Evolution has announced a ten-year extension to its partnership with Galaxy Gaming, which will enhance its live dealer offerings in the US market. Galaxy creates table game content for the retail casino industry. Users of online live dealer games in the US will be most familiar with its patented side bets for blackjack, but more exotic games could be coming.
Evolution and its subsidiary Ezugi are the primary suppliers of live dealer games in the US, though they now face competition from Playtech. Additionally, Light & Wonder expects to launch live dealer games for US online casinos eventually.
Compared to digital table games, there’s a lot of room for differentiation in the live dealer space. Unique games and side bets are one way to achieve that. The relationship between Galaxy and Evolution dates back to 2015 through a third party, Games Marketing. Galaxy and Evolution have now extended that partnership for another ten years.
Since then, Evolution has made a wide range of Galaxy products available to its international customers. The selection in the US has been more limited. However, the partnership extension will make it easier for Evolution to bring new Galaxy content to more markets.
Galaxy’s Director of iGaming & Performance, Jason McCulloch, spoke to Bonus about the deal. He revealed that it includes launching two new Galaxy products for US customers.
What Galaxy Products Are Available Through Evolution in the US?
If you’ve played any live dealer games at US online casinos, you’ve probably played with Evolution. They’re the number one supplier in the US and work with most online casinos. That includes all the big ones: DraftKings, FanDuel, BetMGM, Golden Nugget, etc.
Some New Jersey online casinos also offer games from Ezugi, a former competitor Evolution acquired in 2018.
Evolution’s international studios offer standalone Galaxy games like Double Ball Roulette and Caribbean Stud Poker. In the US, however, the collaboration has so far been limited to exclusive side bets in standard games like blackjack and baccarat.
The Galaxy side bet US players are most likely to be familiar with is 21+3, available in several versions of blackjack offered by Evolution and Ezugi. These include some digital, RNG-driven titles, as well as live dealer ones.
The 21+3 bet is a side bet on the value of a three-card poker hand formed from the player’s two cards plus the dealer’s initial up card. Payouts range from 5-1 for three cards of the same suit up to 100-1 for three identical cards (rank and suit).
You’ll find one or more of Galaxy’s side bets available in the following Evolution games:
- Live Baccarat
- Live Blackjack
- Live Infinite Blackjack
- Live Infinite Free Bet Blackjack
- Live Power Blackjack
- Blackjack Classic*
- First-Person Baccarat*
- First-Person Blackjack*
- Platinum Blackjack Side Bets*
(* Non-live dealer games)
Two New Galaxy Gaming Products Coming to US Online Casinos
Although the deal will expand the number of Galaxy’s creations available to US players, the specifics remain to be determined. McCulloch says that Evolution plans to add two new Galaxy products to its US live dealer studios but is still deciding which ones.
These could be standalone games or new side bets added to existing tables.
Bonus asked McCulloch about the absence of Galaxy’s standalone games at US online casinos. He explained that it has to do with state-by-state regulation and the cost of adding a new game to every studio:
Each game must be built in each state, which is a high cost to Evolution. The most likely scenario is that we will build new standalone games globally first for reasons of scale and then bring them to the US markets at some point if it makes sense to do so.
US operators with operations in Ontario – such as BetMGM, DraftKings, and others – have our standalone games running in Ontario. They can do this because Ontario allows Evolution’s European studios to be used.
The good news is that courts have consistently ruled against the Department of Justice in its attempts to apply the Wire Act to online casino gaming. That worry was one reason state regulators have hesitated to allow interstate streaming of live dealer games.
With that issue now put to bed, we’ve already seen West Virginia allow its online casinos to stream live dealer games from neighboring Pennsylvania. Other states now considering online casino legislation, like Illinois and Indiana, have included forward-looking language to authorize such compacts with other states’ regulators. That may make the possibility of unique standalone games more economically viable for Evolution down the road.