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House Edge: Does Fortune Favour Those Who Play the Odds?
Shane Addinall posted a post in BlogWe all love spending some time playing our favourite casino games, and there is always the hope that we pocket some winnings along the way. Gambling comes with one guarantee: the house always wins. The fact of house-edge in all casino games is undeniable, so what can players do to minimise their risk? Beyond gambling basics, like only wagering with money you can afford to lose, there are other approaches to help players make their online casino experience more fun and lucrative. The most straightforward option is to pick games with the lowest house edge. Join us as we look at the 8 casino games with the best odds. May the Odds Be in Your Favour The secret to enjoying gambling is understanding what you are up against, and the house edge is the most important factor here. Different casino games offer players different odds. We also know that players can lower the edge even further by combining the best house edge with skill. House edge translates to the rate at which a casino pays out when players use optimal strategy. We can also explain it as the ratio of loss to the initial bet. Therefore, the smaller the house edge percentage, the less you are likely to lose in the long run while applying optimal strategy. Jacks or Better video poker Jacks or Better is a fun video poker variation that offers punters quicker gameplay than other versions of poker. Like most video poker games, in a game of Jacks or Better, punters face the computerised dealer, and the gameplay is much faster than a live casino set-up. Since its launch at online casinos, there have been many fresh additions with side bets and different gameplay experiences. The game itself is one of the original versions of poker that dates to the 19th century. Perhaps the low house edge helps this age-old card game to remain a staple in the casino library. Jacks or Better offers players a 0.46% house edge when using the perfect strategy. There are countless online sources for the best Jacks or Better strategy, including Gamblers Pick guides. Blackjack There are many kinds of blackjack available online, including exciting live options along with local variations like Spanish 21. As an age-old favourite, it might surprise you that the game of 21 comes with very attractive odds. When played with a single deck of cards, blackjack comes in with an average house edge of 0.5%, and certain rules allow this to drop lower than 0.1%. Online casinos have entertaining video blackjack options where punters can hone their blackjack skills, and many of these games offer automated strategy advice. When blackjack players use basic strategy tips on when to split, stand, or hit, they increase their odds of winning more often and minimise losses. Because there are so many variations of blackjack, it is good to understand that certain versions, rules, and side bet options affect the odds. For instance, whether or not the dealer stands on soft 17 has a major impact on the house edge, and so does the number of decks used. Regardless, most blackjack options offer the best odds, and this is one reason punters love the game. Baccarat As a favourite to agent 007, this card game is simple to learn and comes with excellent odds. Also known as punto banco or Chemin de fer (by some French players and Mr Bond), baccarat is one of the oldest and most popular casino card games in the world. The highly sophisticated game mostly has three bet options, but only two come with reasonable loss ratios. Baccarat rules are straightforward, and we could compare them to betting on the flip of a coin. Players have three betting options: Player, Banker, and Tie. Some modern online versions have side bets, but the original rules include the ones we mention. The aim is to get a total hand as close to 9 as possible. Whoever gets the best combination wins the round, and this is what the player bets on. The house edge for a banker win is 1.06%, for a player win, it is 1.24%, and for a tie, it is 14.36%. Most baccarat tables at online casinos deal from a six or eight-card shoe, but the odds remain in the same approximate range, and the most obvious bet strategy is to stick to the banker and player bets while applying basic baccarat strategy. Craps Craps is one of the oldest games of chance and used to be played on the streets, with historians estimating its origins from the Roman era. Since then, it evolved into one of the most exciting table games in land-based casinos, with roaring crowds surrounding the table. Today, the dice game has many online versions, and although the excitement of a crowd isn’t there, the core principles remain. House edge for the beloved dice game is anything between 1.4% and 5%, depending on which bet you make. Although the action of a craps game seems straightforward, many rules complicate the game, and it is best to review and understand these