Last year, Everi Holdings wowed attendees of the Global Gaming Expo with a massive number of new games in all of its many game categories. This year, the company once again will top its own efforts.
For the past year, Everi has continued investing in new hardware, while building on successful brands and creating new concepts in each of its product categories—or “swim lanes,” as company executives call them. The result this October will be a display of what is possibly the most diverse portfolio of content to date, for Everi or just about any slot supplier.
“I believe we’re setting up for the most monumental G2E that I can remember,” says Dean Ehrlich, Everi’s executive vice president and games business leader.
Everi, formerly Global Cash Access, was a fintech and payments company when it acquired Multimedia Games nine years ago. In the ensuing years, the company has emerged as one of the most consistently innovative slot suppliers in the business. Ehrlich says it all boils down to a commitment to R&D.
“Last year, we talked about the investment in people that we’ve made over the last two years, hiring 150 people in the development teams,” Ehrlich says. “We’ve onboarded a couple of new studios, with one in Austin, another in Australia. We are also continuing our successful expansion into the HHR market, which we entered in January, and are on track to begin competing in the Illinois VGT market by the first half of 2024 and close to submitting for product approval.”
“What you’re going to see at G2E are five new swim lanes from Everi,” says Loren Rosenberg, senior vice president and games chief product officer. “To date, we introduced a new cabinet with Dynasty Vue. We have three more swim lanes coming out this year and two more in the first half of next year.”
Everi’s G2E exhibit will definitely showcase those swim lanes. The five new cabinets will each accommodate a set of launch titles, resulting in a mind-boggling array of new games set for introduction at the trade show. In all, Everi will launch approximately 86 new game titles in 2024 with more than half of them on display at G2E this year.
“What you’re going to see is a robust library where we’re building out on successful internal brands that people have known and loved from Multimedia Games and Everi for years, as well as additional third-party content,” says Rosenberg.
It starts with hardware. Leading the parade of new cabinets is the Dynasty Sol, a portrait cabinet featuring a 49-inch 4K display, a large LCD button deck allowing for player-facing communication of bet options and game features, and unique design elements including eye-catching light bars, a custom candle, optional wedges for merchandising, and wireless charging.
“Dynasty Sol is our new for-sale portrait cabinet, launching in late Q4 this year,” says Caitlin Harte, senior director of product management for Everi. “It has upgraded internal components for more high-powered game play and higher graphics cards, which allows our game studios to create more robust content.”
The launch games for Dynasty Sol are Destiny Link and Dynamite Pop! Both feature two base themes, with Destiny Link presenting beautiful Asian-themed artwork paired with a hold-and-re-spin bonus while Dynamite Pop! offers intuitive game play paired with a fun twist on accumulators.
“Destiny Link has a shared linked progressive at the top, the Grand, and a major stand-alone progressive,” Harte explains. “We have denominations up to $5, with bets that scale down as the player denoms go up, paired with simple, easy-to-understand game play with a twist on a traditional hold-and-spin feature.
“Dynamite Pop! has two themes, with three accumulators that players can combine to trigger different versions of the Pop! bonus—which was made popular in Cha-Ching!, which is one of our most successful innovative titles. We wanted to utilize the bonus elements from that game, and pair with new twists, taking what was fun about that and now allowing players to mix and match accumulator features to their own bonus event.”
In the main bonus, three different-colored bundles of dynamite can explode at any time, triggering credit awards and game enhancements.
Dynasty Sol is being featured with no less than five other game families including Treasure Stacks, Wheel Streak, Hot Spot Multipliers, sister games Follow the Rainbow and Yee-Haw Stampede, and Dragon Coin.
Treasure Stacks, with base games Great Emperor and Pearl Princess, features stacks of special symbols that reveal multipliers up to 5X. Six or more orb symbols trigger a hold-and-re-spin bonus with cash-on-reels symbols. Each of the two base games has a unique free-spin feature.
Wheel Streak, with base games Bucky Beaver and Panda, features a different take on a classic wheel feature, with “nudges” helping the player win credit prizes or one of five jackpots.
Hot Spot Multipliers falls into Everi’s “innovation” category, in that there are no standard reels. Instead, the screen displays a large bonus wheel over “X” and “Y”-shaped reel arrays (depending on the base game). Values landing in the center reel are increased by multipliers appearing on the reels that form the edges of the “X” or the “Y.”
