As the calendar pages flip and we inexorably head toward fall, the gaming industry once again turns its attention to the annual Global Gaming Expo (G2E), its pre-eminent conference and exposition, which is taking place this year from Sept. 29-Oct.1at the Sands Expo & Convention Center in Las Vegas. As is usually the case, a lot of attention will be paid to the event’s bustling trade show floor, which will display the latest games, products, technologies, systems and services from both domestic and international vendors. To help make sense of this offerings overload, Casino Journalpresents its annual G2E Product Preview, in which top industry suppliers describe their latest cutting-edge innovations in their own words. Below are some excerpts:

CASTLES IN THE SKY

Konami Gaming’s new DUNGEONS & DRAGONS video slots mark the series’ international launch with two rich fantasy themes: Enchanted Riches and Conquests & Treasures.

Enchanted Riches is a five-reel game headlined by a majestic sun elf character. Any three or more DUNGEONS & DRAGONS symbols trigger the Dungeon Master Feature, where players have the chance to spin an extra-tall prize wheel for a chance at free games or a progressive jackpot. In addition, during the free game campaign, players have the chance to unlock additional reel sets in the upper top box for more potential wins as new D&D characters join their party.

Conquests & Treasures is Konami’s compliment debut release theme to Enchanted Riches. During the game’s DUNGEONS & DRAGONS progressive feature, players have the chance to match sets of 12-sided colored die to determine one of four jackpot awards in a pick ‘em style bonus experience.

DUNGEONS & DRAGONS offers a variety of merchandizing options, including logoed premium chairs, themed bezel complete with glowing runes, faux stone design elements, hand painted 3D dragon toppers and a variety of sign packages including one with a large rotating red dragon.

Website: www.konamigaming.com

G2E booth number: 1154

FLUSH WITH EXCITEMENT

American Gaming Systems (AGS) is excited to showcase one of its newest table game titles, High Card Flush, at G2E this year. In this exciting game, players are dealt seven cards and compete against the dealer to create the longest flush possible (for example, a seven-card flush beats a six-card flush). To add to the excitement, High Card Flush offers two optional bonus wagers with big payouts. The Flush Bonus wager is paid when players have at least four suited cards in their hand, while the Straight Flush Bonus wager is paid when a player has at least a three-card straight flush in their hand. High Card Flush is easy to learn and play for both experienced and new table game players and is sure to be a hit in any pit!

Website: www.PlayAGS.com/#tablegames

G2E booth number: 2256

THERE BE DRAGONS

Order of the Dragon from Ainsworth Game Technology features three titles—Fortune, Quest and Victory—and offers the option to play the original “Sweet Zone” or “Double Sweet Zone” for a 50 credit ante-bet. The ante-bet provides an expanded five-four-three-four-five game array and double red Sweet Zones on reels two and four.

When “Dragon” appears in a blue bordered Sweet Zone, all symbols on that reel transform to wild. When Dragon appears in a red bordered Sweet Zone, all symbols on that reel and the adjacent reels transform to wild.  When Dragon appears in both of the red Sweet Zones on reels two and four, all symbols on all reels transform to wild.  Additionally, any three or more scatters triggers eight free games with an expanded 9 x 5 game array.  For increased excitement, Fortune includes a Wild Re-spin feature, Quest contains frequent two scatter retriggers and Victory features multiplier wilds.

Website: www.ainsworth.com.au

G2E booth number: 1967

HOLIDAY CLASSIC

The best present your players will ever receive is the new A Christmas Story Slot Game, the first game in Aristocrat Technologies’ incredible new Arc Wheel cabinet.

Ralphie, the Old Man, Mom Parker, and the whole town are in A Christmas Story, a feature-rich, three-level standalone progressive video slot, housed in the sleek new Arc Wheel cabinet. Arc Wheel has upgraded graphics capabilities, 5.1 stereo surround sound, and a mechanical wheel topper that keeps players engaged during feature play.

In addition to three base game features, players may trigger one of several bonus features: Golden Twinkling Wheel of Mechanized Electronic Joy Feature; Head Honcho Feature—Bonus Gateway; Black Bart’s Bounty; The Queen Mother of Dirty Words; Sinister Triple Dog Dare; and Progressive Decoder Wheel.

A Christmas Story is a 40-line game with a 50 credit minimum bet and 250 or 500 max bet. Denoms are 1cent - $20.

