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Best of John G. Brokopp

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Bally Technologies Moves Full Speed Ahead

3 December 2008

It was apparent during this year's Global Gaming Expo in Las Vegas that Bally Technologies, the one-time king of slot manufacturers, is making great strides toward capturing a greater share of the world's slot machine market.

The company's 11,000 sq. ft. display in the Las Vegas Convention Center showcased 50 percent more games than last year in an effort to capitalize on a resurgence of popularity and demand for its products on casino floors across the country.

Among the new games Bally unveiled before casino industry executives from around the globe was an addition to its Playboy series featuring the company's highly successful V32 video slot platform with 32-inch vertical touch-screen video display.

There also was evidence of an increased emphasis on licensed gaming products with the unveiling of a title called Breeders' Cup, a horse racing themed game.

One of the more innovative products introduced was DualVision, a multi-player gaming platform based on Bally's CineVision gaming cabinet. It features a single, segmented video display with bench seating for couples and friends to share the slot playing experience at the same machine.

Chicago was the original home of Bally Technologies, which was founded in 1932 by the late Raymond T. Maloney. His first product was the Ballyhoo pinball machine, which was a smashing success.

Pinball machines paved the way for the development of slot machines. The company soon grew to become one of Chicago's largest employers before Bally moved its corporate headquarters and manufacturing operations to Las Vegas in 1989.

It is estimated that in the 1960's Bally supplied over 90 percent of the slot machines in Las Vegas casinos.

When other manufacturers moved in to take advantage of the gambling boom of the 1990's, Bally was out of position to compete. During the 1980s it began to diversify into other business sectors including amusement parks, fitness centers and exercise equipment.

Now Bally is back on track under the leadership team assembled by CEO Richard Haddrill, who redirected focus to the gaming industry.

When Bally was king, it unveiled breakthroughs that are commonplace today, such as the first five-reel game and a slot with a bonus feature.

One of its most popular slot games was Blazing Sevens, which to this day retains an iconic presence in casinos.

Bally developed the first electro-mechanical slot machine, which took slot play out of the realm of mechanical reels and set the stage for the advanced technology we see today.

The games that were on display at the Expo are a clear signal that Bally intends to continue developing entertaining slot products while building upon its success of the last several years.

Slot players who enjoy the company's Quick Hit Platinum slots will be happy to know there will be new versions of the popular format, including Quick Hit Diamonds, Quick Hit Wild Red Jackpot, Quick Hit Wild Blue Jackpot and Quick Hit White Fire.

There were eight new games on display that are designed to expand upon the success of the company's popular Quick Hit five-reel steppers, including Quick Hit Golden Bell, Quick Hit Silver Rain, Quick Hit Starlight Fire, and Quick Hit Gold Storm.

And if you've had fun playing games in Bally's Hot Shot series of slots, you'll love Ultimate Hot Shot Progressive, a five-level progressive with a game-in-game bonus and a top-wheel bonus feature.

John G. Brokopp

John G. Brokopp's gaming column appears in Chicago Sun Times (Chicago, Illinois), The Times (Northwest Indiana), The Quad City Times (Davenport, Iowa), The Courier News (Elgin, Illinois), The Gazette (Southwest Suburban Chicago) and Senior Wire (Denver, CO). He's also a regular contributor to The Colorado Gambler, Midwest Gaming & Travel, Casino Player and Strictly Slots. John possesses 28 years of experience as a professional handicapper, publicist, freelance writer, and casino gaming correspondent. He is also the author of two very popular books, The Insider’s Guide to Internet Gambling and Thrifty Gambling.

Books by John G. Brokopp:

> More Books By John G. Brokopp

John G. Brokopp
John G. Brokopp's gaming column appears in Chicago Sun Times (Chicago, Illinois), The Times (Northwest Indiana), The Quad City Times (Davenport, Iowa), The Courier News (Elgin, Illinois), The Gazette (Southwest Suburban Chicago) and Senior Wire (Denver, CO). He's also a regular contributor to The Colorado Gambler, Midwest Gaming & Travel, Casino Player and Strictly Slots. John possesses 28 years of experience as a professional handicapper, publicist, freelance writer, and casino gaming correspondent. He is also the author of two very popular books, The Insider’s Guide to Internet Gambling and Thrifty Gambling.

Books by John G. Brokopp:

> More Books By John G. Brokopp