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VIRTUAL REALITY AND GAMBLING: WHAT’S IN STORE FOR THE FUTURE OF GAMING?

George Miller

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emerging trends and challenges facing the future of the games industry
Reading Time: 3 minutes

With games such as Destiny and Overwatch, along with sleek new models of consoles being released every other day, it seems as though gaming has finally come into its own. In recent years, the entire gaming culture has prospered, and we seem to be living in the golden age of gaming and possibly gambling.

So many of the pillars that hold up gaming as a phenomenon have grown comfortable over the years. Developers churn out first-person shooters like Battlefield between free roaming RPGs such as Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare as though they’re on a conveyor belt. This has led to gamers bemoaning the “sameness” of this year’s blockbusters, with the likes of For Honor earning mere moments in the spotlight before being quickly cast aside. What gaming needs is the “next big thing” to hit the market and shake up a landscape that’s grown stagnant over the last few months. The question is: what?

THOSE OF US LUCKY ENOUGH TO HAVE EXPERIENCED VIRTUAL REALITY AT SOME STAGE IN OUR LIVES WILL RECOGNISE THE “WOW” FACTOR ATTACHED TO HEADGEAR SUCH AS THE OCULUS AND HTC VIVE AND THE AMAZEMENT OF STEPPING INTO AN ALTERNATE REALITY.

There’s no avoiding the fact that virtual reality (VR) has arrived and it’s here for its fair share of the market. Those of us lucky enough to have experienced VR at some stage in our lives will recognise the “wow” factor attached to headgear such as the Oculus and HTC Vive and the amazement of stepping into an alternate reality. Imagine the thrill of a zombie horror, where you look around to see nothing but faint darkness around you while looking down at your own hands you find yourself carrying a gun and flashlight. This is the level of immersion VR can provide, taking gamers one step closer into the shoes of our on-screen heroes.

Fortunately, the fall in price of these systems, the creation of wearable controllers and the recognition by developers that VR is the future, have allowed games of true substance to emerge. The Lab, for example, started as a Valve Corporation play-pen and grew to become one of Steam’s few games with “overwhelmingly positive” reviews.

Of course, there’s much more to the gaming than just technological advancements. Consider developments within the games themselves: in particular, one of the most disappointing aspects of highly-rated games today, microtransactions. These are low cost add-ons that are optional for a player to purchase. Typically in the range of 50c to 5 euro, they often unlock new levels or features on mobile games, or more cosmetic features such as a new colour of armour in larger games. Candy Crush infamously thrived on these so called “microtransactions” offering defeated players another chance to play after waiting one hour or immediately at the low-low cost of 99c.

Some prefer a one-off payment for your games, while others like how microtransactions offer the opportunity to play a game after multiple smaller payments. What we can all agree is that certainty surrounding exactly what you’re purchasing is vital to the experience. Or at least, it was. Nowadays however, microtransactions serve as an innocent placeholder for one of the most toxic aspects of modern gaming, and one of the greatest challenges facing its future: gambling.

Fifa: Ultimate Team has created its own subculture surrounding gambling in recent years. Players are offered the opportunity to part with their hard-earned cash in exchange for “points,” which can then be used to purchase player packs, akin to the booster-pack style of beloved trading card games. While seeming innocent on the surface, digging deeper reveals many of the problems models such as this instigate.

The random chance aspect of purchasing packs creates a pay-to-win culture, one not usually found in games with a 60+ euro price tag. While a fraction of the player base will pay for packs, an even smaller fraction will try again if they’re disappointed with the outcome. In essence, players with deep pockets are that bit more likely to come across a Ronaldo or Messi just by throwing money at the system. It’s the monumental issue with this ever-growing trend which is really concerning: this is gambling in an environment rated ‘E for Everyone’. Children are playing these games completely unsupervised, with mammy or daddy’s credit card in hand. While that itself is a failure on the part of the parents, any system that thrives from underage gambling will need to change soon.

In the past 20 years, changing technology has completely changed the world around us, including the gaming experience and the next 20 years hold even more possibilities for change. With both exciting tech developments and fresh challenges to overcome, the games industry is certainly set for an interesting future ahead.

George Miller started his career in content marketing and has started working as an Editor/Content Manager for our company in 2016. George has acquired many experiences when it comes to interviews and newsworthy content becoming Head of Content in 2017. He is responsible for the news being shared on multiple websites that are part of the European Gaming Media Network.

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Betmotion Migrates to Patagonia Platform

Niji Narayan

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Betmotion Migrates to Patagonia Platform
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The Latin American Gaming Platform Betmotion has migrated its online gambling offering to a brand new omni-channel platform powered by Patagonia Entertainment. The mobile-first platform will give Betmotion customers an enhanced user experience.

Much of that market dominance has come from Betmotion’s sportsbook and Patagonia’s platform will build on that momentum thanks to its wide selection of world-class proprietary and third-party games.

These additional games will complement Betmotion’s market-leading iGaming offering. Betmotion now boasts of a one-stop-shop to satisfy all demand across the intricate LatAm territory. Players will be able to clearly differentiate between their bonus balance and real-money balance thanks to Patagonia’s independent wallet design.

Patagonia Entertainment’s platform will enable Betmotion.com to provide an unrivalled user experience and offering its customers a unique state-of-the-art home for entertainment.

“The first half of the year has been one of relentless growth for the business and our migration to the Patagonia Entertainment platform sets us up perfectly for accelerated expansion. Our mobile-first strategy and dedication to offering the best user experience possible is key to further success in LatAm,” Betmotion.com’s COO Luis Traversa said.

“Our omni-channel platform will enable Betmotion to diversify its offering and continue its strong growth in Latin America. We’re thrilled to welcome Betmotion as a partner and give our games extra exposure,” Victor Arias, Patagonia Entertainment’s Global Business Development Manager said.

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Wildz Casino Pairs Machine Learning and Automation with iGaming

Niji Narayan

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Wildz Casino Pairs Machine Learning and Automation with iGaming
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Wildz Casino has paired the Machine Learning and Automation with iGaming. Wildz Casino, powered by a Rootz platform, entered the gaming sector at a time when innovation and “Machine Learning” are emerging as dominant factors in this industry.

In the iGaming industry, the innovative team behind Wildz.com is leading the charge into a “Machine Learning” assisted future. By 2025, the global AI market is projected to be valued at almost $60 billion. Wildz entered the market with a perfectly functioning machine having superb player incentives and unrivalled Loyalty programmes.

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RummyCircle Names Prosenjit Chatterjee as Brand Ambassador

Niji Narayan

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RummyCircle Names Prosenjit Chatterjee as Brand Ambassador
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Online rummy platform RummyCircle has selected popular Bengali actor Prosenjit Chatterjee as its Brand Ambassador.

RummyCircle, the largest online rummy platform in India, is an initiative of Play Games24x7 Pvt. Ltd. Prosenjit Chatterjee who has spent years on the wide screen is a big fan of the popular Indian card game rummy.

“Bengali people have always been fond of card games and rummy is one of the best entertaining card games of India. I am sure everyone will love this new experience of playing the card game online on rummycircle.com with players from all over India. It is really great fun,” Prosenjit said.

The brand unveils its new marketing campaign running with the name #BhorpurManoranjan, giving a completely new fan experience to its players.

“Online rummy is all about entertainment, what we call #BharpurManoranjan. And who better than Mr. Prosenjit Chatterjee who has been the face of the entertainment industry in West Bengal for over a decade. We are very excited to have such a talented person as our brand face and hopefully Bengalis will love playing online Rummy,” Avik Das Kanungo, Brand Head of RummyCircle said.

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