Gaming guideline G08: Approvals for gaming machines and gaming related systems

Gaming Machine Act 1991 sections 232, 281 and 288


This guideline is to inform gaming machine manufacturer licensees and other gaming equipment and system providers on matters specific to approving gaming machines and gaming related systems under section 232, 281 and 288 of the Gaming Machine Act 1991, for Queensland clubs and hotels.

Applications for approval

Submissions for approval of gaming machines will only be accepted from manufacturers who hold a major dealer's licence under the Gaming Machine Act 1991.

Submissions for approval of gaming machines will only be accepted if the product is compliant with the requirements of the relevant version of the Australian/New Zealand Gaming Machine National Standard.

Submissions for all other gaming equipment will only be accepted where the applicant or manufacturer of the gaming machine, gaming related system or equipment is appropriately licensed.

The Commissioner for Liquor and Gaming will not consider gaming machines, equipment or related systems to be acceptable if they:

  • are bingo games or variations or derivatives of bingo games
  • have gamble features that are offered on progressive prizes
  • include lottery or instant scratch-it type games
  • have an auto-gamble feature (i.e. games that automatically enter a gamble mode to gamble any wins)
  • have features that excessively increase the speed of play or with less than 3 seconds per spin/bet.

The Commissioner will consider whether the gaming equipment aligns with the government's safer gambling priorities by ensuring such gaming equipment is considered fair, minimises the potential for harm and adheres to robust player protection principles. In this regard, the Commissioner will consider its suitability subject to an evaluation taking into consideration contemporary benchmarks and relevant industry standards.

Learn about electronic gaming machine equipment technical requirements.

In accordance with the Gaming Machine Act 1991, the Commissioner will consider whether the submission of a gaming machine or gaming-related system is of sufficient detail and quality, contains all required items to facilitate continued effective regulation and control of the system in the club and hotel market and is in accordance with all the contemporary benchmarks.

Further, gaming machines and related equipment are required to be adequately controlled through electronic monitoring. Any gaming machine or related equipment that cannot be effectively controlled or monitored through established monitoring systems in the club and hotel market will not be considered acceptable by the Commissioner.

Gaming-related behaviours and features

The Commissioner will consider whole number denominations up to $1 suitable. That is, games may have denominations of 1c, 2c, 3c, 4c up to $1.

The Commissioner will not consider acceptable any of the following games, jackpot features or derivatives thereof:

  • blackjack
  • roulette
  • baccarat
  • craps
  • two-up
  • Keno
  • mini dice
  • big six
  • big and small / sic bo.

Further, gaming machines are required to offer reserve mode functionality that allows a gaming machine to be reserved by a player for an appropriate length of time, up to a maximum of 3 minutes. The Commissioner will determine if the reserve functionality is suitably clear and fit for purpose.

Artwork, messaging and bet design

The Commissioner will also assess the gaming machine or gaming related system advertising, artwork, messaging and behaviour to ensure it is appropriate, clear and sufficiently detailed, fair, accurate and unambiguous.

The Commissioner will specifically consider the visual representation of odds reflecting gaming machine events occurring and is unlikely to approve games where changes that occur between standard play are not sufficiently represented through rules and visual cues, or games with unique game features that are not adequately explained to the player.

Paytable and mathematical behaviours

The commissioner is unlikely to approve gaming machine behaviour that includes payouts for outcomes that do not increase linearly as bets increase, or games that excessively change the theoretical return to player as bet types and sizes change.

Where a game has a strategic behaviour, the game is required to make the optimal strategy clear to the player. The impact of the strategic component on the game's return to player will be scrutinised to ensure player fairness principles are upheld.

Gaming machines that include components of physical or cognitive skill or components that are not independent of previous game play (i.e. metamorphic) may be considered acceptable, provided such components are not dominant. For example, these components should not represent the majority of the return to player (RTP) within a game or affect defined minimum jurisdictional limits, or unduly encourage further gambling or affect player betting behaviours.

Security principles

The Commissioner will consider if the gaming machine or gaming related system incorporates industry acceptable security implementations fit for the application.

Hardware is required to be secure and compliant with all relevant safety and electrical standards, contemporary benchmarks and suitable for its installation in the Queensland market. Of particular note, the Commissioner is unlikely to approve hardware that does not enable adequate control of the content and entry to critical areas including gaming machine sealed logic areas.

The Commissioner will also consider if there is a suitable implementation of required randomness through the use of 1 or more robust random number generators (RNGs). The Commissioner will consider if the RNG implementation is fit for the purpose of the application.

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