Slot-machine suppliers across the board are introducing new products into the regional market claiming they have ‘Asian appeal’. But it is easier said than done, four industry executives told a conference panel session at the Global Gaming Expo (G2E) Asia, which ends today.
“Getting the maths right for Asia is probably the most important thing,” said Ken Jolly (pictured, first from left), vice president of Bally Technologies Inc’s SHFL entertainment (Asia) Ltd subsidiary. “Designing games is the hardest thing to do.”
“The adaptation to each market is very important,” added Takahiro Usui (pictured, first from right), senior general manager of Aruze Gaming Macau Ltd and with responsibility for major Asian markets.
The Philippine market is a case in point, Mr Usui said. Successful products for the top tier of the market are quite similar to those which work well in Macau, including features like high volatility and linked jackpots. But on the lower end of the market, players in the Philippines are looking for more entertainment-based games, he added.
Sabby Gill (pictured, second from left), senior vice president for international sales at International Game Technology (IGT), agreed. “It comes down to making sure the content is appropriate to each individual market,” he said.
Mr Gill noted the importance of understanding player demographics and segment of play – mass or VIP.
Peter Johns (pictured, second from right), vice president for electronic games at casino-resort Galaxy Macau, highlighted the importance of regular jackpots. Otherwise, he said, players will get turned off. Mr Johns said jackpots at Galaxy Macau are set to go off on average every 45 days.
Mr Usui said the slot of the future may well be a hybrid solution combining pure electronic games with electronic table games, a segment quite popular in several Asian markets. “That is the challenge manufacturers need to address … to create something new, not categorised,” he said.
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Ambrose So Shu Fai
Vice-chairman and chief executive at Macau casino operator SJM Holdings