Sep 20

How to pick the best casino games to play for your personality.

How to Pick the Best Casino Games to Play by Personality

Well over 100 million people visit casinos every year in North America (with the exception of 2020, of course). It’s an extremely popular past time for adult vacationers; especially those who don’t have young children in tow. From the Hard Rock Vancouver, to MGM Las Vegas, Borgata Atlantic City to Casino de Montreal – billions of dollars are spent gambling in the US and Canada every year. And that’s just at land-based casinos.

For every casino goer, there’s always a ‘first time’. When planning that very first trip, some players want to dive right in, playing a little bit of everything. Others might be a little more cautious, picking and choosing the games they feel would best suit their personality. If you’re one of those – if you’re wondering, “Which casino games are right for me?” – please continue reading.

How to Pick the Best Casino Games For You

As you probably know, there are many different types of games in the casino. Slot machines dominate the gaming floor, and with good reason. They are by far the most popular games of all. But they might not be your cup of tea. Then there’s blackjack, roulette, baccarat, craps, video poker, and a slew of other games to consider.

In the following text, we’ll describe these games very briefly; just enough that you can get an idea of whether each one suits your style. Based on this information, you should be able to decide which games are worth trying, and which ones are not.

Slot Machines – They’re a “No-Brainer”

slot machines

Anywhere from 70-90% of the casino floor will be made up of slot machines. Players just seem to love them! The reason is simple. They require absolutely no knowledge or forethought to play. Insert money. Push button. Cross fingers. It really is that simple. Win or lose, it’s all up to luck.

If you’re looking for a ‘no-brainer’ game that you can enjoy playing, without having to think about what you’re doing, slots are for you. Don’t feel bad though – that’s not an insult in anyway. Remember, the vast majority of casino goers prefer slot machines. They are designed for sheer entertainment, and in that regard, they do deliver.

Baccarat – Win, Lose or Draw

baccarat

Pronounced “bah-kuh-rah”, this is the easiest table game you’ll ever play. As easy as a slot machine, except that you do have to make one decision – which hand to bet on. You won’t play the game. You don’t receive any cards. The dealer does all the work, based on a set of house rules. You only have to pick which hand you think will win.

That being said…

The game involves the dealing of two hands – the Player hand (but it’s not really yours), and the Banker hand. You choose to bet on the Player, the Banker, or a Tie between the two. The Tie is a sucker bet, so just don’t. The Banker has a higher chance of winning than the Player, so you should always bet on it.

So, strategically speaking, if you play baccarat, you should always bet on the banker, making this game just as simple as any slot machine. Drop your banker bet, cross your fingers. If you want to appear more sophisticated, without actually putting any thought into your game, choose baccarat.

Roulette – Easy as 1, 2, 3…34, 35, 36

roulette

Roulette is another game that takes virtually no skill to win (or lose). The only thing that makes this game more complex than slot machines or baccarat is that there are so many different ways to bet. You can drop your chips on a single number, two numbers, three, four, or six numbers, or you can make bigger group bets involving one-third or one-half of the numbers; except for that pesky 0 (and 00 in American Roulette), which is where the house gains its edge.

If you are looking for a more exciting game, with a communal (multi-player) atmosphere, but again, no mental strain, roulette is a good option. Please don’t play American roulette though. That double-zero also nearly doubles the house edge from 2.7% to 5.26%.

Keno – If You Like Playing the Lottery…

keno

If you’re going to the casino for the first time, keno games are an absolute waste of time and money. You might as well stay home and buy a few scratch off lottery tickets. Your odds of winning will be about as good, and you’ll save a lot of cash in travel expenses.

The game consists of 80 numbers on a 10×8 grid, labeled 1 thru 80. Your job is to pick 1 or more numbers that you believe will be randomly chosen by the game. The house edge can vary from one game to the next, depending on the pay table. However, a survey of keno games in Vegas once returned a variable house edge of anywhere from 20% to 35%, depending on the amount of numbers selected.

Those are horrible odds – the worst of all casino games. However, if you really enjoy scratching lottery tickets, or watching lotto numbers get drawn on live TV, maybe you’ll have enough fun playing to get your entertainment’s worth. Just because I don’t recommend it doesn’t mean you won’t enjoy it.

Craps – Not as Hard as it Looks

craps

The most intimidating of all land-based casino games is craps. It’s actually not a hard game to play. There’s just a whole lot of bets, with a whole lot of rules as to how and when they win or lose. Add in a crowd of very excitable people, and it can dissuade any newcomer from getting in on the action.

The truth is, it’s a very easy and fun game to play, once you figure out what’s going on. My advice would be to learn more about craps. Play online first, or download a craps trainer app. By the time you learn the betting system, you’ll either love it or hate it.

Blackjack – Play it Right, or Don’t Play It

blackjack

This game requires more mental capacity than any other. Not only should you know how to play with proper, basic strategy, you need to be able to do it in a timely manner. If you’re not playing with basic strategy, you’re only lowering your chances of wining the game. Basic strategy isn’t difficult, but it is situational. Every variation in the rules, the pay table, even the number of decks in use, can impact the correct decision for every opportunity to either stand, hit, split, or double down.

If you aren’t willing to learn blackjack strategy, don’t bother playing blackjack – at least, not in a live, multi-player setting. You’re just going to piss a bunch of other people off. Again, it’s not that hard to learn, but it does take constant mental fortitude on your part. We’ll talk more about card game strategy in a moment. First, there’s one more game you need to consider.

