HTC announced a partnership with gaming software provider IGT to bring its sophisticated VT technology to Las Vegas casino floors. IGT’s platform Virtual Zone, which is already available at Orleans Hotel and Casino, will use hardware and software by HTC Vive Studios.
The agreement between the two companies will allow casino patrons to compete against each other in real time within IGT’s VR environment. Its Virtual Zone uses HTC Vive Head Mounted Display and virtual reality content, which is now enhanced to give customers the opportunity to take part in tournaments for cash prizes. Unlike most VR casino environments, available in online casinos, the Virtual Zone is available through physical installations on the casino floor.
The Taiwan-based consumer electronics company announced the partnership with IGT Monday evening, saying that the combined platform will bring VR to the mass casino market. Commenting the agreement, Joel Breton, HTC Vive VP Global Content, said that VR is rapidly rising in popularity, especially in entertainment venues. Vive Studios is working with IGT’s new Software Development Kit (SDK), created for the new tournament platform. Vive’s debut game Arcade Saga, which launched in December 2016, is now being adapted for casino floors.
With the new offering, HTC is entering the casino entertainment industry for the first time. IGT, on the other hand, is one of leading providers of casino gaming software offering both online games and slots and video poker machines for land-based casinos.
Casino Gaming Has Already Embraced Virtual Reality
Gambling companies are now relying on technology more than ever and with the boom of online casinos in the past decade, in particular, they are looking into diversifying the casino gaming experience. Meanwhile, in a bid to offer a more exciting and innovative product, iGaming software providers are already exploring Virtual Reality and the seemingly endless possibilities that come with it.
IGT’s VR solution follows a trend led by major developers such as Microgaming and NetEnt who have already introduced VR-compatible games. NetEnt pioneered VR online casinos last year when they launched the first VR real-money slot, Gonzo’s Quest VR. Microgaming, another leading provider of online casino software, also came out with a VR game in 2017 – VR Roulette, which can be played with the help of the Oculus Rift DK 2 headset.
Several online casinos have also introduced VR experiences to their customers, including VR Live Casinos. However, the partnership between IGT and HTC Vive Studios is now stepping into a completely different world by bringing VR arcade-like experiences to casinos. IGT’s Virtual Zone is already available at Orleans Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas and customers can compete against each other in live casino tournaments. They can also access the game, Arcade Saga, from their homes without travelling to Las Vegas.