Japan Becoming a Hotbed for iGaming Software Development
You might not know it, but Japan is fast becoming a major hotbed for the development of online slot titles. There is a Japanese development studio that is rapidly attracting the attention of some of Europe's biggest online casinos. Ganapati specializes in premium Japanese-influenced slot titles, helping to serve up a healthy slice of Japanese culture on the reels of iGaming operators.
Japan is fast becoming a major hotbed for the development of online slot titles.
Launched in September 2016, Ganapati is one of the newest development studios to make a splash in the world of iGaming, but it appears intent on carving its own niche in the industry. Ganapati made its debut at the ICE exhibition in 2017, with a stand showcasing Japanese culture with slots that embrace Japanese tech and pop culture additions such as anime and manga.
Ganapati's most successful slot releases to date
Some of the most recent titles from the Ganapati Group include She Ninja Suzu and CrypBattle. She Ninja Suzu is a typically Japanese game, featuring immersive 3D visuals on all five of its reels. The game's storyline is centered around a young heroine who is prepared to take on and defeat the bad guys on her streets, specializing in martial arts moves and techniques to prevail along the way.
The heroine uses these moves to improve winning outcomes on the reels too; spin-kicking her way to expanding wilds and introducing new win multipliers to existing winning paylines. There is even a nod to past video games that have been developed in Japan like Street Fighter and Mortal Kombat, with the "Anger Bar" above the reels akin to the energy bars of fighters, which fill up and dish out extra bonuses when totally full.
Meanwhile, CrypBattle focuses more on Japan's love affair with anime, bringing this unique cartoon-style animation to the reels, based largely on CrypTract's online role-playing multiplayer game that's been hugely popular in Japan, and is also available with Sony via PlayStation 4 downloads.
The mythical storyline surrounding CrypBattle and its sister slot CrypCrusade is really engaging. You are transported to the world of Centrea, a world dominated by worldly wizards and dangerous monsters. The gamification options in CrypBattle are also impressive, with players given the chance to select their own army of "warriors" to protect them, each coming with their own unique bonus features and characteristics on the reels.
The Ganapati Group originated in Tokyo and still has its head office in the Japanese capital. However, in recent times it has expanded its operations into Europe and America, with offices now in Tallinn, London, Los Angeles, and Malta. Ganapati Malta is the group's main European arm, tasked with bringing Japanese-themed entertainment to Europe's leading online casinos.
Following the launch of its Maltese operations, Ganapati was able to secure a Class 4 iGaming licence with the Malta Gaming Authority (MGA), allowing them to supply slot titles under one of Europe's most stringent iGaming jurisdictions. Well-established sites like Betway are licensed and regulated by the MGA for operations outside of the UK, which has helped provide a massive platform for Ganapati's slots to thrive and evolve.
A new exciting partnership with the world's most recognizable athlete
Earlier this year, the Ganapati Group also took bold steps to enhance its brand exposure by partnering with the world's fastest man, Usain Bolt. This summer, Ganapati is set to launch the industry's first official Usain Bolt slot game. Bolt joined the Ganapati team at ICE London 2020 to push the launch, which was meant to coincide with Tokyo's Olympic Games celebrations.
The Jamaican said that Ganapati caught his eye with their ability to "produce innovative and creative content" that ensures a "natural" partnership. Juliet Edelstein, COO, Ganapati Group, believes that working with one of the most iconic athletes in sporting history is a sign of "just how big [Ganapati] has grown in such a short space of time".