Video Poker – Take Your Time, but Play it Right

video poker

To me, video poker blends the best qualities of blackjack and slot machines. You get the low-edge benefits of playing with perfect strategy, combined with the solitude and relaxation of the slots. By making the correct decisions on every hand, you’re maximizing your chance to win. Yet, there’s no rush to make any decision.

You can look down at a strategy card between every play. Or, you can use a video poker strategy app, inputting your hand with each new deal and following its advice, play by play. No one cares. You’re not wasting anyone’s time. And some of these games carry a super low house edge – as low as, if not lower than blackjack.

Important Note about Casino Card Game Strategies

This last bit of advice applies to any and all card-based casino games that allow you to make a decision after seeing the initial hand. Whether it’s blackjack, video poker, pai gow poker, Caribbean stud poker, 3-card or 4-card poker, casino hold’em – whatever the game, if you can make any decision after placing your initial bet, listen up.

For each and every hand dealt, there is only one strategically correct decision to be made. That decision is the one that proffers the maximum probability of a positive outcome. It doesn’t mean you’re going to win, or that your odds of winning will be better than 50/50. Actual odds are circumstantial, determined on a case by case basis. But regardless of true odds, using basic strategy to achieve maximum probability is strongly recommended. Otherwise, you’re leaving your chances to fate, and fate is known to be less than kind, especially when it comes to casinos.

If you’re not physically or mentally prepared to put forth that kind of effort, these are not the best casino games to play. For someone else, maybe, but not for you.

Lastly, if you’ve read over each of these game descriptions and are still on the fence about what to play, there’s a simple way to find out for sure, without risking any money in the process. Simply visit an online casino, sign up a free-play account, and practice any game you wish. They are the same games, with the same odds (except slots – online slots pay out better; even the real money ones).

written by Grameister777 \\ tags: , , , , , , ,

May 18

Where to Begin: The most played casino gambling games in Canada

If you’re new to casino gambling, you may be wondering where to begin. Don’t feel bad – every gambler has a “first time” experience. We all had to start somewhere. Most people are far too intimidated to sit at a live dealer table right off the bat, leading us to the slots or video poker machines, and there’s nothing wrong with that. Building up a little confidence first can be a good thing.

For he most part, I believe casino gambling is an experience best enjoyed for entertainment value. To get the most entertainment out of it, you need to try a little bit of everything. Not all at once, mind you, but to get a good grasp of what’s out there, and what you enjoy most, you’ll need to spread your wings.

For beginners, I generally recommend starting out with the most popular types of games. That way, you’re most likely to find something genuinely exciting, without limiting yourself too much.

The Most Played Casino Gambling Games in Canada

You can’t go wrong playing the most popular casino games in the country. They may not all be your cup of tea, but there’s surely something fun for every Canadian on this list. After all, they are the most played games for a reason. So, without further ado, here they are…

#1 Slot Machines

Most Played Casino Gambling Games #1 Slots

Don’t look so surprised! Yes, these games draw the intimidated newbies like moths to a flame, but it’s not just their solitary nature that makes them so approachable. Slot machines are just plain fun. Manufacturers endow with them with incredibly attractive themes – everything from tropical destinations and unimaginable wealth, to hit TV shows and Hollywood films.

If there’s anything out there you genuinely love, you can bet there’s a slot machine themed around it. With crystalline graphics, enthralling animations, and exciting features, it really is hard to deny the entertainment value in a good old fashioned (or digitally modernized) slot machine.

#2 Poker

Most Played Casino Gambling Games #2 Poker

It’s true – Texas Hold’em (and other variants) draws a vast crowd of Canadian players to the felt; or the virtual felt, as the case may often be. There’s something about competing against other players like yourself that makes poker so intriguing.

Sure, the games are fun on their own, but when you know you have this much control over your destiny – when you know that your level of skill, the decisions you make, and your ability to convince someone that you have the best hand (whether you really do or not) is far more impact on your odds of winning than pure luck – it’s easy to see the appeal for live and online poker in Canada.

#3 Roulette

Most Played Casino Gambling Games #3 Roulette

None can deny the exponential thrill that takes hold when that wheel starts spinning. Your bets are on the table, and their fate is entirely up to the speed, weight, and trajectory of that little ball, bouncing and bobbling around the wheel’s many numbered columns. The adrenaline pumps ever faster as it finally makes its descent into that fateful pocket. Then, with wide-eyed wonder or the inevitable pangs of disappointment, we place more bets only to see the process repeated.

The thrill of anticipation is by far the main attraction of roulette. However, there are some things you should know before you choose this game. First and foremost, pay attention to the number of zeroes on the table and wheel. If there is a zero (0) and double zero (00), it’s the American version. It has the worst house edge of them all, 5.26%. If there’s just a single zero (0), it’s the European version, featuring a house edge of 2.7%. Better still, if it has a single zero (0) and features the La Partage rule, it is French Roulette, which features the lowest possible 1.35% house edge on all even-money bets, and 2.7% on all others.

#4 Blackjack

Most Played Casino Gambling Games #4 Blackjack

Just as roulette is loved for its simplicity, lacking any real strategy (aside from gamer selection) to increase your odds, blackjack is loved for the opposite reasons. In blackjack, players do have some control over their fate. A player’s decisions can make or break their experience. That doesn’t mean the smartest players will gain an edge over the house. The rules make that virtually impossible (without some fancy card counting techniques). But a smart player can easily achieve a house edge of around 0.25%.

