Joe Fortune Casino Review
Welcome to another one of my painfully honest, comprehensive casino site reviews! I have been excited to write a review of Joe Fortune for a long time, and finally, the chance came my way! This casino has always intrigued me because I couldn't quite determine who exactly this Joe Fortune was. Was he a celebrity endorser that I had never heard of? Maybe the owner of the site? Regardless, I had heard some good things about the site, and this made me eager to dig in and give it a thorough review.
This review will cover everything from the games that are being used to the VIP program designed to keep you a loyal player. Everything you need to know from creating an account to cashing out your winnings will be on this page, and all of it with the honesty and independence that you have come to know and love. I don't have any skin in this game, so all I want is to make sure you find the best places to play, because at the end of the day, I am also a big fan of playing casino games online!
Okay, are we ready to get started? Let's get to it!
For a site that is limited to accepting players from only one country, I would have thought the people behind Joe Fortune would throw everything they had at this casino to make it stick. While the site is very close in many ways, there are some seemingly simple errors that I think if addressed would make the entire operation a larger success. As you will read in this detailed review, that shouldn't stop players from trying the site. I just think that for someone who plays as much as I do, I would like to see a little more overall effort from this brand.
Joe Fortune has four excellent software suppliers on board to provide games for its players, but for some reason does not take full advantage of what each provider is offering. If the company would expand its video poker selection and add a live dealer product from one of its suppliers who I know have it, then this would be a perfect mark. The recent launch of Live Dealer software goes a long way to addressing these gaps, but I would still like to see some additional video poker games in the lobby to help round out the entire offering.
An offshore site that is trying to get players from a country like Australia may be limited in payment options, but not as limited as sites that accept players from the United States. So, I am a bit confused by how few options there are at Joe Fortune, except it starts to make sense if the company is really tied to Bodog. Bodog is heavily invested in the Bitcoin space, and based on the offers to players who use Bitcoin for deposits, it seems like Joe Fortune wants you to use the cryptocurrency as well.
The VIP program is the only thing bailing out this rating. The welcome bonus, while aggressive, is going to be very hard to earn with the high wagering requirement. There are no signs of any ongoing promotions to keep players active, even though I know companies like RTG and Microgaming have tournament functionality at the minimum. I would like to see the company that is behind Bodog88 be a little more proactive in trying to engage its players at this site.
If you can't find a way to get a hold of the support team at Joe Fortune, then it's on you. The site gives you a telephone number, email address, all the links to their social media, and a button on each page of the site that takes you to the live chat window. Add in a pretty solid frequently asked questions section, and I would say you are going to be very happy with the response time from this casino.
I do like the clean lines of the Joe Fortune website, and the games lobby makes it easy for players to find the games they want to play. There is nothing fancy about the site - you can pick from the different game tabs in the lobby or search for a game. Perhaps the casino could do with a few more ways to filter the slot machines given how many are listed, but aside from that, there is nothing really offensive about the UI at this site.
The games at Joe Fortune are all designed to be played in a browser, which means you can at least access the site and your account from your phone or tablet. For me, I cannot give a mark any higher than this to a site that doesn't offer a native app. Perhaps one day this will be the case, but it is unlikely, as Joe Fortune operates in the grey area of Australian gaming law, so it is unlikely that either Apple or Google will approve a real money app that isn't licensed by the Australian government.
The Basics About Joe Fortune
I will admit that my curiosity about Joe Fortune himself got the better of me, and the first good chunk of time I spent researching for this review was on the man himself. I tried to find out any information I could on this mysterious character, and at the end of the day, I was left empty-handed. This appears to be a fictional host of the site, which is a bit of a bummer, but I suppose there is nothing I can do about it.
Now, when I was doing all this frantic research, I did uncover who is behind this casino, and perhaps this unlocked a little bit of the mystery behind its ambassador. The site is owned and operated by Betting Partners, under the parent company of Haydock Sports Limited. If either of those names is vaguely familiar to you, let me try to connect the dots. Haydock is also listed as the owner of a brand you may be a little more familiar with - Bodog88. Yes, this site has ties, however remote these days, to the juggernaut created by Calvin Ayre. Could this Joe Fortune character be an homage to the swashbuckling online casino owner? Maybe...just maybe.