Website: www.aristocrat-us.com

G2E booth number: 1141

NEW DIMENSIONS

At G2E 2015, International Game Technology (IGT) will present a comprehensive portfolio of gaming products and services across all channels, including premium content, core titles, hardware innovations, systems technologies and interactive solutions.

A marquee product in IGT’s booth pairs the most successful slot theme of all time with the most unique video slots technology of the last several years to form the ultimate winning combination—Wheel of Fortune Double Diamond 3D. Housed on the AXXIS 3D/39 cabinet and featuring IGT’s award-winning TRUE 3D technology, this must-see title boasts glasses-free 3D gaming entertainment, the classic Double Diamond symbol set and the timeless “WHEEL -OF-FORTUNE!” celebration that players around the world have grown to love. The company will also feature Return of the Sphinx 3D, a new iteration of the long-tenured original spinning reel hit game, Return of the Sphinx. Additional titles to look for in IGT’s expanded TRUE 3D portfolio include Reef of Riches 3D, Grit, Guns & Gold 3D and PLANTS vs. ZOMBIES 3D Ancient Egypt.

Website: www.igt.com

G2E booth number: 2139

PYRAMID POWER

Striking Egyptian Gods rule in Powers of Egypt, the latest Class II slot from Cadillac Jack, an AGS company. This game features Super Streaming Stacks where almost all symbols appear in stacks and in free spins one of five high-paying God symbols, picked by the player, appear in super long stacks.

This theme features an oversized Powers of Egypt symbol as wild, five high paying Gods and a Scarab as an oversized bonus symbol. Three bonus symbols on reels two, three and four awards eight free spins. Powers of Egypt has a virtual pick before the free spin bonus where one of five Gods are randomly selected to be the Streaming Stack symbol for the entirety of the free spin bonus. Free spins can be retriggered. Three or more bonus symbols award an additional eight free spins shown with an animated retrigger sign.

Website: www.cadillacjack.com

G2E booth number: 2256

FULL TABLE

CATCO Gaming is the manufacturer and supplier of the finest table game products in the industry with facilities in Chatsworth, Calif., and Las Vegas. CATCO Gaming is now a game supplier with exciting offerings like Bet’em All Blackjack and Lunar Poker which have proven to increase table revenue. CATCO has just released TableXchange to the world market. CATCO Gaming also makes the highest quality paper and plastic playing cards printed on its own proprietary custom blended materials. We produce beautiful, robust casino chips with several high-security protection options. The company can also custom fabricate casino furniture for all games with a wide variety of options, features and finishes, as well as table accessories. CATCO designs and prints the best layouts in the market, with the richest color and detail on its premium water resistant fabrics.

Website: www.catcogaming.com

G2E booth number: 4405

JETTING AROUND

Running the count room at peak efficiency yields a better ROI. The JetScan MPS 4100 multi-pocket sorter from Cummins Allison (CA), with its high-speed processing and affordability, lets you do just that. This one machine processes 1,000 mixed bills and tickets per minute, strapping currency and imaging tickets, all in a single pass. One machine, one pass and non-stop processing provide a better value for your operation. The reliability of the JetScan MPS 4100 means there’s no need for a resident technician on property, keeping the total cost of ownership low. When service is needed, one of more than 480 local service professionals will respond within hours, not days. Plus, CA inventories parts, so you don’t have to. Find out why so many casinos make the decision to use Cummins Allison for all their cash and ticket processing needs.

Website: cumminsallison.com/go/betterdecision

G2E booth number: 5047

DESIGNED TO SUCCEED

Cuningham Group provides architecture, interior design and planning services for a diverse mix of client and project types with significant focus over the last 24 years on gaming and entertainment. Using an approach they call Every Building Tells A Story, the firm explores innovative ways to solve their clients’ problems and deliver distinctive, award-winning, and profitable environments. Recent projects include the newly opened Harrah’s Cherokee Valley River Casino & Hotel near Murphy, N.C.; the renovation of Nugget Casino Resort in Sparks, Nev.; the renovation and expansion at Little River Casino Resort in Manistee, Minn.; and the new Rhythm City Casino in Davenport, Iowa that will open mid-2016. As leaders in gaming and entertainment design, Cuningham Group is also currently promoting “Casinos of the Future” and challenging clients to embrace bricks-and-mortar changes that support the evolving nature of gaming and its customers while setting new standards for the future of entertainment.

