To ask whether augmented reality, AR, or virtual reality, VR, has greater potential for casino games developers is a bit like asking if zips make better clothing fasteners than buttons. It could depend entirely on individual criteria, not the least of which is personal preference.
Both technologies are currently available, although their performance so far is limited to enhancing computer games. However, both systems have potential in the casino gaming industry online, and developments in that direction are proceeding competitively. To see how these innovations could change casino gaming online, let’s take a more detailed look at both technologies.
Virtual Reality Big News in 2016
The release of Oculus Rift and HTC Vive last year brought VR into the forefront of computer gamer consciousness with a bang. These stand-alone headsets, which the player controls through sensor-linked gloves, still require massive computing power, bought separately, to deliver an amazing VR experience.
That said, it is amazingly immersive, and even though it’s limited to wealthy early adopters at present, as the technology gets refined and drops in price, it will completely change the experience of playing video games and e-Sports.
Online casinos won’t be far behind; VR casinos will allow players to wander around as if they were at a land-based casino, with games tables and slots cabinets rendered realistically, and also interact with other players and staff. They will even be able to play new casino games, where computer-game skills could increase bonus winnings in a slots title, for example.
So VR will be able to offer players casino games where skill can outweigh luck, and also take them on virtual tours of some of the most breath-taking locations in the world. Imagine enjoying your casino action floating over the rain forest in an airship, or with a panoramic view of New York from the top of a skyscraper.
Augmented Reality Can Empower Players
The recent Pokémon Go! craze showed off some of the potential of AR. Players had to catch creatures on their smartphones at specific locations, to which they were directed by AR, with supplementary information also provided via AR at those locations. AR is also already in use in certain tourist apps, for example; overlaying real images of a city with pop-up features that provide handy information.
The advantage of AR is that it doesn’t create a whole new environment, just overlays more content over the environment already there. AR displaying the odds of various in-play betting options, for example, would be a draw card on any casino game app. It is likely to become more important in smartphone casino games, especially.