It is not uncommon for a particular Global Gaming Expo (G2E) to be dominated by an emerging product trend or news event. At last year’s G2E, all aspects of the show (sessions, tradeshow floor, networking events) were focused on all things sports wagering, not surprising given the judicial overturn of the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) earlier in 2018 and the rapid state-by-state legalization of sports wagering that took place and is continuing to do so. Others years have seen the gaming industry collectively coalesce at G2E over issues such as California tribal casinos and Millennial gamblers (and the lack thereof) or potentially game-changing products like server-based gaming and skill-based slots.
Well, I’m here to tell you—at least from my perspective—that there was no one single item or issue casting a shadow of G2E 2019. Instead, it was very much an infill show, where educational opportunities and product introductions helped evolve recent trends instead of setting new ones. As you would expect, sports betting was still a popular topic among both attendees and gaming suppliers, who continued to introduce and showcase a plethora of support products. The trend toward progressive and persistence slot mechanics continued to resonate, with plenty of new game prototypes along these lines on display at vendor booths. The analytics revolution continued apace, with multiple new software and systems introductions and improvements.
Also showing strong on the G2E floor were table game products and technology, a sign that the recent resurgence in table game popularity and play shows little sign of abating. Here are a few of the table game-oriented items that caught my eye:
Bonus Spin Xtreme—AGS
AGS continues to creatively innovate in the table side bet and display space. Showcased in the company’s G2E booth was the new Bonus Spin Xtreme, a pioneering progressive side bet system that can link all table-game progressives in the casino and innovatively uses three concentric wheels to reward all participating players with a prize—something never before available for community-style games like roulette, baccarat, and craps, according to press materials. Also noteworthy was AGS’ STAX Progressive 2.0, with new O-WAP functionality and seasonal themed backgrounds.
GM Atlas—Scientific Games
Constantly evolving progressive jackpot play mechanics are all the rage in slot machines, so why not bring the excitement over to table games? That is what Scientific Games has done with its GM Atlas, a next-level progressive operating system. The system offers new bonus and jackpot options and the ability to configure must-hit-by and random mystery prizes, according to a press release. Also new at the Scientific Games booth was its redesigned Quartz electronic table game (ETG) cabinet. Quartz displays up to eight games concurrently on an immersive 26.5-inch LCD HD player touchscreen.
Fortune Cup Derby Deluxe—Konami Gaming
I have been a fan of Konami’s Fortune Cup horse racing-inspired table game since it debuted in 2016, and it’s good to see that the company continues to refine the concept. For those unfamiliar with the Fortune Cup, it consists of 10 total betting stations around a mechanical horse track. Each betting station is equipped with a 27-inch HD touchscreen, which provides the primary interface for players to manage their bet placement, discover their outcome, and view data on recent races and individual horses. Fortune Cup Derby Deluxe streamlines the betting interaction, making it easier for players to track and understand. It also adds side bet opportunities and 2x multipliers to keep players engaged and energized over time, according to a press release.
Here’s hoping there will be new table games fare in G2Es to come.