Incredible Technologies’ Expansion in Class II Gaming

Four Questions with IT Class II Leaders

Sponsored Content By Incredible Technologies

Incredible Technologies’ expansion into Class II gaming markets continues after the initial rollout at partnered locations proved successful and yielded even more learning opportunities for the company. As the nation recovers from the economic and social impact of the pandemic, IT’s goal remains: Support Tribal casinos with the very best hardware and software possible. To reflect upon the company’s progress and future in Class II gaming markets, we asked IT’s VP of Product Development Dan Whelan and Director of Central Determinate Gaming Russell Witt to share their thoughts.

Dan Whelan, VP of Product Development

Q: In what ways has designing and developing Class II themes been different than Class III?

A: The development process for Class II themes is very similar to Class III. Where they differ are in the limitations of the game designs. Class II offers limitless possibilities for providing new gambling experiences to players. We can make any game that a designer or mathematician dreams up. Since the bingo engine is driving the outcomes in the background, what we display on the screen has endless possibilities. This is very exciting for a game designer.

Q: Since joining the floor at select Class II properties, what have you learned about their players and customer expectations?

A: We’ve learned that Class II Tribal casinos often provide a higher RTP for their players, so for us that means the game math can be more generous. The gameplay leans towards a naturally higher volatility experience. Our Class III themes have historically leaned towards lower volatility math. In Class II, we are now tailoring our math to match these new markets.

Q: What makes an IT product stand out on a casino floor?

A: When we launched our Skybox cabinet, we became known for large, immersive, easy to play games that players could enjoy for a long time. In Class II, we are taking that same experience and increasing the chances to hit jackpots in those same games to make them stand out even more in a Class II environment.

Q: How do you think IT will fit into the space of Class II in the future?

A: IT always pushes to be different and innovative. We are going to offer new gambling experiences never seen before in Class II. Our teams are working harder than ever to create a commercially successful and systematically reliable product. The development teams are pushing the envelope and we’re really excited to launch several new game families at NIGA 2021 as a preview of what we’re planning to do in the Class II market.

Russell Witt, Director of Central Determinate Gaming

Q: What unexpected challenges have presented themselves during the Class II rollout and how has IT overcome them?

Like all companies, IT faced pandemic-related challenges and the casino closures that ensued. In January 2020 we deployed at our first test site and were preparing for the second installation right when the casino closures began. IT leadership made the strategic decision to keep all team members employed during this period, so we were able to use this time to focus our internal resources to further Class II development and make significant progress on our product roadmap. We also successfully transitioned the development of our Class II system from our third-party partner to internal development.

Q: How does Class II gaming contribute to the success and independence of Tribes?

A: Historically, you can look to the Seminole Tribe of Florida who ran a high-stakes bingo operation in 1979 and the Cabazon Band of Mission Indians in the mid-1980s to see the power of Class II and the impact it has on Tribal sovereignty. Most recently, you can look to Oklahoma and issues that the Tribes faced regarding the conditions or interpretations of the compact renewals. That situation could have had a much different outcome if the Tribal gaming operations throughout Oklahoma weren’t made up of at least 50 percent or more Class II games. Tribes are also benefitting from the industry’s mergers and acquisitions that have allowed Class II games and systems to close the performance gap with Class III products.

Q: What makes an IT product stand out on a casino floor?

A: There are a number of things that make IT products stand out on the gaming floor: Edge displays and unique bank shapes, bright 4K monitors with vivid graphics and high-quality audio. All these elements truly provide an immersive gaming experience. I’ve had the pleasure of working with Dan Whelan, and you can feel the passion that he has for game design from every aspect. He and his teams turn out amazing products that create the iconic “IT experience” for our players.

Q: How do you think IT will fit into the space of Class II in the future?

A: The Indian Gaming Regulatory Act and the Class II Technical Standards were created to ensure maximum flexibility and remove limitations on technology. We’ve witnessed the technical evolution from the high-stakes bingo games of the late ‘70s/early ‘80s, to the Megamania and Megananza games from Multimedia, to the latest innovations coming to this year’s NIGA Tradeshow. Our team understood all of the nuances built into Class II development incredibly quickly, and I believe that the sky is the limit for what we can create in Class II.