Chipy’s Exclusive Interview with Jason Newmark, Vice President of Production at Crazy Tooth Studio

Chipy’s Exclusive Interview with Jason Newmark, Vice President of Production at Crazy Tooth Studio image

Chipy.com had the pleasure of interviewing Jason Newmark, Vice President of Production at Crazy Tooth Studio, a software provider that creates innovative casino game concepts and brings them to life through a complex and dynamic development process. 

To learn everything you need to know about Crazy Tooth Studio, we invite you to sit back, relax and enjoy our delightful conversation with Jason. We guarantee you will be quite impressed with Crazy Tooth Studio!

Q: Hello, Jason! We appreciate that you accepted to do this interview and helped us learn more about Crazy Tooth Studio. Please tell us a bit about yourself and of course your history with Crazy Tooth Studio.

Crazy Tooth Studio

Hello there! Thank you for your interest in Crazy Tooth Studio. My name is Jason Newmark and I’m the Vice President, Production. I’ve been with Crazy Tooth Studio since the beginning - we are gearing up to celebrate our 10th year!

One of my main roles at CTS is to oversee all the animation and video production that not only goes into our games but all of our marketing materials as well. 

I met our president, Ben Hoffman, about 15 years ago when I was working as an editor and producer for a film and video production company. When Ben left IGT and decided to start Crazy Tooth, he gave me a call to see if I was interested in coming on board. Make games for a living? It wasn’t a hard decision! 

Q: Crazy Tooth Studio is quite an interesting name. What was the inspiration behind it? Is there an interesting story on how the name was chosen?

Ben has a dog named Choco and our very first game was based on him (It was called Choco Choco for Bally Technology). Choco has a big crazy tooth. Plus, we like to make crazy games. 

Crazy Tooth Studio Choco Choco Slot Game

Q: What games from your portfolio do you think were the most successful in 2020? What about 2021? 

One of our top games last year was Diamond Force™.  I really enjoyed working on that game because I’m a bit of a Marvel superhero nerd. For me, I’m biased toward any of our games that have fun characters that help tell the “story” of the theme. 

Diamond Force™ features our Team-Up Reels™ mechanic where the majors “Team Up” and bring you into a feature or a bonus. We have a new game coming in 2021 that features Team-Up Reels™ that I am very excited about. 

Diamond Force Slot Game Crazy Tooth Studio

Q: In your opinion, what is the most important asset of a slot game?

Obviously, players love winning and the math is a key component of that. I think the overall ride of a game is important. When we test our games, I want to really feel the potential for explosive wins. 

If we can keep a game fun and engaging, I think players really appreciate that. We try to approach our games from a player’s point of view and really see if it’s an entertaining game to play. 

Q: Can you share with us what a working day at Crazy Tooth Studio looks like? What part of your work do you enjoy the most?

A typical day at CTS would be a quick status meeting to see where we are in the process for each game in development. Then we get to work on our individual to-do lists. It’s always entertaining to see how early in the morning someone asks, “what’s for lunch?” (Food and coffee are very important components to the process!) :) 

There is constant collaboration in every game. One of the things that I really love about our team is that every single person who works at Crazy Tooth Studio is essential for the development of every single game that we make. 

Even though we have lead artists, animators, and engineers on each game, everyone still has input from concept all the way to final delivery. We all huddle up and come up with the concepts for a new game and we all constantly analyze, scrutinize, and play play play until we all think it lives up to the quality that we strive for. 

Q: You are about to release a new game, AUREUS. Can you share with us a little bit about the developing process of the game? What inspired the creation of AUREUS?

When we come up with an idea for a new game, it is often based around a new mechanic. We usually have a pretty intense brainstorming session where all of us gather around a whiteboard and throw out some new ideas. Sometimes one of us has a new idea that we want to explore and other times an idea will evolve from a “what if we tried…” scenario. 

I think it’s always a fascinating journey from idea to full-fledged math model. Aureus™ came from the idea of having values land on the reels and outer brackets then landing and selecting a grouping of values. We decided the easiest delivery system of those values would be shiny coins. Thus our Coinverge™ mechanic was born. 

