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Casino Game Makers Probe VR Market
() 04:30 AM EST - Dec,27 2017

In the past two decades since online casinos first started appearing on the web, the industry has seen many trend changes. First came virtual slots, then came realistic table games, and then came mobile casinos followed by live games offered by in-house studios and streamed in real time.
One of the latest trends that set on conquering every operator from UK's NetBet Casino to even the most obscure of online gambling sites is virtual reality games. Thus far, two important casino game companies have vowed to colonize the VR sector, although both only have games that are still at a development stage.  If you're interested in finding out more about these pioneering casino products, keep reading for the full story.

Microgaming's Virtual Reality Roulette

The first notable casino game company to enter the VR market was Microgaming - an Isle of Man game developer that was also behind one of the first online casinos circa 1995. But instead of adapting slot games to VR technology, which is what other competitors do, Microgaming instead choose to make a Virtual Reality version of their Roulette product.

The VR Roulette was first showcased at the ICE Totally Gaming event in 2016 where visitors had the chance to experience the game in person. The Virtual Roulette table was set against a space backdrop and in charge of it was a 3D robot that hosted the game and took bets. Players began by taking a seat at the table and used an Oculus Rift DK2 Headset with a Leap Motion 3D Controller that tracks hand movements and projects them on the table.

The overall experience was very realistic when you eliminate the space backdrop and robot dealer, as the game was directly ported from Microgaming's catalog of virtual Roulette tables and thus used the same RNG and paytable they use in their regular virtual games. However, VR casino enthusiasts will have to be patient to try out the game, as an official release date is yet to be announced, even though the game has been in the making since 2015.

NetEnt's VR Slots

Another big-time studio that also made a splash at ICE Totally Gaming in 2016 was NetEnt - a Swedish game maker that has been hailed as one of the pillars of modern casino game design. However, NetEnt went the other way and choose to port some of its most popular slot games instead.
The first game that gave a glimpse into NetEnt's future course was Jack's World - a 3D VR Game based on NetEnt's Jack and the Beanstalk slot. But instead of just offering a VR experience of sitting behind the reels of a slot, NetEnt expanded the world of their main hero Jack and added other areas you could explore, just like in a real console game. The same thing happened to their Gonzo's Quest slot, which is scheduled to launch somewhere in 2018. Thus, it seems that the VR market won't be firmly established for another year-two, although VR Poker tournaments are already a thing.

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