The case of familiarity that has been witnessed across US igaming has continued into 2023, but it may not be long before the chasing pack poses a serious challenge on what, it could be argued, has emerged as something of a monopoly.
Nothing lasts forever and it could only be a matter of time before new trends emerge, suggested Rick Eckert, managing director of slot performance and analytics at Eilers & Krejcik Gaming.
These comments came upon publication of the latest Eilers-Fantini performance report, which highlighted that a familiar trifecta sits atop the online casino tree on a gross gaming revenue basis.
Evolution leads the way overall with a total GGR of 26.2 per cent (17.2 per cent on a slots basis), ahead of International Game Technology’s 20.8 per cent (slots: 18.7 per cent) and the 18.7 per cent secured by Light & Wonder (slots: 22.3 per cent).
Regarding what could be a perceived as dominance, Eckert looked at which, if any, of the chasing pack are most likely to gatecrash this during 2023.
“The US online casino market is still new with only a handful of states, operators, and suppliers,” Eckert commented.
“In 2022 our January report covered 18 suppliers with the top three accounting for 63 per cent of all games tracked, as of our last report of the year in December of 2022 we covered 23 suppliers with the top three accounting for 60 per cent of all games tracked.
“Newer suppliers to the market like White Hat Studios are seeing great success with multiple themes hitting our rankings.”
Adding: “Also we are still waiting for Anaxi (Aristocrat) to release games in the US which should lead to a significant shift.”
Breaking this down a little further, IGT’s Blackjack leads the way with 2.63 per cent. The table game is also joined by stablemates Cash Eruption (1.35 per cent), Cleopatra (1.2 per cent) and Fortune Coin (0.97 per cent) in the top 25.
Next in line is the Evolution Group’s Live Dealer Roulette with 1.98 per cent, with the company also counting three further live casino titles, one table game and five slots in the rankings.
The highest slot in the rundown is boasted by L&W and 88 Fortunes (1.61 per cent), which stands above countless other slots (19 in the top 25), including five from the company’s own portfolio.
In addition to the large volume of slots content, the top 25 is rounded off by four live casino titles and a pair of table games.
Onto the new game ranks, and on an overall and slots basis it is a familiar theme in a top five that is led by a new entrant, that being L&W’s Jewel of the Dragon Red Phoenix.
Mask of Amun by Digital Gaming Corporation takes the silver ahead of fellow L&W titles Lightning Blaze and Cash Calls Pirates Trove, with White Hat Studios’ Almighty Buffalo Megaways rounding off the top five.
With tried and tested themes continuing to lead the way, Eckert continued the conversation by looking at what needs to happen to break this trend, if it can be.
“Much like on the land based slot market, tried and tested themes, ‘hero games’ as I’ve heard them referenced lately, remain leaders for multiple years,” he noted.
“These games often spur copycat games and spin offs which perform well and sometimes replace the initial leading theme but nothing lasts forever and new game mechanics and player trends will emerge in time.”
On the ‘supplier mix by game category’ classification, it is Evolution that maintains its place at the summit by occupying 26.2 per cent of the space, of which 85.4 per cent are online slots.
IGT claims second spot overall with 20.8 per cent, of which 84.6 per cent are slots, with L&W’s portfolio made up of 90.2 per cent slot as the company claimed 18.8 per cent of the total ecosystem.
Slots remained the dominant segment when looking at the total games tracked with a total percentage of 90.4, ahead of table games’ 4.6 per cent.
Live casino was next in line with 2.1 per cent, ahead of video poker’s 1.5 per cent, the one per cent gained by instant win and 0.2 per cent shared by lottery and bingo/keno.
Mobile maintains its frontrunning status with the highest percentage of theo win generated at 64.3 per cent and leads across most segments, with desktop, via a theo win of 33.5 per cent, soaring ahead in virtual poker. Tablet continues to bring up the rear with 2.2 per cent.
This latest analysis examines data from Michigan, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Connecticut across 30 online casino sites, tracking 40,859 games to represent 59 per cent of the market.
If interested in learning more, subscribing, or participating in the Eilers-Fantini Online Game Performance Database reach out to Rick Eckert at [email protected].