Traditional and innovated gambling products: an exploration of player preferences


There is concern that recent innovations of traditional face-to-face gambling products may lead to increased harm because of the tendency for innovated products to share certain structural features with electronic gaming machines (EGMs). The VICES framework focusses on several mechanisms known to influence gambling behaviour: visual and auditory enhancements, illusions of control, cognitive complexity, expedited play and social customization. The current study applied the VICES framework to an investigation of player experiences with both traditional and innovated gambling products. Through a series of six focus groups (N = 40) with regular bingo, poker and casino table game players and sports bettors, we examined the characteristics of innovated gambling products and their influences on player experience and the risk of gambling harm. Findings suggest that traditional games are perceived as more social, more enjoyable and less harmful. This was largely attributed to the low social interaction, expedited play and increased potential for consumption that is associated with EGM-type gambling activity. Further, we suggest that VICES, pending some revision, is a valid and applicable framework by which to identify characteristics of innovated products that influence player experience and behaviour.

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