A new report claims there is little evidence to suggest much crossover between the worlds of social gaming and real-money gambling. The International Social Games Association’s Digital + Social + Game = Digsogame report (read it here) concluded that social and real-money players made clear distinctions between the two sectors and that each cohort engaged in its chosen activity for very different reasons. For example, social casino games aka ‘digisinos’ lack the “motivations and reinforcers present in real-money gambling,” factors that are commonly referred to outside the laboratory as ‘cold hard cash.’
Speaking of, Eilers Research believes social gaming revenue will top $2.6b in 2014, around $500m of which will be earned by Caesars Interactive Entertainment (CIE). Eilers’ analyst Adam Krejcik says CIE is the current social gaming emperor with around 19% of the overall market. CIE’s social gaming revenue came to $115.7m in the first three months of this year, compared to $68.8m for International Game Technology’s social gaming offshoot DoubleDown Casino.
DoubleDown has made numerous deals with land-based casinos, allowing them to offer free-play online casino gaming as a promotional tool. That path has now been followed by Win, the social gaming offshoot of UK-listed online gambling operator Bwin.party digital entertainment. Win has inked a deal to offer its Slots Craze social casino title via the United Auburn Indian Community’s Thunder Valley Casino Resort near Sacramento. Bwin has already entered into a real-money online poker tie-up with the United Auburn as they wait for California legislators to legalize the practice.
As part of the social casino deal, Win says it will create custom-designed Thunder Valley games for Slot Craze, the first examples of which should arrive in Q4. Like MGM Resorts’ popular myVEGAS free-play app, Slots Craze players will earn Thunder Club points that can be redeemed for non-gaming amenities at the resort. Win CEO Barak Rabinowitz said the partnership would “offer unique rewards for engagement that bridge the gap between online and offline casinos.”