Niche gaming segments have certainly occupied an increasing amount of attention through 2023, with crash games arguably being one such example that has exploded in popularity, despite inhabiting a place within the ecosystem for quite some time.

However, how is this enhanced popularity best utilised within the retail environment? Enter NSoft, which is hoping to achieve exactly that.

In the first of a two-part CasinoBeats special, Josip Vrbic, Managing Director for Seven Games at NSoft, elaborates on why this genre is a prime candidate to be retail hit, how to best tailor crash games to this space and, perhaps most crucially, the impact that this could have on acquisition and retention.

CasinoBeats: NSoft is looking to utilise the growing appeal of crash games in a retail environment. Could you talk us through the current standing of this genre within this space?

Josip Vrbic: Crash games have firmly established themselves as a popular segment in the online betting and gambling space, recognised for their dynamic gameplay and engaging user experience. 

At NSoft, we recognise the potential of these games and are actively working to translate their appeal into the retail environment.

The retail betting sector, historically, has been somewhat inert, primarily constrained by limitations such as restricted space, a limited number of available TVs, and often, the use of outdated equipment. 

“Our goal is to merge the proven appeal of crash games in the online realm with the unique dynamics of the retail setting”

As a result, players in this space have been engaging with the same virtual games for several years. We see a significant opportunity here to innovate and disrupt the traditional retail betting landscape.

By introducing crash games into retail environments, we aim to revitalize the player experience, offering something fresh and exciting that breaks away from the usual offerings. 

Our goal is to merge the proven appeal of crash games in the online realm with the unique dynamics of the retail setting.

CB: Why do you believe that this genre lends itself to retail success?

JV: This is not a novel concept. Crash games have established a dedicated user base in the online sphere. This existing popularity serves as a strong foundation for their introduction into retail settings.

One of the most appealing aspects of crash games is their simplicity and accessibility. Known for their straightforward gameplay, these games are easily approachable, making them suitable for a broad audience. 

In a retail setting, where quick and engaging experiences are crucial, this ease of play becomes an even more significant advantage. It allows players, regardless of their experience level, to quickly understand and enjoy the game, thereby attracting more customers.

Additionally, the allure of potentially winning big is a fundamental draw for players. Crash games often offer the excitement of significant wins, which is a major motivator for both seasoned and casual players. 

“…the social component of crash games is also adjusted to better fit the retail environment”

This aspect, coupled with the established popularity and accessibility of the genre, positions crash games as a promising addition to the retail betting environment.

CB: Are there any nuances that will tailor crash games to the retail environment that may not be evident in the online space?

JV: One of the key adaptations we’ve made concerns the cash-out mechanism. In the online space, players can cash out instantly, a feature that’s not directly translatable to the retail setting. 

To address this, we’ve restructured the game to suit the cash-out processes typical in retail environments, ensuring a smooth and intuitive experience for players.

Another important modification is the extension of game rounds. Retail players generally require more time to place their bets, as the process of paying for tickets is not as instantaneous as online betting. 

By slightly lengthening the duration of each round, we ensure that retail players have adequate time to participate without feeling rushed, thus maintaining the game’s accessibility and appeal.

Additionally, we’ve introduced a bonus game feature to enhance the excitement and engagement level. This addition is designed to provide an extra layer of entertainment, increasing the game’s appeal and potentially attracting a wider audience.

Finally, the social component of crash games is also adjusted to better fit the retail environment. Our adaptations take into account social dynamics, ensuring that the game remains engaging and enjoyable in a group setting, enhancing the overall experience for retail players.

“The possibility of significant wins in crash games is a major draw for players”

CB: In your opinion, what makes these games so engaging and effective for acquisition? And what about the impact of this segment when it comes to player retention?

JV: The engaging nature and effectiveness of crash games for player acquisition, as well as their impact on player retention, can be attributed to several key factors:

Social Aspect and Gamification: Crash games inherently promote a social gaming experience, which is a significant draw for players. The communal aspect of watching the game progress and deciding when to cash out creates a shared excitement among players, enhancing the overall experience. The gamification elements, such as leaderboards and achievements, further increase engagement and encourage friendly competition.

Simplicity and Accessibility: The straightforward nature of crash games makes them incredibly accessible to a wide range of players. This simplicity ensures that new players can quickly understand and participate in the game, reducing barriers to entry and making these games appealing to both experienced and novice players.

Excitement and Engagement: The inherent design of crash games, with their escalating tension and the decision-making required for cashing out, creates a high level of excitement and engagement. This thrill of potentially winning big keeps players on the edge of their seats, making each round both exhilarating and memorable.

Quick Play Sessions: Retail environments particularly benefit from games that can be played in short sessions, and crash games fit this requirement perfectly. Each round is concise, offering players the chance to engage in quick, yet satisfying gaming sessions. This makes them ideal for customers who are on a short break or waiting, as they can enjoy a complete gaming experience in a limited timeframe.

Big Win Potential: The possibility of significant wins in crash games is a major draw for players. This potential for high rewards adds to the game’s excitement and can be a powerful tool for both attracting new players and keeping existing ones engaged and returning.