Live Casino Gaming
In one form or the other, gambling has been universally present for centuries. The very nature of casinos has a heavy appeal to players, due to their possibility to fill your pockets in a matter of hours, if not minutes.
Of course, most people look at casinos as a way to make money, while some are more appreciative of the entertainment factor of it all. Whereas, for a lot of players both of these factors come into play.
History of Live Casino
The dawn of the Internet ushered a new era in casino gambling. If land casinos were prior seen as a more secluded activity without a mainstream presence, the Internet is what bonded everything together and re-established this industry’s appeal.
Online casinos started appearing in the late 90s, and many people were immediately drawn to the excitement of playing casino games from the comfort of their homes.
By the year of 2000, the industry had already generated more than $2 billion in revenue. Not long thereafter, many more licensing bodies began to appear, which led to a higher number of online casino openings.
The rapid pace at which the Internet developed enabled paralleled growth for the iGaming industry. Access to fast and reliable Internet connections led operators and software creators to innovate and allow players for an even better online experience. If at first you had a handful of games at your disposal, now you could choose between hundreds of games across hundreds of online casinos.
It wasn’t too long before the first live casinos began to appear. As online casinos were in a way, rivaling with land casinos, live dealer games thinned the line even further between the two.
The thrill of facing the dealer in a live virtual setting while sitting in front of your computer, was just as potent as being able to play online in the first place. Many players were dazzled by this opportunity, and even felt safer in playing online thanks to the ability to see the game play out in real time.
How Do Live Casino Games Work?
Live casino games are brought to us thanks to live streaming technology. Unlike listening to the radio or watching TV, live streams are delivered using the Internet.
The casino’s real time video is being uploaded to the web server, while your connection must actively download that data to be able to watch the dealer and interact with the table in real time.
Naturally, all of this is processed in the background, while all you actually have to do is open up a game you like and enjoy it.
However, you can see why live streams weren’t a big thing back in the early 2000’s. A real time data transfer of that magnitude required a strong connection, one that we now take for granted thanks to the fast growth of the Internet.
By establishing a connection with the casino’s server, you can look at the game table and dealer in real time. You can make bets which are immediately registered, and also interact with the dealer or even other players.
Nowadays, the possibilities are nigh endless. Online casinos are offering a more immersive experience than ever, by allowing you to shift the camera perspective, make various side-bets and even play more than one game at the same time. The goal is to minimize downtime and maximize your entertainment.
The next step in this field is improving mobile live dealer casinos. Mobile connections through 3G, 4G and even 5G are constantly improving, but data caps and mobile hardware are still a notable barrier. This is why it’s possible that you won’t have the smoothest live casino experience when playing on the go.
Types of Live Casino Games
Live casinos brought amazement to many when they first appeared, but in retrospect they were quite limited. Initially, all you could play was Blackjack with one dealer, one table and not a whole lot of betting options. Moreover, the tables wouldn’t be available 24/7 as they are now.
In time, games such as Roulette, Baccarat, Poker and many variations of them started filling in live online casinos everywhere. Today, when you open up a live casino, the options are more than satisfactory.
Live Dealer Blackjack
Blackjack is one of the most popular casino games around. It is easy to get into and turn a small profit, yet difficult to master. Anyone can play Blackjack, but if you want to do it efficiently, you are advised to learn basic strategy to learn how to bet properly and maximize your odds of winning.
Live Dealer Roulette
Roulette attracts a wide player because the chances of winnings vs losing are close to 50/50. The odds of winning hover around 48% when making an outside bet, such as red/black or odd/even.
You should play European or French Roulette when looking to maximize odds, as American Roulette hosts an additional house pocket, resulting in a higher house edge overall.
Live Automated Roulette
Not all live casino games require a dealer present, as many software providers have managed to create a noteworthy experience nonetheless.
Automated Roulette is self-explanatory, as you can make a bet and watch the wheel spin in real time. Players who prefer the authenticity of live games, but would still like faster paced gameplay will much prefer this version of Roulette.
Live Dealer Baccarat
Baccarat, also famous for its variation called Punto Banco, is a popular casino card game that’s been around for centuries. The goal of the game is to hit as close to 9 as possible. In a way, it shares similarities to Blackjack, but with a few added intricacies. At first, Baccarat may seem complicated, but in actuality it is easy to get into.
