US20070265094A1 - System and Method for Streaming Games and Services to Gaming Devices - Google Patents

System and Method for Streaming Games and Services to Gaming Devices Download PDF

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Publication number
US20070265094A1
US20070265094A1 US11/559,176 US55917606A US2007265094A1 US 20070265094 A1 US20070265094 A1 US 20070265094A1 US 55917606 A US55917606 A US 55917606A US 2007265094 A1 US2007265094 A1 US 2007265094A1
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game
gaming
device
audio
player
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Abandoned
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US11/559,176
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Norio Tone
Kenichi Kamano
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Konami Gaming Inc
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Konami Gaming Inc
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Priority to US79929006P priority Critical
Application filed by Konami Gaming Inc filed Critical Konami Gaming Inc
Priority to US11/559,176 priority patent/US20070265094A1/en
Publication of US20070265094A1 publication Critical patent/US20070265094A1/en
Assigned to KONAMI GAMING, INC. reassignment KONAMI GAMING, INC. ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST (SEE DOCUMENT FOR DETAILS). Assignors: KAMANO, KENICHI, TONE, NORIO
Assigned to CREDIT SUISSE AG reassignment CREDIT SUISSE AG SECURITY INTEREST (SEE DOCUMENT FOR DETAILS). Assignors: ALCATEL-LUCENT USA INC.
Application status is Abandoned legal-status Critical

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    • GPHYSICS
    • G07CHECKING-DEVICES
    • G07FCOIN-FREED OR LIKE APPARATUS
    • G07F17/00Coin-freed apparatus for hiring articles; Coin-freed facilities or services
    • G07F17/32Coin-freed apparatus for hiring articles; Coin-freed facilities or services for games, toys, sports or amusements, e.g. casino games, online gambling or betting
    • G07F17/3202Hardware aspects of a gaming system, e.g. components, construction, architecture thereof
    • G07F17/3223Architectural aspects of a gaming system, e.g. internal configuration, master/slave, wireless communication
    • GPHYSICS
    • G07CHECKING-DEVICES
    • G07FCOIN-FREED OR LIKE APPARATUS
    • G07F17/00Coin-freed apparatus for hiring articles; Coin-freed facilities or services
    • G07F17/32Coin-freed apparatus for hiring articles; Coin-freed facilities or services for games, toys, sports or amusements, e.g. casino games, online gambling or betting

Abstract

A gaming system providing a game and/or gaming services to a player or user at a gaming or gaming services device. The device receives streaming audio-video representing the game or gaming services and plays streaming audio-video at a device. The device also receives input related to the play of the game or the gaming services from the user/player and relays the input to the gaming system. The system includes a storage device and a controller. The storage device stores elements of the game and/or gaming services. The game controller receives the input from the user/player and responsively retrieving the elements of the game and/or gaming services from the storage device, dynamically creates an audio-video stream as a function of the retrieved elements and the input, and broadcasts the audio-video stream to the gaming and/or gaming services device.

Description

    CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATION
  • This application claims the benefit of U.S. Provisional Patent Application Ser. No. 60/799,290 filed on May 10, 2006, which is hereby incorporated by reference.
  • FIELD OF THE INVENTION
  • The present invention relates to gaming system, and more specifically, to a system and method for delivering games and/or services to gaming devices using real time audio-video streaming.
  • BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
  • A majority of the games provided at a casino are computer based. For example, video slot machines, video poker machines, and even mechanical slot machines are currently controlled by computer software executed on a computer located within a game cabinet.
  • Due to regulatory controls, the software running the game is stored on program computer chips known as EEPROMs. Each EEPROM is numbered and has an associated software version. Location and replacement of the EEPROM in a gaming cabinet, as well as software updates, is strictly regulated. Unfortunately, when a software update is desired or required, each EEPROM must be physically replaced under strict guidelines. This is time consuming and expensive.
  • Currently some game manufacturers and casinos are moving to downloadable systems, in which the software which runs the games is downloaded to each game when an update or new software is available. However, as each game requires the most up to date software, the software must be downloaded to each game cabinet. This is a time consuming and complex task which must be performed under the strictest guidelines. The main features and capabilities of the game itself are not changed from EPROM based gaming systems.
  • Some game manufactures and casinos are moving to server-based systems which games run on casino servers located in casino server room. However, in these systems game graphics and/or sound data are transferred and stored at the game cabinet in the same manner of the downloadable systems. Regulatory controls ensure that the transfer of the game elements and sound data are performed under the strictest guidelines. The transfer may occur once at game activation or any time while the game is in service. This kind of server-based system is based on the downloadable systems described above.
  • The present invention is aimed at one or more of the problems set forth above.
  • SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
  • In a first aspect of the present invention, a system and method dynamically creates an audio-video stream containing a presentation of the games and/or services and broadcasts the audio-video stream to one or more gaming devices which receive the audio-video stream and play it at the device.
  • In a second aspect of the present invention, a system and method for providing server based real time casino gaming using audio-video streaming technology.
  • In a third aspect of the present invention a gaming system for providing a game to a player at a gaming device is provided. The gaming device receives streaming audio-video representing a game and plays the streaming audio-video at the device. The gaming device also receives input related to the player of the game from the player and relays the player input to the gaming system. The gaming system includes a storage device and game controller. The storage device stores elements of the game. The game controller is coupled to the storage device and the gaming device and receives the player input from the player and responsively retrieves the elements of the game from the storage device, and determines a result of the game as the result of a process. The gaming controller dynamically creates an audio-video stream as a function of the retrieved elements and the result of the game and then broadcasts the audio-video stream to the gaming device.
  • In a fourth aspect of the present invention the gaming system for providing a gaming service to a user is provided. The gaming system includes a gaming service device, a storage device, and a gaming service controller. The gaming service controller is associated with the gaming device and provides a gaming service in response to input from the player. The storage device stores the elements of the gaming service. The gaming service controller is coupled to the gaming device, the gaming service device, and the storage device and receives the player input from the player and responsively retrieves the elements of the gaming service from the storage device, and determines the result of the gaming service as a function of the player input. The gaming service controller further dynamically creates an audio-video stream as a function of the retrieved elements and the result of the process of the gaming service and broadcasts the audio-video stream to the gaming service device.
  • In a fifth aspect of the present invention, the gaming system provides a game and gaming services to a player at a gaming device. The gaming device receives streaming audio-video representing the game and gaming service and plays it at the device and receives input from the player and relays the player input to the gaming system. The gaming system includes storage devices and controllers for game gaming service respectively. The storage devices store elements of the game and/or elements of the gaming service. The controller is coupled to the gaming device and the storage device and receives the player input from the player and responsively retrieves the elements of the game from the storage device and plays the game. The controller also responsively retrieves elements of the gaming service from the storage device as a function of the player input and dynamically creates an audio-video stream as a function of the retrieved elements of the game and the gaming service and the player input. The controller further broadcasts the audio-video stream to the gaming device. The audio-video stream contains both presentations of the game and the gaming services.
  • In a sixth aspect of the present invention a gaming system for providing a game to a player at a gaming device is provided. The gaming system includes a storage device and a game controller. The storage device stores elements of a plurality of games in first and second libraries. Each library includes at least one game. The game controller selectively enables one of the first and second libraries based on the library parameter for game play.
  • In a seventh aspect of the present invention a gaming system provides a game and/or gaming service to a player at a gaming device. The gaming device receives streaming audio-video representing a game and/or gaming service on a display and receives input from the player and relays the player input to the gaming system. The gaming system includes a storage device, player data storage device, a gaming services device, and a controller. The storage device stores elements of the game and/or elements of the gaming services. The player data storage device retrieves information related to a plurality of players. The gaming services device receives input from the player related to the identification of the player. The controller is coupled to the gaming device, the gaming services device, the data storage device, and the storage device for receiving the information related to the identification of the player and responsively retrieving player information from the player data storage device. The controller further receives the player input from the player and responsibly retrieves elements of the game and/or game service from the storage device. The controller dynamically creates an audio-video stream related to the game and/or gaming services as a function of the retrieved elements of the game and/or gaming service and the player input. At least a portion of the audio-video stream incorporates the player information. The controller further broadcasts the audio-video stream to the gaming device. The audio-video stream contains both elements of the game and the elements of the gaming services.
  • In an eighth aspect of the present invention, a system and method for creating an audio-video stream of a game element of a game is provided. Player input is received from a gaming device, and in response, an audio-video stream of a game element is created and broadcast to the corresponding gaming device. Player input may be XY coordinates from a touchscreen sensor and/or a signal indicative of actuation of a physical or touchscreen button. No game logic occurs at the gaming device. The audio-video stream broadcast to the gaming device may be targeted at the main display, a top box display, a player tracking display, or any other display. The audio-video may be by full screen or may be directed at only a portion of a display. The game element may be part of a main game, a bonus game, a secondary game, or other game.
  • In a ninth aspect of the present invention, a system and method for creating an audio-video stream of a service (such as player tracking, alerts, messages linked player services, etc . . . ) is provided. Similar to the Streaming Game Element, however it is directed at player tracking services or any other non-gaming services, such as reservations, hotel folio, etc . . . . The services are displayed using streaming audio-video. No logic occurs at the gaming device. The services may be provided on a player tracking device/display, the main display, a top box display, and/or any other display.
  • In a tenth aspect of the present invention, a system and method for integrating a audio-video stream representing game element and players gaming services on a display at the gaming device is provided. The Streaming Game Elements and the Streaming Services are integrated into a single audio-video stream and/or separate audio-video streams which are played in separate areas of the same display.