Website: www.cuningham.com

G2E booth number: 2336

MAKE A STAND

The new DFS-500 Kioskfrom DiTRONICS is an “all in-one” solution that optimizes the player experience directly at the kiosk, cage and via DiTRONICS’ digital wallet. Housed in state of-the-art hardware, the DFS-500 Kiosk maximizes efficiency through exclusive software enhancements for ticket redemption, bill breaking, ATM, cash advance and check cashing transactions. Proprietary DiTRONICS’ Vantage software options include: Transaction Rewards that integrates funds access applications directly with a casino’s player database; New SMART Dispense technology that reduces wear and tear on the kiosk while improving the player experience; and new JACKPOT Pay technology that makes jackpot pays a breeze—available on one, several or all of a casino’s ticket redemption kiosks—enhancing customer service by saving time and money while eliminating costly additional equipment.

DFS-500 also includes: dual bill validator (multiple ticket pay-off capability), greater bill holding capacity (five cassettes/3,000 notes each) and 17-inch touchscreen with eye-catching multi-color LED illumination.

DiTRONICS is changing the way players experience funds access in your casino.

Website: www.ditronics.com  

G2E booth number:  3616       

TAKE A SEAT

Known for consistently delivering superior casino seating over the last 40 years, Gary Platt Manufacturing is introducing their new X2-Tended Play Series.

The X2 Series continues the tradition of unsurpassed comfort by enhancing the performance of some of their very successful classic designs and adding an entirely new line—The LIDO X2.

With the additional ergonomic sculpting and plush toppers, the X2-Tended Play Series delivers more comfort and player satisfaction, translating into longer playtime.  Every Gary Platt chair is handcrafted to enhance the casinos interior themes while being engineered for durability and unsurpassed comfort. The X2 Series is truly the next generation of quality casino seating.

The X2 Series includes the LIDO, GX2, SX2, BX2 product lines.

Website: www.garyplatt.com

G2E booth number: 2823

HELPING HAND

Helping clients of all sizes get more is one of the many strengths of Gaming Laboratories International (GLI). GLI focuses on helping regulators, suppliers and operators get so much more than just testing, including:

GLiCloud, a modern inventory management and tracking system to quickly and instantly check regulatory status of components on the entire casino floor, all in real-time.

Verify+ by Kobetron, the simple way to maximize compliance efficiencies by replacing hundreds of other compliance tools.

Kobetron GI-4000 Gaming Investigator and Kobetron MI-300 Memory Investigator series, two hand-held tools that speed time to market, reduce human error, and give users highest possible confidence levels.

GLI University’s new and expanded curriculum is broad and varied and can be conducted at GLI or on-site at a client’s location.

GLI’s Gaming Services Division, staffed with leading security, compliance, audit and IT experts, provides the most comprehensive portfolio of services available to help you protect yourself and your casino.

Website: www.gaminglabs.com

G2E booth number: 4430

ELEVATING DESIGN

Hnedak Bobo Group (HBG) is taking design to the next level, because good design elevates clients’ business success. As a five-time G2E-Casino Design Award-winner and owner, operator and developer of its own four-star hotel, HBG designers have a distinct edge in understanding what it takes to operate and differentiate in a competitive market. Designers are constantly rethinking the guest experience, because market demographics continue to evolve. HBG capitalizes on new opportunities for innovation in casino resort design, through more diverse amenities, integration of technology, and design aesthetics often grounded in the authenticity of cultural and local context as the catalyst for discovery and experience. Our designers translate market influences into inspired, memorable designs that, combined with carefully crafted details, built-in efficiencies and well-planned execution, generates the perfect balance between beauty and functionality. Visit us to see how HBG is elevating design for our clients across the country.                     

Website: www.hbginc.com              

G2E booth number: 2036   

RESETTING THE TABLES

G2E will pulse to the brilliance of luxury gaming manufacturer Interblock. The company is celebrating 25 years of incredible innovation and landmark creations with a dazzling line of products that are current, evolutionary and revolutionary—a perfect blend of products for today’s players with an eye keenly focused on tomorrow’s players as well.

G2E will feel the energy of Interblock’s revolutionary Pulse Arena experience, an innovative way to attract players and keep them engaged in a social environment that extends the gaming experience to new levels. Pulse can be configured from a small number of play stations to an entire arena, involving any of Interblock’s games in a specifically themed setting. Interblock has its finger on the pulse of today’s players.

