For Troy Zurawski, a career in the gaming industry was perhaps written in the stars. He comes from a family whose roots date back to Las Vegas’ early heyday in the 1940s. Three generations later, Zurawski is still flying the flag proudly. Founder and CEO of Design Works Gaming (DWG), he oversees a company that boasts – according to its own figures – 4 million active online players in addition to its presence at casinos in over 100 countries.
Now the Scottsdale-based business has set its sights on the online real money market. The ambitious entrepreneur jetted into London last summer for the CasinoBeats Summit, determined to leave delegates salivating for more from DWG. By combining an enviable reputation for in-person games with its online prowess, Zurawski and his team are right to be excited about what the future might bring.
And it’s quickly had success having already developed a number of games for the likes of Aristocrat, IGT and Novomatic. New releases like Hold Your Horses, Bear Tracks and Wonders of Africa are now some of the most-played slots games at major online slots guide like VSO.
Noted for their variety and innovation, DWG has committed itself to avoid the cookie-cutter approach and has developed features such as its wheel spin bonus, prize drop minigames and piggy bank, which Zurawksi believes will be powerful marketing tools for online casino providers in future.
“These tools deliver customizable and flexible promotions and incentives that reward play across all games on the casino – not just ours”, he told delegates at CasinoBeats, adding that they’re not limited to a single vertical, but available across bingo and sportsbook too.
Whilst being a new player in the market, DWG’s experience of free-to-play games and land-based casinos is, without any doubt, a major advantage as it looks to spread its wings. Indeed, after appointing Andy Harris as the CEO of its UK arm, the former Realistic Games head honcho said Zurawski’s firm was “the best real-money games developer that the developer’s clients have never heard of”.
DWG’s experience of both gaming markets has enabled it to collect an abundance of data, which it is has used to develop current products as well as influence the creation of new ones. This has also ensured the firm only brings its most popular titles to market.
Zurawski says this data will help DWG’s casino partners better target consumers based on their location by revealing what games perform best in what territories. It means their “offering is tailored and focused for each operator’s requirements”, he acknowledges, going on to say that such “bespoke validation” and its associated benefits are not something afforded to partners by many other suppliers.
DWG’s founder and CEO believes it’s best to keep things as simple as possible, however. “We worry about making an outstanding slot first, then contemplate all the verticals it can serve”, he says. In practice, that means in-house design from a blank page that doesn’t rely on cloning previous successes. Style, substance and innovation.
Harris is similarly excited about the future. He says, for existing clients, DWG’s ambition produces greater opportunities to access the highest quality gaming while new partners have the opportunity to piggyback innovative gameplay that genuinely puts players first.