A fixture of the US industry events lineup, the annual Indian Gaming Association tradeshow and convention gathers tribal leaders and casino executives to network and exchange industry-specific insights and ideas. For Konami Gaming, the latest edition, which took place April 21–22 in Anaheim, California, marked a very special occasion to showcase the company's latest developments, including the debut premiere of the multi-game edition of All Aboard on Konami’s big-screen DIMENSION 75C.
"Since the earliest days of the company, tribal gaming has been core to Konami’s business," Konami's Tom Jingoli, Executive VP & COO, tells Yogonet in a new interview. "Our participation in both the casino games and systems sectors is heavily connected to needs and trends out of the tribal markets we’re proud to serve."
In this post-IGA conversation, the executive reflects on products unveiled at the expo -which also include latest game releases on the DIMENSION line and the world’s first BattleBots slot machines-, the growing interest in cashless technology and expectations for the US market.
The company has recently participated in the Indian Gaming Association tradeshow and convention. How would you describe Konami’s presence at the expo and what are the main takeaways from the event?
As with any other show, our goal for this year’s Indian Gaming Tradeshow was to present Konami’s latest advancements, allow operators to try them first-hand, and meet one-on-one with customers to discuss their goals, needs, and ideas for the years ahead.
Konami’s presence at the expo was focused on supporting continued tribal growth and success, through a mix of top-performing games and systems technology. This year’s show marked the industry world premiere of Konami’s multi-game edition of All Aboard, on our big-screen DIMENSION 75C.
In addition, Konami’s SYNKROS casino management system team hosted a marathon of live demonstrations throughout the event—showing top features aimed at cashless, cardless, player convenience, and other improvements to the overall player experience.
DIMENSION 75C with All Aboard Gold Express
Besides the aforementioned products, what other advancements were presented at the expo and what was the reception to the offerings like? Which are the ones that drew the most attention?
Many were curious about the latest game releases on the DIMENSION line—which has consistently delivered strong-performing software options to the casino floor like All Aboard, Ocean Spin, Lucky Envelope, and Fortune Mint, to name a few. We see that momentum continuing with upcoming series like Bull Blitz. A proven successful Konami slot now live in Australian markets, Bull Blitz is set to make its North American debut on DIMENSION 49J later this year, with a credit collection retrigger mechanic called “X-TRA HIT”.
All Aboard multi-game was a central attraction as well, situated front and center in the booth across DIMENSION 75C’s 75-inch curved screen. Konami’s 2022 display also featured the world’s first BattleBots slot machines, based on the popular robot combat sport and reality TV show broadcast in over 150 countries. This premium linked series is targeted for both DIMENSION 49J and DIMENSION 75C.
What presence does the tribal market have within Konami’s operations at the moment? What are the current demands of the sector, and how do the company’s products support this industry?
Since the earliest days of the company, tribal gaming has been core to Konami’s business. Our participation in both the casino games and systems sectors is heavily connected to needs and trends out of the tribal markets we’re proud to serve.
At this time, we’re seeing a high degree of interest in cashless technology, among players and operators. Konami’s SYNKROS casino management system has offered this technology for many years, and it’s important that we look to give our players options in order to be competitive to other entertainment that customers enjoy.
And Konami’s current games offering is delivering top performance for both the premium lease and core for-sale categories. Our award-winning DIMENSION 49J is the launchpad for some of the industry’s most popular premium series like All Aboard and Ocean Spin—both of which continue to expand with additional base game titles. On the for-sale side, our DIMENSION 49 cabinet has ranked the industry’s #1 Top Indexing Cabinet – Portrait for four straight months, with industry-leading series such as Fortune Mint and Triple Sparkle.
What can you tell us in regards to face-to-face discussions with industry members at the event?
From what we’ve seen with the success of original new series such as All Aboard, Ocean Spin, Fortune Mint, and more, players are looking for fresh games with new experiences. Guests are returning to the casino with a desire to explore different game play entertainment, which we’re happy to support through additional new series and follow-up brand extensions.
The US casino sector has been delivering record figures as of late, showing a healthy land-based industry, even posting new all-time high revenue in March. What are your expectations and next goals for the market?
Konami’s focus is reaching more players and properties with proven casino entertainment and technology, to create important wins for customers during this time. We have some of the industry’s top entertainment—from a #1 ranked portrait cabinet, to standout slot series like All Aboard—and we’re committed to delivering that value, live to casino floors.
What other industry events will we be seeing Konami attend in the near future?
This fall Konami will deliver a wide mix of fresh games and systems tech at G2E Las Vegas.