Okay, enough about the host and the owners. Here are some pieces of information that are pertinent to you as a player. First, the site has a license, but it is from Gaming Curacao, which means that it isn't worth much to players who have any issues with the casino that cannot be resolved internally. Now, usually when a site is licensed by Curacao, it means that it is going to be wide open to players from most countries, most importantly from the United States. However, in the case of Joe Fortune, the exact opposite appears to be true. This casino is only open to players who live in Australia. Yes, that is correct - this is an Australian-exclusive site. For those of you who don't live in Australia and continue reading this review, you risk being very jealous of a site you cannot access. I don't blame you if you move on right here and find another one of my reviews, but if you do continue on, you will at least get some insight into software companies and welcome bonuses that may help you along the way.
Joe Fortune is also a relatively new casino, having launched back in 2016. While normally this would give me cause for concern, given who is behind the brand, I am not going to dock any rating points from the site for their longevity.
Now that you have a full rundown on the history of this casino and its ownership (and the lack of an actual Joe Fortune), it is time to turn my attention to the games and promotions.
With the online casino world crowded with operators, trying to set yourself apart can be very difficult. When I started the review of Joe Fortune, now knowing that it is only open to Australian players, I had a very different viewpoint to come from. Australia has recently made some changes to their online gambling laws, and that has cleaned out many operators from the landscape. This means there are fewer competitors for Joe Fortune. Having an Australian-focused theme to the site is meant to give residents a feeling that this site knows exactly what they are looking for in a casino, but is there anything behind that idea? I headed to the lobby to see what I would find.
For the Joe Fortune brand, the folks at Haydock Sports have landed on multiple software providers. They include Rival Gaming, RealTime Gaming, iSoftBet, and Microgaming. This is an excellent combination of providers, which means you are going to find a wide array of different looks when it comes to the content in the casino lobby. These days, it is important for a site to offer as many games as possible, and the non-download games that dominate the landscape make it much easier for different vendors to be integrated into one back-end management platform.
Given the fact that the site is offering games from four different partners, I would have thought I'd find a lobby chock full of titles. That isn't what I found, though, and as you will see in the games breakdown below, there are some easy fixes that the company can make that will ensure that the happiness of a player like myself will be increased. Now, there are still hundreds of titles in the lobby, so don't get scared off by my last statement. All I mean is that sites should take full advantage of the fact that their software partners have all these great games to choose from.
The slots catalog is where I started my games review, and although I wouldn't say that I am the biggest fan of playing slots, the innovations in the game these days are making it far more compelling an option.
For me, the first thing I look for is the huge progressive jackpots. Companies like Microgaming can leverage the fact that it has licensees all over the world, which means that players can be adding to these jackpots 24 hours a day. My favorite of these by far is the Mega Moolah slot, which has paid out an eight-figure jackpot on several occasions in the past.
Sadly for me, it wasn't going to give me that pleasure during my playing at Joe Fortune, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't make it one of your first stops on your journey at Joe Fortune. There are literally hundreds of amazing slots titles at this casino, featuring everything from the best in co-branded content all the way to the most classic fruit machines. Here are some highlights of what I found in the lobby:
- Atomic Age
- Aztec's Treasure
- Beverly Hills 90210
- Candy Cottage
- Candy Slot Twins
- Cleopatra's Gold
- Dog Pound Dollars
- Dolphin's Island
- Dolphin Quest
- Doo-Wop Daddy-O!
- Game of Thrones 15-Line
- Gangster's Slot
- Gifts from Caesar
- Girls with Guns - Frozen Dawn
- Irish Charms
- Iron Assassins
- Jackpot Rango
- Jacques Pot - Gourmet Slot
- Lucky Koi
- Mega Moolah
- Mega Moolah Isis
- Pistols and Roses
- Platoon Wild
- Platoon Wild Progressive
- Red White and Bleu
- Reel Circus
- Reel Crime 1: Bank Heist
- Retro Reels Extreme Heat
- Rhyming Reels - Georgie Porgie
- Scary Rich
- Sevens and Bars
- Sevens and Stripes
- Skulls of Legend
- Slammin' 7s
- Snow Wonder
- So 80's
- Spin or Reels HD
- Spooky Family
- Spring Break
- Super Multitimes Progressive
- Super Tricolor
- Surf Paradise
- Surprising 7
- Swinging Sweethearts
- Tahiti Time
- Tally Ho
- Tennis Champion
- Ten Times Wins
- Terminator 2
- The Love Guru
- Wacky Wedding
- Watch the Birdie
- ...and many more in the lobby!
