If there had ever been a slot machine supermarket, it would be G2E.
Starting this week, gaming industry professionals will gather at The Venetian Expo to see, hear and touch what game makers say is the next generation of casino gadgets designed to keep players more engaged – and to spend more of their entertainment dollar.
Leaders of the American Gaming Association, the operators of G2E – the Global Gaming Expo – say quality, not quantity, will be the focus of this year’s show.
It’s the world’s largest gaming trade show, and over the next four days buyers will be browsing devices that promise to engage gamers with new technology or experiences.
Knowing the challenges of international travel during the coronavirus pandemic, AGA President and CEO Bill Miller doesn’t expect the 27,000 people who usually attend G2E all to show up for the opening. doors Monday.
“I have a firm belief that the mix of exhibiting and attending will be economically valuable and meaningful,” Miller said in an interview.
“Measuring the success of this G2E on the basis of numbers would not be important,” he said. “What encouraged me was the enthusiasm of the exhibitors. It has been two years since they have been able to show live new technologies, new platforms and new entertainment. This is something that you cannot duplicate in a Zoom call.
And many participants agree.
“It’s a big deal this year, considering we didn’t have a G2E in person last year,” said Mike Gatten, senior vice president of slots strategy for MGM Resorts International. “There’s something to be said about being able to hold your hand and actually play the games and touch and feel and experience that stuff in a more physical environment. It is still the renowned video game show and it is their grandfather.
Gatten is one of those with the power to make purchases, and he and a contingent of MGM slots managers will be at the show that opens Tuesday, looking for devices that will engage customers.
One of the features that Gatten likes the most about G2E is that he can shop around and also gets to see offers from small businesses that may not have their headquarters in the south of the country. Nevada. It is easy for him to see the latest trendy machines by visiting the showrooms of IGT, Scientific Games, Aristocrat and a host of others with a solid presence in Las Vegas.
Back to normal
“It is important that G2E performs this year, especially as the industry continues to be a leader in providing health and safety measures for its guests and staff,” said Brendan Bussmann, director of government affairs for Global Market Advisors, based in Las Vegas.
“It’s time to start bringing things back to normal and come out of the big shutdown. I look forward to meeting the colleagues who will be able to come to the show this year. It is however unfortunate that many of our international friends were not able to join us this year even though they were vaccinated and under the same protocols as us here. “
Thus G2E is a commercial center for the gaming industry and a gathering place for professionals. What else?
Miller said it was an opportunity to discuss industry issues and bring in speakers to discuss important topics.
“It’s not a token event,” Miller said. “There will be conversations about the growth of the industry, including sports betting, digital payments, and payments modernization. The gaming industry is also a leader when it comes to inclusions, and we’ll have a dedicated panel for that.
Tuesday afternoon there will be a panel on how casino companies can prioritize diversity. The three speakers are Jyoti Chopra, Head of Human Resources, Inclusion and Sustainability of MGM Resorts International; US Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Suzanne Clark; and Marriott International Senior Vice President, Multicultural Affairs, Social Impact and Business Advice Apoorva Gandhi. Contessa Brewer from MSNBC will be moderating the discussion.
On the same day, Miller will deliver a state of the industry speech, and Governor Steve Sisolak and Rep. Dina Titus, D-Nev., Will take the stage to discuss recovery from the pandemic.
A panel on Wednesday will feature Brewer moderating a session with CEOs of three companies speaking on several industry topics, with the participation of Bill Hornbuckle of MGM Resorts International and Matt Maddox of Wynn Resorts Ltd. The tribal perspective representative will be Jim Allen of Hard Rock International, whose company is operated by the Seminole Indian Tribe of Florida.
The main parade ends Wednesday with Miller’s interaction with Arizona Cardinals owner Michael Bidwill.
“It’s a great lineup of speakers, and I think that’s because there’s a lot going on in the industry and we’ve clearly been through a pretty tough 18 months,” Miller said.
There may even be a celebrity or two.
Wheel of Fortune star Vanna White is expected to host a celebrity charity slots tournament where $ 15,000 will be donated to multiple causes. It’s all part of IGT’s celebration of the “Wheel of Fortune” slot brand turning 25 this year.
“It’s game time”
But at the end of the day, it’s mostly about the massive display of new slots, table games, and other devices.
“Our theme is ‘It’s time for the game’. I think it’s a really, really appropriate theme for us because I think it’s a really big year for the products we’re going to show, ”said Nick Khin, IGT COO for games.
“This year is a special year because many of the products and solutions that we are going to present will have a big impact on the market in general over the next few years. “
Khin expects the firm’s Diamond RS firm to be the topic of conversation.
Diamond RS, making its global debut at the show, is a mechanical reel cabinet that retains player-favorite features, including Diamond Glass, which can overlay video elements on the reel window.
Cabinets are a big part of IGT’s business – with an emphasis on the “big” – with the company showcasing its Peak65 cabinet with a “Wheel of Fortune” game. It is part of IGT’s Peak hardware family in which the number represents the screen size, in this case, a 65-inch screen that is progressively curved.
Meanwhile, Scientific Games Corp. plans to focus on the future of gaming with its display of content and iGaming platform with a mix of popular games, its Wall and Kascada cabinets, and its Player Boutique and iView player engagement systems.
“Excitement has been building for months now that our teams have developed a line of products to showcase this year at G2E,” said Barry Cottle, President and CEO of Scientific. “After months of virtual gatherings, we’re ready to safely get together and show everyone what we’ve been working on.”
Other companies have big plans.
Aristocrat Gaming will present new evolutions of its Mighty Cash Ultra 88 and Gold Stacks 88 and new innovations of Jackpot Catcher, Triple Supreme and Wild Fireball Rumble.
JCM Global will showcase customer experience enhancements with its DSS Flex and DSS Max R video walls, secure invoice validators, Gen5 thermal printers and an assortment of high-speed cash transaction systems.
Gary Platt Manufacturing will showcase its seating solutions to maximize customer comfort. The company has delivered some of its most recent work to Resorts World Las Vegas.
“As they say, ‘The show must go on.'” Said Bussmann. “Now is not the time, even with the current restrictions put in place by the governor, to push back on G2E, not to host meetings and conventions when they can take place in a safe environment. It’s a vital part of the Las Vegas economy, and the industry must maintain its leadership in showing how other sectors can follow suit.
The Review-Journal is owned by the family of Dr Miriam Adelson, the majority shareholder of Las Vegas Sands Corp., which operates The Venetian Expo.