Illinois Casino Slot Machines and Illinois VGTs Aren’t the Same

If you’ve had the opportunity to visit both an Illinois casino and an Illinois gaming establishment, you may have noticed there are differences in the video slots offered in each type of location. You may not have noticed all the differences, though. It’s interesting to make a point-by-point comparison.

Illinois Casino Video Slots vs. Illinois VGTs: The Physical Machines

  • Video slots come with one of two designs. They have either upright cabinets or slant cabinets.
  • Upright cabinets need to be installed on bases. Slant cabinets are freestanding.

As you can no doubt see, this fundamental fact has implications for the casino operator or video gaming establishment seeking to make the best use of available space. Upright cabinets lend themselves to being placed in rows since the bases and separators can be connected. Thus, casinos tend to have most upright cabinet slots with perhaps a few slant cabinets scattered here and there. Conversely, because slant cabinet VGTs stand up on their own, it’s easy to stand them apart from one another, and this can make a playing area feel roomier. Therefore, to enhance players’ enjoyment, gaming cafes will opt for slant cabinets when space allows.

Single-Game Machines vs. Multi-Game Machines

Generally speaking, you can run the same software on either an upright cabinet or a slant cabinet video slot. Nonetheless, the video gambling machines in casinos and the video gaming terminals in Illinois bars, restaurants, and truck stops often differ in terms of the number of gaming options they provide.

Casino slots tend to be single-game machines. Each individual machine offers a player only one way to play. The VGT in a bar, restaurant, truck stop, or veteran or fraternal organization tends to be a multi-game machine. The player can choose from a number of different titles on a single machine.

In a certain respect, the use of multi-game machines keeps smaller gaming establishments competitive with casinos. Most video gaming locations are allowed a maximum of six VGTs (ten for large truck stops), but because each VGT has anywhere from six to fifteen different titles, players have plenty of options.

Illinois Casino Video Slots vs. Illinois Video Gaming Terminals: Monitoring

The Illinois Gaming Board (IGB) mandates that one of its agents be present in a casino at any time gaming is occurring. In contrast, video gaming establishments do not have this requirement. Instead, as per the Video Gaming Act, each VGT connects to a central communications system (CCS), and the CCS provides the monitoring. Currently, a company called Scientific Games International (SGI) is providing Illinois with its CCS.

The CCS can turn machines off and on as per the hours on the establishment’s liquor license, shut down a specific game if there appears to be an issue with it, or turn off all the VGTs in an establishment if the IGB has imposed disciplinary action.

As you can imagine, that disciplinary action can disrupt a business and diminish profits, and faithful compliance with IGB regulations is essential at all times. At Universal Gaming Group, we’re committed to full compliance and cooperation with the IGB to create a safe environment for video gaming. 

Illinois Casino Slots vs. Illinois Video Gaming: Which Has the Edge?

There was a time when Illinois casino revenue was huge. By many standards, it still is, but it’s declining. Its best year was 2005 with $699 million, but the figure has slipped nearly every year since. In 2018, it was $260 million. That’s nearly a 62% drop.

In contrast, Illinois video gaming got its start in 2012. By 2017, VGTs were bringing in more money than casinos, and the boom shows no signs of stopping. If you’d like to add Illinois video gaming to your business, we invite you to contact Universal Gaming Group today. Our expert team will guide you through the licensing process and help get your VGTs up and running as quickly as possible.