Remember earlier when I mentioned that there were a couple of things that this site could do easily to improve its rating in the game variety category? Well, here is the biggest blunder of all, in my opinion. I know exactly how many versions of video poker each of the suppliers for this casino offer, so I also know how many are missing from the lobby. Now, I understand that video poker is a game typically played by a more seasoned gambler, but I am one of those who believes that if they are exposed to all the great variants, new players can become long-term fans of chasing the Royal Flush jackpots. Oh well, at least there are some multi-hand versions of the games that are offered for degenerates like me to take advantage of - have a look at the titles you will find in the lobby:
- Bonus Deuces Wild 1 Hand
- Bonus Poker 1 Hand
- Bonus Poker Deluxe 1 Hand
- Deuces Wild
- Double Bonus Poker 1 Hand
- Double Double Bonus Poker 1 Hand
- Double Double Jackpot Poker 1 Hand
- Double Jackpot Poker 1 Hand
- Jacks or Better 1 Hand
- Jacks or Better 10 Hands
- Jacks or Better 3 Hands
- Jacks or Better 52 Hands
- Joker Poker 1 Hand
- Joker Poker 10 Hands
- Joker Poker 3 Hands
- Joker Poker 52 Hands
- Loose Deuces 1 Hand
Okay, at least the site has figured out to load up on table games for us non-slots players! I like what I see here, especially when I see that blackjack has its own tab in the casino, and clicking on it reveals at least 10 different tables for me to choose from! While many of you are used to the classic version of the game, I encourage you to try games like Perfect Pairs or Zappit for some added intrigue to the traditional game of 21.
There are a ton of other great table games to choose from in the lobby, and I am thrilled that the site has Pai Gow Poker, as that is a game I tend to spend hours playing in a session. Here are the games you can find at Joe Fortune:
- 3 Card Poker
- Casino Hold 'Em
- Casino War
- Crown and Anchor
- Cyberstud Poker
- High Low
- Let It Ride
- Pai Gow Poker
- Poker Pursuit
- Red Dog
- Sic Bo
- Stud Poker
- Three Wheeler
Joe Fortune has recently launched Live Dealer games on its platform, and I for one couldn't be happier for the players at this casino. Live Casino games have swept through the industry in recent years, with multiple providers starting to deliver games live-streamed onto your devices and computers. The human element of having a dealer playing the games with you really changes the dynamic of online casinos. The interaction and the speed of the game are much more like being in a land-based environment.
Here are the Live Dealer games that Joe Fortune has chosen to launch with:
- Super 6 Baccarat
Given that this casino is only open to folks from Australia, I am surprised that there aren't more payment options available to the players. This is likely a decision that leads back to the Bodog team, as it has long been pushing Bitcoin as a payment method that is preferred. In fact, as you will see in the promotions area of this review, Joe Fortune is trying hard to entice you to use the cryptocurrency for all your deposits and withdrawals. Don't worry; there are some traditional methods of getting your money to and from the site, but maybe this is the time for you to dip your toes in the Bitcoin pool.
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Okay, now that you have seen how to get your money to the site and how many games are at your disposal in the lobby, it is time to look at the promotions to see how Joe Fortune tries to make it worth your while to be a real money player. I am going to look at a couple of promotions in detail, but I will say that the first thing that struck me is the lack of compelling ongoing offers. Maybe these are reserved for email marketing, but to me, if there aren't ongoing reasons for me to play, I may just start looking for other sites. Okay, back to the promotions I did find.
