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Top 5 High Variance Slots For 2020 So Far

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Top 5 High Variance Slots For 2020 So Far
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The high variance slots market is home to some of the most exciting gameplay in the casino industry right now. The popularity of these high risk slots has been driven by talented studios like Big Time Gaming who revolutionised this niche with their Megaways™ game format, and by the exposure that gambling streamers have given the games through their live feeds on sites like Twitch.tv. High variance games are all about drama – fast, high paying action played out in big win sequences that are very irregular, but massively rewarding when they strike. In 2019 more studios jumped on the bandwagon to produce games with super-high variance ratings and big top payouts. And this year, the golden age of high variance has continued with more features and higher payout potential across the board.

So, to keep you up to date with the action so far we’ve chosen our top 5 high variance games for 2020.

 

Royal Mint Megaways™ – Big Time Gaming

Popular slot game and casino site review magazine, The Casino Heat, recently referred to Royal Mint Megaways™ as ‘the quintessential Big Time Gaming slot’, and loading it up and checking out the gameplay for the first time it’s not hard to see why. Royal Mint, which takes its inspiration from the famous London coin factory, brings together all the best features created by this Australian game developer – expanding reels creating 117,649 paylines, Cascading Wins, Free Spins, Multipliers and the Heartstopper™ Enhanced Free Spins format first aired in their Lil Devil slot. The game has a 40,000x top advertised payout, making it potentially one of the biggest paying slots of the year.

 

Pink Elephants 2 – Thunderkick

Back in 2017 Pink Elephants was Scandanavian developer Thunderkick’s take on the 4,096 win ways format used in slots like Raging Rhino. But it had a twist – aside from the psychedelic theme, there were added thrills in the free spins round where collecting glowing ‘orbs’ led to symbol upgrades, enhanced reels, and much higher payouts. It’s a game that is particularly memorable to play and continues to be popular three years on. So of course slots fans are thrilled at the prospect of a follow-up, due for release in the first week of May. The action has moved to a mountain setting and meerkat symbols are replaced with goats, but apart from that the game works in pretty much the same way, only with an improved jackpot of 10,000x.

 

Punk Rocker – Nolimit City

The NoLimit City game studio is a relative newcomer to the scene in comparison to other names, but they are really starting to make their mark in 2020. Punk Rocker is one of their best releases to date, taking its theme from the London music scene that spawned bands like the Sex Pistols. It’s full of Banksy-type illustrations of English icons too, including Churchill, drawn against the backdrop of the London Underground. But graphics aside, it’s the stacks of features that have made Punk Rocker so popular. There are Mystery Symbols, Re-Spins, two Free Spins rounds, and Multipliers and Jumping Wilds to enhance the basic gameplay and push the win potential up to 8,000x.

 

Hellcatraz – Relax Gaming

Relax Gaming, who produce their own games as well as running the Silver Bullet platform, are starting to create some really top high variance titles too. They have three Megaways™ slots under license from BTG under their belts, and Hellcatraz is their newest high volatility product. It has been designed like an 80s Atari game with 8-bit graphics and a backdrop that evokes San Fransisco Bay and the notorious Alcatraz prison island, home to murderers and mobsters. What’s interesting about Hellcatraz is the gamification format – players must collect 2,000 key symbols to unlock the bonus round where free spins come with mystery symbols and an enhanced paytable with a top prize of 50,000x.

 

Heroes Hunt Megaways™ – Fantasma Games

Fantasma Games partnered up with Relax Gaming to utilise their Megaways™ license and deliver this slot on the Silver Bullet platform in April 2020.  Heroes Hunt has a Dungeons and Dragons type theme, with Wizard and Warrior heroes who all have superpowers. Players pick which hero they want to activate at the start of the game, and others can be activated throughout. It’s an exciting enhancement to standard gameplay and with Expanding Wilds, Re-Spins and Multipliers to drive the wins, this slot is a thrilling ride for high risk fanatics. With 46,656 paylines and a top payout of 26,000x Heroes Hunt is getting a lot of attention and will surely be one of the top games of the year.

 

Industry News

Dutch Gambling Regulator to Conduct Inspections on Land-based Slots

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Dutch gambling regulator Kansspelautoriteit (KSA) has announced that it will conduct a round of checks on land-based slots during this month and the next. It will inspect machines throughout the country to check they comply with new registration requirements.