  • In an eleventh aspect of the present invention, a system and method for synchronizing sounds and/or volume of game and/or service elements in a gaming system is provided. Sounds and Volume and other elements may be synchronized in time and/or volume. Alerts, messages, including wins, may cause some type of action on a number of machines. This action may be integrated into the audio-video streams broadcast to the gaming devices.
  • In a twelfth aspect of the present invention, a system for providing audio-video streams of games and/or services to gaming machines or devices is provided. Gaming devices may be grouped together, e.g., by location and/or by function. An audio-video stream may be created for each gaming device within a group, where each stream is part of a composite stream composed of the audio-video streams for all of the gaming devices within a group and the composite stream forms a unified stream and/or message and/or signal.
  • In a twelfth aspect of the present invention, a gaming system for providing a library of games is provided. The gaming system provides the ability to define, modify, and provide different offers or combinations of games in a library. Within a library of games, different groupings of available games may be made available based on different criteria, including time of day, player criteria, etc . . . .
  • In a thirteenth aspect of the present invention, player data or information may be integrated into a streaming audio-video of a game and/or gaming service. The data or information may include the name and/or of the player, the player's family, or other people referred to in the player account, into the game element. For example, in a bonus game having a sports theme, the player's name may appear on the back of a sports jersey and/or the player's family's pictures may appear as faces in the crowd.
  • In a fourteenth aspect of the present invention, an application programming interface or API is provided which provides a common game engine. Games written under the API may be added to a game library. This would allow third parties to write games or provide services and allow the games and/or service to be integrated into the game library and offered via Server Based Gaming System with Streaming Audio-Video. Ideally, the third party games would be located on a separate server.
  • In a fifteenth aspect of the present invention, a gaming system provides a plurality of games and/or gaming services to a player on a display. The system includes a gaming device, a storage device and a game controller. The gaming device includes a display and a set of user controls. The user controls receive player input. The gaming device receives streaming audio-video representing the games and plays the streaming audio-video on the display. The display includes multiple sections wherein each game and/or gaming service is displayed within its own section of the display. The storage device stores elements of the game. The game controller is coupled to the storage device and the gaming device for receiving the player input from the player device and responsively retrieving the elements of the game from the storage device, for playing the games, and responsively, dynamically creating a single audio-video stream as a function of the retrieved elements, the player input, game and for broadcasting the audio-video stream to the gaming device, the audio-video stream representing the games by a single audio-video stream or multiple audio-video streams.
  • BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE DRAWINGS
  • FIG. 1 is a block diagram of a gaming system for providing a game to a player at a gaming device, according to an embodiment of the present invention;
  • FIG. 2 is a block diagram of a gaming system for providing a gaming service to a player, according to an embodiment of the present invention;
  • FIG. 3A is a block diagram of a gaming system for providing a game and a gaming service to a player, according to an embodiment of the present invention;
  • FIG. 3B is a block diagram of a game contents storage device, according to a first embodiment of the present invention;
  • FIG. 3C is a block diagram of a game contents storage device according to another embodiment of the present invention;
  • FIG. 3D is a block diagram of a game device having a display and controls, according to an embodiment of the present invention;
  • FIG. 3E is a block diagram of a game services device having a display and controls, according to an embodiment of the present invention;
  • FIG. 3F is a game device having a touchscreen display used to provide a game and game services to a player, whose display has virtual multiple screen sections where each game and gaming service is displayed, according to an embodiment of the present invention;
  • FIG. 4 is diagrammatical illustration of a gaming system having a game control server, a game contents storage server, an audio-video stream creation server and an audio-video stream broadcasting server for providing game and/or game services to different types of gaming devices;
  • FIG. 5 is a flow diagram illustrating the flow of data and streaming audio-video in a gaming system, according to an embodiment of the present invention;
  • FIG. 6 is a diagrammatical illustration of the interface between a game terminal of the present invention and an existing casino management system;
  • FIG. 7 is a system block diagram of a gaming system for providing games to gaming devices;
  • FIG. 8 is a diagrammatical illustration of a computer network utilized in the gaming system, according to an embodiment of the present invention;
  • FIG. 9 is a block diagram associated with the application control server in a gaming system, according to an embodiment of the present invention;
  • FIG. 10 is a flow diagram showing game results and streaming audio-video in a gaming system, according to an embodiment of the present invention;
  • FIG. 11 is a more detailed block diagram of a gaming system, according to an embodiment of the present invention;
  • FIG. 12 is a diagram showing various network connections in a gaming system, according to an embodiment of the present invention;
  • FIG. 13 is a block diagram of a gaming system which provides games from more than one manufacturer via streaming audio-video, according to an embodiment of the present invention;
  • FIG. 14 is second diagram of a gaming system for providing games via streaming audio-video from a plurality of manufacturers;
  • FIG. 15 is a third diagram of a gaming system of FIGS. 13 and 14;
  • FIG. 16 is a flow diagram of game installation in a gaming system, according to an embodiment of the present invention;
  • FIG. 17 is a block diagram of a game software package utilized in a gaming system, according to an embodiment of the present invention;
  • FIG. 18 is a block diagram of two different databases utilized in a gaming system, according to an embodiment of the present invention;
  • FIG. 19 is a flow diagram illustrating game play flow in a gaming system, according to an embodiment of the present invention;
  • FIG. 20 is a block and flow diagram illustrating the connection use of a legacy system gateway within the gaming system of the present invention;
  • FIG. 21 is a data and flow diagram with respect to a gaming device for use with a gaming system, according to an embodiment of the present invention;
  • FIG. 22 is a data and flow diagram of a remote configuration process for use in a gaming system, according to an embodiment of the present invention;
  • FIG. 23 is a block and flow diagram of a player tracking fund transfer process in a gaming system, according to an embodiment of the present invention;
  • FIG. 24 is a block and flow diagram of a system for allowing competitor's games to be utilized with the gaming system of the present invention;
  • FIG. 25 is a block and flow diagram of the connection use of remote gaming devices within the gaming system, according to an embodiment of the present invention;
  • FIG. 26 is a block and flow diagram of the use of the gaming system of the present invention with internet devices;
  • FIG. 27 is a block and flow diagram of an audio-video rendering and audio-video broadcasting server for use in the gaming system of the present invention;
  • FIG. 28 is a first exemplary screen shot of a game device for providing a plurality of games and gaming services to a player; and
  • FIG. 29 is a second exemplary screen shot of a game device for providing a plurality of games and gaming services to a player.
  • DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION
  • With reference to the drawings and in operation, the present invention provides a gaming system 10 for providing a game and/or gaming services to one or more players. Generally, the game and gaming services are provided using dynamically created streaming audio-video. In one aspect of the present invention, the game or game service is run, executed or performed on a controller 12, 12A, 12B at a central location (see below) and only the dynamically created audio-video stream is broadcast to a remotely located gaming (or game) device, gaming services devices or other terminal (see below) 14, 14A, 14B. The audio-video stream is displayed to a user on a display 26, 30, 34, such as player and/or employee of a casino or other user. The device 14, 14A, 14B includes a set of user controls 28, 32, 38, 40 and a processor 27, 33. User input from the controls 28, 32, 38, 40 is relayed to the controller 12, 12A, 12B for processing.
  • In one embodiment, the controls 28, 32, 38, 40 are mechanical buttons and switches (not shown). In another embodiment, the display 26, 30, 34 is a touchscreen device and the controls 28, 32, 38, 40 are implemented as designated locations or areas on the display 26, 30, 34. When the user touches the touchscreen display 26, 30, 34, the location, e.g., x, y coordinates, is relayed back to the controller 12, 12A, 12B which interprets and processes the location.
  • With particular reference to FIG. 1, in one aspect of the present invention, the gaming system 10 provides a game to a player at a gaming device 14A.
  • In one embodiment, the player is allowed to place a wager on the game and the game is played. The player may be awarded an award, e.g., prize, pot, or jackpot based on the outcome of the game. The award may be awarded in cash, credits, coins, tokens, or other items or merchandise. Such games are typically provided at a casino, but may be provided at other locations or at remote locations (see below). Such games include, but are not limited to, video and mechanical slot machines, video poker games, and the like. Examples of several typical games may be found in the following commonly assigned U.S. patent documents, which are hereby incorporated by reference in their entirety:
      • U.S. Pat. No. 6,939,228 issued Sep. 6, 2005 to Toshiaki Shimizu,
      • U.S. Pat. No. 6,869,360 issued Mar. 22, 2005 to Howard R. Marks et al,
      • U.S. Pat. No. 6,805,632 issued Oct. 19, 2004 to Satoshi Suda,
      • U.S. Pat. No. 6,547,242 issued Apr. 15, 2003 to Arata Sugiyama et al,
      • US Patent Application Publication 2002/0119818 published Aug. 29, 2002 listing Russell Savio et al as the inventors, and
      • US Patent Application Publication 2003/0083120 published May 1, 2003, listing Darren DeWall et al as the inventors.
  • In another embodiment, the game requires no wagering. For example, the system 10 provides a game to the player, typically, in exchange for some payment.
  • Since the device 14, 14A, 14B only requires the relaying of control information from the controls 28, 32, 38, 40 and the ability to play the streaming audio-video, the processing power, and memory and storage requirements of the device 14, 14A, 14B need not be high. As described below, the gaming device 14, 14A, 14B may include, but is not limited to: a networked terminal located on the premises, e.g., a casino; a remote device (such as a personal digital assistance or PDA) wire connected to the system 10 through a wireless network, and an internet device connected to the system 10 across the internet (or other suitable network).