before placing bets. Certain bets make it tricky to determine a house edge. An example of this is the place bet, where it could take many rolls of the dice to resolve a bet. Because of these differences, we express house edge for craps in different ways than other casino games. Odds ratios depend on if a push is being counted. Without getting too technical here, the best bets on a craps table are the pass-and-come bets which offer players odds of approximately 1.41%. If you are keen on shooting some dice, look at our Craps guide. Pai Gow Poker This table game is a unique and more recent casino game played with a single 53-card deck, including one joker. Inspired by the Chinese domino game Pai Gow, this fun and social poker game originated in Southern California in the 80s, and players bet on two hands instead of one. Pai Gow Poker has a house edge of approximately 1.46%, and although it is a game of skill with similar rankings to standard poker, it is an easier game to learn. Both the player and the dealer get 7 cards each after the player enters their bet. The joker card is a semi-wild and can complete a straight, flush, or straight flush, and royal flush. Both parties split their cards into two hands: one two-card hand being low, and the other 5-card hand for high poker values. Players bet on whether their two separate hands beat their opponents, much like classic poker games. Ultimate Texas Hold ’Em This popular version of poker is available as a video casino game at most online casinos and as a live online casino game known as Extreme Texas Hold ‘Em from Evolution. In this poker game, the players may make one raise at any point of playing a hand, and the earlier they do this, the higher the raise can be. Standard US rules apply to Ultimate Texas Hold ‘Em, which is played with a single deck. The game has a house edge of 2.19% on the ante bet, using an optimal strategy. Punters have the advantage of playing this fan-favourite for free on training versions, and some real-money casino games have the option to switch on computerised advice for the best strategy. An advantage with this version of poker is that you play against the house, and no poker face is required, so don’t worry too much about a bluff or Botox replenishing. Ultimate Texas Hold ‘Em is the perfect game to allow players the freedom to learn solid poker strategies while becoming confident gamblers. European roulette There are two kinds of roulette that reign among punters; single zero and double zero. The latter is an American version of the European former. The number of zeros has a major impact on the house edge, and therefore only European, or single zero, roulette makes it onto today’s list. As one of the easier table games, it has become a favourite for land-based patrons and online punters. Single zero roulette has a house edge of 2.7%, and the difference comes in with the 37-number wheel. Thanks to the single zero on the wheel, the house edge drops significantly when compared to the American double zero version. Other rules that impact the odds are whether the game has Atlantic City rules or French rules. When playing according to French rules, the la partage standard allows players to get part of their even money bet back when the pill lands on zero. Atlantic City rules can apply to single or double zero wheels and drop the house edge to 2.63%. video slots These highly entertaining online casino games are by far the favourite choice among punters around the globe. The trick is to find slots with the highest RTP ratings. Online Slots represent house edge through the Return to Player percentage, and the average rate is around 96%. This translates to a house edge of 4%, which is not exactly in line with the previously mentioned games. However, some software providers and casino platforms have online slots with RTP ratings of 97% and 98%. Now we’re talking, right? Always remember software developers calculate RTP scores over a massive number of spins, mostly over 1 million. Another differentiating point is that some providers allow platforms to choose the RTP, meaning that the same game can have different odds at various online casinos. When opting for online slot gambling, always do so with responsible gambling tools, like automatic time and loss limits, activated. The downside to slots with a low house edge is the lack of game options and exciting themes. Most slot games run with an average RTP between 94% and 96%, with exciting bonus features to sweeten the deal. Odds Stacked Against You? These are the best games to choose when you want to play with the highest odds of losing as little as possible. Gambling always has an element of risk, and when it is no longer fun, take a break and do something else you enjoy. At the end of the day, casinos are a business, and the house edge is there to keep them in business. As the saying goes: “Some you win, some you lose”, so play casino games for the fun of it, and if you win along the way, it is a bonus.