It’s this knowledge that makes blackjack such a popular casino game in Canada. Not necessarily the strategic knowledge itself, but the knowledge that such strategy exists. Even knowing it’s available, you’d be surprised how many players don’t employ even basic strategy. The majority play on gut instinct. While professional may scoff at such behavior, there’s something to be said for the increased entertainment value of playing off the cuff, so to speak.

#5 Baccarat

Most Played Casino Gambling Games #5 Baccarat

I’m convinced that the popularity of baccarat (pronounced bah-kuh-rah, not back-a-rat) has everything to do with its depiction in Hollywood films. There’s nothing more dramatically suspenseful than watching James Bond play baccarat (aka Chemin de Fer) in so many of Ian Fleming’s iconic 007 films. – Casino Royale (1953), Dr. No (1962), Thunderball (1965), On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (1969), For Your Eyes Only (1981), and Golden Eye (1995).

The game itself is somewhat complicated to learn, and yet extremely simple to play. The way the cards are dealt, and the hands are built, is based on a complex system of rules. But you – the player – do not need to understand the rules to partake. All you need to know is how to place a bet. Drop your chips on the Banker, or the Player, or if you’re feeling particularly lucky, the Tie bet. That’s all you have to do. The dealer will take care of the rest.

As for strategy, the best thing you can do is bet on the Banker – always. There’s a 5% commission on all winning Banker bets, but the rules of the game still give the Bank hand a slight advantage, reducing the house edge to 1.6%. The Player hand carries a 1.24% edge. Don’t bother with those Tie bets either. They come in at a dastardly 9.5%.

written by Grameister777 \\ tags: , , , , , ,

Mar 17

Lowest house edge casino games and where to play them.

Different types of casino goers are attracted to different types of games. Some like fast paced games, while others like to take their time. Some enjoy single-player amusements, while others enjoy the communal atmosphere of multi-player games. Sometimes it’s not about the game play or atmosphere, but the odds of winning that draws a player to the action.

I don’t necessarily recommend choosing your games based solely on the house edge you face. Doing so implies disregard for the entertainment factor. If you’re not enjoying the games, you’re violating the most important rule of responsible gambling – to have fun, since the odds are never really in your favor. Then again, finding a game you enjoy that’s among the lowest edge games – that could be something worth looking into.

Lowest House Edge Casino Games

The following is a top-10 list of the casino games with the lowest edge. Having a low house edge means, in contrast, that the game has a high return to player (RTP). Please understand that the RTP is theoretical. It is based on mathematical probabilities, and as such, only applies in the long term.

Note: The RTP is, quite literally, the opposite of the house edge. If the house edge is 5%, the RTP is 95%. Together they make 100%.

Top 10 List of the Lowest House Edge Casino Games Online & On Land
  1. All Aces Video Poker – 0.08%
    All Aces is a video poker variant found at online casinos powered by Microgaming software. It’s house edge of 0.08% is so low that, over the years, many Microgaming casinos have decided to remove it from their menus. In order to achieve that fantastic 99.92% RTP, you’ll need to make every decision strategically. Learn more…
  2. Blackjack – 0.18% to 0.35%
    Blackjack is known for its low house edge, but there are dozens of rule sets offered at land-based and online casinos. The trick is to find the best games, where the edge does not exceed 0.35%. 1x2Gaming’s Bonus Blackjack and Red Queen Blackjack offer a super low edge of 0.18%, but isn’t the easiest to find. Microgaming’s Vegas Single Deck Blackjack comes in at 0.31%, and is available at hundreds of online casinos.
    Note: I’m not listing any other blackjack games here, although there are plenty with ~99% RTPs that could have occupied the list. Those above are the best – I’ll leave it at that.
  3. Spanish 21 / Pontoon – 0.40%
    Spanish 21 (a.k.a. Pontoon) is a game characterized by the removal of all 10s from each deck. In exchange, a host of player-friendly rules are applied. So long as the dealer is required to Stand on Soft 17, you’ll play against an edge of just 0.40%. (Note that Dealer Hitting Soft 17 increase edge to 0.76%).
  4. Jacks or Better with 9/6 Full Pay – 0.46%
    Another good video poker variant that’s widely available is Jacks or Better. Check the pay table. If it features a 9/6 Full Pay, you can achieve the optimal 99.54% RTP.
  5. Baccarat, Banker Bet – 1.06%
    Betting on the Banker hand in baccarat is as easy as dropping a chip on the table. It begets a decently low house edge of 1.06%.
  6. Baccarat, Player Bet – 1.24%
    Don’t want to bet on the Banker hand? Place your chip on the Player hand instead for a 1.24% house edge.
  7. Craps, Don’t Pass/Come – 1.36%
    They said it’s wrong to bet against the shooter, but who are “They” anyway? A bet on Don’t Pass or Don’t Come offers with a higher RTP of 98.76%.
  8. Craps, Pass Line/Come – 1.41%
    If you prefer to bet with the crowd, for an added 0.5% to the edge you bet the Pass Line or Come wager in craps.
  9. Pai Gow Poker – 1.46%
    This is one of those games you’ll either love or hate. If you find the 1.46% edge appealing, give it a try.
  10. Pai Gow Tiles – 1.50%
    Please know that this is not the same as Pai Gow Poker. Played with 32 dominoes, it is one of the world’s oldest casino games, reserved for casinos in the Eastern hemisphere prior to the online gambling revolution. It’s 1.50% house edge makes it a unique choice among the industry’s lowest house edge casino games.

written by Grameister777 \\ tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Jan 31

The best casino game for beginners (Hint: It’s not slot machines!)

