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Social casino game publisher Playstudios has unleashed some celebrity firepower by developing two new MyVegas games in partnership with basketball legend Shaquille O’Neal.

Playstudios is launching its new MyVegas social casino games, CaddyShaq and ShaqJack, today. Shaq’s reputation can draw attention to the games, allowing the company to cut its budget for user acquisition advertising. Playstudios has stood apart because it offers real-life rewards, like complimentary stays in Las Vegas hotels, to loyal social casino game players. The new Shaq games have similar rewards.

The deal is the latest marriage of mobile games and celebrities in the wake of Glu Mobile’s huge hit from 2014 — Kim Kardashian: Hollywood. And while Shaq is late to the game, he brings his own fan base and built-in audience. O’Neal will likely hold his own in this competition, but I can see gamers overloading on brands and celebrities at some point.

“We’ve partnered with the Big Man and we are incredibly excited about what we’ve created together,” said Andrew Pascal, CEO of Playstudios, in a statement. “When players get a flavor for how we’ve incorporated Shaq into our games, they are going to be amazed at how we’ve captured the essence of his personality. And just like our MyVegas games, players earn real rewards as they play.”


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O’Neal was already a fan of the innovative MyVegas Slots and MyVegas Blackjack games. He worked closely with Playstudios (or so the developer claims) in developing, designing, and implementing the games. Designers and animators used motion-capture technology and audio to bring to Shaq’s personality to life.

“Once players see the games, they are going to have some fun,” O’Neal said, in a statement. “I play MyVegas games and their features really keep you there for a while. These games will do the same thing.”

Players can redeem points earned on the games for rewards that include CaddyShaq-signed T-shirts, an autographed Shaq jersey, a personalized voicemail recording from Shaq, floor seats at a Sacramento Kings game and a chance to shoot hoops with O’Neal at his house.

CaddyShaq is a slot machine game, while ShaqJack is a blackjack game. Both titles are narrated by Shaq. They’re available on iOS, Google Play, Facebook, and Amazon.

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