In the concluding episode of SlotBeats Spotlight’s delve into slot design, we looked into responsible gambling and how developers can alter its slot creation process and be redesigned to protect players.

How do you think slots can be redesigned to adhere to responsible gambling guidelines and protect the player?

Ivan Kravchuk, Evoplay: One clear example of demonstrating responsible gambling in slot design is implementing pop-ups with the size of the win or loss from the session, so that the player can control their actions and make decisions consciously. 

On the part of game designers, responsible gambling can be implemented in the game design by integration of well-known practices into the game, and combining it with the theme of the game and the gameplay. 

For example, designing a session timer or a reminder that pops up at the end of free spins would send a coherent message to players of a studio’s values. This kind of strategy is exactly what can prove to be a win-win for both the operator and supplier – and flexibility is going to be key over the next decade. 

Marcus Honney, AvatarUX: Again, there is no ‘best’ designed slot that will tick all the boxes of all the regulated markets, but there have already been different redesign processes in many regulated markets to reflect player protection. Think of max bet limits, bonus animations, and restrictions to some features. 

Overall, we consider slots a product for entertainment. We design them for players to have fun. So, if during the design process, we notice that something (functionality or design wise) is not fitting this purpose and maybe perceived as creating a situation of irresponsible player behaviour, we simply don’t do it.

Rob Procter, SG Digital: Responsible gambling now factors heavily within the overall development process of a slot, especially as we deliver games to multiple markets and must adhere to different regulatory frameworks. 

We have to prepare ourselves for further regulatory changes too as all the indications show that the industry is heading for tighter regulation. New measures such as the minimum spin duration of five seconds in Germany impacts the game design. That’s a fairly significant time period compared to traditional slots. 

From our perspective, we have to think outside the box and create ways to ensure that every spin is as entertaining as possible to keep players interested. 

Kenny Dahlsjö, Lady Luck Games: I think we are likely to see more and more casual elements added to online casino games to keep players entertained. Traditionally, those players have enjoyed fast game play or the ability to get onto that cool feature without having to wait for it to trigger. 

We are obviously seeing restrictions on spin times, bans around buying features and the prohibition of autospins, as well reduced stake amounts. That makes it hard to attract the players as the industry once did – with the promise of big, fast wins. 

Studios need to be more creative around making the user experience more enjoyable as a result. The ones that get it right will be both compliant and competitive, which isn’t always the easiest circle to square.