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Center for Gaming Innovation

Powered by the International Gaming Institute

Welcome

The International Gaming Institute’s Center for Gaming Innovation is an academic incubator that seeks to create innovative and commercially viable casino games. At the foundation of the Center for Gaming Innovation is the Gaming Innovation class, which is a class designed to foster innovation and an entrepreneurial spirit in inventors and non-inventors of all ages. By the end of the semester, through lectures, mentorship, and guidance, students who never thought of themselves as inventors leave the class with a prototype for a brand new gambling game or other gaming-related innovation.

The Center was launched in 2013 with a grant from Governor Sandoval’s Office for Economic Development, and since then has filed more than 50 patent applications—18 of which have resulted in issued patents and eight in commercialized products. Several of these games are available to play in casinos today.

CGI has also been showcased in national media outlets such as CBS Morning News, ABC News, Global Gaming Business, and Casino Enterprise Management, all highlighting UNLV and Nevada as a world leader in gaming innovation.

Most recently, the sports betting company DraftKings announced a multi-year sponsorship agreement with the Center. This agreement includes the launch of the DraftKings Gaming Innovation Studio at UNLV, which will broaden the horizons and opportunities afforded to students in the Gaming Innovation class. For more information on the DraftKings Gaming Innovation Studio at UNLV, view the full press release here.

DraftKings Gaming Innovation Studio Logo
2013
Year Established
50+
Patent Applications
18
Patents Issued
8
Commercialized Games

Gaming Innovation Class

The annual gaming innovation class is a one-of-a-kind educational and entrepreneurial experience where world-class industry and faculty experts help students to develop their ideas. Led by Dr. Dan Sahl, who earned his Ph.D. by researching the convergence of video games and gambling, the class offers a unique learning environment for students from both the campus and the community/industry to develop game ideas.

The class runs every fall semester:

  • Open to all UNLV students and the community
  • Learn about the history, psychology, and math behind successful casino games
  • Consult with industry experts to design and refine your own unique gambling game
  • Work with experts to patent and commercialize your innovation
  • Covers all game development: slots, table games, lottery, sports betting, online social games, and gaming accessories
  • Students have launched their games in local Las Vegas casinos and across the country
  • One student-inventor sold her idea to Konami Gaming, Inc.
  • 50+ patent applications generated by students since 2013

For further information, and to enroll in the class, please contact cgi@unlv.edu.

What is UNLV's Gaming Innovation Class?

What Our Students Say

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Matthew Stream
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More About Gaming Innovation

IGI Gaming Innovation Student Presentations at G2E

Students from the Gaming Innovation class present their inventions at Global Gaming Expo (G2E), one of the largest gaming trade shows in the world.

Students from the Gaming Innovation class present their inventions at Global Gaming Expo (G2E), one of the largest gaming trade shows in the world.

UNLV IGI Gaming Innovation Class

Students from the Gaming Innovation class share their experiences from idea to inception.

Students from the Gaming Innovation class share their experiences from idea to inception.