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The Benefits and Disadvantages of Video Gaming Terminals

Sep 20, 2023 | Blog Posts, Illinois Video Gaming Terminal Operator

Video gaming terminals (VGTs) have become an increasingly popular form of entertainment and revenue generation in various regions, including Illinois. These electronic gaming machines offer a range of benefits, such as stimulating the local economy, providing entertainment options, and contributing to state revenues. However, they also come with potential disadvantages, including concerns about addiction and social consequences. This essay will explore the advantages and disadvantages of video gaming terminals and highlight their impact on Illinois. Additionally, we will briefly discuss Lucky Street Gaming, a VGT operator in Illinois.

Benefits of Video Gaming Terminals

1. Economic Impact:
One of the most significant advantages of video gaming terminals is their positive economic impact. VGTs generate substantial revenue for the state, which can be used to fund public services, education, and infrastructure improvements. This source of income is significant for states like Illinois that have faced fiscal challenges in recent years.

2. Local Business Support:
VGTs support local businesses, tiny bars, restaurants, and fraternal organizations. These establishments often rely on VGT revenue to enhance their operations and create jobs. This symbiotic relationship between VGT operators and local businesses helps to stimulate the local economy.

3. Entertainment and Recreation:
Video gaming terminals offer entertainment and recreation to residents and tourists. They provide a social setting for people to enjoy games, socialize, and have a good time. Many people view VGTs as a fun and leisurely activity that helps them unwind.

4. State Tax Revenues:
The taxes collected from VGT operations contribute significantly to state finances. These revenues can fund essential services, such as healthcare, public safety, and education. This source of income helps to reduce the burden on taxpayers.

Disadvantages of Video Gaming Terminals

1. Addiction:
One of the most pressing concerns regarding VGTs is the potential for addiction. Some individuals may develop gambling addiction issues, leading to financial problems, strained relationships, and other negative consequences. It is essential to regulate VGTs to mitigate this risk.

2. Social Impact:
The presence of VGTs in local establishments can have unintended social consequences. Some argue that VGTs can lead to anti-social behavior, as individuals may become absorbed in their gaming, neglecting social interactions with friends and family.

3. Problem Gambling:
While VGT operators and regulators implement responsible gambling measures, there is a risk that some players may struggle with problem gambling. It is crucial to provide support and resources for those affected by this issue.

4. Revenues Allocation:
Disputes may arise regarding how the VGT revenues are allocated and spent. Ensuring that these funds are directed towards critical public services and community development projects is essential to maximize the benefits of VGTs.

Lucky Street Gaming in Illinois

Lucky Street Gaming is an established VGT operator in Illinois, offering gaming terminals and related services. While they can provide valuable support to local businesses and the state, it is crucial to carefully consider the benefits and disadvantages of VGTs, as outlined in this essay, before making any decisions regarding their implementation.

Video gaming terminals in Illinois offer numerous benefits, from economic growth and local business support to entertainment and tax revenues. However, they also bring potential disadvantages such as addiction, social concerns, and problems related to revenue allocation. It is essential for legislators and stakeholders to carefully evaluate the pros and cons of VGTs to strike a balance that maximizes the advantages while mitigating the disadvantages. Responsible regulation and oversight are crucial to ensuring that VGTs benefit the state and its residents.


Video Gaming is regulated by the Illinois Gaming Board. Licensed establishments can have up to 5 video gaming terminals at their locations.

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