(Exclusive interview).- Eduardo Aching, VP, International Sales at Konami Gaming Inc shared with Focus Gaming News his analysis of the latest Global Gaming Expo.
Konami Gaming was one of the main exhibitors at Global Gaming Expo, the highly renowned gaming event held in Las Vegas last week. Eduardo Aching, Vice President, International Sales has shared with Focus Gaming News the details of Konami’s performance and upcoming projects after participating at G2E.
Did G2E meet Konami’s expectations?
We are very excited about the response to this year’s G2E event. Konami’s Concerto Collection is seeing record momentum and global expansion, and through this year’s G2E we were able to build upon that even further with an array of original new game releases and creative entertainment options for players to enjoy. Our customers across Latin America, Europe, and beyond have seen the results that Konami’s Concerto lineup delivers and from G2E 2017 they know it continues to grow with leading math and play mechanics. In addition, Konami unveiled an entirely new cabinet called Concerto Opus, with a 65-inch screen and 4K-capable display that can feature the latest single screen in a very big way.
After attending so many editions of G2E, what things would you consider made this year’s edition different from the others?
For Konami’s annual G2E presence, people expect to see a strong mix of original game titles, industry-leading hardware quality, and fun premiums. This year on top of that, our Beat Square Tournament area exemplified something not only different for Konami, but something totally unique in the history of our industry. It is the first rhythmic game play skill-based development for casinos and the first skill-based game with comprehensive tournament functionality. Throughout the show, professionals from around the globe signed up to compete. We were thrilled by the response and feedback from our customers has been very encouraging.
In a recent press release, Konami highlighted Beat Square’s success during the show, what are your expectations for the product in the future?
Beat Square stems from our commitment to help pioneer product for the future of our industry and provide new entertainment options to reach new types of players. It is unique from anything else available to market, actively engaging in many ways, and designed for recurring play over time.
Were there any other products among the company’s extensive lineup as well received by the public as Beat Square?
Throughout all three days, there was heavy traffic to our newest KP3+ game releases. With the expansion of single screen cabinets Concerto Stack, Concerto Crescent, and Concerto Opus, Konami showcased a huge variety of portrait-oriented games—some with a nod to proven classics, such as China Shores Great Stacks and Lotus Land Deluxe Wild, and others like PurrFect Pirates and Star Watch Fire include original game play that is very fresh and unexpected.
Konami also featured more than 20 different types of progressive games, including symbol-trigger progressives that provide some extra excitement in each spin. Linked progressives like Money Galaxy and Power Boost Inferno were standout products for Concerto upright and Concerto Slant, and our customers were also excited to see the new Solstice Celebration Triple Sparkle single screen game with a large linked progressive bonus as well.
Crystal Cyclone also made a strong appearance as one of our latest multi-station developments. In the spirit of Konami’s Titan 360 multi-station machine, Crystal Cyclone has a colorful, high-energy mechanical bonus game that connects players to a center roulette-style feature. It provides a one-of-a-kind community-style jackpot experience that players can enjoy together as they share in seeing the action unfold. Guests were very impressed by the game’s look and attraction.
Has Konami managed to make deals with new partners or managed to extend to new markets?
As we have done for many years, Konami continues strong distributor partnerships across many important regions. Our newest exclusive distributor, Atlantic Venture joined us at G2E for the first time. Their leadership shows outstanding promise and we look forward to working closely as they work to help expand Konami even further in markets such as Argentina, Paraguay, and Uruguay.
What are Konami’s plans for 2018?
One of the biggest G2E announcements for Konami’s international customers was the debut of our first single screen multi-game offering on Concerto Crescent and Concerto Stack. From this, Konami now has a full Concerto SeleXion lineup spanning 4 different cabinets: upright, Slant, Crescent, and Stack. This is excellent news for international market especially, where multi-game product is key to maximizing floor space and achieving the highest long-term machine value. Looking ahead to the coming year, I believe this expanded Concerto SeleXion lineup will be of top demand internationally for our customers.