  • It should be noted that while FIGS. 1-3 illustrate (and the accompanying description below), various controller(s), the function and components associated therewith may be distributed or performed among various computers or servers as appropriate. Furthermore, while additional embodiments with various computer system architectures are described below, it should be noted that the present invention is not limited to any such embodiment.
  • Returning to FIG. 1, the gaming device 14A receives the streaming audio-video, which represents the game and plays the streaming audio-video on a display 26 (see FIG. 3D). The gaming device 14A receives input related to the play of the game from the player via controls 28 and relays the player input to the controller 12A.
  • As shown in FIG. 1, the system 10 may include a plurality of gaming devices 14A-01, 14A-02 . . . , and 14A-n. The player may utilize one of the gaming devices 14A-01, 14A-02 . . . , and 14A-n.
  • The system 10 includes a storage device or game contents storage device 16 storing elements of the game (see below) and a game controller 12A. The game controller 12A is coupled to the storage device 16A and the gaming device 14A for receiving the player input from the player and responsively retrieving the elements of the game from the storage device 16A, The game controller 12A runs or plays the game and responsively, dynamically creates an audio-video stream as a function of the retrieved elements and the player input and broadcasts the audio-video stream to the respective gaming device 14A.
  • In one embodiment, the elements of the game include game application executable code, game graphics, and sound data. The elements of the game stored in the game contents storage device 16A may also include one or more configuration properties files which include game device location data, e.g., type of location (public area, private area, etc . . . ), identification of the location of the game device 14A (casino floor, pool, sports books, hotel room, network address, etc . . . ).
  • The configuration properties file is used to define the specifications or attributes of the target game device 14A. As discussed above, the gaming device 14A may be of different types. For example, the game terminal may be a networked terminal located on the premises, e.g., a casino; a remote device (such as a personal digital assistance or PDA) wire connected to the system 10 through a wireless network, and an internet device connected to the system 10 across the internet (or other suitable network). Furthermore, each device 14A may have different specifications, e.g., display and/or controls. Since the game is always run on the game controller 12A, the game application executable code is the same or independent of the target device 14A. However, the game application executable code does not directly handle the game device 14A, e.g., the layout of elements in the audio-video stream related to the display of the game device 14A. The configuration properties file is used by the game controller 12A to configure or layout the game elements within the audio-video stream for a particular type of device 14A. Thus, in one embodiment, there is only a single set of game application executable code per game, but there may by multiple configuration properties files (generally one per game device type).
  • In one aspect, the configuration properties file defines attributes of the gaming device. In one embodiment, the configuration properties file includes: screen resolution of the display, display coordinates for images and/or animations, and color depth of the display. The configuration properties file may also include game hold percentages, game denominations, game specific parameters, and maximum payout thresholds.
  • As discussed above, the gaming device 14A may be different types. In one embodiment, the elements of the game can be served to multiple types of game devices with multiple configuration properties files, one for each type.
  • In one aspect of the present invention, the game controller 12A includes several components: a game control component 18A which runs or executes the game application executable code, an audio-video creating component 20A which retrieves the necessary components from the game contents storage device 16A and creates an audio-video stream, and an audio-video broadcasting component 22A which broadcasts the audio-video stream created by the audio-video creating component 22A.
  • In embodiment, see for example FIG. 4, the game contents storage device 16A is embodied in a database on a server 16C.
  • In one embodiment, the game control component 18A, audio-video stream creating component 20A, and audio-video stream broadcasting component 22A are implemented on or run on a single server computer (not shown). The game storage device 16A may be located on the server computer or on a game contents database server 16C.
  • In another embodiment, the game control component 18A, audio-video creating component 20A, and audio-video broadcasting component 22A are all run or implemented on one or more servers, respectively. For example, as shown in FIG. 4, the gaming system 10 may include one or more application control servers 50 for running the game application executable code, one or more audio-video stream creating clusters 52 for creating the streaming audio-video, and one or more audio-video stream broadcasting servers 56 for broadcasting the streaming audio-video to the gaming devices 14, 14A.
  • The game contents storage device 16A and the game components 18A, 20A, 22A may be implemented on a single computer/server or distributed among different computers/servers.
  • In one aspect of the present invention, the game contents device 16A stores elements of a second game. With particular reference to FIG. 3B, for example the game contents storage device 16A may include a set of elements for a first game, A (“Game Package A”) and a set of elements for a second game, B (“Game Package B”).
  • In one embodiment, a player, at any one of the gaming device 14A may be given the opportunity to choose between the available games. As described below, once a player chooses a game to play at one of the gaming devices 14A, the set of elements associated with the chosen game is loaded from the game contents storage device 16A, unless otherwise loaded and a new instance of the game will be run. As discussed above, in one embodiment, the set of elements will include a single game application executable code for the associated game, but may include one or more configuration properties files. Each configuration properties file is associated with a type of gaming device, which is used to configure the streaming audio-video to the particular gaming device 14A being used.
  • In another aspect of the present invention, the sets of elements of different games may be arranged in selectable libraries. For example, with particular reference to FIG. 3C, the game contents storage device 16A may include first and second libraries 70, 72. Of course, the present invention is not limited to two libraries; any number of libraries may be provided. Each library 70, 72 may include any combination of one or more the same games, one or more different games, and/or one or more variations of another game. For example, in the illustrated embodiment, library 1 includes game package A (for associated game A) 62, game package B (for associated game B) 64, and game package C (for associated game C) 66 and library 2 includes game package A′ (a variation of game A) 62′, game package B 64, and game package D (for associated game D) 68. A variation of a game may include one more changes to the game, for example, but not limited to, the game rules, graphics, colors, audio, pay tables, odds, etc . . . .
  • In one embodiment, the games in only one library 70, 72 are available at any time. For example, library 1 70 may be available on weekdays and library 2 72 may be available on weekends. The libraries 70, 72 may be switched automatically (according to predetermined rules) or manually.
  • With particular reference to FIG. 9, in one embodiment, the application control server 50 includes multiple shared instances 74, as shown. The multiple shared instances 74 may include one random number generator module 76 (as is known in the art) and a plurality of application instances 78. Typically, the multiple shared instances 74 include an application instance 78 for each gaming device or terminal 14A for which the application control server 50 executes or runs an instance of the game application executable code. In the illustrated embodiment, the application control server 50 includes four application instances 78A, 78B, 78C, 78D for four corresponding gaming devices or terminals 14A. Each application instance 78 is an instance of the game application executable code for a chosen game at the corresponding device 14A. For example, in the illustrated embodiment, the first application instance 78A is an instance of the game application executable code for a game called “Incan Pyramid”, the second application instance 78B is an instance of the game application executable code for “African Treasure”, the third application instance 78C is currently playing a streaming audio-video of a menu screen through which a player may select a game to play, and the fourth application instance 78D is a second instance of “Incan Pyramid”.
  • With particular reference to FIG. 2, in another aspect of the present invention, the gaming system 10 provides a gaming service to a user, e.g., a player, employee of the casino, or other user, depending on the service being provided. The system 10 includes a gaming service device 14B and a gaming services controller 12B. In one embodiment, the gaming system 10 includes a plurality of gaming service device 14B-01, 14B-02 . . . , and 14B-n for providing one or more game services to one or more users.
  • The gaming service device 14B provides a gaming service in response to input from the user. The type of user will be dependent upon the service being provided. Gaming services may include, but are not limited to player tracking, cashless gaming, or other player related services such as casino advertisement; gaming devices related services, such as maintenance, hopper fills, jackpot processing, etc . . . . The gaming services controller 12B dynamically creates an audio-video stream as a function of the retrieved elements and the user input, and broadcasts the audio-video stream to the gaming services device 14B.
  • In one aspect, a gaming service may be related to, and be provided at a gaming device 14A. For example, generally, player tracking services may be provided to a player at one of the gaming devices 14A. The gaming devices 14A may provide a game to the player or may be, for example, a kiosk specifically designed to provide one or more gaming services. In one embodiment, the gaming service may be provided at the gaming device 14A through a separate or independent device, such as a player tracking device 14C (see FIG. 3E). The player tracking device 14C may be an add-on device (to a gaming device 14A) which is used to specifically provide gaming services relating to the gaming device 14A. As shown, the player tracking device 14C may include a display 30, an ID reader (such as an ID Card Reader) 31, controls 32 and a processor 33. The controls 32 may include a plurality of mechanical switches or inputs, such as a keypad (not shown). Alternatively, display 30 may be a touchscreen device and the controls 32 implemented thereon. As discussed above, inputs to the controls 32 may be relayed back to a gaming service controller 12B, which performs all processing related to the gaming service being provided. The gaming service controller 12B retrieves (if not already loaded) a gaming service set of components from a gaming service(s) contents storage device 16B which may be implemented in a database on a server 16D. In a manner similar to the elements of the games described above, each set of components of the gaming service may include gaming service application executable code, service graphics, and sound data. The gaming service contents storage device 16B also includes configuration properties files. Generally, the executable code is the same for all types of target gaming services devices 14B. However, the graphics may be different. Specifications of the target device 14B are defined in a configuration properties file associated with each type of device 14B.
  • Returning to FIG. 2, the gaming services controller 12B includes a gaming services control component 18B, an audio-video stream creating component 20B, and an audio-video stream broadcasting component 22B. The audio-video stream creating component 20B receives input from the gaming services control component 18B, i.e., the results of the gaming services, and the elements of the gaming service from the gaming service(s) contents storage device 16B and creates a streaming audio-video as a function thereof. The streaming audio-video is delivered to the audio-video stream broadcasting component 22B which broadcasts the streaming audio-video to the appropriate gaming service(s) devices 14B. The gaming service contents storage device 16B and the gaming services components 18B, 20B, 22B may be implemented on a single computer/server or distributed among different computers/servers.