The Best Casino Game for Beginners

Preparing for your very first foray into a casino can be very intimidating. Casinos are often massive properties, lined with opulent décor, glimmering chandeliers, fancy carpets and elaborately dressed employees. For so many of today’s first-timers, walking into a resort-style casino can feel like entering a fine dining establishment in a Hawaiian shirt and flip-flops.

Of course, the casinos don’t really care what you’re wearing, so long as you’ve got cash in your pocket, and a willingness to spend it. But the anxiety for a newcomer is real. Even playing your first casino game at an online gambling destination can set your hairs on end. If you aren’t familiar with the rules of any games, all of these fears become magnified tenfold.

The logical answer might be not to go to the casino. Common sense might tell you to hold off, learn some games first, better prepare yourself for the experience. But what if that’s not an option? I remember my first visit to a casino all too well. It was an impromptu choice, spurred by a group of friends who all decided we should go. Two of them had been before. Three of us had not. As a newbie myself, it was overwhelming, to say the least!

I did what so many first-time casino goers do. I stared in horror at the massive gaming floor, then went straight to the slot machines, where I stayed until almost all my money was gone. It was fun, yes, but I had no idea what I was doing. Within 20 minutes, I’d blown through $80. I spent the next half hour walking around, pinching my last $20 as I watched other people play games I had no clue about. So, if you want to avoid mimicking this tale of majority boredom, might I recommend…

The Best Casino Game for Beginners

Baccarat is the Best Bet for First-Time Casino Goers

If you ask most people the easiest game to play in the casino, they will say it’s a slot machine. Yes, push a button and cross your fingers does seem easy, but there’s so much more to those games. Did you ever try reading a video slot’s pay table? Page after page of symbols, line info, features, payouts, etc. They really aren’t so simple. The easiest game of all – one that features a far better return to player (RTP) than slots – is baccarat.

Baccarat is a card game that you don’t really have to play. All you have to do is choose where to place your bet – kind of like roulette, but again, with a higher RTP. The dealer will take care of everything else. Let’s take a quick look at how the dealer plays out hands.

The Rules of Baccarat

The object of baccarat is for one hand – the Player hand or Banker hand – to be closer to a total of 9. The closest to 9 wins. Each hand starts with two cars. If the total value of those two cards exceeds 9, 10 is subtracted.

For example, a hand of 3+8=11. You can’t exceed 9, so you subtract; 11-10=1. The new hand total is 1. If the cards are 4+5, the total is a perfect 9. Or, if the cards are 10+8, we subtract 10 for a total of 8.

There are certain situations where the dealer is required to give the Player and/or Banker hand a third card, depending on the totals of the first two cards. These are known as “house rules”, and give the Banker hand a slight advantage (51%) over the Player hand. But don’t worry, you can bet on the Banker Hand, too. Or, you can bet on the two hands resulting in a Tie.

Baccarat Odds, Payout and House Edge

Knowing the odds of winning each bet, the payout for winning it, and the house edge involved, will help you choose where to place your bets. The “odds” are the probability of winning each bet. The payout is the amount you’ll get back for winning, compared to what you’ve wagered on it. The house edge is a combination of odds and payouts that determines how likely the casino is to beat you on that bet. Hence, the lower the edge, the better the bet.

Note: You’ll notice that a winning Banker bet pays 1:1, -5%. The casino collects a 5% commission on all winning banker bets to offset the fact that the Banker hand will win more often. If it weren’t for the 5% commission, the casino would lose money on these bets in the long term.

Baccarat Bet Odds Pays Edge
Banker Hand 45.85% 1:1, -5% 1.06%
Player Hand 44.62% 1:1 1.24%
Tie 9.53% 8:1 14.36%

The low edge of 1.06% on Banker and 1.24% on Player bets makes this not just the easiest casino game, but the best casino game for beginners. It offers a communal table game experience, is easy to understand, and can sustain a modest bankroll far longer than slot machines.

written by Grameister777 \\ tags: , , , , , , ,

Jan 07

Top live dealers casino websites for Canadians in 2020.

Passion for Payouts: Top Live Dealers Casino Sites for Canadians 2020

We’re kicking off the New Year with a fresh list of top-tier live casino operations welcoming Canadian players. Live dealer games are preferred for their realistic experience, closely mimicking that of a land-based casino – as close as you can possibly get on a computer or mobile device. There are real live dealers, operating real table games, with multiple real players joining in the action.

Here in Canada, we are limited in the number of online casinos we can play at. Some provinces are privy to locally-regulated gambling websites, but only two of them have live casino games. There are many more highly reputable and strictly regulated international offerings, but only so many have a good live dealer presentation.

Top Live Dealers Casino Sites for Canadians

Normally, a “top” list of anything has 3, 5, 10, or maybe 20 of the best whatever you’re listing. I’m going out of the box with this list and giving you the “Top 4”. Yes, four of Canada’s best live casinos in 2020. Why four? Because I couldn’t possibly cut this list down to three, and there really isn’t a fifth worthy of inclusion.

