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Malaysia’s Gaming Rise: Understanding the Popularity Surge

Last Updated on 2023/09/24

Online Gaming Growing in Malaysia

When you take a look at the entertainment business, gambling is up there with giants like film and TV production, video games, and music. It has been widespread globally and present for more than a thousand years.

The premise makes it attractive to everyone – even the biggest underdog has a chance to win and completely change the final outcome. That is the reason why it’s been popular all over the world, including Malaysia.

During the last decade, there’s been a massive growth of online gaming participants in Malaysia despite the market still not being regulated to the fullest.

Even the best ones, like 7slots casino, are joining the scene with optimism that the government will realize the industry’s potential and take it to the next level by putting it into a serious legal frame.

In this article, we will go through the factors that have contributed to the meteoric rise of the Malaysian gaming scene and what changes could be made to facilitate its development in the future.

The Lack of Regulations Issue

Malaysia’s online gambling regulations are currently shrouded in confusion, leading to a surge in popularity for the online casino industry in the country. While most forms of Internet gambling are neither officially regulated nor allowed within Malaysia, numerous prominent online casino platforms based outside the nation actively cater to Malaysian gamblers.

The legal framework in Malaysia operates within a complex system that draws from both Malaysian Common law and Religious Sharia law. These laws impose a comprehensive ban on all gambling activities, with a particular focus on Muslims, for whom it is considered Haram, contradicting the teachings of Allah and the Prophet Muhammad. Certain exceptions do exist, primarily aimed at non-Malaysians.

Two key pieces of legislation, the Common Gaming Houses Act of 1953 and the Betting Act of 1953, govern the actions of individuals who participate in, own or operate betting establishments. Although these laws have remained largely unchanged for a considerable period and do not explicitly address penalties for engaging in online games-of-chance activities, they still oversee these activities to some extent.

Nevertheless, due to the absence of clear penalties outlined for virtual gaming, Malaysians effectively have the freedom to place bets on offshore platforms, even though these websites fall outside the jurisdiction of Malaysian law due to their foreign locations.

Convenience & Scarcity Driving the Industry

Judging by the current state of their market, the popularity of internet gaming in Malaysia can be attributed to two primary factors:


Participating in online games of chance offers exceptional convenience since there’s no need to make the journey to a brick-and-mortar casino.

Players can save time and enjoy the same activities found in traditional casinos from the comfort of their own space. This time-saving convenience can create an ideal gaming atmosphere, particularly for newcomers who might feel anxious in unfamiliar surroundings.

To a Western player, this might not sound like a reason for massive growth, but in Malaysia, an introduction of playing from your home was a game changer.


In Malaysia, the legal system strictly prohibits all forms of gambling. However, there are a few exceptions for non-Muslims, although these exemptions are quite limited and not as widespread as one might assume. Consequently, the casino scene in Malaysia is not robust due to limited opportunities.

This naturally leads many Malaysians to turn to virtual casinos to experience the excitement and thrill of playing from the convenience of their homes.

Games of Chance & Human Nature

The relationship between the games’ uncertainty and human nature is thus multi-dimensional and multi-layered. At one level, gambling meets some of the most natural aspects of human psychology right at its core, and Malaysians are no exception.

The thrill accompanying taking risks, the uncertainty surrounding outcomes, and the possibility of winning all fall within natural human inclinations. The brain is wired to seek out novel or thrilling experiences, and online gaming websites serve up an irresistible mix of fun and potential for those seeking such experiences.

It further confirms another feature of human beings: to have everything be simple and as much available to them as possible. Almost all sorts of activities include shopping and even conversation to be able to do over a tap on the screen, online gambling fits in this flow without difficulty.

It allows gamblers to satisfy their thirst with no need to leave home, making it progressively easier to access. This availability could present an issue to players, who are susceptible to its ubiquitous attraction for always available gambling activities.

Final Thoughts

If we were to distil the core factors contributing to the surge in Malaysian online gambling, we would find three key factors: The unclear nature of Malaysian online regulations, the limited options for individuals seeking to engage in these kinds of activities, and the overall ease and convenience of online gambling.

Combined together, all these factors essentially underpin the growth of internet gambling and sports betting in Malaysia.

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