Interblock is also steadily and methodically releasing enhancements and innovations that take each of its ETG categories to new levels of excitement and profitability, including StarBar, Big 6 Wheel, Blackjack and Craps.

Website: www.interblockgaming.com

G2E booth number: 1239

EXPERIENCED HAND

At G2E 2015, JCM Global will mark 60 years of creating innovative and industry-leading products that have revolutionized the gaming industry and created new global standards. While celebrating the past 60 years, JCM is entering a new era, positioning the company strongly for success for the next 60 years and beyond.

 It’s fitting that leading the JCM Global team into G2E at such a momentous occasion is Hikaru “Terry” Izawa, the man who created the WBA and UBA—products that made JCM a global powerhouse. His other notable successes include the establishment of JCM’s overseas production facility for bill validators in China in 1995, and overseeing direct customer interfacing during the development of JCM’s multiple award-winning UBA bill validator.

“This is an exciting time at JCM,” Izawa said. “We have an incredibly strong foundation of core products in our portfolio, and we have a very keen eye sharply focused on the future.”

Website: www.jcmglobal.com

G2E booth number: 3633

SPIN ZONE

Spin Games, the leader in content and gaming technology for the interactive and social markets, will be bringing more smart solutions technologies, more games, more fun and more spin on gaming. Spin Games will showcase the latest smart solutions gaming technology such as Rapid Games (Class II on-property mobile entertainment); The ROC (RGS); and MIG (multiplayer interactive gaming); in addition to an array of new and exciting game content.

Website: www.spingames.net

G2E booth number: 2410

MONEY ON THE TABLE

TDN Money Systems is proud to announce their affiliation with APEX Gaming as the national distributor for the I-DROP, the latest technology for table games. The I-DROP is a table game drop system with SAS protocol that will redeem and print TITO tickets at the gaming tables. Our 2,500 note JCM stacker allows the count team to do the table drop in the same fashion as the slot drop, saving countless hours of labor prepping currency and tickets from traditional drop boxes for the currency sorters. I-Drop dramatically reduces chip fills and eliminates long lines at the cage, as table game players can now redeem their tickets at the kiosks.

Additionally, you can now automatically track player buy-in and cash-out, helping your marketing team to establish a player’s true worth.

Website: www.tdnmoney.com

G2E booth number: 2867

ANNIVERSARY CARD

The G2E 2015 marks the 30th anniversary of the WIN CARDS program from Gaming International.

Over the years, millions of new players have been introduced to the casino’s live table games of blackjack, craps and roulette with the WIN CARDS program in casinos, cruise ships, riverboats and tribal casinos.

The WIN CARDS program is designed to assist casino operators in marketing their live table games to new players. It has proven to be successful in attracting, developing and enticing people to learn how to play.

All casinos that offer live table games can benefit from this promotion that works to reduce the intimidation factor that prevents many beginners from giving the live games a try.

The appeal of the WIN CARDS promotion cuts across demographic, economic and age lines. Whether the person is 21 or 81, the enticing nature of the WIN CARDS program has proven to be an effective and cost efficient venue for casinos to use to increase their customer base and increase their gaming revenues.

Attesting to the universal appeal of the WIN CARDS program, casinos large and small have used this program to properly introduce novices to the basics of how to play the live games. Circus Circus - Las Vegas has utilized this promotion for the past 15 years. The Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino, in Las Vegas has offered the WIN CARDS program for the past seven years. The Sac & Fox Casino in Kansas, the El San Juan in Puerto Rico, New York, New York in Las Vegas and the Sky City Casino in New Mexico are some of the latest casinos to use this promotion.

Website: www.wincards.com

G2E booth number: 3435

STAYING PUT

The ultimate in funding convenience is coming to the slot floor.  The PlayOn PIN Debit table solution from Automated Cash Systems (ACS) will soon be available for slot players. The new system features the same convenience and security controls as the existing table version, but will interface with the slot accounting system to generate TITO tickets. This revolutionary system installs easily on any slot machine and does not require any additional wiring or disruption to the casino floor. The process is easy—the player swipes their debit card, enters their PIN and requests an amount. Once the transaction is authorized, a TITO ticket prints at the slot machine, the player inserts the TITO ticket into the bill validator and the credits are populated on the game. Patrons remain engaged and no longer are inconvenienced by losing their seat to access additional funds.

