is in the USA, including Las Vegas, Reno and Atlantic City. What you will find though, is that the payout table might be much different. For some reason, the payouts on Buffalo vary from place to place. I have no idea why, but I do know that my favorite is the one in Las Vegas.
Similar Games Online, to Play for Real Money
If you would like to play games online that are similar to the Buffalo slot machine - that is, with the same mathematics (the 243 winning lines) and with similar free spin bonus games, then the best game to play would be Jaguar Mist. It is essentially the same game as Buffalo, but with a different theme. Jaguar Mist used to be available online, but it got taken down in 2018, so you have to go to a bricks and mortar (land-based) casino to play now.
Buffalo is a hugely popular slot machine that takes you out on to the American plains. Here you will encounter all kinds of wild creatures. The original Buffalo slot proved so popular in live casinos that it has spawned several exciting sequels. These added progressive jackpots, wheel bonuses and unique features like a ‘stampede’ that added more high paying symbols and expanded the reels.
The buffalo itself is the standout symbol in all the slots in this range. It appears stacked on all five of the reels and can lead to some huge pay outs. Buffalo slots use an all-ways setup, feature free spins which are easy to retrigger and have wilds which can multiply your prizes.
You will find many Buffalo slots in live casinos around Michigan. Alongside the original, Buffalo Gold, Buffalo Grand and the new Buffalo Diamond are popular choices.
Other popular games
Setup: How Buffalo Slots Work
Buffalo from Aristocrat is a five-reel slot, with each of those reels showing four symbols at the end of a spin. The game uses the Xtra Reel Power format. This means you will win when lining up matching symbols on consecutive reels from left to right, regardless of the position on those reels. You can choose how many of the reels have the Xtra Reel Power format enabled. With all 5 reels enabled, there are 1,024 ways to win – most players maximize the action by choosing this option.
A look at the pay table tells you that the buffalo itself is the highest paying symbol, worth 300 coins for the maximum five in a row. This symbol is stacked on all five reels, so the chances are that if you do hit a win, you will be looking at multiple pay outs. The eagle and the cougar are the highest paying of the non-stacked symbols, each worth 150 coins when appearing on all five reels. The grey wolf and the stag have top pays of 120 coins.
The wild symbol features a sunset rising above the plain, creating a silhouette of the jutting rock formations. This wild, which appears on reels 2, 3 and 4 only, will substitute for any other symbols in the game apart from the gold coin bonus scatter symbol.
At the low end of the pay table are the standard Aristocrat playing card symbols 9, 10, J, Q, K and A.
Buffalo Gold Slot Machines
Buffalo Slots: Easy to Retrigger Free Spins Bonus Feature
The gold coin acts as the scatter symbol. Land 3, 4 or 5 anywhere on the reels and you will get an instant win of 2x, 10x or 20x your total stake, as well as being awarded 8, 15 or 20 free spins respectively.
Each spin in the feature offers much larger wins than in the base game, as every wild symbol has a 2x or 3x multiplier attached. And these multipliers can work together to create some huge numbers. If you are lucky enough to land a win with 3x wild multipliers on reels 2, 3 and 4, the usual prize will be multiplied by an incredible 27x.
You can also retrigger the free spins at any time. Land 3, 4 or 5 scatters and get an additional 8, 15 or 20 spins added to your total. An extra 5 free spins are awarded for just 2 gold coins anywhere in view.
Online Option: Gamble After Win
If you are playing Buffalo at a legal online casino in Michigan, an additional gamble after win option is available. You can aim to double your money by correctly predicting the color of a face-down playing card – or multiply your win by 4 by predicting the suit.
Sunset Stampede – Buffalo Slots Design
Buffalo features a backdrop of the American plain at sunrise. The scene has a blue and purple coloring, while the first rays of sunlight appear in the distance. The reels have a tan color and feature many native creatures. The buffalo itself is the most imposing, especially when it appears stacked, creating a herd effect.
When you win with the buffalo symbols, you’ll hear the shout ‘buffalooo…’. Eagle screeches and an entertaining bluegrass style tune for the free spins are also unique sounds for this slot.
The Buffalo Slots Range
While the original buffalo slot is available both live and online, you will need to head to the brick and mortar casinos in Detroit and around MI to enjoy the full range. Here are some of the newer Buffalo slots to enjoy in the Great Lake state:
- Buffalo Grand: This version has a non-standard reel setup, wheel bonus feature and features progressive jackpots.
- Buffalo Gold: Here you can collect gold heads during the free spins bonus. As you hit certain numbers of them, different animals turn into buffalo symbols.
- Buffalo Stampede: Herds of buffalo run up the screen, expanding the reels, others run over the top of the reels, adding more of these symbols.
- Buffalo Diamond: This version has a diamond shaped reel setup and features free spins with win multipliers of up to 4x.
- Buffalo Gold Revolution: This variation adds a wheel bonus and progressive jackpots to the Buffalo Gold game.
You can also find variations of this game with mechanical reels in some Michigan casinos.
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Will the Buffalo Slot give you a Wild Ride?
One of the most popular casino slots of the last 20 years, the original Buffalo has turned from a single game into a big series. The original still holds its own, thanks to solid game play and a great balance of features. Free spins have two big boosts. First, you can retrigger them easily. Second, wild symbols get multipliers which work together for up to 27x wins.
You will find the original Buffalo slot at selected online casinos. For the full range of innovative new variations, you will need to head to one of the live casinos around Michigan.