Our gambling news this week finds us in London attending the International Casino Expo, or ICE, where J.Todd is reporting from the floor of the event! Topics of discussion include Michigan online poker news, an update on New Jersey esports betting, and a look at a brand new slot machine!
Hello everyone! J.Todd here for This Week in Gambling, coming to you from the floor of the International Casino Expo… or ICE, as we call it. I gotta tell you, I didn’t know what to expect coming over because last year’s event was canceled due to the pandemic, and this year you know, there’s a war going on. So I wasn’t sure how the event was going to come off, but I got to tell you there are thousands and thousands of people here from all over the world… and hardly anyone’s wearing a mask. I normally wear a mask, except when I’m filming.
Okay, you may remember a couple of weeks ago I spoke about Michigan online poker, and how the state was considering joining a multi-state poker compact that already exists between New Jersey, Nevada, and Delaware. And now I can report that yes, in fact they have joined that compact now. Unlike traditional casino games, poker needs players. And joining these poker compacts for smaller states will make online poker viable for everyone. And now that Michigan online poker has joined that compact perhaps we’re going to see that landslide of regulating online poker, like we saw with sports betting recently. So here’s to hoping for that now.
Another thing I was noticing this week is New Jersey esports. The state just regulated esports betting. If you don’t know what that is, take a game like Call of Duty, and you have a team that plays against another team, and they could play for cash or a trophy or whatever. But now people are betting on the outcome of those games. Yes, now these are different than casino skill games. If you’ve never seen a casino skill game we have several videos for them on This Week in Gambling or our YouTube channel, so go check them out. But esports are something altogether different, and now New Jersey has started regulating esports, and we’re seeing some esports data providers moving into the American market. So, if you’re interested we’ve got some information for you on our website about esports. It could be the next big thing.
So we spoke about Esports and Michigan online poker, and I was telling you in the first half of the program that this is a ginormous event. I think that’s the correct English term: Ginormous. And I’m going to show you some b-roll now of just how big this event is. Normally I would say there’s 25… 35… maybe even 40,000 people attending this. We’re down about 30%, which is pretty much spot on for an event making a comeback. Unfortunately a lot of the slot manufacturers that I film with, to bring you the reviews, are not here. It was just logistically too challenging to get a lot of those slot machines over here, so I’m gonna have to wait… maybe go down to Vegas and film some slot reviews there in person.
But, I did want to tell you that we do have a new slot machine review out for you right now, from our friends at Aristocrat. It’s the Big Fish Grand slot, which is based on the classic spinning reel game with a catch and win mechanic, where players win whatever lands in that little box right there. And it’s a medium volatility game that comes with a gamble feature, and has a multi-site progressive jackpot. You can find the review for this game and hundreds more when you visit our YouTube channel. While you’re there, do me a favor hit that subscribe button.
So, we covered Michigan online poker and New Jersey Esports. Now, I’m gonna go get Covid tested, and if I’m negative I’m getting on that airplane, and I’ll see you guys next week.