Flutter Entertainment has rebranded its free-to-play virtual reality product PokerStars VR to Vegas Infinite, as part of a “full-scale overhaul”.
Flutter said that having launched almost five years ago, the newly rebranded offering “represents the next generation in the game’s evolution as a virtual entertainment destination.”
PokerStars VR has undergone continual developments since its launch in 2018, the operator added, which has accelerated since its acquisition by Flutter in 2021.
The rebranded product includes a new, bespoke 3D virtual cityscape featuring virtual “personal player suites, luxury casinos and exclusive rooftop escapes”.
Additionally, PC players will be able to join the game’s VR users on Steam VR and Meta Quest VR without the need for a VR headset.
In addition to those changes, Flutter has also introduced new games into the Vegas Infinite product suite including blackjack, roulette, slots, craps and its proprietary game Rocket Rush.
Spin & Go poker, multi-table tournaments, and the Metaverse Poker Tour, have also been added to the product offering.
Further, Flutter has integrated AI live chat monitoring tool ToxMod to assist its moderation team, in a bid to further improve player safety measures.
“As we approach our fifth anniversary, it’s incredible to think how far our game has come,” said PokerStars director of VR and innovation James O’Reilly.
“From a cutting-edge experiment in applying virtual reality to the poker table, we’ve grown to become a living entertainment destination with a full suite of games and experiences played in otherworldly environments that are home to an avid community of players.
“Today, we’re much more than poker and much more than VR. Vegas Infinite is where we’re taking our players next and there’s lots more in store.”
In recent years, the Swedish iGaming market has undergone significant transformations, emerging as one of the most exciting and lucrative sectors in the global gambling industry.
As we step into 2023, this market continues to thrive, offering players a safe and diverse gaming environment.
In this article, we will delve into the key factors contributing to the success of the Swedish iGaming market, its regulatory landscape, and what the future holds.
Regulation and licencing
One of the cornerstones of the Swedish iGaming market’s success is its well-established regulatory framework. The introduction of the Gambling Act in 2019 laid the foundation for a structured and transparent iGaming industry.
Under this legislation, operators are required to obtain a Swedish gambling licence to offer their services in the country. The Swedish Gambling Authority, or Spelinspektionen, oversees and enforces these regulations, ensuring fair play, player protection, and responsible gaming practises.
This level of oversight has not only instilled trust in players but has also attracted reputable operators looking to comply with stringent regulations. For more information on the licencing process, read more at casino-med-svensk-licens.com
The Swedish iGaming market has experienced remarkable growth in recent years. In 2023, it continues to expand, driven by various factors.
One of the main contributors to this growth is the increasing popularity of online casinos and sports betting platforms. Swedish players now have access to a wide array of gaming options, from traditional casino games to cutting-edge sportsbook offerings.
Moreover, the COVID-19 pandemic accelerated the shift towards online gambling, with more people seeking entertainment from the safety and comfort of their homes. As a result, the demand for iGaming services surged, propelling the market to new heights.
Innovation and technology
The Swedish iGaming market has always been at the forefront of technological advancements. In 2023, we can expect to see even more innovations, such as virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) gaming experiences.
These immersive technologies are set to revolutionise how players engage with their favourite casino games, offering a more lifelike and interactive gaming environment.
Furthermore, mobile gaming remains a key driver of growth in the Swedish market. With the widespread use of smartphones and tablets, players can enjoy their favourite games on the go.
Mobile apps and responsive websites have made it convenient for players to access their preferred iGaming platforms, contributing to increased revenue for operators.
As the Swedish iGaming market continues to expand, so does the emphasis on responsible gaming practises. The regulatory framework requires operators to implement stringent measures to prevent problem gambling.
This includes tools for self-exclusion, deposit limits, and time tracking features to help players stay in control of their gaming habits.
Additionally, initiatives like GamStop and Spelpaus allow players to self-exclude from all licenced operators, promoting responsible gambling behaviour.
This commitment to player well-being has been integral to the market’s success, as it fosters trust and ensures the long-term sustainability of the industry.
In 2023, the Swedish iGaming market will stand as a shining example of a well-regulated, innovative, and responsible gaming environment.
With continued growth and advancements in technology, the future looks promising for both operators and players alike.
The market’s success can be attributed to its robust regulatory framework, market growth driven by demand and innovation, and a steadfast commitment to responsible gaming practises.
Flutter Entertainment-owned PokerStars VR is set to be a launch title for Facebook owner Meta’s Quest Pro mixed reality headset, which is expected to launch on 25 October.
The firm’s free-to-play virtual and mixed-reality social casino game will be one of a select few game titles chosen to launch alongside the flagship device, which was revealed by Meta yesterday (11 October).
The Quest Pro, which comes with an eye-watering $1,499 price tag (compared to existing headset the Quest 2 which starts at $399), brings the added benefit of mixed reality capability, allowing digital content to be overlaid on the real world.
Meta chief Mark Zuckerberg has described mixed reality as “the next major step for VR”.
Flutter said Lucky VR, the developers of PokerStars VR, have been working behind the scenes to come up with new ways of taking advantage of the headset’s capabilities and integrate them into the free-to-play casino game.
PokerStars director of VR and innovation James O’Reilly: “Our goal with PokerStars VR is to push the potential of new technologies as far as we can to create a fun and authentic social casino game that really is limitless.”
PokerStars VR players using the Quest Pro will be able to choose between a fully immersive virtual reality experience, a partially immersive experience that brings objects or spaces from the physical world into the game through “passthrough windows”, and a full mixed reality experience allowing players to bring virtual game elements into their own world.
Further, face and eye-tracking technology will add an additional dimension to the game, allowing players to make and see more realistic facial expressions in their customised avatars.
Players will be able to smile, frown, and glance at their cards as they would at a real poker table.
Flutter added that advanced haptics will also add to richer, more engaging gameplay with players getting the full experience of the hundreds of toys, props and items available.
“Our goal with PokerStars VR is to push the potential of new technologies as far as we can to create a fun and authentic social casino game that really is limitless,” said James O’Reilly, director of VR and innovation at PokerStars.
“We’re extremely proud to be part of the launch of Meta’s Quest Pro, which is a transformation in virtual and mixed reality. Our developers have been having great fun exploring what this technology means for our players and we can’t wait to show them what we have in store.”
PokerStars VR offers players a variety of free-to-play casino games in addition to poker. Roulette, Blackjack and slots also feature, while last week the brand announced the addition of craps to its list of available games.