The game is famous across casinos for its high roller tables ranging in hundreds of thousands of dollars. In VIP sections of famous casinos, sometimes millions are staked by the day.
Live Casino Software
The evolution of online live casinos has over time led to a massive influx of game variants and discrepancies in quality between multiple providers. While at their core, most live casinos feature a similar lineup of games, there are still things you need to look out for before playing for real money.
There are software companies which are regarded as the best for a reason, and we’re listing them here so you can have an easier time during your online game sessions.
Evolution Live Games
Evolution is the undisputed champion of live dealer games in the online casino industry, mostly due to the fact that live games are their only area of focus. Nonetheless, the company’s dedication to provide the best live gaming experience has led to a level of quality that comes second to none.
Evolution provides crystal clear HD streams and multiple variants of popular table games such as Roulette, Baccarat, Blackjack, Casino Hold’em, Three Card Poker and Caribbean Stud Poker.
Their tables feature multiple camera angles for a more immersive experience, a modern betting interface backed up with a wide selection of side-bets and a variety of dealers to choose from. Most tables are open 24/7, some of them are also available in multiple languages.
NetEnt Live Games
NetEnt is famed for producing top quality and modern video slots, but the company’s influence extends across table games and live casino as well.
As is always the case with this provider, you can expect superlative levels of quality in all aspects. They host their live tables from studios in Malta, featuring professional live dealers and HD streams working around the clock.
NetEnt offer tables of Roulette and Blackjack, including an automatic variant of the former. The games are backed with a sleek betting interface, a wide array of side-bets and quality of life additions such as live chat between dealers and players.
Microgaming Live Games
Microgaming ventured into live casino gaming back in 2006, and they’ve come a long way since then. Just like NetEnt, live casino games aren’t Microgaming’s primary attribute, but they’ve done a good job at it nonetheless.
Microgaming’s lineup of games includes Blackjack, Roulette, Baccarat, Bonus Baccarat, Casino Hold’em and Sic Bo. The supplier also offers a Playboy Live Casino for operators who choose to acquire it, consisting of Blackjack, Roulette and Baccarat.
The tables are up to par with industry standards, offering high definition streams, a number of user options and a wide selection of bets.
Best live casinos in the UK
Ladbrokes Live Casino
Ladbrokes is the leading provider of casino games to UK customers. This sports betting and casino giant is great when it comes to live casino too. They offer wide range of live games including roulette, baccarat or blackjack. Their product is top class and you can enjoy live casino games 24/7 there.
Betway Live Casino
If you’re looking for the industry’s most polished live casino games, then Betway is one of your best options, as they feature Evolution’s full gaming arsenal.
As soon as you enter, you may be intimidated by the options on your screen, through Blackjack, Baccarat, Roulette, Casino Hold’em, Three Card Poker and Caribbean Stud Poker.
Not only that, but a good chunk of those games can be played on a wide array of tables featuring different dealers. Roulette itself is available through multiple variations of the base game, such as Dragonara Roulette, Double Ball Roulette, Auto-Roulette, and more! As for Blackjack, you have regular, VIP, Platinum VIP, Fortune VIP and Grand VIP tables.
There will always be a spot open for you at Betway, as players at the casino have been spoiled for choice.
Bet365 Live Casino
Bet365’s live casino games are powered by Playtech, who feature an abundance of games split into two sections: Asian and European. The games on offer consist of Baccarat, Roulette, Blackjack, Hi-Lo, Casino Hold’em and Sic Bo.
Above all else, Bet365 is worthy of praise thanks to the diversity in games. Baccarat alone can be played in “No Commission” variations, as well as Topaz Speed, Zhu Que Mini, Fushi Mini, Opal 7 Seats, Jade, Crystal Mini, and more.
Blackjack and Roulette feature standard and bet365 premium variants. Moreover, Roulette is split into Prestige, Speed, Aphrodite, Diamond, Pearl, Phoenix, Sapphire Room, French, Vesta, and so forth.
While many of those variants are split due to their unique layout and aesthetics, you’ll still find Bet365’s diversity unrivaled in the industry. The casino also allows you to play up to three games at once, thanks to Playtech’s “multi-game” functionality.