Aureus Slot Game Crazy Tooth Studio
We had never done a Greek or Roman mythology game so we came up with Aureus™, which was a gold coin of Ancient Rome. The Roman God Jupiter stands next to the game board waiting for one of the many special coins to trigger a feature - whether it’s a multiplier, an upgrade, free spins, and more. There are a lot of things that happen in this game and I hope that players really enjoy playing it. 

Q: Crazy Tooth Studio is based in the United States. So, what are your thoughts on the future of online gambling in the USA?

Living in Nevada, where our economy heavily relies on gambling tourism, I know the draw that Reno and Las Vegas have when it comes to the casinos. I think there was initially a lot of fear from brick and mortar casinos about the growing market of online gambling. 

However, I think there has been a shift with the advent of online sports betting and poker, and a lot of the properties are changing their views. There is a lot of money for land based casinos to make in the field of online gaming. 

Financial incentive aside, I think there is a lot of desire from players to be able to play their favorite land titles on their phones for actual money and also to be able to discover new games from the comfort of their homes. People are still going to go to Vegas, even when they can play online. I’m excited for it to happen here in the states!

Q: What are Crazy Tooth Studio’s plans for the future? What should we expect from your upcoming game releases?

We are constantly exploring new game concepts. We are currently developing some new game mechanics that we are very excited about and also have a number of new themes using some of our existing mechanics. 

Our engineers are also currently furthering the development of our game framework Incisor™. We are very proud of our ability to make innovative games quickly and efficiently and Incisor™ allows us to do that. 

While we are always working on new games, we are also constantly developing our tools that make our games successful and fun to play. 

Q: You’ve released a short promo video from the Crazy Tooth Game Lab for each one of your games. Amazing and unique idea! How is it like filming them? How do you come up with ideas for them? 

Making videos has been something that we have done since the beginning. They started out as a form of team building where we could get a little silly and then we thought of the idea to use them to market each game using the concept of a “Game Lab” with “Game Scientists”.

Like our games, we are all involved in the ideas and development of the videos. Sometimes, the idea will come from someone just saying something random and goofy and other times it takes a bit more effort to tie an idea to one of our games. But it is always a fun process and I hope people have as much fun watching them as we do making them. 

Game Lab Game Scientists Crazy Tooth Studio

Q: You’ve recently launched a game titled “3 DEVILS PINBALL™”, which has a very funny presentation on YouTube. Can you give us more details about the developing process of the game?

With 3 Devils Pinball™, we wanted to make a new game utilizing our Power Path™ mechanic. For Queen of the Crystal Rays™, we used light rays bouncing off of prisms and we thought that a pinball bouncing off of bumpers would give that concept a satisfying tactile feel. 

Thinking about classic pinball styles led us to use a classic cartoon style that was popular in American animation of the 1920s. If we make a game with an existing mechanic, we really strive to give it a completely different feel than the other games utilizing that mechanic. 3 Devils Pinball™ is a great example of that.  

3 Devils Pinball Slot Game Crazy Tooth Studio

Q: Personally, do you like playing casino games? If yes, do you have any favorite titles or game developers?

Attending college in Reno, there were a lot of weekends involving Pai Gow poker, Blackjack, and Sundays at the sportsbook at the local casinos. I never really was a slot machine player until I worked at CTS

Now we play a lot! When we were developing land-based games, we would go out to the casinos frequently and play as a team to see what other studios were doing. 

Now that we make games for the online market, we can easily investigate and demo games. Like any industry, I feel that it’s important to see what your colleagues from other groups are doing to push the future of our industry. 

Q: Lastly, we would like to say thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule to answer our questions. Is there anything else you would like to mention?

Thank you so much for letting me talk a bit about what we do. Keep playing our games and always be on the lookout for new titles from Crazy Tooth Studio. We have a ton of fun making our games and hope our players have a ton of fun playing them! 

Final Thoughts 

We hope you had a lot of fun reading this interview and that you are eager to try out some Crazy Tooth Studio games for free here at Chipy.com! Good luck!

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