Swedish casino games provider NetEnt announced Tuesday that it has signed a deal to exclusively develop new games based on the Planet of the Apes film franchise, as well as confirming plans for its first real-money virtual reality slot game.

Announced at ICE yesterday, the agreement with 20th Century Fox Consumer Products will allow NetEnt to develop slot games on the entire Planet of the Apes franchise, about a world in which humans and intelligent apes clash for control.

It will be the first time that the brand has been used in online casino gaming, and follows the recent commercial success for Rise of the Planet of the Apes (2011) and Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (2014).

“Planet of the Apes is one of the largest film franchises in the world never to have been applied to gaming before,” said Simon Hammon, chief product officer at NetEnt. “With such a rich history, the brand resonates with everyone that has grown up with the films, and it will fit perfectly with NetEnt’s wide and divers player base.

“We are thrilled to have signed the franchise, and can’t wait to offer the game to players later in the year.”

NetEnt said that its Planet of the Apes slot is set to be released during the second half of 2017, with the game featuring stunning graphics and unique game mechanics that will bring to life the power and excitement of the brand.

NetEnt also revealed Tuesday that it will develop and launch its first real-money virtual reality slot game, based on one of its most popular titles Gonzo’s Quest.

The supplier said that it eagerly tracks technology advancements and believes that WebVR technology will be mature enough to offer basic support for VR game-play in the next two years.

It plans to add Gonzo’s Quest VR game to its current multi-channel offering and to distribute it through the existing NetEnt Casino Module to maximise reach and availability for its customers.

“We firmly believe that VR has a given place in the future of online gaming, based on our research and the trends that we monitor,” said NetEnt CEO Per Eriksson. “We remain focused on delivering the ultimate entertainment experience by taking this first step towards developing our first real-money VR slot. This is a milestone for NetEnt and the gaming industry.”

Shares in NetEnt AB (Co. Data) (STO:NETS-B) were trading at SEK73.30 per share in London earlier Wednesday.

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