  • As mentioned above, gaming services may be directed towards players and/or other users of the system 10. Some services directed towards players, such as player tracking, cashless gaming, comps, cashless gaming, hotel portfolio, dinner and show reservations, bonus games, progressive jackpots, entertainment and other video/audio services, etc. . . . and/or may be directed towards others, and are described in the following US patent documents which are hereby incorporated by reference:
      • US Patent Application Publication 2004/0082380 published on Apr. 29, 2004 listing Jeffrey George et al as the inventors;
      • US Patent Application Publication 2004/0259632 published on Dec. 23, 2004 listing Michael Crittendon et al as the inventors;
      • US Patent Application Publication 2005/0181864 published on Aug. 18, 2005 listing Tim Britt et al as the inventors;
      • US Patent Application Publication 2005/0059480 published Mar. 17, 2005 listing Thomas Soukup et al as the inventors;
      • US Patent Application Publication 2006/0052161 published Mar. 9, 2006 listing Thomas Soukup et al as the inventors;
      • US Patent Application Publication 2006/0052162 published Mar. 9, 2006 listing Thomas Soukup et al as the inventors; and
      • US Patent Application Publication 2006/058099 published Mar. 16, 2006 listing Thomas Soukup et al as the inventors.
  • In other embodiments, the gaming services devices 14B may be embodied in remote devices, such as personal digital assistants (PDA) which are connected to the gaming services controller 12B through a wireless network. The remote devices 14B may be carried by authorized employees to allow them to offer or administer specific gaming services. Such gaming services are described in the following US patent documents which are hereby incorporated by reference:
  • US Patent Application Publication 2004/0113360 published Jun. 17, 2004 listing Jeffrey George et al as the inventors;
  • US Patent Application Publication 2004/0092303 published May 13, 2004 listing Jeffrey George et al as the inventors;
  • US Patent Application Publication 2004/0092314 published May 13, 2004 listing Jeffrey George et al as the inventors;
  • US Patent Application Publication 2004/0092306 published May 13, 2004 listing Jeffrey George et al as the inventors;
  • US Patent Application Publication 2004/0092305 published May 13, 2004 listing Jeffrey George et al as the inventors;
  • US Patent Application Publication 2004/0092304 published May 13, 2004 listing Jeffrey George et al as the inventors;
  • US Patent Application Publication 2004/0082386 published Apr. 29, 2004 listing Jeffrey George et al as the inventors;
  • US Patent Application Publication 2004/0116185 published Jun. 17, 2004 listing Jeffrey George et al as the inventors;
  • US Patent Application Publication 2004/0116184 published Jun. 17, 2004 listing Jeffrey George et al as the inventors;
  • US Patent Application Publication 2004/0127291 published Jul. 1, 2004 listing Jeffrey George et al as the inventors;
  • US Patent Application Publication 2004/0132531 published Jul. 8, 2004 listing Jeffrey George et al as the inventors;
  • US Patent Application Publication 2004-0092307 published May 13, 2004 listing Jeffrey George et al as the inventors;
  • US Patent Application Publication 2005/0027381 published Feb. 3, 2005 listing Jeffrey George et al as the inventors; and,
  • US Patent Application Publication 2005/0075165 published Apr. 7, 2005 listing Jeffrey George et al as the inventors.
  • With particular reference to FIG. 3A, in another aspect of the present invention the gaming system 10 is adapted to provide both games and gaming services by providing one or more respective audio-video streams.
  • In the illustrated embodiment, a controller 12 includes both the game controller 12A and the gaming services controller 12B which include the game control component 18A and the gaming services control component 12B, respectively. In the illustrated embodiment, the controller 12 includes a single audio-video stream creating component 20 and a single audio-video stream broadcasting component 22. The audio-video stream creating component 20 receives elements of the games and/or gaming services from the game contents storage device 16A and/or the gaming services contents storage device 16B, respectively and the output/results from the game control component 18A and/or the gaming services control components 18B, respectively, creates a game audio-video stream and a gaming service audio-video stream separately or a single audio-video stream containing presentations of both the game and the gaming service.
  • As described above, the components of the controller 12 may be implemented in a single computer or server or may be distributed among different computers or servers (see below for examples).
  • In one embodiment, the game audio-video stream is broadcast to a respective gaming device 14A-01, 14A-02 . . . , and 14A-n. The gaming services audio-video stream may be broadcast to one of the gaming devices 14-01. 14-02 . . . , and 14-n or to an associated gaming services device 14B-01, 14B-02 . . . , and 14B-n (see above). In another embodiment, the game audio-video stream may be broadcast to a gaming services device 14B-01, 14B-02 . . . , and 14B-n to give casino employees a notice of a gaming machine error or a jackpot or other event that requires attention.
  • With particular reference to FIG. 3F, in one embodiment the game and gaming services may be directed towards the same display 34. Thus, only a single, combined audio-video stream is needed. In the illustrated embodiment, the display 34 is divided up into sections. Each section may be directed towards a specific function. For example, a game portion 36 may be utilized to display the game or game information; a game control portion 38 may be utilized to implement input buttons; a gaming services portion may be utilized to display gaming services information, and a gaming services control portion may be utilized to implement input buttons for the gaming services.
  • It should be noted that the portions of the display 34 need not be static. They may be dynamically re-arranged (including not be included while they are not required).
  • In another aspect of the present invention, player specific information may be incorporated into the audio-video stream. With reference to FIGS. 1, 2, and 3A, the gaming system 10 may include a player data storage device 24 which is used to store player specific information, e.g., the name of a player, and/or pictures of the player or the player's associates or family or friends. The player data storage device 24 may be implemented as a database and may be part of a player tracking system.
  • Once a player has been identified by the system 10, e.g., through the player tracking system, information from the player data storage device 24 can be incorporated into the streaming audio-video dynamically created by the controller 12, 12A, 12B.
  • With particular reference to FIG. 4, in one embodiment the gaming system 10 provides games via streaming audio-video to a plurality gaming devices 14, 14A, 14B. Specifically, games may be provided to computing devices, such as personal computers, 14C over the Internet or other computing network, portable or wireless devices 14D, and to devices in gaming cabinets 14E located on a casino floor.
  • As described above, gaming services may also be provided to all or some of the devices 14, 14A, 14B. For example, gaming services may be provided to the computing devices 14C, the remote devices 14D by the system 10, and the devices located on the casino floor 14E.
  • Alternatively, with reference to FIGS. 4 and 6, a legacy or existing system 54 may be used to provide some services to some of the devices, such as the devices located on the casino floor 14E. The gaming system 10 may include a legacy systems gateway 58 which is an application server that runs system and communication software which processes messages between the devices 14E and casino management systems 60 such as a casino accounting system. In the illustrated embodiment, all devices on the casino floor 14E, e.g., slot machines forwards messages from an existing casino system 60 to the legacy system gateway 58 by a casino system network 55. With reference to FIG. 20, multiple threads may be run to each device 14, 14A, 14B. The threads may utilize different protocols supplied by another company or any other suitable public or proprietary protocol. At each device 14, 14A, 14B, messages are packed/unpacked for transportation to/from the legacy system gateway 58. In one embodiment, the gateway 58 has an address table to exchange device unique ID, for example, an IP address, with an address in the corresponding protocol.
  • FIGS. 4 and 6 shows the communication between a slot machine or a device 14E and casino management systems. The device 14E has to process messages from casino management systems with particular communication protocols. In the illustrated embodiment, the device does not process messages but forwards them to the legacy system gateway 58.
  • Generally, game software includes that system and communication software in it. In present invention, game software and system and communication software may be completely separated. An advantage of this concept is that casino operators don't need to upgrade all game software running in the casino by introductions of new devices, new protocols, or new regulations as long as these are not game specific changes. In another embodiment, such system and communication software that communicates with casino management systems may run on the application control server 50 to run all game and gaming regulated applications at server side.
  • Returning to FIG. 4, in the illustrated embodiment the game contents storage device 16A and the gaming services storage device 16B are embodied in databases located on one or more storage servers 16C, 16D. In one embodiment, the storage servers 16C, 16D are disk array systems that store game and/or services application (executable code), graphic and sound data, and all other system and communication software which communicates with casino management systems.
  • In the illustrated embodiment, the game control component 18A and the gaming services component 18B are run or executed on application control server 50. The application control server 50 is an application server that loads game application from servers 16C, 16D and run it. In the illustrated embodiment, all game applications and some of the server applications run on the application control server 50.
  • In the illustrated embodiment, the audio-video stream creating components 20, 20A, 20B are implemented on the audio-video stream creating clusters 52. The audio-video stream creating clusters 52 are a cluster of the audio-video stream creating servers that load game graphics and sound data from the servers 16C, 16D and create streaming audio-video. In the illustrated embodiment, each server in a cluster has a graphic processing unit or GPU.
  • The audio-video stream broadcasting components 22, 22A, 22B are implemented on the audio-video stream broadcasting server 56. The audio-video stream broadcasting server 56 broadcasts streaming audio-video to each device 14C, 14D, 14E.
  • With respect to FIG. 4, it should be emphasized that:
      • No game application and no game related data is downloaded to, or preloaded or pre-stored on, the devices 14C, 14D, 14E. All game applications run on an application control server 50,
      • The devices 14C, 14D, 14E are updated by streaming audio-video broadcast by the audio-video stream broadcasting server 56,
      • In the illustrated embodiment, (existing) slot machines have to communicate with an existing casino management system 60.