I’m also not giving the operators a number ranking. I don’t feel that any one is better than another. They all have differentiating qualities that earned them a spot on this list. For instance, the first two, PlayNow and PlayOLG, are both home-grown operations. Then again, they’re ring-fenced to their local provinces, limiting who can access them. The second two, LeoVegas and Royal Vegas, are open to all Canadians, but present very different live gaming options. With that being said, let’s get right to it…

PlayNow Live Casino – BC and Manitoba Only

PlayNow is a great iGaming operation built, maintained and regulated by the provincial government of British Columbia. Through a player sharing contract with the BCLC, Manitoba residents are also able to partake in PlayNow’s internet gambling activities. For residents of these jurisdictions, the degree of security and player protections can’t be beat.

The PlayNow Live Casino is powered by the industry’s #1 Live Casino brand, Evolution Gaming, and includes live blackjack, infinite blackjack, baccarat, eSqueeze baccarat, roulette, auto roulette and ultimate Texas holdem. That’s not a bad assortment, but it doesn’t include any of Evolution’s immensely popular game show-style productions.

EspaceJeux Live Casino – Quebec Only

Similarly, Espacejeux is the online gambling operation of Loto-Quebec – home grown and locally regulated by that provincial government. As such, security and safety are unquestionable, but only residents of Quebec can sign up an account and place wagers. That’s good for Quebecois, as is the implementation of Evolution Gaming’s world class live dealer software. On the negative side, the only live games are standard blackjack and roulette, baccarat, and Control Squeeze baccarat.

LeoVegas Live Casino – All Canadians Accepted

LeoVegas is an internationally operated casino brand, regulated in multiple jurisdictions. LeoVegas is licensed in its home country of Sweden, and also holds gaming licenses from Denmark and Malta. It is powered by more software brands than I’d care to count; somewhere in the neighborhood of 50. Several of those software studios offer live casino games. As such, this website presents, by far, the largest live gaming menu of any competitor.

There are – and bear in mind, some of these numbers will appear as duplicates due to multi-categorization – 48 live roulette games, 31 live blackjack games, 18 types of “card games”, 16 private Chambre Séparée (high roller) tables, 16 “VIP” tables, 11 live baccarat tables, 7 live “game show” style options, and 5 live poker variants; 23 of which are ‘Fast Play’ titles.

Royal Vegas Live Casino – All Canadians Accepted

There are some who would argue that “less is more”. By this, I mean having so many options – as many as LeoVegas presents – can make it harder to actually pick one. It’s not just a theory, but a scientific fact. Studies have shown that being offered chocolate, vanilla or strawberry ice cream makes it easy to pick one, whereas 30+ flavors can actually cause stress, anxiety, and an accelerated heart rate. Why such difficulty? People tend to fear that they won’t (or didn’t) choose the best option, and it leaves a bad taste in their mouth – pardon the pun.

If you prescribe to this ideal, then I present to you Royal Vegas Canada. Licensed in Malta, this operator only employs one live casino supplier, but it’s the world’s best – also proven by statistical data – Evolution Gaming.

Evolution has won the eGR Live Casino Supplier of the Year Award for the last 10 years straight. It’s almost as if they’ve figured out the perfect formula for live dealers casino games, and they’ve kept it as confidential as Mr. Krab’s secret formula for the “Krabby Patty”.

Royal Vegas accepts players from all over Canada. It’s also one of the few international sites that is approved to process payments via Interact eTransfer. Live casino games include blackjack, roulette, double ball roulette, baccarat, casino holdem, 3 card poker, Caribbean stud poker, private tables, game show tables, and their signature “Party” tables.

written by Grameister777 \\ tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Aug 02

KamaGames’ new video poker app for Android and iOS extends the brand’s wildly successful social casino games portfolio.

KamaGames new video poker app for Android and iOS

KamaGames is among the worlds leading mobile poker operators; responsible for the social gaming phenomenon that is Pokerist. After launching what would become the wildly successful Pokerist Texas Poker app for iOS and Android in 2011, KamaGames has since grown into the largest social poker operator in all of Europe, averaging well over half a million active players daily. In 2018, it was the top grossing app in more than 100 countries on the Google Play Store.

As the company’s social poker success skyrocketed, KamaGames decided it was time to expand into the realm of social casino gaming. Basing their future of brand recognition, they built off the original theme with a series “-ist” games – Rouletteist, Blackjackist and Baccaratist, launched in 2013, 2016 and 2017 respectively.

KamaGames has been scaling upward and outward ever since. But it wasn’t until this week that the company finally spread its wings into what seems a natural expansion of their existing market dominance – video poker.

KamaGames Launches New Video Poker App

On Wednesday, KamaGames issued a press release announcing the official launch of the digital gaming lab’s first foray into social video poker games. Again keeping with the simplicity of their celebrated “-ist” branding, they call it Video Poker by Pokerist.

Video Poker by Pokerist

As of now, the app includes just three classic video poker titles; Deuces Wild, Jacks or Better, and Bonus Poker. The creator guarantees fair play via their certified random number generator (RNG). Video Poker by Pokerist is free to download and play, with free daily chip allowances and daily achievements to top off a player’s stack. Anyone who wants to purchase additional chips can do so, spending anywhere from $0.99 to $99. However, being a 100% social casino gaming app, chips can never be exchanged for real money.

