Saturday, February 21, 2015

Changes Are On The Way

Very few things change in this world without a whole lot of motivation for change. The "Who Moved My Cheese" mind set is alive and well in America and elsewhere.

The casino/gaming industry is no exception. Many of the games that are available to gamblers on the casino floor have changed little in decades. They have historically made money for casinos and as long as they continue to do so they will remain.

The issue of slot machines may prove to be the exception to the rule. The one-armed bandits of the 70s and 80s and decades before that have given way to electronic gizmos that ring, gong, toot, holler, and belch in ways unimagined 40 or 50 years ago. The switch from handles to buttons may have lost the casinos some customers but slots have continued to be the big earner for casinos - until recently, that is.

 In November of 2014 I wrote here about the dissatisfaction twenty somethings display regarding slot machines, even glitzy, computer-like ones. It seems that what they dislike is not the electronic nature of them but the "chance" nature of them - no skill involved at all. This is not what younger people are used to. Their phones, iPads, and other mobile devices are full of apps that allow them to demonstrate some kind of skill and they like that. Line up a bunch of candies; shoot down a few airplanes; skillfully build a city. They enjoy these challenges so much that they are willing to pay for the right to play on, move to another level, or buy another life.

When money suddenly becomes  a variable, smart corporations will stand up and listen.

The link below is to a very recent article on the KNPR News (Nevada Public Radio) website by Chris Sieroty detailing the efforts of A.G. Burnett, Chairman of the Nevada Gaming Control Board, to support a bill in the Nevada Legislature that would allow skill based games on casino floors.

There will be naysayers and those holding on to their "cheese," but if moves like this bring more young people into the casinos to play, not just to drink, dance, and carouse as they have been, it will become a reality a lot sooner than anyone expected.

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