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Review ICE TOTALLY GAMING ONE STEPPER AT


A TIME - ARUZE Aruze Gaming America is a growing force on European slot floor with some big orders in France, Portugal and Northern Cyprus looking to pave the way for more


“Last year was our first year exhibiting at ICE for some six years and whilst in all honesty we were testing the waters, we have been staggered by our sales in Europe which have exceeded all expectations,” said Albert Yu, Assistant General Manager responsible for Asia and European Operations. “As such, we’ve had to double the size of this year’s stand. French operator Partouche has rolled out our games across all of its French casinos, we have banks of 15 machines in five casinos in Northern Cyprus and we will begin to install in Portugal at the start of March. Whilst we are looking to move one step at a time, we are looking to increase our market share in Germany, Italy, Austria and Switzerland over the coming year.”


The reason for Aruze’s instant success in Europe is clear; it is offering something new or rather something old with a new spin with its collection of steppers.


“The vast majority of our European orders have involved steppers,” Mr. Yu confirmed. “We have a very unique product with innovative and exciting play mechanics that are much loved by players favouring steppers.”


The G-Series of video products was led by the


Ultra Stack series of games, which randomly stack groups of symbols, including wilds, for big wins. New Ultra Stack titles include: Ultra Stack Diamond, Ultra Stack Bison, Ultra Stack Vampire Night, and Ultra Stack Feature Rose.


Mr. Yu said: “These themes are among the hottest games in the industry and are performing partic- ularly well in the United States and in Macau.”


Aruze also introduced the stand-alone progres- sive versions of Ultra Stack Diamond Jackpot, Ultra Stack Panda Jackpot, and Ultra Stack Vampire Night Jackpot. Other G-Series games showcased included Wolf 500G, Dragon 500G, King Eagle, and Hungry Bear.


Aruze also introduced the latest stepper titles that will be added to its Innovator library of games. These feature Radiant Reels-a revolu- tionary spin on stepper technology, designed with large reels, dynamically illuminated multi- coloured LED lights, and variable spin speeds; all


monitor’s bonus event to morph the reel display into and out of various awards or bonuses using creative lighting technology and innovative play mechanics. Break the Bank, Double Jackpot, Double Nutty Jackpot, Red Eye Nickels, Rooster Riches and Rose Chance will also be on display in the 3-Reel Innovator Series.


“We also decided to show Lucky Big Wheel from the G-Station product line at this year’s show,” Mr. Yu added. “This has generated a lot of interest with operators from Romania, Bulgaria, the UK and Ireland and so will hopefully open the doors to these markets.”


Aruze’s Albert Yu with Platinum Jackpot at ICE.


of which combine to build player anticipation for winning combinations. The Innovator Deluxe platform, with eye-catching top boxes, expands to include Ultimate Diamond, Platinum Jackpot, and Mystical Egypt. The standard Innovator series with 5-Reels welcomes several new themes to the family such as Circus Clown, Howling Wolf, The Great Inca, and the new 4+1- Reel game Golden Frontier featuring the Extra Reel.


The 5th Reel in Golden Frontier utilises a multi- action Extra Reel that interacts with the top


Lucky Big Wheel is a multi-station capable of offering five to 50 stations, electronic table game version of the Big 6 Wheel, where players have the opportunity to spin the wheel to win. Each Lucky Big Wheel is equipped with a lever, by pulling it; players can spin the giant wheel and determine their own fate.


“Between the lever and the big wheel, Lucky Big Wheel is an extremely interactive product, unlike any other game currently on casino floors,” Mr. Yu explained. “We’ve also brought a new ETG to London in Sic Bo to prove the variety of our product offering. Whilst it is very popular in Asian markets, there are many jurisdictions throughout the world that cater to Asia players.”


GSA MAKING PROGRESS ONLINE


The Gaming Standards Association is spreading its sphere of influence beyond land-based to the online sector


The Gaming Standards Association was in London with the ultimate aim of developing global standards for the online gaming side of the industry.


The recent addition of Playtech as a platinum member should pave the way for more online gaming companies to come on board and lend their expertise to the process.


GSA President Peter DeRaedt said: “Playtech joining the association will be a driving force supporting our strategic plan and ensuring the association’s continued relevance within the industry. As a Platinum member, and with their vast experience and knowledge in the interactive gaming market, Playtech will take a leadership role in our Online Gaming Committee (OGC). The OGC is just beginning its efforts to create online gaming standards, and GSA encourages like-minded businesses to join


GSA’s Ethan Tower and Peter DeRaedt.


us so that they, too, can provide direct input into the future of online gaming. We are inviting more online companies to come forward and participate fully in the process of piecing together online gaming standards. Many of today’s devices and systems on the trade show floor are powered by GSA standards. This is a testament to the success of our land-based standards. Now as online gaming continues to grow globally, it is important for the industry to bring the relevant standards to this critical area as well.”


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