Scientific Game

Running the Tables

LT Game is on the move, chasing down new products, new markets and new ways to stay on top in Macau

Thursday, 16 May 2013 17:30
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Electronic table games are transforming mass-market casino floors across Asia, and nowhere is this more evident than in Macau, where LT Game continues to shore up its dominance with a host of new products for the pit and some significant enhancements to its market-leading Live Table Multi-Gaming System.

G2E Asia 2013 will see the debut of LT Game’s LT E-Baccarat, a live “chipless” table that blends the look and feel of the traditional game with the speed and efficiency of touchscreen betting. Players can buy in by inserting cash or a ticket into built-in acceptors. Betting is conducted at each seat on friendly seven-inch LCD monitors. But it’s a real dealer dealing real cards, so the personal and tactile elements of the game that are so important to Chinese gamblers are preserved. They also get to track past results on full 27-inch “road map” monitors and the slot-like convenience of a ticket printer at every seat. What’s eliminated is the possibility of dealer error and disputed results (or worse, cheating or fraud) since every hand is electronically recorded. Which also makes player-tracking possible, bringing science to the art of ratings and rewards.

“We’re thinking of the future, and in the future the casino will be more efficient,” says LT founder and Chairman Jay Chun. “Even the dealer will not have to be trained too much because they don’t have to learn all the payouts. It’s much easier.”

It will be hard to keep up with the restlessly innovative Mr Chun at this year’s show, where LT is also unveiling two state-of- the-art cash-handling solutions. LT Cash Access is a self-service currency exchange built for smart, fast, secure cash- and ticket-handling. Fitted with a range of options and fully customizable, it is capable of turning a bulk insert of 2,000 bills into a paper voucher in less than 30 seconds. Then there is the new CTS-5000, a multifunctional tableside companion that dealers, especially in Macau’s intensely high-volume, high-limit environment, are going to love. Sleekly designed, compact and unobtrusive, the CTS-5000 counts, sorts and validates buy-ins, accepts, validates and prints tickets and reads smart cards. Results are displayed on a full-color seven-inch screen.

LT is also looking to make its mark on community games with an electronic version of Texas Hold ’Em and e-table versions of mahjong and a popular Chinese card game called Dou Di Zhu (“Beat the Landlord”), a team game for three players with rules roughly similar to bridge.

The company’s flagship Live Table Multi-Gaming System, available in single- and dual-screen models, has been redesigned with a wider 26-inch player interface and a larger arm rest to provide more space and comfort for tracking results and performing the various analyses that are part and parcel of the baccarat experience. This new “Landscape” version offers more interactivity, too, courtesy of a new software package that lets players pre-set bet levels and alerts them to take advantage of certain streaks. Also, for the first time, players can bet multiple games from a single wallet.

Live Table Multi-Gaming System has a lock on more than 50% of Macau’s booming ETG market, currently numbering more than 4,700 seats, by virtue of the exclusive patent LT holds in the territory through Mr Chun on live dealer technology. In Macau the live dealer games are the most popular by far, highly visible on the floors at The Venetian, Sands Cotai Central, City of Dreams, the Lisboa, Wynn Macau and Sands Macao in “stadium”-style installations consisting of large numbers of terminals, almost all baccarat, arranged together in multiple rows around one or more croupiers.

There are more than 1,400 of these terminals in action, and they’re all LTs. There will be a lot more of them in the future, too, for a lot of reasons: they’re convenient, they’re player-friendly and they’re extremely cost-effective. They’re also the best tool the six casino concessionaires have to keep pace with demand in the face of the government’s yearly cap of 3% on new table games. In a supply-constrained environment that is driving bet minimums in the largest table games market in the world through the roof, they’ve emerged as the ideal high-margin low-roller solution.

Beyond Macau, LT scored its first Live Table sale in Australia earlier this year with a 40-seat installation the company expects to grow to 100 seats in the months ahead. Talks are under way with New Zealand’s SkyCity for an installation. In the United States, 30 units have been sold to Barona Resort & Casino near San Diego. Royal Caribbean has purchased a 40-seat installation. LT is looking for big things in Nevada as well, where it holds an associate equipment supplier’s license. The company opened an office in Las Vegas in October.

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