  • In FIG. 4, data is represented by dotted lines 80A, 80B, 80C and audio-video streams are represented by solid lines 82A, 82B, 82C, 82D.
  • In the illustrated embodiment, the system 10 consists of the application control server 50, the contents server(s) 16C, 16D, optionally the legacy system gateway 58, the audio-video stream broadcasting servers 56, and the audio-video stream creating clusters 52. It should be noted however that system functionality may be combined or distributed among a different number or arrangements of servers.
  • In one embodiment, a gaming device or terminal 14E may provide to a player a selection of games to play. With respect to FIGS. 5 and 10, system flow during game selection is shown. Game play flow is the same as game selection. Generally, game application won't be reloaded during game play.
  • When a player selects a game at a device, it sends a signal to the application control server 50 through the network (84A). Whenever a game is selected or a player goes back to a menu screen, the application control server 50 loads a set of game application program executable code and its game data model from the contents server 16C (84B). The application control server 50 runs the game application. The game application responsively generates a result of the game to the player input, and sends the result to the audio-video creating servers 52, 84C. The audio-video stream creating servers 52 load appropriate game graphics and sound data from the contents server 16C, 84D, create an audio-video stream 90, and send the created audio-video stream to the audio-video stream broadcasting server 56, 84E to update game screen of the device. The audio-video stream broadcasting server 56 broadcasts the audio-video stream to the device (84F).
  • Game application logic runs at the application control server 50. The application control server 50 generates a game result in response to a signal from the device 14E. The application control server 50 sends the game result data to the audio-video stream creating server 52 to show the game result to the player. In one embodiment, the game result may include animation patterns representing the outcome of the game play.
  • The features of the system 10 are:
      • 1. No game application or its data is downloaded to, or pre-loaded or pre-stored on, a device for game play unlike conventional downloading gaming system;
      • 2. All game applications that generate game outcomes may be run in highly secure casino server rooms.
      • 3. Game application doesn't handle game screen directly so that the application code is independent of, and this the same for all, devices (e.g., slot machines, wireless devices and the Internet browsers without being customized).
  • With particular reference to FIG. 7, the system 10 is capable of integrating games developed by third parties. A block diagram of the system 10 is shown. Games provided by a main provider (typically, the system manufacturer) are represented by block 86A. As discussed above, game data may be stored in one or more databases located on one or more servers. Games provided by third party providers are represented by 86B. In one embodiment, the games are designed using a common application programming interface or API which is typically provided by the main provider. Game execution, streaming audio-video creation and broadcast processes are performed by block 86C. The games may be selected and played at devices or terminals on the casino floor 14E, remote or mobile devices 14D, and internet gaming devices 14C. As discussed above both games provided by the main provider and third party providers may be combined and offered in selectable libraries.
  • With particular reference to FIG. 8, the system 10 may include a system management server 88 which manages other servers in the system 10 and device information and audit information for game play. The functions of the system management server 88 may be combined with other functions of the system 10, such as storage of game and/or service contents.
  • With particular reference to FIGS. 11 and 16, games and/or services (or updates thereto), i.e., game or service packages, may be provided through a games sales and service server 92. The game or service packages may be uploaded to the content storage server(s) 16C, 16D via a contents register terminal 93 and through the system management server 88. Alternatively or in addition, game packages may be delivered to the system on removable media such compact discs (CD) or DVD's 94. A jackpot or bonus server 96 may be connected to the system 10 through the legacy system gateway 58 to provide bonusing and/or progressive jackpots to the players. Alternatively, or in addition, a legacy jackpot or bonus controller and host systems 60 may be connected to the system 10 through the legacy system gateway 58 to provide bonusing or progressive jackpots.
  • Additionally, as shown, the controls 28, 32 of the gaming devices 14B may include a touchscreen sensor 32A for implementing touchscreen controls on one or more the displays 26, 30, 34 and/or one or more buttons 32B. The gaming device 14B may also include other peripheral devices 98, such as a hopper, printer, card reader, etc . . . .
  • PDP Media Controller 100
  • The media controller 100 and plasma displays (PDP) 102A, 102B, are used to play movies and/or animations for attracting players. The PDP 102A, 102B may be inside or outside the casino property. In one embodiment, the media controller 100 and the displays 102A, 102B may show current progressive game bank that is placed over the game machines. In legacy or existing media controllers, movies or animations may be pre-encoded. In one embodiment, the media controller 100 may be capable of playing streaming audio-video created by the audio-video stream creating cluster 52 and broadcast by the audio-video stream broadcasting server 56.
  • With reference to FIGS. 12-15, various embodiments of a system 10 of the present invention are shown, with the components thereof located in a casino server room 112 or casino floor 114.
  • With particular reference to FIG. 12, the game contents register terminal 93, application control server 50, contents storage server 16C, 16D, system management server 88, legacy system gateway 58, and the audio-video stream creating clusters 52 are located within the casino server room 112. The game sales/service server 92 may be located at a remote site, such as the facilities of the game provider.
  • In this arrangement, separate servers: audio-video stream broadcasting server for internet 56A, audio-video stream broadcasting server for wireless devices 56B, and audio-video stream broadcasting server for game devices 56C are used to broadcast audio-video stream to internet devices 14C, to mobile or remote devices 14D and to game devices 14E located on the casino floor 114.
  • Conventional games 110A, 10B may also be located on the casino floor 114. Gaming services are provided to the conventional games 110A, 110B through conventional service related servers. For example a ticket in ticket out (TITO) server 104 may allow cashless gaming via printed ticketed 122 to be used, accounting services may be provided by an accounting server 106. Alternatively, another server 108, may provide both TITO and accounting functionality.
  • With particular reference to FIGS. 13 and 14, third party downloadable systems may be integrated into the system 10. In the illustrated embodiment, gaming devices 120A, 120I, 129W from manufacturers A, I, and W, respectively are integrated into the system 10. Each set of gaming devices 120A, 120I, 120W is connected to a respective downloading server 118A, 118I, 118W, respectively. The downloading servers 118A, 118I, 118W may be linked to other systems or servers, such as the accounting system 106 to provide services related thereto. The downloading servers 118A, 118I, 118W may also be linked to the machine configuration server 116 and the system management server 88 to allow the downloading systems to be managed, Each downloading server 118A, 118I, 118W controls the downloading of new games and updates to games to the respective game terminals 120A, 120I, 120W.
  • With particular reference to FIG. 13, all manufacturer' servers may share the same network for 3rd party servers 118A, 118I, 118W to download game contents to terminal. With particular reference to FIG. 14, in contrast, each manufacturer may have a separate network to download game contents.
  • With particular reference to FIG. 15, games and/or gaming services may be provided to gaming terminals 120A, 120I, 120W from other manufacturers (A, I, W) using streaming audio-video as described above. The game contents or packages may be stored in the contents server 16C, 16D or alternatively in separate servers (see above). The audio-video stream broadcasting server(s) 56 may provide streaming audio-video to all of the gaming devices or terminals 14, 14A, 14B, 120A, 120I, 120W.
  • As shown in FIG. 18, game terminal accounting data is stored in a redundant array of independent drives (RAID) or disk array on the accounting server 106. Game packages may also be stored in another RAID 107 on the storage server 16C, 16D. As shown the RAID 107 may include game package A, game package B, game package C, and other game packages 67.
  • During installation, a user or operators may install a game into the contents storage server 16C, 16D using the contents register terminal 93 and may also activate a gaming device 14, 14A, 14B. When a game is installed or a gaming device 14, 14A, 14B is activated, accounting files will be created on the system management server 88 and/or the accounting server 106. As shown, each gaming device will have its own file and a file for each game played on each device may also be created. The accountings files should be persistently maintained.
  • With particular reference to FIG. 19, game play flow will now be explained. At initialization, no game is selected at a game device 14, 14A, 14B. Therefore, the application control server 50 will contain a menu application. In the illustrated embodiment, the first, second and fourth multiple shared instances 78A, 78B, 78D are the menu application, and while the third multiple shared instances 78C is a game application. In step 1, a player selects a game available from the game list provided by the menu application. In step 2, the game application and its model data is loaded to the application control server 50 as an instance of the game application. Thereafter, the system 10 (as described above), updates the gaming device display(s) based on the user/player input and the game application via dynamically creating the audio-video stream broadcast to the respective devices 14, 14A, 14B.
  • With particular reference to FIG. 21, in one embodiment each gaming or gaming services devices 14, 14A, 14B may be capable of being remotely booted and of its firmware being remotely updated. In the illustrated embodiment, each game or gaming device 14, 14A, 14C includes a game service interface module 124 and a set of device drivers 126 for the related peripherals 98. Each gaming device 14, 14A, 14B also includes an audio-video stream viewer 128 for receiving the streaming audio-video and playing it on the displays 26, 30 the gaming device 14, 14B, 14C.
  • With reference to FIG. 22, the system management server 88 may manage terminal/device and games through a configuration application 132 by using the terminal/game profile and/or configuration properties files 134, 136. The configuration application 132 may be accessed through a terminal console 130. The game application references the profiles 134, 136 and updates the terminal profile 134 when changes are made, e.g., to the denomination being played by the player. Configuration data may be stored in a remote configuration server 138.
