Jack Cleveland Casino Adds an Electronic Gaming Studio

Jack Cleveland Casino Electronic Gaming Studio

Jack Entertainment added electronic gaming machines to their Cincinnati and Detroit casinos, too.

Jack Cleveland Casino, formerly known as the Horseshoe Cleveland, launched its electronic gaming arena this week. Jack Cleveland is partnering with Synergy Table Games, which brought similar electronic gaming machines to Bethlehem Sands and Mohegan Sun.

The 2,000-square-foot e-Gaming arena in the Cleveland casino is going to include 28 hi-tech electronic play stations. Each station will have a 27-inch video screen display. The displays provide the ability to play electronic roulette, craps, blackjack, and baccarat

Each display will have the ability to interact with a live dealer who administers each of the four games. The electronic gaming stadium which surrounds the 28-machine section is going to have a DJ booth and a video wall.

The studio is designed to provide an immersive light show, which bounces lasers off the video wall while dance-style club music plays. The DJ handles the sound, while players enjoy a different kind of gaming experience on their electronic machines.

What Is an Electronic Gaming Studio?

Electronic gaming studios are one of several concepts casino owners are hoping will bring millennial age gamblers into their venues. While Baby Boomers and some Gen X visitors flock to slot machines, a large percentage of millennial age players have no interest in slots row.

Caesars’ Skill-Based Slots

At the height of their popularity, slot machines generated about 70% of a land-based casino’s gaming revenue. Last year, Caesars Entertainment estimated that about 63% of its gaming revenue came from slot machines. That makes the massive gaming space allotted for slots by far the single-most important part of a casino’s revenue stream, but a 7% decline in a handful of years is alarming.

Caesars Entertainment tried skill-based slot machines and skill gaming machines last year. Caesars exec Melissa Price described the results trying to cater to millennials as “a big learning experience.” The millennial generation is supposed to be particularly difficult to target in marketing efforts.

Electronic Roulette Gaming

Jack Cleveland Casino expects that they’ll prefer electronic roulette and electronic blackjack. Such gaming stations provide the opportunity to use skill and strategy, at least with certain game choices. That is preferable to traditional electronic slots, which are based purely on chance.

Jack Entertainment’s other properties, Greektown Casino in Detroit and Jack Cincinnati, already feature electronic table games. Dan Gilbert and his executives have seen enough success with their other land-based casinos in the region to invest in the 28 machines for Cleveland.

Jack Cleveland Casino Revenues

The Cleveland casino has generated disappointing revenue figures after the casino was rebranded a couple of years ago. In such situations, executives find a number of excuses.

The “millennial problem” is often top of the list, because the millennial generation surpassed the Baby Boomer generation in spending power earlier this year. It is the largest demographic class in America now, so casino owners naturally are catering to their tastes.

Pew Research Center asked millennials last year what they found to be the defining traits of their generation. 24% responded that “technology use” was the defining characteristic. 11% said it was “music and pop culture”. The electronic gaming studio combines the two concepts.

Reactions to Electronic Gaming Studios

One customer on Cleveland.com said he had no interest in an electronic gaming studio. The poster said, “Too much noise, flashing lights give me a headache — they’re lucky they haven’t caused a bunch of seizures….Too close together, too much congestion just to get more games on the floor. You can have my share.”

Not every reaction was negative. Another commenter noted, “It started in Detroit. Pretty cool concept.”

Still another said, “Some people complain that the JACK doesn’t have enough modern ‘neon’ and focuses on the chandeliers. Now they’re complaining about a section of the casino that has all of the flashing lights, bells, and whistles.” 

Brian Eby: “Revolutionary Table Games Arena”

When the planned studio was first announced in late-January, Brian Eby, the Jack Entertainment Innovation Chief, said that the gaming studio is designed to create “another level of entertainment.” Eby called the new addition to Jack Cleveland a “revolutionary electronic table games arena.”

Rock Ventures, which owns Quicken Loans and the Cleveland Cavaliers, bought the Horseshoe Cleveland in 2016 and renamed it Jack Cleveland. The casino generated $203 million in 2016, but saw a backslide to $201 million in 2017. In an industry which expects steady growth, a 1% decline was met with significant alarm.