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Are skill games the future of casinos?

02. September 2015

Traditional slot machines are on the decline, says David G. Schwartz, director of the Center for Gaming Research at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas; which is why many land-based casinos are eager to set up skill games on their casino floors. Today, many who have the disposable income are looking to play something that is simply far more entertaining than slot machines in casinos, Schwartz said. The realization that traditional slot machines are becoming less popular was also shared by James Murren, Chairman and CEO of MGM Resorts International. He sees a new way of traditional casinos and thinks that this will be looking very differently in ten years. Both products will look different and they will also be configured differently. There will be far more social settings, more interactive games and more social games, which allows people to play against each other, he said. For example, the younger players prefer to play on their smartphones instead of land-based slot machines, experts believe that another reason for the decline of traditional slots, is the fact that they do not have a certain appeal, such as skill-based tasks and competition.

The games that will be offered by casinos in Las Vegas will soon be more console and app-based styles and themes that will be attracting the younger audience. To this end, the Gaming Control Board of Nevada had at its second workshop in early August discussed rules for skill-based slot machines in land-based casinos but there was hardly made any progress. It requires another meeting in September at which the rule change is to be confirmed and then it will be submitted to the Nevada Gaming Commission for approval. While traditional casinos fight for the regulations to allow skill-based slot machines, online casinos are fighting to get licensed in order to be able to work at all. As repeatedly reported, online gambling is allowed in only three states of America, though more are keen to follow their example. If traditional casinos are able to offer a competitive option on iGaming in the US, that could attract more players to them, it could definitely happen, that the Internet gambling could be legalized at a federal level. Then traditional casinos have to work very hard to compete with online and mobile casinos

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