All the talk at this week’s Game Developers Conference appears to have centered around - you guessed it - gambling.
And why not? Experts placed a dollar figure at around $20 billion for the sector.
The big question for a panel discussing the subject: Is gambling the next growth opportunity and how can it be regulated?
Already, a handful of states including Nevada, New Jersey and Delaware have legalized some forms of online gambling, mostly with a focus on poker even though player liquidity will be an issue early on.
Social gaming giant Zynga has seen its share price rise in recent months ever since focusing more on its plans to offer real money gambling in the coming months.
“I think there will be a lot of learning this year,” said Big Fish Games CEO Paul Thelen.
Big Fish, like many similar companies in the gaming sector, plan to partner with casino operators to offer real money gambling.
The first game companies to introduce gambling will be “pioneers,” Thelen noted.
He projected the industry would be worth the $20 billion over the next few years.
- Aaron Goldstein, Gambling911.com