Mikohn to test new Pai Gow Poker

July 31, 2001 1:52 AM
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Mikohn Gaming Corp. has received approval from the New Jersey Casino Control Commission to begin field testing its new Progressive Jackpot Pai Gow Pokerâ„¡ game in Atlantic City.

The company has seen significant interest in its new offering, which is the first electronic Pai Gow game with a progressive jackpot feature. Park Place Entertainment Corp. has leased five tables for Caesars Atlantic City and another two for Bally’s Park Place. Mikohn is currently finalizing placements with other Atlantic City operators, who have previously expressed their intent to take the game.

“Atlantic City, with a huge Asian player base, is a major center of Pai Gow poker,” commented David J. Thompson, Mikohn’s chairman and chief executive officer. “Because of this, we are really looking forward to beginning this important trial. While there are several Pai Gow games in casinos, Mikohn is introducing the first with a progressive feature, which greatly increases fun and excitement for players and provides additional returns for casinos on the game’s side wager. Our game also features a dramatically themed felt, sign and electronics package.”

Mikohn’s Progressive Jackpot Pai Gow Poker game is expected to generate progressive jackpots averaging $250,000, which are funded by a $5 side wager and so are made available at no risk to the house. The classic Pai Gow game dates back several centuries to China. According to Thompson, the problem with traditional Pai Gow Poker in today’s casino is that approximately 46 percent of wagers result in pushes because players are dealt a front hand and a back hand against the dealer, and often will win one and lose one. He noted that Mikohn’s electronic version solves that problem since casinos may select among a variety of pay tables, which afford players up to 15 different ways to win.

To support the Progressive Pai Gow Poker launch, Park Place and Mikohn plan an aggressive promotional campaign featuring the appearance of a classic Chinese manned dragon on the Boardwalk, the distribution of fortune cookies, billboards and other promotions.

Mikohn’s Progressive Jackpot Pai Gow Poker game has already been approved in Nevada and Mississippi. The company anticipates prompt regulatory approval in New Jersey in accordance with state gaming regulations. Additional regulatory submissions are in progress.

Thompson added: “Mikohn’s Progressive Jackpot Pai Gow Poker game is an easy upgrade for a casino since it does not require displacing an existing table, but only the addition of the electronic jackpot feature. We believe we have a very exciting product and look forward to the response from players and operators in New Jersey.”

Mikohn is a diversified supplier to the casino gaming industry worldwide, and specializes in the development of innovative products with recurring revenue potential. Mikohn develops, manufactures and markets an expanding array of slot games, table games and advanced player tracking and accounting systems for slot machines and table games. The company is also a leader in exciting visual displays and progressive jackpot technology for casinos worldwide.