Casino Game Testing
Thorough testing is paramount for a successful game. Whether that includes live prototype play, certification in a gaming control lab or actual deployment, game model and game implementation problems can be very costly if not caught early.
- Math Model Consistency Checking - Whenever possible, odds calculations and counts are computed using independent methods to verify the math model. If the original model wasn't created like this, we can usually replicate the calculations using different methods to identify problems at their source.
- Analysis vs. Simulation - Even for games with analytic solutions, we run simulations, preferably on the target machine, to verify payout expectations and program execution. For skill games, we automatically make optimal play selections to determine the highest possible payback. We can also run with realistic, sub-optimal strategies to verify median hold.
- Chi-Square Analysis - Essential to verifying correct game operations and a fundamental test within the gaming control labs is chi-square analysis. Not only does this validate the expected performance of every outcome, it can also uncover subtle flaws with your RNG.
- Random Number Generator (RNG) Testing - In addition to chi-square analysis, or possibly because of bad chi-square results, we can test and analyze your RNG's behavior. These types of issues can often be the toughest to resolve during gaming control lab certification. These can also lead to anomalies payback performance in live games.
- Near Miss Analysis - Gaming control labs also have rules regarding near miss opportunities on weighted reel games. While this is a very simple test to perform, you want to make sure it's not the lab that finds the problem.
Usability / Playability Testing
While the math model testing can get your game through the labs and performing to spec on the floor, the softer science of usability testing is key to a game's success. Likewise, common user controls across games on a multi-game platform, multi-game application or online casino can affect your success.
Typically, we recommend testing and addressing these issue in the prototype where changes are the least expensive. After evaluation and improvements by gaming designers, we then set up focus tests to have sample players try out the games. Usability problems are spotted by carefully watching the player interact with the game. We also perform detailed debriefings to try to identify likes and dislikes.
For games slated for a casino floor in a regulated jurisdiction, we can also set up a trial program in an unregulated casino to get real-world performance statistics. While such programs are relatively expensive, they can help you choose the most profitable games from a collection without the expense of developing, certifying and deploying the entire collection. This can also be used to select amongst possible payback models for a given game prior to its public roll-out. With new games, first impressions are very important.