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Germany’s gambling regulator has sent game studios and suppliers a list of minimum standards for slots after many games failed to meet the requirements.

In January, the Gemeinsame Glücksspielbehörde der Länder (GGL) pledged to process all outstanding licence applications by the end of 2023.

However, the authority pointed to challenges with individual game reviews and complained that many slots were lacking even the most basic requirements as set out in Germany’s Interstate Treaty.

This was the main reason for the delay, according to the GGL.

The GGL informed iGaming NEXT that, as of today (17 February), approximately 3,000 games still need to be assessed.

To tackle non-compliance head-on, the regulator has published a list of minimum requirements based on the top 10 most frequent failings found in game submissions.

The GGL has shared this list with iGaming NEXT, and it is summarised below.

1. Max win

The maximum win potential tops the list of issues highlighted by the GGL.

The authority requires the game rules to specify and display this information.

The maximum win should also be clearly visible on the site where players place their stakes.

In addition, the game rules must explain the specific situation to which the probability applies and, if relevant, that higher payouts may also be available but with a lower probability.

2. Gambling features

The authority emphasised that optional gambling features, which can multiply wins with a 50% chance, can only be used if the game rules provide a clear sequence and the actual probability distribution is stated.

In addition, their design should not give a misleading impression of the probability distribution.

3. Start, direction and winning combinations

The GGL had to include several straightforward requirements, such as the need to outline the start, direction, and slot combinations that lead to a win.

4. Average payout rate

The probability of winning the maximum prize, as well as the average payout rate per one euro bet, are to be displayed permanently at the game level.

5. Game rules and prize schedule

Next on the GGL’s list are the game rules and the prize plan, which must be easy to understand and access, with clear identification and visual presence.

The button for accessing them should be permanently present and labeled clearly. The game rules and prize plan should be easily accessible without additional steps.

Furthermore, players should be able to access both the abbreviated and detailed versions of the game rules from the same button.

6. Actual winnings

In addition, the GGL stressed that the winnings displayed in the pay table must match the actual winnings based on the chosen stake.

7. Currency

Games are only allowed to be offered in one version, and the authority added that the currency used is restricted to euros and cents.

8. The term casino

The GGL warned game studios about using the term ‘casino’ in their games, as it is prohibited by German regulations.

9. Jackpot ban

The regulator stressed that they do not allow jackpots.

10. German language

Lastly, the GGL said slot developers need to ensure that the game rules and the entire design of the game are written in German and easily understandable.

So far, 25 operators in the slot category have received regulatory approval from the GGL and are featured on Germany’s whitelist.

However, German regulation requires operators to submit each game they want to offer to the GGL for review.

Unlike some other jurisdictions, Germany does not have a B2B licensing regime in place.

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