Now that we’ve started a new year, it seems that everybody’s in a race to predict what’s next for virtual reality. Most of the major headsets were released in 2016, and now we’re all just waiting to see which types of experiences hit it big, and when. But predicting timing, with tons of developers working on VR projects at all different levels, is tricky. Instead, we want to put forth a prediction for the near future, without concern for what might be coming out in the next month or so.
That prediction is that casino gaming is going to become huge on virtual reality platforms. Depending on your perspective, that might sound either visible or unlikely. Some would say casino gaming is already popular on most gaming platforms while others would argue that there’s no place for it on such mainstream entertainment devices. Here are four reasons why VR is starting to seem like the ideal place to advance the casino gaming industry.
1. It’s Already Started
“The money is fake, but the rush is real.” That’s the line that was used to describe the launch of Casino VR Poker on Oculus Home. A free-to-play, competitive online poker game that operates with Gear VR or Oculus Rift, Casino VR Poker is a slightly updated version of Casino VR, which actually debuted back in 2015. Its graphics are a little clumsy, but it offers fully interactive poker experience that makes players feel like they’re sitting at real gaming tables. There’s a long way to go before a game like this turns into a more polished VR casino, but the ball is already rolling.
2. Online Casinos Have Already Experimented With VR
It’s nothing new for online casinos to be competitive and features live multiplayer options, but more recently some of them have been experimenting with something closer emulating real life. More specifically, they’ve started designing live dealer games in which actual card dealers run multiplayer games via video feed. Some of the top casinos have made live dealer games available on mobile devices, bringing a certain form of VR to handheld phones and tablets. This demonstrates that the casino gaming industry wants to increase the level of realism for players and that could lead to further exploration of the VR platform.
3. Real Casinos Are Adding VR
Back in December, word surfaced that Muckleshoot Casino in Washington was installing virtual reality systems in its facility. The casino partnered with VRStudios, a company that has already worked out several forward-looking alliances. This may or may not wind up moving the needle for in-home VR developments, but it’s another indication that there’s a market for video poker and other similar games on VR formats.
4. VR Isn’t Just For Kids
We wrote last year about the fact that Sony’s PS4 could become a major platform for porn, and while that won’t happen with Sony’s help or endorsement; it does make one thing clear: VR is for adults. If we start with people viewing porn and other mature content on VR devices, not to mention playing games for adults, the stigma about casino gaming could be lifted as well That doesn’t mean real money gaming will be allowed everywhere, but the idea of gambling probably won’t seem like something that should be prohibited.