Website: www.acsplayon.com

G2E booth number: 1620

MYTH MAKING

Aruze Gaming’s new and exciting Cube-X platform will showcase the Goddesses Series. The three Cube-X video titles supporting the series are goddesses Aphrodite, Athena and Hera. All three of these new themes put the player in the driver seat allowing them to decide a pay line option of 10, 30, 40, 50 and 100 lines.

Two unique features included in the Goddesses Series are the Mighty Symbols and Goddesses Respin. Mighty Symbols are large symbols with a dimension three symbols high by three symbols wide, and appear on reels two, three and four only. Each symbol can appear in the form of a Mighty Symbol and any part is valid if appearing on a win line, except when the feature symbol appears.

Goddesses Respin is triggered in any base game when the Goddess symbol appears as a full Mighty Symbol. During the respin, the Goddess symbol is held and reels one and five are spun once more.

Goddesses Aphrodite features eight free games, Athena allows the player to decide how many free games he or she wants to play, and Hera features seven free games. The goddesses of love, reason and marriage are brought to life in this new, electrifying platform.

Website: www.aruzegaming.com

G2E booth number: 1356

EVERY LITTLE THING

Everi is showing off its complete casino floor solution at G2E 2015. In this new space, Everi is premiering its new first-class standard cabinet, Core HDX, and seven original Core HDX titles. Core HDX will be available November 2015 and will feature a library of 86 existing Everi titles in addition to three games developed specifically for the new cabinet. Everi will continue to showcase the Platinum MPX cabinet that premiered in 2014. Everi Payments will show off the line of solutions and kiosks that was responsible for more than 85 million casino transactions, totaling nearly $22 billion in 2014.

The sleek and modern multi-function CXC line of kiosks offers integrated and innovative cash handling solutions and critical cash access services on the casino floor. The Jackpot Xchange reduces player and personnel wait time by automating jackpot payments. Everi Compliance (formerly known as NEWave) is an award-winning compliance and revenue management system. CashClub streamlines credit and debit transactions from a single dashboard interface.

Website: www.everi.com

G2E booth number: 1116

DOMINATING APPROACH

The Dominator Curve will feature prominently at the NOVOMATIC booth and will naturally be a major attraction as it is now being launched for use in U.S. markets. A significant technology evolution of the original Dominator, the Dominator Curve extends the successful concept and enhances its attractiveness with its own unique feature: the upright 40-inch full HD touchscreen that guarantees maximum impact gaming with sophisticated graphics and sound.

Website: www.novomatic.com

G2E booth number: 2656

CAST OF CHARACTERS

Scientific Games will be highlighting its latest array of licensed games at G2E.

At last year’s show, the company announced a partnership with Playboy and global music superstar Pitbull. This year, Scientific Games proudly introduces Playboy Don’t Stop the Party! The progressive video slot, featuring Playboy Playmates and Pitbull, is presented on the ALPHA 2 Pro theatre cabinet. The game will entertain players with four hit songs from Pitbull, popular play mechanics, and a five-level progressive jackpot, including a life-changing wide-area progressive award on the Bally Cash Connection link. It’s sure to heat up casino floors!

The incomparable Cher performs five of her most popular hits in the CHER Live video slot, presented on the Pro Series V22/32 platform. A Concert Wheel awards credits and five free games bonuses: Believe, Turn Back Time, It’s in His Kiss, All or Nothing, and Strong Enough. With hit songs, a variety of popular play mechanics, and a huge progressive jackpot, this game gives players the chance to become the ultimate fan.

THE ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW and CADDYSHACK will make their slot debut on the WMS Blade cabinet. These hot new themes will have players reliving two classic and quotable films.

Website: www.scientificgames.com

G2E booth number: 1126

LOYAL SHOPPERS

Rymax Marketing Services develops and manages award-winning player and employee loyalty programs for the gaming industry’s largest properties. The company’s unique, custom-designed programs engage millions annually through proven merchandise segmentation strategies and the industry’s largest assortment of trending products from brands like Bowflex, Kate Spade, Calvin Klein Narrative, Thule and Viking.

These exclusive relationships allow Rymax to create aspirational programs that drive ROI and increase play. Additionally, R-S.I.T.E (Rymax’s Strategic Interactive Themed Events) creates an impactful experience and long-lasting impression on players by offering themes and rewards that can be customized for virtually any player demographic or geographic location.

Website: www.rymaxinc.com

G2E booth number: 3026

www.wincards.com