Casinos have come to the realization that millennials simply don’t fancy the slot machine as much as the generations that have come before them. That of course presents grave concerns for gaming operators that rely heavily on the games of chance to make up the biggest chunk of their revenues.
The major players in Las Vegas are scrambling to find a solution, and to date, the best thing is the concept of real-money skill-based gaming. Combining elements of aptitude with pure chance, the innovative devices have begun popping up on casino floors from Atlantic City to Sin City.
This week, Planet Hollywood Las Vegas announced it’s doubling down on skill-based gaming. Already home to three Gamblit Gaming Model G tables, the Caesars-owned property says three “TriStation” units, the latest offering from the skill-based gaming manufacturer, are now also available for play.
The TriStation pods provide three gaming stations, with each screen offering six skill-based video games. The machines are operating under the Nevada Control Board’s New Innovations Beta (NIB) program that allows casino floors to test new games with real gamblers. NIB affords games to bypass certain regulatory standards during the testing phase.
In addition to Planet Hollywood, The Venetian casino also recently incorporated a TriStation.
Gamblit’s Model G tables were one of the first skill-based gaming products to hit the market. But those tables, designed to be social gaming experiences, require at least two physical persons.
TriStation allows for individual or group play, with each terminal coming with a variety of games. From a zombie shooter format, to a wordsmith game that challenges players to create as many words from a group of letters in 30 seconds, the subjects vary greatly.
Bets range from 50 cents up to $10, with top-end max bet payouts at 300-1, according to the Las Vegas Sun.
While it’s unknown just how well the skill-based games are performing in terms of revenue, the news that Planet Hollywood is adding Gamblit products would seem to hint that they’re doing just fine.
California-based Gamblit announced in May that it had raised $25 million in funding from private investors.
Caesars Bullish on Millennials
Fresh out of bankruptcy, Caesars is perhaps the most millennial-focused gaming operator. The conglomerate was the first major casino company to partner with Gamblit, and debuted the Model G devices in late March at Planet Hollywood.
Cannonbeard’s Treasure and Gamblit Poker, the two Model G games, were later rolled out at the Linq and Paris.
Caesars also tried skill-based gambling at its Atlantic City casinos, but apparently didn’t find the same success.
At least 21 games from GameCo, a New York-based gaming manufacturer and Gamblit rival, were debuted at Harrah’s, Caesars, and Bally’s in November of 2016. But just six months later, the terminals were removed from all three properties, Caesars Entertainment Senior VP Melissa Price admitting, “It was a big learning experience for all of us.”
Price said she believes it was too difficult for the skill-based devices to stand out in a sea of slots. In Las Vegas, Planet Hollywood is aggressively marketing the new devices, with monitors throughout the property displaying a video trailer showing TriStation gameplay.