Regular readers of the site know that there are different types of gambling machines that appear in different markets. These include:
- Class III (Vegas-style) slot machines
- Class II/Bingo machines
- Historic Horse Racing machines
- Lottery Video Gaming Machines digital scratch-offs
Increasingly, you’re able to find the same popular game themes in different types of formats, which leads to a simple question: If you see a popular Vegas-style slot machine in a Bingo machines casino, or a lottery-run Video Gaming Machine, should they play similarly, even though the games themselves operate differently?
It’s a question I posed to Juan Mariscal, Director of Game Design at Everi, as part of my recent interview with him. In short, yes, the games basic traits (its volatility, hit rate, and so on) should be similar regardless of format.
“Players should expect the same experience as technology innovations in the Class III market has spilled over into the Class II and lottery markets,” Mariscal said. “This shift has made Class II and lottery gaming nearly indistinguishable from Class III in terms of player engagement features, speed of play, and play functions.”
Everi is among a group of companies with extensive experience in, for instance, the Class II/Bingo machine markets, and so their development approach factors in that experience, where they design games that can easily be deployed to either Class II or Class III markets. In a 2019 article in Tribal Government Gaming, Jesse DeBruin, Vice President of Gaming Operations for Everi, shared a bit about their approach.
“For a company like ours that started as a Class II company, we have a design philosophy in mind, where we’re designing for Class II and Class III customers together,” says DeBruin. “Suppliers that started as Class III might not have the same approach. Everything we offer in Class III, for the most part, we offer in Class II. That’s not always the case with other manufacturers.”
DeBruin noted this approach gives them multiple options for making a game available: “We do not have separate development teams. We design a game with Class II operators in mind, and then release it, across Class II and Class III. That allows us to leverage our game design in all markets. It gives us flexibility.”
Regardless of the approach taken, care is taken to ensure that when a game is seen in various formats, it will look and feel like the game you know and love, so you don’t have to be so worried about the format you find it in. The technology that powers the various formats out there have evolved to such that it becomes much easier to make those variations play alike.
This is also why you’re seeing popular themes pop up in more places now. Companies like Everi can build games with multiple formats in mind, and ensure their brands are well represented in each format.
Thank you once again to Juan Mariscal of Everi for the recent interview!