As Real As It Gets (Minus the Money)

The stand-alone app was built with the intention of mimicking the exact same experience as the most popular video poker machines in Vegas. According to the reviews by some of the app’s earliest adopters, KamaGames succeeded in that goal entirely.

Deuces Wild, Jacks or Better and Bonus Poker on KamaGames Video Poker App

One review on the Apple Store calls Video Poker by Pokerist a “classic experience”, thanking KamaGames for creating “exactly the same video poker machines which I usually play in traditional casinos.”

It’s only been out for a few days, but it’s worth noting that Video Poker by Pokerist currently has a perfect 5.0 rating from both Android and iOS users.

Aim to Draw New and Existing Customers Alike

KamaGames CEO Andrey Kuznetsov is extremely proud of the versatility they’ve achieved in their ever-growing social casino apps. “We are placing a strong focus on differentiating our portfolio of social casino games in many directions this year,” he said. “As an iconic element of the Las Vegas casino, video poker is very familiar to our audience and in-line with the products they want from KamaGames.”

Kuznetsov sees this latest addition to the company’s portfolio as the perfect means to attract new players to the brand, as well as draw existing users from the Pokerist app. “With this exciting new addition, we hope to both satisfy both our existing players whilst also attracting a fresh, new audience.”

He goes on to assure users that KamaGames will be working to install additional games on the new video poker app throughout the remainder of 2019.

written by Grameister777 \\ tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Jun 04

Gambling 101: Probabilities predict theoretical returns, not future results.

Gambling 101: Probabilities Predict Theoretical Returns, Not Future Results

Casino gambling can be a tumultuous thing. It comes with deep swings – ups and downs that can send our emotions soaring through the clouds one day, and our bankroll down into the doldrums the next. The transient nature of casino games is more volatile than most people realize, leading them to believe that with the right strategy, they can overcome the odds.

Therein lies one of the most common mistakes of novice gamblers – the belief that acquiring enough knowledge will give them the upper hand against the casino. Unfortunately for us players, it doesn’t work that way; at least, not anymore. And thanks to super intelligent computers that can crunch millions of numbers in under a second, it never will again.

Knowledge and skill are the experienced player’s friend. They can help the gambler to gain the best edge, but not a player’s edge. No matter how smart or mathematically inclined a person is, they cannot use that knowledge to predict the gambling future.

I know that a French Roulette wheel has two different levels of house edge. Even-money bets have a better payout rate than any other bets that pay 2-to-1 or more. I also know that those bets have a 1.35% house edge, which means players who make those bets should (collectively and over a long period of time) win back 98.65% of all those wagers.

Gambling Probabilities Predict Theoretical Returns

Gambling Probabilities Can't Predict Gambling Future

This knowledge of the game should provoke me to place only even money bets. Employing the skills that this knowledge has taught me, I will avoid the 2.7% house edge of all other bets and stick only to those that have the highest rate of return.

In this way, I am applying both knowledge and skill. But neither of these assets can predict the game’s future. I’ve gained no insight as to whether the next number will be black or red, odd or even, high or low. It is not going to help me predict future outcomes. The only thing my mental acuteness for French Roulette has given me is the keen ability to, on average, lose less money than an inexperienced player who wagers the full gambit of the roulette betting diagram.

Gambling’s Future Results are Unpredictable

Okay, you’re going to argue with me here. I know half the world predicted New England would win the Super Bowl over the Rams this year, and the other half doesn’t watch football. But it’s rare such simple bets come along. In a casino, they simply don’t exist.

None can predict with 100% assurance that will win the next slot machine pull, hit 3 of 3 keno numbers, or be dealt a blackjack. None can, with consistent accuracy, foretell when the craps shooter will crap out or the baccarat banker and player will tie. Were there any source of knowledge or superlative skill that gave players the ability to predict the gambling future, casinos would have been driven out of business long ago.

Play Smarter – Know The Difference

In gambling, the only realities are these:

  • Some players will win money
  • Some players will lose money
  • More players will lose than win.

Such is the ecosystem of casinos. Those who understand this – and use combined knowledge and skill to make smarter decisions – will not only have a higher chance of being among that first group of winners. They’ll also have the wisdom to bet responsibly and take their losses in stride.

written by Grameister777 \\ tags: , , , , , , , ,

May 24

Simple casino games that are easy on the brain.

If I had to divide the world’s sea of gamblers into just two categories, I’d have to classify them as those who like a good mental challenge, and those who do not. If mental fortitude is one of your strong points, odds are you’ll enjoy thought-provoking games that give you a better shot of winning for applying a proper strategy. If not, then you’re probably just in it for stress-free relaxation and entertainment value. And if that’s the case, you’ve come to the right place.

Earlier this week, we talked about casino games that require skill to maximize odds of winning. As promised, today’s topic will cover the opposing regimen of games. These titles present absolutely no mental challenge to play. There is no strategy to apply that will increase the theoretical return to player (RTP). Winning these games requires nothing more than dumb luck.

Simple Casino Games that Require No Skill

The following is a collection of easy casino games, best suited for players who enjoy them for their simplicity. If your the type who plays to shed the stress of a long day or work week, these are the games for you. I’ve listed them in order of ascending RTP; theoretically highest paying to lowest.

