having talked with others living in the States, the new coin feature is largely banned as it resembles gambling too much.
Not very familiar with US law I see. The coin games were specifically modified to minimize the impact of luck and chance specifically to avoid any resemblance to gambling. Instead, from a legal standpoint these games are purely skill based and as such wagering is perfectly acceptable from the viewpoint of the federal government and most state governments. Only a handful of states deem it otherwise.
It is this same 'skill' approach which allows for the one-day money-wagering fantasy sports sites to legally operate since they are not legally deemed luck-based but skill.