In this interview with CalvinAyre.com’s Stephanie Raquel, Nick Hill of Flow Gaming explains how operators may capitalize on the popularity of skill-based games to lure young Asians to gamble.
Asia’s love affair with eSports is undisputable. Their mad love for eSports can be compared to the Americans’ passion for basketball or Latin America’s obsession to football.
While game consoles dominated Western entertainment gaming, Asians embraced PC and mobile gaming and became a hotbed for pro gamers. This is evident in global skill-based tournaments as most of the champions hailed from East and Southeast Asia.
The 2016 League of Legends World Championship was dominated by SK Telecom T1 of South Korea while the runner-up was Samsung Galaxy, which also hails from the same country. A Chinese team, meanwhile, dominated The International (TI), an annual Dota 2 eSports tournament hosted by Valve Corporation.
In April this year, the Olympic Council of Asia has announced that it will include eSports in the 2018 Asian Games and make it a medal sport in 2022.
Asian’s penchant for online and mobile games, however, has left gambling operators scratching their heads on how they will be able to lure young Asians with disposable income.
Nick Hill of Flow Gaming pointed out that operators must adapt to what the market demands to capitalize on skill-based games’ popularity of in the region.
“I think they are attracted to that via various means [like] eSports. That’s attracting them. Sponsor an eSports team, because it is a cheap form of mass marketing,” Hill told CalvinAyre.com. “You start doing that, you can then cross market your eSports play in your random-number generated casino or even your live casino. So you’ll start to attract those players. You just have to get out there and get the product out there.”
He also suggested operators focus on developing games for mobile since the prevalence of smart phones is driving younger generations’ attraction to mobile gaming.
Hill used Southeast Asia as an example on why it is smart for operators to make mobile offerings. He pointed out that mobile networks in Southeast Asia are more developed than the internet network, making mobile games more readily accessible.
“So, what is starting to happen is you are now getting a younger audience that are starting to play the games. But your RNG (random number generated) content from the various content providers is really coming to the forefront,” he said. “This younger generation are the target market at the moment because they have disposable income and they have the knowledge to use the various payment processing methods that are available to them.”