Follow the Rainbow and Yee-Haw Stampede feature new takes on the classic cash-on-reels feature, with an Irish theme on Follow the Rainbow and a Western theme on Yee-Haw Stampede.
Finally, the Dragon Coin series, with base games Moon Festival and New Year, features 243-ways games with a traditional cash-on-reels mechanic, but with a twist—dragon coins flipping to reveal additional prizes.
“Wheel Streak is in Everi’s wheelhouse,” Harte says. “Both themes present two recognizable characters from our playbook and leverage our learnings over the years to attract players as they walk the aisle then deliver high entertainment value. Hot Spot Multipliers is in our ‘innovation’ bucket with its unique X- and Y-shaped reel layouts. Follow the Rainbow and Yee-Haw Stampede feature a different twist on cash-on-reels.”
Vue from the Top
Everi is also showing several new game families at G2E on the Dynasty Vue cabinet, the unique form factor introduced earlier this year that incorporates a portrait screen in a footprint with sightlines that resemble a dual-screen or slant-top.
Two of those game families are video versions of Everi’s high-earning stepper products. Mega Meltdown and sister game Ice on Fire join the High Rollin’ Gems multi-game family as traditional three-reel games with multiple progressives targeted at high-denom video players.
“Mega Meltdown, though it plays like a mechanical, is one of our strongest video products, especially in high denominations, that didn’t see the light of day outside of Class II and Washington,” says Rosenberg, “where this is absolutely one of the best games out there. We have strong video products and believe players will appreciate the flexibility in both low- and high-denom play with these two themes on Dynasty Vue.”
The Big Bubble series is one of Everi’s unique non-reel games. In an underwater scene, the main game screen displays ascending bubbles for an all-picking game. Chosen bubbles make their way to the surface, where they pop to reveal credits, bonuses or jackpots. A mystery bonus can occur with the appearance of a puffer fish, jellyfish or clam, which award more bubbles, multipliers, credit awards or jackpots.
The Jewel Lock series, with base games Flame Warrior and Golden Tomb, are classic gambler-style games featuring a hold-and-re-spin mechanic where prizes and jackpots can be upgraded for better values or jackpot tiers.
The Nian Nian You Yu series, with base games Fortune and Prosperity, are Asian-themed 243-ways games featuring a unique hold-and-re-spin mechanic—landing a koi fish in the feature will cause that spot to absorb all surrounding credit values into one cash-on-reels symbol, clearing up other spots as the feature continues. Filling all 15 reel spots with cash-on-reels and jackpot symbols has the same effect—all credits are absorbed into one spot and the feature continues.
Finally, sister games Great Tiger Gold and Octopus Gold are 243-ways games with another twist: Landing a “Key Pays” symbol on the first or fifth reel awards all scatter symbols, containing credits, bet multipliers, bonus pays and jackpots.
The mechanical reel-spinning genre is one that Everi has mastered, and this G2E will have no shortage of stepper titles, both on the advanced Player Classic Signature cabinet launched last year and on two new premium cabinets, Player Classic Reserve and the hybrid Dynasty Dynamic. All three cabinets incorporate modern mechanics, technology and play features into games that are otherwise traditional three-reel steppers.
“Our standard mechanical products are something that we have gotten a lot of recognition for,” says Harte. “We see player recognizability, high overall performance, and a lot of our competitors being inspired by our products, but ours remain at the top of the Eilers lists. Everi titles hold three of the top five cabinets in the Eilers rankings, and typically about 70 percent of the top 25 titles, so we want to continue to hold that position.
“We believe we’ve got the best mechanical-reel product in the market right now, so we want to focus on having a balanced portfolio in our roadmap of those classic mechanicals and brand extensions—but we believe there is space to create new innovation.”
Everi will arrive at G2E with no less than a dozen new games in the standard mechanical-reel group that will arrive on casino floors late this year and into 2024.
Among the first new game families on the Player Classic Signature that will arrive on floors by G2E is 10X Jackpot, with base games Wild Liberty and Wild Seas. As the titles indicate, multiplying wild symbols are the main feature, winning combinations with wilds returning between twice and 10 times the credit win.
Among other releases are sister games Sapphire Stacks and Scarab Stacks, with an innovative scatter-only format. Wins are based on how many scatter symbols land on the reel array.