Baccarat

Isn’t baccarat the cosmopolitan of gambling games? Is it not the prime choice of James Bond and every other cultivated high-roller in the casino? You would assume it requires erudite skill to master. In reality, it’s the simplest game of all, requiring no thought or awareness beyond placing a bet. As for where to place that bet, the Banker has the best odds of winning with a 98.94% RTP, even with the 5% commission applied to all wins. The Player hand pays 1 to 1, but its RTP comes in slightly lower at 98.76%.

Roulette

Everyone knows this game. Pick a number or selection of numbers and cross your fingers! It really is that easy. Getting the best RTP is a matter of finding the right rules. The best are found in French Roulette, where all even-money bets (red, black, high, low, odd, even) have a 98.65% RTP. All other bets come in at 97.3%, matching the full spectrum of wagers in European Roulette. Just stay away from the double-zero American Roulette tables, where you’ll only get a 94.74% RTP at best, 92.11% at worst.

Craps

Craps is probably the most misconceived game in the casino. Everyone believes the rules are so complex, they never bother to learn them. I won’t argue that point – there are some convoluted bets in the mix. However, the simplest bets are the ones with the best odds of winning, and if you stick to these, you will naturally learn the rest of the game as you go. Betting against the shooter on the Don’t Pass Line comes with the highest RTP of 98.64%. It also comes with very nasty looks, so don’t do it unless you’re playing at an online casino. In a physical casino, bet with the shooter on the Pass Line; RTP 98.59%. If you enjoy the game, take the time to learn about placing odds to bring the edge down even lower. It’s not a strategy – just a smart bet.

Casino War

If you played card games as a child, you surely remember playing War with your friends or siblings. This is the exact same game. Each player flips a card, and the higher card wins. In this version, the casino gains the advantage when there’s a tie. Players must wager a second bet to “go to war”, or forfeit half of the original bet to surrender. But going to war means the original bet will push. Thus the casino gains its edge, resulting in an RTP of 97.72%.

Slot Machines

You knew these were going to pop up on here at some point, right? Those dastardly (but oh so entertaining!) one-armed bandits are still among the easiest games to play. Depending on where you enjoy them, the RTP could be decent, or really bad. Most of today’s online slots come with a standard RTP of about 95-97%. Play at a land-based casino, and you could be facing an RTP as low as 88-92%.

Big Six Wheel

This game gains its name from the fact that there are 6 different numbers on the wheel to wager on. The higher the number, the less it appears on the wheel, but the more it pays for a correct pick. Unfortunately, the odds increase faster than the payouts. The best you’ll get is an 11.11% RTP betting on the $1.

Keno

Like Big Six, Keno is one of the easiest casino games to play, but even more terrible on the pocket book. It’s the worst game most casinos have to offer. Selecting a single number that only pays 2 to 1 for a win comes with a 75% RTP (house edge 25%), and it only gets worse from there.

written by Grameister777 \\ tags: , , , , , , ,

May 02

How to understand online casino bonus rules & requisites.

How to Understand Online Casino Bonus Rules & Requisites

I’ve visited this topic before, but it’s been a few years. Times have changed a lot since then, and immensely since the birth of the online gambling industry. Most of those changes have been for the better, but not all.

The most positive change has been a legal shift in which transparency of online casino bonus terms I now mandated by reputable regulators. Ambiguous, misleading or otherwise convoluted rules are no longer permissible, and could get an operator in hot water with licensing authorities.

Conversely, some of the more alluring casino bonuses of yesteryear are just that – a thing of the past. Gone are the free play time bonuses that gave players a huge chunk of chips and an hour to spend them, keeping the profits if the right conditions were met. You can hardly even find a small no-deposit bonus anymore, thanks to rules surrounding pre-authorization through ID verification.

Nevertheless, the bonuses that are available are certainly worth taking advantage of. The key is to understand what you’re getting into, and to know what to look for when reading the fine print.

Understanding Online Casino Bonus Rules & Requisites

Bonus terms can be very long-winded, even in today’s age of obligatory transparency. Somewhere within all that confusing text are four key elements to look for. They include:

Wagering Requirements (WR, aka Play Through)

Eligible Games

Qualifications

Expiration

Wagering Requirement / Play Through

Online Casino Wagering Requirements

Every bonus comes with wagering requirements (WR), which relate to the amount of play through you must conduct before you get to keep any of that money for yourself. It only makes sense that WR would be required. Without it, any new player could claim a bonus, withdraw it as cash and walk away. Online casinos will go to great lengths to compete for players, but they are not in the business of throwing away money.

To find the wagering requirements in the terms, search within the text (Find in Page) for the terms “wager”, “require” or , “WR”. One of these, if not all, will hit the right section of the fine print, wherein you’ll discover a number associated with WR. It’s probably going to be listed as 30x, 35x, 40x, etc. This number denotes the number of times you’ll have to play through the bonus., or the deposit + bonus combined.

So you’re looking for two elements; the WR number and its multiple of the bonus, or deposit + bonus.

Here’s an example of how to calculate play through requirements when the WR is 35x and it applies to deposit + bonus. Click here for a more detailed explanation.

Deposit of $100 grants a bonus of $100. Therefore deposit + bonus = $200. At 35x WR, the total play through is 35*200 = $7,000 in wagers.

Eligible Games

Some online casino bonus terms will limit game eligibility, such as “Slots Only” bonuses. These are very common. Some will even limit you to one or a few slot machines the operator is trying to promote. Others will cater to game play on all sorts of gambling.

