The Frugal Gambler, Jean Scott – Challenging New Post, Essential New Book

JeanScott

Jean Scott – if you don’t know the name, then you’re probably under 30, still wondering how that Space Invaders Skilled Based Slot works while waiting to pay $500 for bottle service in the club and having your ears blown out by the “oonce, oonce, oonce….” inside the club.

SpaceInvaders800 Skilled Based Slot Machine

This post is about a recent post by Jean Scott.  The Queen of Comps issues a challenge to the industry, saying

“Don’t Ignore Me Because I Have Gray Hair”

Before I share the link, a little about Jean. Jean Scott, or the Frugal Gambler & the Queen of Comps, was one of the first gambling gurus I followed years ago.  She was part of an old guard of experts such as Bob Dancer, Max Ruben, Anthony Curtis, and John Grochowski. She & Bob Dancer were Advantage Players playing Video Poker even before multi-line VP, such as Triple Play, was introduced. Jean’s expertise was getting the most out of casino comps.  Her first book is still in my gambling library, and is a staple for most entitled “The Frugal Gambler.”

But things have changed drastically for those of us who enjoyed coupon books, fun sheets, and great gaming rules.  It used to be fun to play and ask the pit boss if you earned a buffet.  Those were good times.  Looking for 2-for-1 specials, matchplay and slot freeplay were great to look for.  Some visits to Las Vegas included one day of “coupon & specials day, driving all over the valley. Now, it’s impersonal – play so much through, and the casino’s algorithm for the reward system spews out your balance which you then use swiping at a kiosk, getting a ticket. Even getting a comped drink at a bar top machine includes playing enough to get it comped.  (although, I support this change, for the moment) See our coverage of this system in a related post: Video Poker Free Drinks One More Thing to Take Away From Players?

Back to the Queen of Comps, Jean Scott.  She has been in the news, lately.  No, not TMZ type of news, but the gambling community news.

Jean was recently interviewed on CousinVito’s Casino Podcast, and coming out with a new book The Frugal Gambler Casino Guide which is a comprehensive update on the low-roller concepts for casino gambling covered in the first two Frugal books.  You can get an autographed copy on sale right now at a great website, Las Vegas Advisor. Another extremely helpful book by Jean is Tax Help for Gamblersdealing with the innumerable nuances and gray areas of gambling and taxes. For more information, visit her website QueenOfComps.com. You can also get a weekly newsletter if you subscribe like we do at NETG.

One drastic change that we have seen is the obsessive concern of how to get younger gambler (millennials) interested in slots, still the casino’s biggest revenue producing game. The seemingly clueless “throw anything at the wall and sees what sticks” strategy by the industry and slot makes is still baffling to me. (Thanks to NETG SuperFan Victoria for the reference!).

So, today, we want to share her post:

“Don’t Ignore Me Because I Have Gray Hair”

Whether you visit Las Vegas, or your local casino, and you’re 40, or over 40, (remember 70 is the new 40!) you will love this article.  Careful, it might you get riled up to the point of screaming “You go Jean, you go girl!”

Click on the link above. Enjoy.

Binbin

The Growth of Electronic Table Games in America’s Casinos

One of the first Electronic Blackjack Multiple Player games. Still can be found at Twin River Casino.

One of the first Electronic Blackjack Multiple Player games. Still can be found at Twin River Casino.

Did you ever catch yourself saying “That will never happen in casinos?”  Be honest – I have.  I thought that a complete non-smoking casino would never fly, and yet all casinos in Massachusetts gaming expansion will have non-smoking casino floors.  I also said I thought coins dropping would still be expected from players instead of paper receipts (TITO), no casino in their right mind would offer 6:5 blackjack and nightclubs were a passing fad….wow, how wrong could anyone be?

The same can be said about Electronic Table Games (or ETG). I never thought they would make such a resounding boom in the casino.  The fact is electronic table games, a traditional table game that has been converted into an electronic format, have arrived in abundance……..but, why?

Shoot to Win - one the most popular ETG Craps games.

Shoot to Win – one the most popular ETG Craps games.

The Reasons for ETG Popularity in Today’s Casino

downloadAccording to Joan Mantini of Casino Journal, there are four reasons for the army of ETGs on the scene:

  1. These machines are convenient for customers, especially those whose are intimidated by the real live dealer/player experience.  Players are able to learn new games at a pace that suits them and without the pressure of making wrong choices in a group environment.
  2. They cut costs for the casino by, (unfortunately for live dealers) saving on labor costs for the casino’s operator.
  3. Regulatory issues in certain U.S. gaming markets allow ETGs as the only allowable form of table games on casino floors.  Slots only casinos can offer ETG’s as a viable option for their patrons.
  4. Electronic table game products are attractive to this younger demographic because they have a short learning curve. ( in other words, less patience – “I want it now.”)

The ETG Player Portrait

Seats, at least two rows, on either side of two sets of dealers. Players can choose to play baccarat, roulette, or other games the live dealers are dealing. Games are shown live on the screens above the dealers.

Seats, at least two rows, on either side of two sets of dealers. Players can choose to play baccarat, roulette, or other games the live dealers are dealing. Games are shown live on the screens above the dealers. Mohegan Sun

Mantini also commented that Interblock, one of the world’s finest electronic table games company with over 25 years of  experience, “commissioned The ETG Player Portrait, its first-ever ETG player segmentation study. This report defines who EGT players are and why they are critical to gaming businesses. The results of this independent study clearly showed that ETG users play more often and longer, they have larger gaming budgets, spend more and are more likely to play games across the entire operation.” “These findings reinforce what Interblock has been sharing with casino customers: ETGs are crucial to building successful casino revenue streams and that would not be changing” said Colleen Stanton global vice president of marketing at Interblock.

However, is it worth it for the casino financially?  Not yet.  According to Megan Clemens also of Casino Journal, wrote “Gabriel Baron, general manager and senior manager of electronic table systems for Scientific Games, commented ‘…..most ETGs, so far, only attract low-stakes gamblers and wagers, at least when compared to live table games. “We know players like to play they’re favorite games, and we like to present players with their favorite games in electronic format,” he said. “So the challenge we have is to continue to come up with side bets, progressives and other original ideas that leave the main game itself available for players, but also attract slot players and younger players who are willing to accept the volatility of a wager that has a high pay out.”imagesBetty Zhao, chief operating officer for LT Game, said in Clemens’s article, “Electronic table games help provide this by introducing a table game product in a less intimidating environment, with a lower minimum bet and [allowing] more people to participate in the game.”

Basically, they are here to stay.  What may have been empty slot space could be filled with more electronic games.  ETG’s are here to stay, and trending towards an evolutionary future.

Binbin