  • With reference to FIG. 23, cashless gaming (EFT/AFT) may be performed using conventional casino accounting protocols, e.g., SAS or G2S, or any suitable public or proprietary protocol through the legacy system gateway 58. Cashless gaming may be performed in a conventional manner using a player ID card 142 and a player tracking interface 140, for example, an existing player tracking device.
  • With reference to FIG. 24, as discussed above, the system 10 may allow third parties to provide games to be used by the system 10 and provided to either 3rd party terminals 120D-01, 120D-02 or to other game devices/terminals 14A-01, 14A-02. Game contents or packages by the third party may be stored in a 3rd party server 16E. In the illustrated embodiment, game package C 66 has been provided by the 3rd party and is stored on the 3rd party server. As needed, the game C package 66 may be loaded into the multiple shared instances 78.
  • With reference to FIGS. 25-26, as discussed above games and/or services may be provided to various types of devices 14, 14A, 14B. For example, games and/or services may be provided to devices 14E located on the casino floor, remote or wireless devices 14D, and/or devices 14F connected via the Internet.
  • In one embodiment, the streaming audio-video may be provided in a format, e.g., SVG or W3C, which is playable on any type of device regardless of its specifications, e.g., screen size.
  • Alternatively, the streaming audio-video must be created for a specific device or device type. Thus, the content server 16C, 16D, 16E may include graphics, sounds, and other elements of a game which are for use for a specific type of device. For example, in FIG. 25, the servers 16C, 16D, 16E include graphics and sounds for games B and C for remote or mobile devices. In FIG. 26, servers 16C, 16D, 16E contain graphics and sounds for remote or mobile devices and for internet devices.
  • With reference to FIG. 27, the operation of the system 10 may be viewed as having two phases. In the first phase, the audio-video stream creating process starts when the application control server 50 asks an audio-video stream creation manager 52′ to update a game screen. The audio-video stream creating manager 52′ performs a scheduling function, assigns one server of the audio-video stream creating clusters 52 for a game screen, and may be implemented in a separate server. The server in the audio-video stream creating clusters 52 assigned to the game screen loads the graphic and sound data, and other needed data from the appropriate storage server 16A, 16B, 16C, and creates appropriate game screen image and encodes it into an audio-video stream.
  • In the second phase, the streaming audio-video is broadcast to the corresponding device 14, 14A, 14B. First the audio-video stream creating cluster 52 sends the created audio-video stream to the appropriate audio-video broadcasting server 56A, 56A, 56C. Then the audio-video stream broadcasting server 56A, 56B, 56C broadcasts the streaming audio-video to the desired device or terminal 14, 14A, 14B. In one embodiment, the audio-video stream broadcasting servers 56A, 56B, 56C have the ability to broadcast multiple audio-video streams to the same device 14, 14A, 14B, in the case, e.g., when the device 14, 14A, 14B has multiple display devices.
  • With specific reference to FIGS. 28 and 29, in another aspect of the present invention, the system 10 is adapted to provide multiple games, simultaneously, to a player on the same display 26, 30, 34. Each game will have its own corresponding game package which will be loaded and used to play the game and creates the audio-video stream broadcast to the gaming device 14. It should be noted that a single audio-video stream may be created which is broadcast to, and displayed by, the gaming device 14.
  • With particular reference to FIG. 28, an exemplary screenshot 150 of a possible display configuration is shown. The exemplary screenshot 150 is divided into 4 game play sections 152A, 152B, 152C, 152D and a gaming services section 154. A main game may be played and displayed within the first game play section 152A and alternative or additional games may be played in each of the other game play sections 152B, 152C, 152D. Gaming service(s) may be provided in the gaming services section 154. In the illustrated embodiment, each element of the game or service, e.g., graphics and/or text and/or audio, is a separate element stored in the corresponding game or service package. In one aspect, the size, shape, and location of a section may be contained or defined by a configuration properties file. The size, shape and location of a section may be static or dynamic. For example with respect to FIG. 29, a first game section 152E may be displayed as all or part of the display 26, 30, 34. A second game section 152F may be displayed on top of the first game section 152E, as needed. In other words, it is displayed only when needed and may be dynamically located around the display 26, 30, 34, e.g., by the system 10 and/or the player.
  • INDUSTRIAL APPLICABILITY
  • With reference to the Figures, the detailed description, and in practice, the present invention provides a gaming system with integrated gaming services and casino and gambling services by applying real time creating audio-video streaming technology. Integration of streaming games and services provides both synchronized and unsynchronized game features to players when it is applied to casino floor.
  • In contrast, in the case of system which downloads games, i.e., application code, to gaming hardware or terminals, the central server system is not able to provide synchronized game features to the gaming devices and players because each game runs independently on each device. However, integration of streaming games and services enables the central server system (of the present invention) to provide synchronized game features to heterogeneous terminals and players because game logics are executed within a central server system in which synchronized game logic and events can be invoked for all terminals and players. In other words, integration of streaming games and services can provide one-to-many control between a central server and many gaming devices while players are playing games.
  • Integration of streaming games and services also reduces the maintenance costs of casino floor. It enables the integration of heterogeneous gaming devices and it does not require game installation for each. This concept encourages game business logics to be reused commonly for various gaming devices and platform without any modifications on the game business logics. One system can cover conventional slot machines, mobile devices, PDAs, Internet gaming, on-line gaming, and displays devices for advertisement and etc . . . .
  • VIDEO STREAMING GAMING SERVER SYSTEM AND SERVICES
  • The audio-video streaming capability provides features that are hard to implement in conventional EPROM based gaming systems and downloadable gaming systems which just download game applications and graphics and sound data to a terminal.
  • The gaming system 10 of the present invention includes four main concepts:
  • 1. Audio-Video Streaming system for game play and services
  • 2. Game/System application separation technology and operation
  • 3. Full server side system
  • 4. Open Gaming Application Environment and API
  • 1. Audio-Video Streaming System for Game Play and Services
  • In one embodiment, the system 10 includes of at least a pair of audio-video stream creating servers and broadcasting servers for presentation of game play and casino services, respectively. As used in this document, the “audio-video stream creating/broadcasting server” may refer to a single computer or server which dynamically creates streaming audio-video and broadcasts the audio-video stream to the target devices. Alternatively, the term may refer or include separate audio-video creating and broadcasting servers. The audio-video stream creating/broadcasting server is able to provide not only game play but also several casino services on each gaming device or terminal of the system 10.
  • a. Presentation for Game Play and Services
  • In conventional gaming systems, such as EPROM based gaming devices, a game application runs on each gaming terminal and uses one or more LCD/CRT monitor for game play and operator maintenance purpose such as auditing, game configuration and diagnostic. Game graphics and sound data are stored in one or more storage devices such as EPROM, CDROM and Compact Flash cards. Once the contents have been installed, it won't be changed until new contents are installed. However, it is not easy and won't happen frequently due to gaming regulatory requirement. And the game application is usually not capable of displaying or compiling materials other than its contents installed on the terminal. For instance, a terminal is not able to display casino advertisement on the screen in real time without prepared design and program particularly for this purpose.
  • In the case of systems with game downloadable capability, a casino operator is able to install game application and its contents remotely from a server system instead of physical installation at each terminal. With this kind of system, a casino operator can change game more frequently than EPROM based gaming systems because downloadable gaming system has a capability of managing audit meters at the servers that are required by gaming regulatory. However, game presentation mechanism is the same as EPROM based gaming system because game screen will be created by the game application that is downloaded and installed remotely from a downloadable gaming system.
  • Simply speaking of the conventional EPROM based gaming system or the downloadable gaming system, game business logic and presentation logic to create game screen is integrated. And the presentation logic can work only for the game business logic and terminals or devices designed for unless it is previously designed and programmed.
  • In the gaming system 10 of the present invention, game business logic and game presentation logic is completely separated each other. This concept is advantageous in following points.
  • I. The contents to be displayed on game screen are streaming audio-video dynamically created by audio-video stream creating server.
  • II. The game screen can display non-gaming services like player tracking services and other services, including alerts, messages and linked player messages, etc . . . , on the same screen without any modification on game business logic and presentation logic. This concept doesn't require that the game application be previously designed or programmed for this purpose. The non-gaming services to be displayed on the game screen are also player interactive services.
  • III. The system doesn't limit audio-video devices where the contents are displayed. For instance, the same game screen can be displayed on all terminals and display devices simultaneously. For more detailed instance, a jackpot screen can be displayed on all displayed within the same casino, which is not only active casino floor but also restaurant, bar, pool side, commercial display outside the casino property, website and anywhere the streaming audio-video can be played on.
  • IV. The streaming audio-video can be played in other casino properties. For instance, celebration movie for a multi-site linked jackpot game can be played in many casinos in real time. For another instance, two players in different casino properties can be linked through the system.
  • b. Integration of Gaming Services and Casino Operations
  • As described in section 1-a. III, audio-video stream created by the audio-video creating server doesn't limit audio-video devices to play the contents. This concept can integrate gaming services and casino operations seamlessly. This means that a gaming device can display casino services on the same screen, and non-game displays or other gaming devices can display game screen(s) that are currently displayed on gaming device(s) that are a portion of the system.
  • This list shows representative gaming or gaming services devices 14A, 14B.
  • I. Gaming Devices
  • Primary/Secondary LCD devices on slot machine, mobile devices, cell phones, web browser through the Internet, glasses on slot machine where game rule or paytable is usually printed, player button panel, etc . . . .
  • II. Player Tracking Devices
  • LCD displays mounted on player tracking plate, etc . . .