When all (or most) games are eligible, not all will count 100% towards WR. Those that do count 100% are slot machines, and sometimes specialty games like keno, bingo, and scratch cards. Table games like blackjack, roulette, craps, and baccarat usually generate a smaller percentage, ranging anywhere from 10-50%. Games with the absolute lowest house edge, such as favorable blackjack rules (classic blackjack, single deck blackjack, etc) and video poker, may not contribute to WR at all. If they do, it will only be 1-10% at most.

Search for the terms “games”, “eligible” or “eligibility” within the online casino bonus fine print to discover what games you can play, and what contribution rate they accumulate towards WR.

Also note that offsetting wagers will not be permitted! You can’t wager on Red and Black in Roulette to clear a bonus. If you do, and the casino catches you (and they will because it’s all electronic), at best you’ll forfeit the bonus and winnings you may have derived from it. At worst, your account may be closed and your deposit returned – or not. This is why reading the fine print matters!

Qualification

This section is pretty simple. The terms will identify who will and won’t qualify for a casino bonus. Many bonuses are designated for “new players only” making a “first deposit”. If you’re not new and/or have already deposited, you can’t claim that bonus. Others may restrict players from certain countries where such bonuses are illegal. Look for the terms “qualify” or “eligible” to find any such stipulations.

Expiration

This is pretty self-explanatory. Browse through the rules to see if there are any time restrictions on the bonus. Look for the terms “expire”, “expiration” or “days” (i.e. you have 90 days to complete WR) within the text.

written by Grameister777 \\ tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Mar 27

BCLC approved high limit baccarat tables at River Rock Casino amidst revelations of money-laundering.

BCLC approved High Limit Baccarat Tables amidst Money-Laundering Scandal

It’s been an entire year now that British Columbia has been reeling over the revelation of mass money laundering through BC casinos. The fact that the scandal remains a highlight of regular news symbolizes just how severe the problem was, and every week it seems more evidence comes to light.

The situation revolves largely around Mainland Chinese VIPs laundering money through the province’s casinos – namely the River Rock Casino in Richmond. It’s been going on for at least a decade now, with hundreds of millions – possibly even billions – in dirty cash cycling through the casino’s cashier cages.

And now, to make matters even more brow-raising, it’s been discovered that the British Columbia Lottery Corp (BCLC) – the Crown Corporation that’s responsible for regulating the gambling industry in BC, and not-so-coincidentally accused of intentionally allowing it to happen – continually approved a vast increase in high stakes baccarat tables at both River Rock Casino and the Edgewater Casino in Vancouver.

BCLC Approved High Limit Baccarat Tables for Chinese New Year

You read that headline right… Let’s briefly revisit a few of those details. Millions of dollars were laundered through BC casino over 9+ years by Chinese high-rollers in association with organized crime. BCLC is under intense investigation and scrutiny for intentionally turning the other cheek. BCLC repeatedly increased limits for high stakes baccarat players during Chinese New Year – a time when VIPs are known to travel from China to casinos all over the world to celebrate their heritage by placing extravagant wagers on their culture’s historically favorite game of baccarat.

It wasn’t a nominal increase in stakes, either. BC casinos are normally allowed to accept stakes of up to $5,000 per play; no higher. Mot of them cap the limits at $100. But in anticipation of this special tourism-driven holiday, the province’s finance ministry decided it was appropriate to intervene, giving their two largest casinos, River Rock and Edgwater, permission to boost the stakes limit to as high as $100,000 per bet.

The next obvious question; how do the ministry and lottery regulators defend their actions? The same way they always do, by declaring their commitment to generate revenue for the province and host communities.

And the Plot Thickens…

Sam Cooper of Global News writes:

In May 2015, then-finance minister Mike de Jong said in B.C.’s legislature that the controversial “senior-level intervention” was made “in the public interest” in order to maximize casino revenue.”

Documents show that, since 2010, the Gaming Policy Enforcement Branch (GPEB) warned the BCLC not to accept large cash transactions from Chinese VIPs; that suspicion of money-laundering was a serious issue. Not only did those warnings go ignored, the GPEB’s Executive Director and Senior Director of Investigations – the two who sounded the alarms the loudest in those days – were dismissed with no explanation.

As the years went by, BC’s gaming revenue continued to increase to all new heights – particularly around Chinese New Year when the high limit baccarat tables received their annual 6-figure increase.

Light finally began shining on the situation in late 2014, when GPEB officials again complained to BCLC about large, suspicious cash transactions; literally bags of cash, almost all $20 bills, being accepted by River Rock cashiers on a nightly basis.

Documents show that BCLC responded by stating their belief that the transactions were tied to high stakes baccarat players and an organized crime suspect from Richmond. This lead to an investigative probe in 2015 – one that was ongoing while BCLC CEO Jim Lightbody announced projections of more than $1.2 billion in annual gaming revenue, “due to an increase in high-limit table revenue.”

Fast-forward a few more years to April 2018, when the newly appointed Attorney General David Eby received Peter German’s now-famous report, revealing the extent of money laundering that had been going on for so many years. And now here we are, one year later, still learning new and shocking details of just how deep the rabbit hole goes. It’s no wonder the people of British Columbia have lost faith in the leadership system that was meant to protect them, demanding a public inquiry into provincial corruption surrounding the money laundering scandal.

written by Grameister777 \\ tags: , , , , , ,