Other highlights include a new version of Cash Machine, the groundbreaking “Win What You See” game with only numbers on the reels, the winning combinations consisting of what appears left-to-right on the reel array. Its sister game, Blazin’ Grand, has been added, following a similar math ride and play mechanic with an added “nudge” feature that can turn losing results into wins.
“Cash Machine is one of, if not the most popular in the mechanical brands we’ve got out now,” says Harte. “We wanted to keep that brand going, so we’re bringing it forward to Player Classic Signature.”
Everi is launching two new cabinets in the Premium Mechanical category, with launch titles based on popular Everi franchises. Player Classic Reserve features a large top display with intelligent side lighting, with video monitors above the reels displaying pay schedules and progressive meters, topped by a video wheel clad in a bright chrome bezel.
Launch titles for the new cabinet include Casper Jackpot Wheel and Smokin’ Hot Stuff Jackpot Wheel. Both are classic three-reel, nine-line steppers with traditional symbols, frequently hitting multipliers and symbol-triggered progressives.
The other new cabinet in the Premium Mech space is Dynasty Dynamic. Integrated with the mechanical reels is a 49-inch video display. A transparent video technology called Dynamic Glass enables 4K video to be displayed over the mechanical reels for a variety of game-play enhancements.
Featured on the Dynasty Dynamic are Smokin’ Hot Stuff Spin Frenzy and The Vault: Beat the Bank. The Vault brings the popular bank-wide bonus feature of the original to the new format.
“Casper and Smokin’ Hot Stuff are brands that were popular in our mechanical product line,” says Rosenberg. “We’re bringing those brands back, reimagining them with all new features, enhancements and technology. Dynasty Dynamic marries two things that Everi does very well, which is mechanical game play and highly entertaining video bonuses.”
The Premium Video category is another that boasts a new product offering this year, the Dynasty Sol Sync. The cabinet integrates the stylish Dynasty Sol cabinet with uniquely shaped LED signage and wedges that combine for a premium bank presentation, spiced up with bank-wide bonus features.
As with the Dynasty Dynamic, the launch titles for Dynasty Sol Sync are drawn from popular Everi game franchises. The Mask includes base games drawn from some of the funniest moments of Jim Carrey’s 1994 comedy film about a mild-mannered bank employee who finds a mask that transforms him into a supernatural, zoot-suit-clad hipster.
Base games It’s Party Time and Somebody Stop Me feature hold-and-re-spin bonuses, and are filled with footage of many of the most hilarious moments from the film.
Smokin’ Hot Stuff Link, with base games Fired Up Fat Stacks and Fired Up Fortunes, features the Hot Stuff devil character appearing in funny sequences to deliver win enhancements, and a hold-and-re-spin bonus in which the character appears to boost credit prizes, refresh the spin counter, or nudge a reel to turn a loser into a winner.
“The Mask is a brand we released as a launch title on our Empire DCX cabinet, which was a wide-area progressive product with limited placements,” says Harte. “We’re taking that same brand due to its popularity and reimagining it here in this portrait form factor. If you like the movie, these games are a great reflection of it and are going to be quite fun to play in the banked presentation.”
On the Flex Fusion cabinet, Everi is launching High Voltage Link and Big Dollar. High Voltage Link, with base games Mayan Fortune and Snow Tiger, features three pot-style accumulators and a hold-and-re-spin bonus. Big Dollar features Everi’s award-winning “Win What You See” mechanic and a “Hot Seat”-style community feature that gives one player on the bank a wheel spin for a large prize.
“Everi is known for these bank-wide timed-mode games, and now we are using our technology in new, unique ways like the Big Jackpot Chance feature in Big Dollar,” Harte says.
Everi will round out its exhibit with new versions of the TournEvent instant slot tournament system. “This has been a great product for us, as it’s deployed across more than 400 properties, and we’re continuing to push it,” says Rosenberg. “We’ve got two new tournament games approved.”
“We reinvented this system a couple of years ago,” adds Harte, “and definitely put horsepower into it. There are operators who have replaced their TournEvent systems with a competitor’s product, but they always come right back to TournEvent.”
In all, Everi’s G2E lineup reflects the company’s continuing investment in both game and hardware development. “With the added onboarded studios, customers will experience our most diverse content portfolio ever,” says Rosenberg. “Viewing it from my five years with the company, this might be the boldest collection in our company’s history.”