As of October 1, when the Netherlands’ new licensed online gambling market launched, land-based slot machines must record players’ visiting frequency. Rules were already in force requiring slots to record data on excessive play, a requirement introduced in April.

“The new registration obligations are an important condition for analysing player behaviour. The law not only legalises the online gambling market, but also imposes new requirements on country-specific providers in the field of addiction prevention and advertising,” KSA said.

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European Volleyball Confederation Selects Genius Sports as its Official Technology Partner

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The European Volleyball Confederation (CEV) has entered into a long-term technology and integrity partnership with Genius Sports Limited.

As part of the deal, all major men’s and women’s CEV competitions across indoor, beach and snow volleyball will be powered by Genius Sports’ leading suite of scoring, coaching and competition management solutions to drive the sport’s digital transformation.

e-Scoresheet, the preeminent live scoring solution in world volleyball for over a decade, has now been specifically developed for beach and snow, providing CEV with consistent and official match scoresheets across dozens of competitions such as CEV EuroBeachVolley, the CEV Beach Volleyball Continental Tour, and the CEV Snow Volleyball European Tour.

CEV fans, statisticians, coaches, administrators and members will benefit from Genius Sports’ leading data-driven solutions, streamlining key processes such as delivering real-time statistics to fans, digitally managing competitions and allocating referees to matches.

As the trusted integrity partner to the National Football League, English Premier League and Euroleague Basketball, Genius Sports will also help to preserve the transparency and fairness of European Volleyball from betting-related corruption. Its Bet Monitoring System will analyse 24/7 betting activity on all CEV competitions, cross-referencing real-time odds movements with predictive algorithms to automatically flag any potentially suspicious activity.

“The partnership with Genius Sports is a pivotal piece of our long-term vision to modernise Volleyball and its governance. We wish to innovate at all levels and the latest solutions provided by Genius Sports will be playing a key role in supporting our efforts to engage with our passionate fans even further and to provide a standardised, high-quality digital experience across all of our competitions,” Aleksandar Boričić, President of CEV, said.

“Providing sports with cutting-edge solutions to maximise the value of their live data and streamline the running of their competitions has been a central part of our business for more than 20 years. This approach is more important than ever for us and our partners and we are proud that our partnership with CEV will drive the growth and digital transformation of European Volleyball across indoor, beach and snow,” Mark Locke, CEO of Genius Sports, said.

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Industry News

Catena Media Reports Strong Growth in Q3

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Catena Media has announced the preliminary results for the third quarter ahead of the interim report to be published on November 17.

The company reports strong growth in revenue and adjusted EBITDA fuelled by an exceptionally strong US performance, along with an impairment charge arising from a writedown of German and French sports assets.

Revenue in Q3 is estimated at EUR 33.1m (24.9m), up 33% from the same period last year. Revenue from North American iGaming increased by approximately 124% and accounted for 51% of group revenue during the quarter.

Organic growth is estimated at 23%, or 34% excluding the now-regulated German iGaming market, where revenue fell approximately 62% and accounted for 4% of group revenue during the quarter.

Adjusted EBITDA, excluding items affecting comparability, is estimated at EUR 16.0m (12.0m), an increase of 33% and corresponding to a margin of 48%.

Operating profit will be negatively impacted by a non-cash impairment of intangible assets in accordance with IAS 36, resulting in an estimated writedown of EUR 49.4m. EUR 42.8m of the writedown pertains to German sports assets acquired between 2016 and 2018. EUR 6.6m relates to French sports assets acquired in 2018.

The writedown and consequent impairment charge reflect an updated assessment by management of the assets’ expected future earnings in the context of recent regulatory changes in Germany’s iGaming market and overall market conditions. Management regularly assesses expected future earnings in accordance with IAS 36 and may further adjust assets’ amortisation plans. The writedown will have no impact on cash flow.

Catena Media CEO Michael Daly said: “Q3 was an exceptional quarter with September revenue breaking our monthly all-time high. This was the result of our strategic investment in organic development, particularly in North America, and was supported by two recent acquisitions in the United States and the opening of the iGaming market in Arizona. The impairment charge adjusts our European business to new market realities following a review by the management team and our focus on transforming the business to reach maximum potential.”

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