UK trade bodies reach cross-industry agreement for safer game design code for gaming machines


game industry commercial organizations Bacta, the Bingo Association and the Betting and Gaming Council (BGC) work finalized last week on a Safer game design code for gaming machines in the land sector. One of the changes that will result from the adoption of this new code will be that machines will no longer celebrate under-bet wins with visual or auditory fanfare.

The Code is a cross-industry initiative that began before the COVID-19 pandemic in response to calls from the UK Gambling Commission for the industry to take further action to address risks associated with game design features.

A group of gaming machine manufacturers and operators have come together under the chairmanship of Reflex’s Matt Ingram throughout the pandemic assess common characteristics found on gaming machines in light of current research, standards, and the views of those who have experienced gaming-related harm.

BGC Executive Director Wes Himes

In an official statement, Bacta CEO John Whitesaid: “It is a significant achievement for the entire industry to reach agreement on such a vast topic.. Nevertheless, the challenge had to be met and we now have a Code that once again demonstrates the industry’s commitment to socially responsible recreational gaming. It adds to a long list of industry initiatives that have helped reduce problem gambling rates to an all-time low of 0.2% of the population..”

Miles Baron, CEO of the Bingo Association, added: “The Bingo Association is pleased to support this code in partnership with Bacta and the BGC demonstrating the ability of the land sector to come together when necessary to reinforce safer gaming protocols.”

Wes Himes, BGC Executive Director also commented:We welcome this code as another example of the industry applying higher standards to address risk issues and we will continue to introduce new evidence-based measures in our fight to prevent harm.

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