Atlantic City Game Changer: Skill-based gaming

Some new, skill-based game could soon be coming to Atlantic City casinos.

Some new, skill-based game could soon be coming to Atlantic City casinos. (3/31/16)

ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. - As many Atlantic City casinos struggle to bring in profits, game manufacturers are coming up with new ways to get younger visitors to gamble on the casino floor.

Experts say that many millennials stay away from slot machines and stick with casino games like poker. Many others ignore the casino games all together and frequent the casino night clubs instead.

The manufacturers have now started to bring new elements to the games that rely more on skill than chance.

"These people grew up playing X-box, they play the first-person shooter games. They play Mario Bros. or Mario Kart or other racing games," says Eric Weiss, with the New Jersey Department of Gaming Enforcement.

Some of the new "hybrid slot machines" feature bonus rounds that the player controls with a joystick.

New York-based company GameCo is testing a racing game that would be the first 100 percent skill-based betting videogame. Game testers say that it is only a matter of time before similar types of games enter the casino market.

"If manufacturers come up with a way to monetize those games, it's going to be a homerun," says Weiss.

Experts do say that the challenge now becomes how to balance a skill-based game payout with the promise to a casino that they'll still make money.

As with all games that enter the Atlantic City casinos, the new, skill-based games will be tested at the Department of Gaming testing lab to make sure they are fair.

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