BETER Live’s director, Anna Vikmane, shares exclusive details about the company’s experince, work approach, and goals in the near future.
Below, you will also find out how the GEO aspect influences live casino gaming products and how AI technology is expected to be integrated into the business.
What are the top three secrets that make live casino gaming so popular among players worldwide?
The first and most important is the live element. Players are drawn to the human aspect of the game and the ability to communicate with the dealer or host in real time throughout their playing session. The second is that live unites players from all verticals, from slot players who enjoy low-stakes play to sports fans who want to have a few spins on a football-themed roulette game. There is a live title for every player type and preference. Due to this broad appeal, operators are able to drive unrivaled cross-selling from live content. There really is no other product that could push a bingo player to a live gameshow or a sports bettor to a table game – live is absolutely the best product for this. Finally, live is the most flexible product in the market, and there really is no limit to the content that can be produced using this format.
Do you think that live casino gaming can eventually lead to the revival of offline casinos? Does the popularity of live casino gaming mean that gamblers miss a land-based casino experience?
No matter what industry we are talking about, online and retail can and should support each other. Take shopping, for example. It’s great to be able to purchase some items online, especially if we are busy and short of time. But there are some items that you’d always purchase in person and enjoy the experience of doing so. The same applies to live casinos and real-world casinos.
In many ways, the retail casino experience is much richer than online – the sights, the sounds, and the connection you have with the dealer and other players sitting around the table are unique to in-person play. But from the other side, with new technologies, things like the familiar background noise and atmosphere, that magical personal touch, and other factors that were once exclusive features of the land-based experience can now not only be reproduced but even enhanced in the online arena.
If a live game offers this, it can attract players from the retail casino while also pushing online players through the doors of a property and to the tables and machines located on the gaming floor.
How do preferences in live casino games change depending on GEO? Is the market an important factor in the development of live casino games?
There are some core factors that should be in place for any live game deployed in any market. The production value must be high, the gameplay seamless, and the streaming uninterrupted. But to truly unlock the potential of live content in specific markets, localization is required. This is often subtle but must go beyond simply changing the language and currency. Localization must be built into everything from the user interface to the dealer running the game. The dealer actually plays a significant part in the localization of the game – having them speak to local language is a must, but if they are a true native, they will also understand the culture of the market and will be able to engage and chat with players on a different level to those that are from somewhere else. Those that can crack localization have the potential to become the true live content leader in that market.
This is something we have done in Ukraine following the launch of our Ukraine Roulette title. Localization runs deep here, especially with the UI, which includes blue and yellow studio lighting, and with the game matrix, which includes the pattern from the country’s national dress. Players outside of Ukraine might not spot these elements – and nor would they impact their enjoyment of the game if they did – but for those in Ukraine, it is a major indicator that the title has been designed for them.
What are the top technologies BETER Live uses to provide players with the best live casino gaming experience?
There are several cutting-edge technologies that we use to ensure we deliver the best live casino experience to players. This includes high definition, low latency streaming, powerful cameras with multiple angles covered, advanced audio systems, video layer graphics, and advanced analytics and data insights.
When it comes to our game show titles, the likes of Gravity Roulette, we combined interactive hosts, engaging visuals, and unique gameplay mechanics to provide players with an entertaining and immersive experience similar to being on a live TV show.
Do you expect to see more AI technology implementation in the Live Casino category in the near future?
It has to, and we are using it already today. I don’t think there is any industry, product, or experience that won’t be impacted by AI – the real question is how quickly it will find its way into live gaming content and how much it will take over. AI could do things like shuffling the cards and spinning the roulette wheel, effectively replacing the dealer. But when it comes to live content, the human element is a major draw and a core part of the experience, so finding the right balance will be key – AI needs to add to the experience and not take away from it. Of course, AI can bring more engagement and entertainment – in fact, its capabilities are pretty mind-blowing, and I think it can be used to take the live experience to the next level.
What are your expectations from live casino gaming in the next five years?
We will see more and more gameshow titles hit the market, which will become the proper categorizing of these games. At the moment, anything other than a traditional table game is put in the gameshow category, but sub-categories are emerging, such as those for Multipliers. Take our Gravity series, for example. These game show titles include innovative Multipliers, and right now, we have Gravity Blackjack and Gravity Roulette, with more games in the series set to launch in the coming months. These are gameshow titles but really appeal to those who enjoy playing games with Multipliers, so they would benefit from being placed under a Multiplier tab within the Live Gameshow lobby. Another expectation is for some game-changing innovations to land. Such is the scope of what can be achieved with live content. In five years, there will be game formats hitting the market that we haven’t even thought about today. And that’s what makes live the most interesting and exciting game vertical.
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