These are exciting times for redemption, comments John Vallis, Suzohapp’s VP gaming and amusements EMEA with customer appetite being matched by a raft of technical innovations the market sector looks set to remain at the forefront of the UK FEC industry for years to come.
Coinslot: What do you feel the hottest trends this year have been in the redemption machine market place?
John Vallis: “The great thing about ticket-based redemption machines is that all the machines payout the same type of tickets regardless who the manufacturer is or type of amusement game. People have fun playing the games and can be rewarded with tickets. There are pushers that are used as redemption machines as well – giving these machines a further impetus in the amusement market.”
CS: What do feel the prevailing market trends going forward may be?
JV: “The future could well belong to virtual tickets. Here the player no longer has to collect physical tickets and enter them into a machine to be redeemed. The simpler way is via a customer card. There are several benefits here.The player has the
points on the card. Operators can offer several usages of such a card. Points that have been won no longer need to be swapped for plastic toys that the kids don’t necessarily want – they could in future be used in different ways. Operators have a better overview of the games that their customers play and can so target their product offering better to remain successful. We have the ideal solution for all of this as reflected in its name – IDEAL.”
CS: How important is the physical engagement of redemption units, in a culture when touch screens and home entertainment systems are becoming ever the more prominent?
JV: “I believe that redemption machines are part of the British culture. In Britain we have amusement machines that cater to the entire family – that is why we have FECs here. Many European countries do not have this and gaming machines only cater to adults. We focus also on the entertainment and skill values here and have ensured that adults and children alike can enjoy this pastime. The price to pay is accordingly low and the focus is on skill and entertainment.”
CS: How do you see the popularity of tickets themselves continuing? Are there other solutions that are growing in stature?
JV: “Tickets play a very important role here. It is something that many of us grow up with.The extra excitement of being able to win tickets gives the amusement machines more impetus. Customers can win the same type of tokens not only on different types of the same machine (such as pushers) but on other machines as well. These are machines that are linked with skill as well as luck.The motivation is thus higher when tickets are paid out to reward the individual skill level.Furthermore,the fact that the tickets can be counted very quickly on a machine makes it easy for operators to manage – they don’t have to count them.This saves time and money and enables operators to offer a wider range of potential prizes, motivating people to play a little more to get that prize they are looking for.”