The welcome bonus at Joe Fortune is straightforward, offering you up to $5,000 in welcome bonuses over your first 9 deposits. This may be a few too many deposits to be considered a true welcome offer, but I appreciate that the site extends it out this far, especially when you consider how few ongoing promotions there are for players after this welcome offer. The bonuses break down as follows:
- A 200% bonus on your first deposit up to a maximum of $1,000 in bonus dollars.
- A 100% bonus on your next 8 deposits up to a maximum of $500 on each deposit.
One thing you will want to consider when trying to decide how much to deposit is how much of the bonus you are going to be able to convert to real money. I did some research on the terms and conditions of this offer and found that the site expects you to wager 40x the sum of the deposit and bonus to clear it. This means that to earn the full bonus from the initial deposit, you would have to be wagering at least 40x $1,500 - I am not sure how many of you have the stomach for that level of wagering.
A good VIP and loyalty program can go a long way to keeping players active and loyal for a long time. There are several keys to a great program, not the least of which is giving players the details of the program, so they have something to aspire to when they are playing. Too many sites these days hide the details of their VIP programs, making it seem like they don't even want you to be a VIP player at the site.
At Joe Fortune, I would place the VIP program right in the middle of the sites I have reviewed. I had hoped it was going to be far more aspirational in nature, like the old Bodog programs back in the day. Unfortunately, it does not appear to be the case at his casino. The program is closely tied to the redemption of loyalty points to cash and the amount of cashback you get on your losses. Both of these are excellent perks for players and make it very easy to track your overall profitability on the site. However, the value of something more tangible is typically much higher than the actual retail value, so it would be good for Joe Fortune to add even the smallest items to the program in order to improve the overall perceived value in the players' eyes.
Here is a table that shows the different levels of the program and what rewards players can expect when they achieve the points necessary to move up to each level:
|Volume||Adventure Points Required||Redemption Rate||Cash Back on Losses %|
|Escape from Maneater Isle||0||2500 = $1.25 AUD||5%|
|Joe and the Mystery Slot||2,500||2,250 = $1.25 AUD||6%|
|Joe in the Tale of the Cloud Casino||10,000||2,000 = $1.25 AUD||7%|
|Joe VS the Demon Dealer||60,000||1,750 = $1.25 AUD||9%|
|Joe and the Zombie Showgirl||150,000||1500 = $1.25 AUD||10%|
|Joe and the Devil's Game||500,000||1,250 = $1.25 AUD||11%|
|Adventure on Fortune Trail||1,000,000||1000 = $1.25 AUD||12%|
|Joe and the Magic Bankroll||2,500,000||1000 = $1.25 AUD||15%|
Here is some good news for our readers who like to play their casino games on their phones or tablets. Because the games at Joe Fortune come from multiple providers, they are built to be played in a browser instead of having to download anything to your PC. This means that the site is also compatible with the majority of mobile browsers. At this point, there is no native app available for this casino, but the games played via a device's browser are basically the same quality, with the only lag coming from a slow internet connection or an older-model phone.
Customer support in the online world is always daunting, as it seems like a black hole where emails go to die. When it comes to online casino customer service, I tend to reserve my best ratings for sites that give me the most options to reach a support team and a company that does not shy away from taking care of their clients in public forums.
At Joe Fortune, there is an entire page of the website dedicated to the social media arm of the company, where the site invites you to communicate with them via Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. This is the most aggressive I have seen a casino be with their social media, and I love what I see. You can also reach support right from the site via live chat or email, and if you really need to hear the sound of someone's voice, you can pick up the phone and give them a call. Overall, this is an excellent display of wanting to stay in touch with players, and I applaud Joe Fortune for the work they have done here.
After getting over the fact that there is no actual person named Joe Fortune and focusing on the site itself, I have to say that overall I am very happy with what I found. Of course, the big drawback is that the site is only open to residents of Australia, but what can you do? The site has an excellent pedigree, and aside from some tweaks to the game offering, the thing I was most upset about was the lack of ongoing promotions. Overall, Haydock Sports has done an excellent job with this brand.
This one is pretty easy. If you live in Australia, you should definitely check out this site. Don't expect much in the way of bonuses, but focus on the VIP program and getting your cashback and converting your points, and you should still see some positive value above and beyond anything you win.