As part of their seemingly never-ending bid to get off of life support, Atlantic City casinos are rolling out an American first: skill-based slot machines.

Use of the machines, which are produced by a New York firm called GameCo, Inc., was approved during a late-night meeting of the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement (DGE) on October 12.

According to a report from the Associated Press, the first of the new machines will be placed in properties owned by Caesars Entertainment as early as this week.

The new machines are referred to as VGMs and are designed to attract a new, younger, demographic to the casino floor by incorporating elements of video games to standard slots play.

Not surprisingly, GameCo founder Blaine Graboyes was thrilled by the prospect of his machines carving out a new casino niche saying:

“With this approval from the DGE, the VGM is officially the first skill-based video game gambling product approved by any U.S. gaming jurisdiction regulator.”

Graboyes and his company were able to get expedited approval for their machines from the New Jersey DGE thanks to a program designed to give approval preference to innovative gaming devices if they’re first introduced in Atlantic City.

In a statement touting AC’s position as gaming industry innovator NJ DGE boss Dave Redbuck said:

“We have been at the forefront of encouraging innovation, and are pleased that the efforts of GameCo and division staff have culminated in this skill-based video game becoming available in Atlantic City before any other jurisdiction in the United States.”

If successful in Atlantic City, expect to see skill-based slot machines make major inroads into both the land-based and online gambling industries.

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