  • III. Operator Displays
  • Mobile devices that are used for casino operations, for instance a mobile device used to redeem printed ticket or voucher for players. For more instance of this use, a jackpot or an error condition that requires an operator intervention can alarm floor attendants immediately with streaming audio-video identifying what is pending on the terminal and where it is. This feature may already exist as a portion of casino management system that might alarm upon receiving event messages from a terminal. However, it may not be available at any place. With this concept, it can be available even if the casino management system doesn't support this feature.
  • c. Game/Terminal Synchronization
  • In the gaming system 10 of the present invention, the device (terminal) displays and other display devices for casino operations are a portion of the server system 10. In other words, the system 10 may be viewed as a single device that has multiple or a large number of displays. All the displays are controlled by the system 10 so that the system 10 can utilize multiple displays as a wide display.
  • For example, three slot machines have secondary LCD display in their topbox. The system and the audio-video stream creating/broadcasting server 52, 56 can use all three displays for the same bonus game play when a common jackpot bonus game triggers. The system 10 1) may display same game screen on each terminal, or 2) may display different game screen on each game terminal or 3) may use all the three displays as one wide size display. It is depended on the contents but in any case, all displays are synchronized and controlled by the system 10.
  • With this synchronization, the primary game played on each terminal can be synchronized or unsynchronized. This allows the system to show casino advertisement on the topbox LCD displays while the displays are not used by the primary game in nonsynchronous condition.
  • The synchronization can be taken place between gaming services and non-gaming services as described in section 1-b.
  • 2. Game/System Application Separation Technology and Operation
  • The gaming or gaming services devices may provide services such as gaming services, player credit management, auditing, and host communications. They can be roughly categorized into 1) gaming services usually called game application and 2) system services usually called system. The system service is basically common for all games on the terminal.
  • The gaming system of the present invention can improve costs and processes in software upgrade and development for various platforms.
  • In conventional EPROM based gaming system, those services are usually stored in the same storage media on a terminal so that a system service change will require the game replacement or upgrade because signature of new software package will change, and is controlled by regulations. This means that one system service change would cause large amount of conversion cost.
  • In conventional downloadable gaming system, those services can be separated and downloadable separately. Usually, those services are packaged and works as same as conventional EPROM based gaming system. In either ways, those services run on the same terminal, which the gaming services may not reuse for various gaming devices such as slot machine and mobile devices. One solution for this would be reprogramming the same game contents for various devices. This would cause large amount of development cost.
  • In both systems, any game and/or system service application software may run on a client gaming terminal.
  • The present invention enables the complete separation of gaming service application and system service application physically and logically. And both applications run on single or multiple servers.
  • The advantages of this concept are;
  • a. Separate Upgrade
  • This requires no game or system application software upgrade and replacement unlike a conventional EPROM based gaming system, which is an advantage in cost of software conversion. What's more, this software update will require no regulatory memory clear processes that will erase critical information stored in a gaming terminal when new software is installed unlike conventional EPROM based and downloadable gaming systems. This is also an advantage for casino operators and regulators.
  • b. No Service Applications at Terminal
  • Both game and system service applications run at the server system. No service applications run at client terminal. As described above, audio-video stream created by the audio-video stream creating server and which presents game screen can be displayed on any device is as long as the device is capable of playing the created audio-video stream. An instance of this advantage is that the same gaming service application can serve for both a slot machine and a mobile device without modification of the application itself. The presentation of the devices may vary, however, the streaming audio-video covers the differences of the devices.
  • It is hard on the conventional EPROM based and downloadable gaming system that the same game contents are compatible with heterogeneous devices, especially if screen resolution is different. So this is an advantage in cost of game contents development for providing same game contents to heterogeneous devices.
  • c. Multiple Game Play System
  • The present invention may provide totally different game environment compared with the conventional systems, and which is named “Multiple Game Play System”. The Multiple Game Play system can allow playing different games and/or game themes at a time on the same terminal or the device. Each game application is completely separated so that each game application runs and generates game result independently.
  • There are several games that offer multiple game themes or multiple play hands in the same game. However, in both cases, only one game application is played.
  • For example, four different video slot games are available on a slot machine. A player will choose one game out of the four games to play in the case of conventional EPROM based or downloadable gaming systems. In the case of this system concept, player can play two or more games simultaneously. Selected games can run independently. Moreover, the system can synchronize them as well.
  • The system portion of the Multiple Game Play system can control each game application in synchronized or unsynchronized state. During the synchronized state, the system will wait for completion of all game applications to start next game. Even when new game is added to a list of the Multiple Game Play system, no game application will be affected. Of course, a game application can run as traditional single play game without any modification for it.
  • 3. Full Server Side System
  • As described in section 2-b, no game and system service application runs on the gaming devices.
  • One advantage of the system 10 is that full game and system services may be seamlessly provided to gaming devices on casino property and Internet gaming devices.
  • In conventional EPROM based and downloadable gaming system, games and services are designed and developed to serve on specific platform and/or environment. This means a downloadable gaming service application is not compatible with heterogeneous platforms and devices. For instance, slot machine requires software tailored for it. Similarly, mobile device or Internet gaming service requires other software tailored or written specifically for that device.
  • In the present invention, the availability of the game contents which can be used commonly for various gaming devices and environment are provided seamlessly without any modification for the contents themselves.
  • Another advantage of the system 10 about the full server side system is less possibility of tampering the game elements. Regulatory control requires storing the game elements on or transferring them to game devices be performed under the strictest guidelines. Especially on downloadable systems, all game elements transferred between servers and game devices must be encrypted by highly secure and robust encryption mechanisms to prevent from tampering the gaming elements, which means the authenticity of the game elements is the highest requirement in regulatory control. In the present invention, the system 10 has potential advantage of less possibility of tampering the game devices than other gaming systems by transferring all of the game elements between the servers located in highly secure casino server room only.
  • 4. Open Gaming Application Environment and API
  • In another aspect of the present invention, the system 10 is an open gaming application environment using a common application programming interface or API. This allows games to be written by a third party (with knowledge of the common API) which may be integrated into the game library and offered via the system 10. Server Based Gaming System with Streaming Audio-Video. Ideally, the third party games would be located on a separate server.
  • OPERATION
  • 1. Loading Game Elements
  • As discussed above, one or more application control servers 50 run or execute the game and/or service applications. One or more audio-video stream streaming servers 52 create presentations of the game and/or services for each client terminal in a streaming audio-video format and one or more audio-video broadcasting servers broadcast it. The term of “server” means the audio-video stream creating/broadcasting servers and the application running on the servers for the creating and broadcasting streaming audio-video in this document unless otherwise it is specified.
  • The application control server 50 creates game application instances, corresponding to each client terminal (gaming device or gaming services device). At the first startup after server installation, it does not contain any game instance which means a condition “not game entity is assigned”. Once the server starts up, either a menu screen (if corresponding client is configured with multiple games and menu screen enabled), or a game element if only one game content is assigned or menu screen is disabled will be bound to each game instance on the server, which is done by an operator client before starting the servers in operation.
  • The instance condition goes into “bound but not loaded yet”. The server loads game element from one or more game contents servers into server memory. Game element consists of game application executable code, game graphics, and sound data. And it further includes configuration properties files. This loading process will happen when the server receives a player input that indicates a player has selected another game from an available game list on the client terminal.
  • When all necessary game elements are loaded into server memory which can be RAM and storage devices such as hard disk, the condition goes into “ready to serve”. In this condition, the application control server 50 is able to serve games and gaming services with streaming audio-video but it is not allowed yet by operator. An operator manually and/or automatically allows the application control server 50 to be in operation. Then, the application control server 50 will be serving by dynamically creating streaming audio-video and broadcasting it to corresponding client terminals, then the condition goes to “serving”. Once a game instance goes into this condition, the instance will come back to the “serving” even after server shutdown.
  • 2. Game Elements
  • A game element or game packages may consist of at least game application executable code 61A, a game model 6B, and game graphics and sound data 61C. The package may also include configuration properties files and is stored in internal/external storage device as game library package. Game application executable code is designed and programmed independent from client types such as slot machine or portable devices, which can be used with any client type. The other elements are client specific data that the application doesn't use directly but the system 10 uses it to creating streaming audio-video. In one embodiment, game content is packaged with one game application code, graphics files, sound data, and configuration properties files for one client type. For example, the server is connected to a slot machine and a PDA device. There are two game packages; one is for slot machine and the other is for PDA device.
  • 3. Configuration Properties Files
  • As described above, a game application executable code serves for any kind of client type so that the code does not directly handle client terminal and device especially game screen because device's screen resolution of the device may vary from device to device. The Configuration Properties files define configuration and attributes of a client device. Following are possible attributes defined in the files, but not limited to:
    • Screen resolution (width×height in pixel)
    • Color depth
    • Image/Animation display coordinate where each graphic image file such BMP is displayed on device's screen.
    • Game-hold percentages configured by an operator.
    • Player denominations configured by an operator
    • Game specific configurations such as maximum number of play lines, credit bet per line, configured by an operator
    • maximum payout thresholds.
  • 4. Game Instance
  • There will be a number of game instances created and running on the server, according to the same number of the client terminals. Each game instance can be assigned to either same game element or different element. Each game instance usually serves for a client terminal corresponding thereto.
  • In the case of two game instances running on the server, and assigned to the same game element for the same client type, these instances can share the same game element loaded from the game contents server (storage for game elements). These instances may not share anything.
  • 5. Multiple Client Type Support
  • With the Configuration Properties Files, a game content can support multiple client types. Several versions of game elements are provided corresponding to client types. The server loads a game element including shared game code and its data corresponding to a client type when a game is selected. The audio-video stream creating server creates game screen in streaming audio-video format from the game element loaded.
