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"We're very happy with the addition of over twenty new games to the Bodog.com Online Casino," says Morris Mohawk Gaming Group CEO Alwyn Morris. "Over the coming months the Bodog.com Casino will continue to expand as more and more new games are added to the roster. Many of these new games are being added as a direct result of feedback we've received from Bodog.com Casino players, so we're especially excited to see and hear their reactions."
The Complete List of New games includes: New Slots at Bodog: Archipelago, Atlantis Dive, China MegaWild, Freaky Fruits, Freaky Gym, Fruit Salad Jackpot, Gold in Bars, Hot 7's, Mexican Slots, Mystic Slots, Olympic Slots, Party Night, Pirate Slots, Spin the World, Summer Dream, Totem Quest
New Specialty Games: Bingo Scratch, Bonus Cards, Jackpot7, Lucky Wheel, Poker Bet, Potshot, RollUp, and Soccer Shot
Phase 1 of the Sands Casino Resort Bethlehem will soft launch this Friday with 3,000 slot machines and electronic table games, four restaurants, two lounges, and a bar. A grand opening will be held on June 9th.
Built in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, at the old Bethlehem Steel mill, the $743 million Sands Bethlehem is expected to pose some serious competition to Atlantic City. Bethlehem is just a one-hour drive from Philadelphia and New Jersey and 90 minutes from Manhattan, a prime location that is expected to siphon away customers from already struggling Atlantic City casinos. Later this year, the casino will be even more attractive when it opens up more floor space and adds 2,000 more slot machines, giving it a total of 139,000 square-feet of gaming floor and 5,000 slot machines. The Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa, Atlantic City's largest casino, has a 161,000-square-foot gaming floor with 4,100 slot machines.
What you will not find is the luxury shopping mall, a 300 room hotel, and a sprawling convention center that were originally planned. Those projects are "on hold" until economy and credit markets improve, but don't hold your breath.
Some interesting developments this week in the gambling world:
PartyGaming PLC, best known as the parent company of the popular online poker site, PokerStars.com reached a settlement agreement with the US Department of Justice. In exchange for a non-prosecution agreement, PartyGaming agreed to pay a fine of $105 Million. PartyGaming ceased its US operations in October of 2006, but the company hopes to some day reenter the market. Should the poker be deemed a skill game, or the UIGEA is repealed, this settlement clears the way for the company and its executives to start US operations without fear of prosecution from past actions.
Steve Wynn shared his thoughts on the economy and Vegas’ path to recovery.Wynn argued that Nevada cannot afford to ignore helping the Casinos, since their taxes fund over half of the state’s budget. Wynn also noted he was frustrated with how the US Government “stimulus funds” are being distributed and that more attention needs to be paid to creating new jobs. He suggested government tax credits for job creation, conservation of assets, and responsible debt levels. Check out the article for the complete video interview. Wynn, also did a sit-down interview with Charlie Gibson, which will appear on “60 Minutes” this Sunday.
Atlantic City’s oldest Casino, Resorts Atlantic City, is trying to conjure up memories of Atlantic City’s heyday by installing 8 coin-operated slot machines. The clinging of coins coming out of slot machines used to be the signature sounds of gambling. Today, coin-operated machines have been replaced by electronics, flashy lcd screens, and receipt vouchers. In the United States over 90% of the estimated 900,000 slot machines do not accept or payout coins, and are rapidly becoming extinct. So far the machines have received rave reviews from customers, but casino executives warn not to expect many of these coin operated machines and say electronic slots are more efficient to run, jam less often, and offer an equally enjoyable experience for players.
Old school slot machines aren’t the only sign that some customers are rejecting technology. The Trump Plaza announced this week that it will remove all electronic poker tables from its casino floors. The Trump Plaza installed the 14 tables last June, but said that even though the machines were faster, error free, and did not need to be tipped, the tables generated less interest than traditional tables, as it seems players like to play poker with a traditional card dealer. Welcome news for dealers worldwide.
A recent report by consulting firm Cigital analyzed 103 Million Hands recently played on PokerStars and concluded that poker is a game of skill. Cigital found that just over 75% of pots end before a showdown and only 50% of those those remaining hands that go to showdown are won by the player with the best hand. Using this data Cigital concluded that Texas Hold’em can be seen as 88% skill and not predominated by chance. Expect data from this study to be referenced frequently in future debates over the legality of poker.
Today is Friday the 13thand in case you are wondering, there will be 3 Friday the 13th’s this year, the most in the past decade!
The ACES train that shuttles people between New York City and Atlantic City is now running and reviews are beginning to show up. Review were generally positive, but apparently the trays on the backs of the coach seats were badly aligned. Speaking of trains, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D,NV) managed to secure $8 Billion in the latest economic stimulus bill to build a high speed trains. Speculation is that a large portion of the money may be used to build a high speed train that offers service from Los Angeles to Las Vegas.
A new study found that slot machines are being designed to take advantage of the “near-miss effect.” This phenomena should help explain why some gamblers try to chase their losses by continuing to bet after a bad beat. The article states:
“Before the reels on a slot machine stop spinning, a gambler’s brain is already anticipating the potential rewards. And although two bananas on the pay line with a third just barely visible won’t pay a gambler any more than three random fruits, such near misses have the well-documented, if irrational, effect of enticing gamblers to try again. The reason, according to a new study, is that these near misses activate the same reward signals in the brain as a win. ...
The rewards of a near miss may have ancient origins. In skill-dependent tasks, such as hunting, people do have some control over the outcome, and trying again after a near miss could bring home the bison, he explains. “The healthy brain is looking for ways in which it can control the environment, and gambling games harness that natural system.”“
More reports telling us stuff we already knew: when money is tight, people don't gamble as much. Casinos in Atlantic City struggle as revenue drops. In fact, only one casino, Harrah's Resort Atlantic City, managed to increase its revenue during the year. It isn't just the big guys either, small casinos are feeling the recession all over the country with revenues down across the board.
This isn't to say every gambling channel is struggling, the AP reports that state lottery sales are rising in many states as more people faced with financial insecurity are trying to hit a big payday.
It looks like Bellagio is still the King of Las Vegas and the Palms is agreat for Slots and Video Poker players. Be sure to check out the 2008 Trippies which gives out awards for the best and worst of Las Vegas.
Here are some of the results chosen by readers:
This was a great week for the Smarter Gamblers General Forum, including a great discussion about knowing when to quit. Be sure to jump into the conversation and let us know how you know when its time to color up and leave the table.