|There is a new growing sector of the online gambling industry. Restricted by the grey-area surrounding online gambling in the US, some sites are now developing a line of games which they refer to as “skill-based”. This complies with the underlying edict of legal gaming, that games played must depend mostly on the skill of the player, rather than luck, which decides whether the player will win or lose. Examples of the games currently falling into this category are Solitaire and 8-ball. Sites which host these games, are watching their popularity grow, although this line of games still only accounts for a very small percentage of the whole online gambling industry- estimated at less than five percent by Sebastian Sinclair- the president of a gambling industry consultancy called Christiansen Capital Advisors. |
However as the spotlight on illegal gambling practices continues to intensify, it is predicted that the popularity of the skill-based games will steadily grow. One company hosting approximately 30 of these games, WorldWinner, currently has 10 million registered players. The chief executive of this company, Stephen J Killeen, has been quoted as describing this sector as “competitive entertainment”. He has also highlighted the difference inherent in playing these games as, “because these are games of skill, as opposed to games of chance, there’s an added dimension of ‘O.K., I have to concentrate on this…It’s not ‘What’s this random roll going to show me?’”.
The suppliers of these games are conscious though, that they must work not to be netted into the legislative debates currently affecting the rest of the online gambling market.