  • 6. Synchronization with Player Specific Information
  • With the Configuration Properties files, screen object can also be displayed. An instance of this idea is a text or graphic object displayed on game screen like player's name or picture provided by casino management system from a player card inserted into the machine. In this case, the configuration properties files and screen elements are automatically created in real time and provided by casino management systems. As for the server, there is no difference between pre-stored game element and automatically created screen element except its location which the element is loaded from. This means the difference is “which content server the audio-video stream creating server will load elements from”. To do this synchronization, an application program is also loaded from the same server. The application program works as the same as game program but it is programmed just for to handle screen element and not for game play.
  • The invention has been described in an illustrative manner, and it is to be understood that the terminology which has been used is intended to be in the nature of words of description rather than of limitation. Obviously, many modifications and variations of the present invention are possible in light of the above teachings, and the invention may be practiced otherwise than as specifically described.

Claims (34)

1. A gaming system for providing a game to a player at a gaming device, the gaming device for receiving streaming audio-video representing the game and playing streaming audio-video on a display and for receiving input related to the play of the game from the player and relaying the player input to the gaming system, comprising:
a storage device for storing elements of the game; and,
a game controller coupled to the storage device and the gaming device for receiving the player input from the player and responsively retrieving the elements of the game from the storage device, for playing the game, determining an outcome of the game, and awarding the player an award if the outcome of the game is a winning outcome, and responsively, dynamically creating an audio-video stream as a function of the retrieved elements, the player input, the outcome of the game, and the award, if any, and for broadcasting the audio-video stream to the gaming device.
2. A gaming system, as set forth in claim 1, wherein the elements of the game include one or more of game application executable code, game graphics, sound data, and a configuration properties file.
3. A gaming system, as set forth in claim 2, wherein the elements of the game further include gaming device location data.
4. A gaming system, as set forth in claim 3, wherein the gaming device location data includes a type of location and an identification of the location of the game device.
5. A gaming system, as set forth in claim 2, wherein the gaming device includes a display, the configuration properties file including one or more of the following: screen resolution of the display, display coordinates for images and/or animations, color depth of the display, game hold percentages, game denominations, game specific parameters, and maximum payout thresholds.
6. A gaming system, as set forth in claim 2, the configuration properties file defining attributes of the gaming device.
7. A gaming system, as set forth in claim 6, wherein the gaming device is of one of first type and a second type, the configuration properties file being associated with the first type, the set of elements of the gaming including a second configuration properties file associated with the second type.
8. A gaming system, as set forth in claim 1, whether the game device is one of a terminal networked to the game controller, a wireless device wirelessly networked to the game controller, or a remote device connected to the game controller via the internet.
9. A gaming system, as set forth in claim 1, the game controller including a game contents storage server, the storage device being embodied in a database on the game contents storage server.
10. A gaming system, as set forth in claim 9, the game controller including a game control component and an audio-video stream creating component coupled to the game contents storage server, the game control component for playing the game, the audio-video stream creating component being in communication with the game control component and the game contents storage server for creating the audio-video stream.
11. A gaming system, as set in claim 10, the game controller including an audio-video stream broadcasting component for broadcasting the audio-video stream to the game device.
12. A gaming system, as set forth in claim 1, the gaming being adapted to provide a game to a second player at a second gaming device, the storage device for storing elements of a second game.
13. A gaming system, as set forth in claim 12, the elements of the first and second games including first and second game application executable code, respectively, the game controller for loading the first game application executable code and running a first instance of the first game application executable code.
14. A gaming system, as set forth in claim 13, the game controller for running a second instance of the first game application executable code.
15. A gaming system, as set forth in claim 13, the game controller for loading the second game application executable code and running a first instance of the second game application executable code.
16. A gaming system, as set forth in claim 1, wherein the dynamically created audio-video stream is a series of digital images displayed in rapid succession to give the appearance of motion.
17. A gaming system, comprising:
a gaming service device for providing a gaming service in response to input from the user;
a storage device for storing elements of the gaming service; and,
a gaming services controller coupled to the gaming device, the gaming service device, and the storage device for receiving the player input from the player and responsively retrieving the elements of the gaming service from the storage device, for dynamically creating an audio-video stream as a function of the retrieved elements and the player input, and for broadcasting the audio-video stream to the gaming service device.
18. A gaming system, as set forth in claim 17, wherein the gaming service is one of player tracking, including, but not limited to, comps, cashless gaming, hotel portfolio, dinner and show reservations, bonus games, progressive jackpots, entertainment and other video/audio services.
19. A gaming system, as set forth in claim 17, wherein the elements of the gaming service include one or more of service application executable code, service graphics, sound data, and a configuration properties file.
20. A gaming system, as set forth in claim 19, wherein the elements of the gaming service further include game device location data.
21. A gaming system, as set forth in claim 20, wherein the gaming device location device includes a type of location and an identification of the location of the game device.
22. A gaming system, as set forth in claim 19, wherein the gaming service device includes a display, the configuration properties file including one or more of the following: screen resolution of the display, display coordinates for images and/or animations, and color depth of the display.
23. A gaming system, as set forth in claim 17, whether the gaming service device is one a separate player tracking device associated with the gaming device and an integrated device with the gaming device.
24. A gaming system, as set forth in claim 17, the gaming service controller including a gaming service contents storage server, the storage device being embodied in a database on the gaming service contents storage server.
25. A gaming system, as set forth in claim 24, the gaming service controller including a gaming service control server and an audio-video stream creating component coupled to the gaming service contents storage server, the gaming service control server for providing the gaming service, the audio-video stream creating component being in communication with the gaming service control server and the gaming service contents storage server for creating the audio-video stream.
26. A gaming system, as set in claim 25 the gaming service controller including an audio-video stream broadcasting component for broadcasting the audio-video stream to the gaming service device.
27. A gaming system, as set forth in claim 17, wherein the gaming services device is associated with a gaming device, the gaming device for providing a game to a player.
28. A gaming system, as set forth in claim 27, wherein the gaming services device is a player tracking device.
29. A gaming system, as set forth in claim 17, wherein the dynamically created audio-video stream is a series of digital images displayed in rapid succession to give the appearance of motion.
30. A gaming system for providing a game and gaming services to a player at a gaming device, the gaming device for receiving streaming audio-video representing the game and gaming service on a display and for receiving input from the player and relaying the player input to the gaming system, comprising:
a storage device for storing elements of the game and elements of the gaming service; and,
a controller coupled to the gaming device and the storage device for receiving the player input from the player and responsively retrieving the elements of the game from the storage device and for playing the game, for responsively retrieving elements of the gaming service from the storage device as a function of the player input, and dynamically creating an audio-video stream as a function of the retrieved elements of the game and the gaming service and the player input, and for broadcasting the audio-video stream to the gaming device, the audio-video stream containing elements of the game and/or elements of the gaming services.
31. A gaming system for providing a game to a player at a gaming device, comprising:
a storage device for storing elements a plurality of a plurality of games in first and second libraries, each library include at least one game; and,
a game controller for selectively enabling one of the first and second libraries based on a library parameter, for receiving the player input from the player and responsively retrieving the elements of one of the games in the enabled library from the storage device, for playing the one of the games and dynamically creating an audio-video stream as a function of the retrieved elements and the player input, and for broadcasting the audio-video stream to the gaming device.
32. A gaming system for providing a game and/or gaming service to a player at a gaming device, the gaming device for receiving streaming audio-video representing the game and/or gaming service on a display and for receiving input from the player and relaying the player input to the gaming system, comprising:
a storage device for storing elements of the game and/or elements of the gaming services;
a player data storage device for storing information related to a plurality of players;
a gaming services device for receiving input from the player related to the identification of the player; and,
a controller coupled to the gaming device, the gaming services device, the player data storage device, and the storage device for receiving the information related to the identification of the player and responsively retrieving player information from the player data storage device, for receiving the player input from the player and responsively retrieving the elements of the game and/or game service from the storage device, and dynamically creating an audio-video stream related to the game and/or gaming services as a function of the retrieved elements of the game and/or the gaming service and the player input, at least a portion of the audio-video stream incorporating the player information, and for broadcasting the audio-video stream to the gaming device, the audio-video stream containing both elements of the game and elements of the gaming services.
33. A gaming system for providing a plurality of games to a player, comprising:
a gaming device having a display and a set of user controls, the user controls for receiving player input, the gaming device for receiving streaming audio-video representing the games and playing the streaming audio-video on the display, the display including multiple game play sections, wherein each game is displayed within its own section of the display;
a storage device for storing elements of the game; and,
a game controller coupled to the storage device and the gaming device for receiving the player input from the player device and responsively retrieving the elements of the game from the storage device, for playing the games, and responsively, dynamically creating a single audio-video stream as a function of the retrieved elements, the player input, game and for broadcasting the audio-video stream to the gaming device, the audio-video stream representing the games.
34. A gaming system, comprising:
a gaming service device for providing a gaming service, the gaming service being a system or controller based progressive jackpot;
a storage device for storing elements of the gaming service; and,
a gaming services controller coupled to the gaming device, the gaming service device, and the storage device for retrieving the elements of the gaming service from the storage device, for dynamically creating an audio-video stream as a function of the retrieved elements, and for broadcasting the audio-video stream to the gaming service device.
US11/559,176 2006-05-10 2006-11-13 System and Method for Streaming Games and Services to Gaming Devices Abandoned US20070265094A1 (en)

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JP2007301371A (en) 2007-11-22

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