Social Casino Gaming
In the 50's, the Las Vegas strip was in its prime. Organized crime ruled the city, but for the most part, they left the gamblers alone. Most of the casinos and hotels on the strip were owned by various mafia families. The Sands was owned by famous gangsters like Meyer Lansky, Frank Costello and even Frank Sinatra had a 9% share. The Rivera opened in 1955, and was run by Chicago gangsters the Fischetti Brothers, Sam Giancana and Tony Accardo. Things have calmed down considerably since then, the city has cleaned up its act, and the mafia has gone the way of the dinosaurs.
The fabled strip is still there although many say it is past its prime. Casino operators are investing to make the strip more attractive and bring tourists back. One casino, The Rivera, has brought bingo back to the strip. The resort and casino hosts two $200,000 bingo tournaments annually and $25,000 coveralls every day, and the games are well attended. The Rivera is looking into the future and has partnered with social game developer Buffalo Studios to give Facebook players a chance to win a free trip to one of the Rivera's high stakes bingo tournaments. Currently the Rivera has the only bingo room on the strip.
Buffalo Studios is the creator of the seventh most popular game on Facebook Bingo Blitz. The game has been wildly successful and has millions of regular players. The partnership is a first of its kind between a brick and mortar casino and a social gaming company. The partnership combines the Rivera's extensive casino experience with Buffalo Studios' expertise in social gaming.
Many casinos have expressed an interest in social gaming, and a recent report predicts that by 2017, social gaming will generate $100 billion dollars annually.
For a limited time, Facebook players can go to Bingo Blitz and play at a special a special Rivera themed bingo room. Bingo Blitz players can enter the sweepstakes to win a free trip to the July bingo tournament to be held at the Rivera. The prize includes meal and slots vouchers and air fare. These promotions bode well for the future of real money bingo on Facebook.
Salim Mitha, vice president of Buffalo Studios, spoke about the partnership and said: "Bingo is the ultimate social game, and it is now even more exciting than the classic game enjoyed by earlier generations. In fact, BINGO Blitz's fun, modern gameplay has driven the resurgence of online bingo, which has risen to new heights of popularity in recent years, even amongst a younger demographic. Together with the Riviera Casino & Hotel, we are now rewarding these players - namely the more than 3 million monthly BINGO Blitz players - by providing them an opportunity to compete in one of the richest live in-person bingo tournaments in Las Vegas."
The Rivera is not the only Las Vegas casino to enter the world of social gaming. Caesar's entertainment purchased Israeli social gaming company Playtika for $170 million, and slot manufacturer International Gaming Technology purchased Double Down interactive for a cool $500 million. Most gaming experts predict rapid growth in the social gaming sector of the online gambling industry.
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