Friday saw the launch of a new mobile game app Star Match in the US state of Georgia, and no it is not a celebrity dating app, but a gambling app reminiscent of 3-in-a-row matching games Candy Crush and Bejeweled.
LottoInteractive’s title will cost US$2 to play for a chance to win US$10,000. In Star Match the premise is simple: match three or more “Hollywood icons” to collect stars and a chance to win real money. However unlike regular titles, this game will incorporate a chance element .
CEO of LottoInteractive states that “Over 50 percent of American adults play the lottery and over 50 percent of the population plays mobile games. Star Match is an interactive mobile game and digital scratcher that merges these two segments by delivering a first-of- its-kind crossover experience. LottoInteractive is developing a full slate of compelling games for lotteries around the world, in the most popular casual mobile game genres. With our games, it’s now just as fun to play the lottery as it is to win it.”
Debbie Alford, president and CEO of Georgia Lottery issued a statement “We’re thrilled to be the first lottery in the world to launch Star Match. This mobile-game-inspired addition will enhance our product offerings and deliver engaging content to our players.”
LottoInteractive are currently in talks to release Star Match in other US states as well as in Europe and Canada, and will be available elsewhere in the world as a free trial.
This launch could see a dramatic shift in the already controversial gambling game market with Valve struggling to curb the online gambling phenomena creating through its skin trading in titles such as Counter-Strike: Global Offensive.
The 3-in-a-row matching games are not only immensely popular, but already raking in large profits. The studio behind the most popular title of the genre, Candy Crush Saga, revealed a drop in profit in 2015 to a still staggering US$517 million with a total revenue of US$2.1 billion, made through in-game purchases.
The latest data from Australia shows that although overall gambling revenues has decreased from $288 million to $230 million between 2009 and 2014, problematic gamblers are still spending the same amount of money. If you are concerned about the gambling habits of yourself or others, visit Gamblers Help Online or ring the Gambling Help Line for a free 24-hour anonymous counselling referral service: 1800 858 858.