The online casino sector has been making headlines in the past two years due to the global pandemic causing many countries and US states to reconsider their stance on allowing games of chance over the internet. Budget shortfalls and government-mandated stay-at-home measures inadvertently spot-lit interactive gaming platforms, introducing the general public to these entertainment hubs and the latest goings-on in this sphere.
Online gambling came into existence in the mid-1990s. However, for the first fifteen years of this industry’s activity, its gaming products remained static, only slightly changing as time passed. That said, recently, on account of the ever-growing online player pool, things have begun to seismically change in this sector, as the products offered and the ways users can enjoy them are now developing at an incredible pace. It seems like, now, every few months, a new trend appears out of nowhere. Hence, in the subheadings that follow, we break down a few online casino elements that have, so to speak, changed the game.
While the general school of thought is that poker has seen its heyday come and go, many believe that the world’s most popular card game has yet to have its final say and that VR technology may be the driving force that will usher in a new era in card gambling action. PokerStars VR is a virtual reality poker game available on steam that opened people’s eyes to the possibility of playing cards online in lush 3D environments that make Texas Holdem games more fun than simply staring at a screen. Metaverses, virtual shared spaces that are now all the rage, seem to have taken note of this and are now offering VR Poker at their gaming establishments. A prime example of this is Decentraland’s ICE Poker venue, which hosts around six thousand unique players per day, generating over $7.5 million in revenues over three months at the break from 2021 to 2022.
Social casinos are software-powered platforms where users play casino-style games for fun and not real money. Their developers implement monetization schemes that allow users to buy credits and features that prolong or enhance their gameplay. The most famous mobile apps are Gaminator Casino from Funstage, Tycoon Casino Vegas from Triwin Games, and Slotmania from Playtika. These applications often act as gateways for real money gambling fun, and a few of them have gotten created by famous gaming operators. Moreover, most regular online casinos have a demo-play option, which allows them to act as fun-play platforms.
Fish Table Games
Post-2015, in an attempt to capture younger demographics, the gambling industry made a push for skill-based gaming to get legalized at brick-and-mortar locales and online. Nevada was the first region that made this genre legal in September 2015, and New Jersey quickly followed suit. Today, fish table games on the internet are a skill-based mainstay at many gambling sites, hosted in their specialty product tab, primarily supplied by pioneering slot provider Realtime Gaming. Fish Catch is their most notable entry in this gaming category. Who would have thought that out of all the potential products where expertise plays a role in game outcomes, ones where the gameplay revolves around shooting fish would gain such traction? These titles first got introduced as machines in arcades throughout Asia before moving to specific US states, where their legal status remains a bit muddy. By all accounts, Chinese Guangzhou Intelligent Game Software is the most renowned global manufacturer of physical fish table machines.
Live Dealer Game Show Products
While slots dominate online casino lobbies, they now face stiff competition from live dealer games. These are streaming options where players compete against croupiers in traditional and novel gambling contests. The live format is nothing new, but it rose in popularity post-2017 when Evolution Gaming released their first game show-like product called Dream Catcher, a version of the Big 6 wheel game. Now, everyone is trying to get in on this craze, with providers like Pragmatic Play Live and Playtech launching similar lotto-style products. Nevertheless, Evolution is the undisputed king in this field, as they are continuously innovating, mixing in RNG gameplay with live host gaming action. Examples of this include Crazy Time and Gonzo’s Treasure Hunt.
For decades, reel-spinners used the standard three-reel, three-row format. It was not until the 2010s rolled around that new game mechanics entered the mix, such as expanding grids, multiplier symbols, and diverse bonus rounds. Now, developers like Sweden’s Nolimit City are breaking new ground each month by unleashing complex slots that incorporate never-before-seen gameplay. Moreover, NetEnt and Playtech are attempting to revive VR slots, and Malta-based Betsoft is trying to jazz things up with its Max Quest series, fish table-like mummy shooters that feature slot concepts.
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