10 Ways Online Casinos are Better Than Land-based Venues
Shane Addinall posted a post in BlogWhile the adage "a rose by any other name would smell as sweet" would have you believe that there is no real difference between gambling online or at your local casino, that simply is not true. While land-based casinos do offer certain benefits like the potential to get free drinks, be comped a meal, and the experience of a night out “on the town”, playing at an online casino offers far more benefits for both experienced and beginner gamblers to enjoy. Why Gambling Online is the Best Here are 10 reasons why we believe online casinos trump their land-based peers every day of the week: 1. Perfect Environment for New Players Most online casinos offer free to play versions of the real money games they have on offer. This is the perfect way for new players to get to grips with the mechanics, features and bet sizes of any game they intend to play for real money later. Not only can you play these games for free, but each game comes with handy in-game hints and a detailed help file that explains everything from what each button does to how wins are determined and the games specific return to player percentage. 2. Online Casinos Offer Better Payouts The simple fact of the matter is that the House always has an advantage, whether playing online or at a land-based gambling venue – the trick is optimising that advantage as best possible. This is where online casinos beat out their brick and mortar counterpart’s hands down. Land-based casinos must cover the costs of running sprawling complexes which include restaurants, bars, clubs and all the staff to man these various activities. Online casinos only have support staff and tech-related costs which cost a fraction of what it takes to run an offline casino. This is why online casinos offer payouts of around 96%, this means the average house edge is as low as 4%. 3. Incredibly Range of Online Slots Slot machines are by far the most popular game type whether you choose to play online or offline, this is due to their wide range of themes, interactive features, payline options and jackpot win potential. Plus, individual developers each offer something unique to give their slots even more appeal. Big Time Gaming created their Megaways system offering up to 117,649 ways to win, Microgaming offers incredible progressive jackpot wins on their Mega Moolah slots and so much more. 4. Gamble When It Suits You Unlike online casinos which are open all year round, not all local casinos offer 24/7 access to their games. By playing online you can hop onto your favourite slot machine or play a few hands of blackjack whenever it is best for you. Oftentimes it is also simply not possible to coordinate getting to a casino venue at conventional times given the demands placed on our time by work, travel, family and more. In this instance being able to relax over a cup of coffee and a few spins of the reels when you have downtime available to you is an important feature. When you add this to the fact that you can play on your mobile device online gambling offers the most comprehensive, customer-first, gambling experience you could hope for. 5. Live and Play on Your Mobile The mobile device is far more than just a phone these days, we all run our lives from these tiny handheld computers. Online casinos understand this and offer an engaging gambling experience right there in the palm of your hand. Best of all thanks to high-quality apps and HTML5 these casinos offer the same entertainment on your device as they do when you play on your laptop or desktop computer. Allowing you to gamble whenever and wherever you want to. 6. There is Always a Seat for You A very real downside to gambling at a land-based venue, especially in smaller towns, is limited seating or access to popular games. At an online casino, whether you are playing at peak traffic times or in the middle of the night, your favourite casino table or online slot will be waiting for you to dive right in. This is equally true of buying additional casino chips while playing your favourite game. Online casinos allow you to easily top your chip stack from within the game you are playing rather than expecting you to get out of the action to go get more chips as you would at your local casino. 7. Fantastic Casino Bonus Selection Receiving bonuses at a land-based casino is highly unlikely for a new player. All new players at reputable online casinos will receive some form of welcome bonus. This bonus acts both as a gift basket to make you feel at home and as a safety net with which you can test out casino games without risking your own money. These casino bonuses will include deposit match bonuses, free spins, no deposit bonuses, wager free bonuses or a combination of these. Once you are a regular at the casino you will be able to avail yourself of reload bonuses, cashback and Loyalty bonuses. 8. Choose When to Play with Others A big part of ensuring your mental health though, especially during lockdowns is having the choice to play with others when you need contact and give yourself space when that is more important. One of the fastest-growing niches within the online gaming industry is the live casino sector. This allows players to step away from purely RNG casino games to enjoy the experience of interacting with a live dealer and the players around the table. As the market appetite for live games has grown so developers like Evolution Gaming have stepped up to grow their selection beyond traditional games like blackjack, roulette, and craps, to include custom games like Monopoly Live, Deal or No Deal Live and Mega Ball. 9. Protect Your Privacy with Bitcoin For players who are looking to further enhance the privacy and security offered by online gambling, there is the option to gamble at a Bitcoin casino. These sites are built on the blockchain, offer provably fair gambling, and ensure that your transactions are hidden from prying eyes thanks to Bitcoin’s incredible encryption. This is over and above any other measures, one can take online to protect their search histories and online banking by using virtual private networks (VPN) to connect to the internet. 10. Safety First When making the decision whether to play online or go to a local casino one must consider the potential health risks. Given the current situation we all find ourselves in, it is prudent to avoid crowds of people and rather play from home. With the ease of access to multiple casinos and swathes of cutting edge casino games, not to mention the bonuses and 24/7 personal support, there is very little reason to play at a land-based casino when with the click of a button you can enjoy world-class entertainment from the comfort of your home.