In the latest series of SlotBeats Spotlight, we take a closer look into the online world of branded slots. These titles range from movies, music to books yet how effective are they for operators to tap into an already established fan base?
In the penultimate episode, we asked our experts on which brand is the most attractive for slots and if they see a difference in various markets.
Which brand category is the most attractive for slots? Is there a variety from different markets?
Simon Hammon, Relax Gaming: Naturally, you want a brand that taps into a nostalgic or positive familiarity that can be worked into an effective narrative within the game. This is often best done with films, tv shows or music.
Given the increasing market segmentation of the industry, localised branded content has also emerged as an effective trend in terms of player acquisition and these games are likely to become more prevalent in the coming years.
Uri Cohen, Skywind Group: There is no specific category of brand that can claim superiority over any other.
Attractiveness like in all things changes with the audience and your market. Each game we make is made with that deep understanding, which is why each game has unique features and attributes that speak to their markets.
As stated previously, it all depends on the strength of the brand. At Skywind Group, we make smart use of our branded titles by making sure that we understand who their target audience is and crafting the game to fulfill the spirit of the brand. It’s true when adapting books to movies, and it’s true when adapting games to new genres, like we did with Resident Evil.
It’s as true when adapting Hollywood treasures like The Magnificent Seven, as it is when adapting market-specific series phenomenon like La Casa de Papel and Old Master Q, or sports games and icons like we did with Lothar Matthäus – Be a Winner.
As you see from our examples, there absolutely is a variety of brands from and for different markets. Brands can be international hard hitters, and they can be local treasures. Providing branded games means providing access to that which players love in a new and exciting way.
Carl Ejlertsson, NetEnt: From music icons to TV series that have spanned decades, we aim for brands that represent content which has been consumed over a long period of time. A single movie title wouldn’t be as attractive as a band that has developed a loyal fanbase over many years, for example. Substance is important too.
The content has to offer enough material for our developers to be creative and invent
mechanics and features that suit the brand. NetEnt’s most popular branded games of all time are Guns ‘N’ Roses Video Slots and Narcos, both of which provide adrenaline-packed themes that are well suited to the slot format, as well as an established audience.
We also look for branded games that work nicely in a package, such as our NetEnt Rocks: the tour, which includes Jimi Hendrix and Motörhead alongside Guns ‘N’ Roses.
Catalin Bratosin, Pragmatic Play: It’s not so much about what the category is but about finding a good fit between a theme and the slots space. All global brands, whether they’re in sports, TV, video gaming or whatever else, have the potential to work as a slot, but some are definitely more suited than others.
We factor that into our decision-making processes when we seek out these licences to ensure we can generate the most added value to players and complement the brand as best we can.
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