The NFL is going full throttle in the gambling industry. Aristocrat Gaming, a slot machine and casino game manufacturer, and the NFL have partnered to provide NFL-themed slot machines inside casinos.
Are Pennsylvania casinos going to provide these NFL-themed slot games?
The short answer is yes, and casinos must go through the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) for approval.
Pennsylvania casinos to unveil NFL slots to players
Many PA casinos institute Aristocrat Gaming slots on their properties. Both Rivers Casino locations in Philadelphia and Pittsburgh confirmed to PlayPennsylvania that they have Aristocrat slots.
Jack Horner, for Rivers Casino Pittsburgh and Philadelphia, said:
“Rivers Casino Pittsburgh and Philadelphia both feature Aristocrat games. The new NFL-themed slots are expected to be added to the gaming floors at both Rivers Casinos in PA pending approval and delivery.”
Valley Forge Casino is in the process of acquiring three NFL slot machines for its property. The casino’s public relations team said that Aristocrat will lead the advertising duties.
Live! Casino Pittsburgh is also getting in on the action. Vice President of Slots and Marketing, Bryan Prettyman, told PlayPennsylvania:
“Approximately 25% of the slot machines currently on our floor are Aristocrat. Live! Casino is constantly listening to guest feedback to ensure we have the most popular slots. True to form, we recently signed a contract to receive several NFL-themed slots, but do not have an estimated delivery time frame. We expect they will be a big hit.”
Penn Entertainment VP of Public Affairs and Government Relations, Jeff Morris, told PlayPennsylvania each of its locations in the Keystone State has a “substantial number” of Aristocrat slots. Penn Entertainment has four Hollywood-branded casinos in the state. They are:
- Penn National Race Course
- The Meadows
Morris did not have any information on whether Penn Entertainment would be releasing NFL slots in PA.
Process for PA casinos to add new slots
PA casinos need to get approval from the PGCB to release new slot games for players.
PGCB Director of Communications, Doug Harbach, listed the steps casinos must take to install new slots:
- PGCB’s Gaming Lab must approve the slot game.
- Each casino must submit a request to the Bureau of Casino Compliance to install the game on the floor.
- The game must also be inspected onsite by board staff to verify the software, pay tables and configurations to verify these match with the submission.
- The board’s staff reviews the surveillance coverage before the game is permitted to go live and offered to the public for play.
NFL slots to target younger audience at Pennsylvania casinos
Pennsylvania casinos have invested in entertainment, not related to gaming, such as restaurants, nightclubs and hotels to appeal to a younger demographic since the pandemic. It seems to be working because in FY 2022/2023, PA casinos recorded the highest slot revenue ($2.45 billion) since 2011/2012. Retail slots accounted for 44.4% of the entire state’s gambling revenue.
While retail gaming is still on an upward trajectory, adding NFL slots should continue that trend, and attract even more of a younger audience.
According to a CNBC article, Aristocrat will have customizable skins. Players can choose their favorite team, which will then load relevant imagery, videos of key game moments and even stadium anthems.
Aristocrat Gaming CEO, Hector Fernandez, told CNBC:
“I truly believe that this could be an industry changing event for for slot machines and for casinos themselves … pushing the boundaries, driving innovation to something that really has never been done before.”
With the popularity of the NFL, it’s possible adding NFL slots, especially in football-crazed towns such as Philadelphia and Pittsburgh, can take retail gaming to another level.