Jul 29

CWS launches original casino games with cryptocurrency gambling theme.

Casino Web Scripts creator of original casino games with a crytpocurrency gambling themes

CasinoWebScripts (CWS) isn’t what I would call a prominent name in the iGaming industry. It hasn’t gained the universal recognition of major players like Microgaming, NetEnt or Playtech. But for the last nine years, the company has been developing innovative digital gaming content, optionally available as a complete package – a turnkey backend solution that can have a brand new online casino up and running in 24 hours.

CWS is unlike many of its competitors because its primary focus lies within a niche market, as a cryptocurrency gambling solution. Over those nine years, the group has built an impressive portfolio of nearly 200 games. This month, their lab published three new titles, two of which revolve around the same company-centric cryptocurrency theme.

Three Original Casino Games from CWS

Originality was the key for CWS when developing its latest games. Two of them, Crypto Persian Prince and Crypto Dice O Meter, both feature digital currency as their thematic model. The third, Rock Paper Scissors, is a tile game with a progressive payout for consecutive winning picks. Let’s take a closer look.

Crypto Dice O Meter

Crypto Dice O Meter Original Casino Games by CWS

This is a simple game wherein 5 dice are rolled. The minimum and maximum sum of all dice ranges from 5 to 30. The player will use a sliding scale to wager on a range of up to 16 numbers. For example, you could bet on 9 to 24, and if the result of the dice falls anywhere in that range, you would win a very small amount of money – 10% of your total bet. Or, you can make the scale smaller, choosing as few as just 1 number for a huge payout if correct.

To make it a little easier to choose your range, the game will show you your probability of winning based on your selection. For instance, choosing just 1 number has a very low 2.63% chance of winning, while betting on 15-20 (6 numbers) has a 55.7% chance.

Crypto Persian Prince – Tiles Adventure

Crypto Persian Prince Tiles Adventure by CasinoWebScripts

Another simple game in which the player makes a bet, then selects one of three tiles on a 10-high ladder diagram. Each rung of tiles includes two golden lamps and one bearded villain.

Choosing a lamp awards the prize shown on the current row of tiles, while picking a villain steals your bet and all current winnings.

The payouts for climbing the prize ladder are progressive. The first win pays 1.4 for 1. So if you bet $1, the first win awards your $1 bet back, plus $0.40. You can either collect the winnings, or choose a tile from the second rung, worth 2.2 for 1 ($2.20 on a $1 bet). The prizes grow exponentially larger, up to 55 for 1 on a 10-win streak.

Rock Paper Scissors Tiles

This game was a bit confusing at first, but once you get going, it makes more sense. My advice – play in Demo until you get the hang of it.

Rock Paper Scissors Casino Game by CWS

In the middle is your betting diagram. Tap on a tile to the right – rock, paper or scissors – then choose your bet size at the bottom and press start. You’ll need to pick one of three tiles at the bottom of the prize ladder.

If the tile is beaten by your original selection (i.e. rock beats scissors), you win. You can collect your winnings or continue by selecting a tile from the next rung. If the chosen tile beats your selection, you lose. If it’s a tie, nothing happens, and the game continues.

By climbing the ladder and winning consecutive bets, rather than collecting, you can win progressively larger amounts of money. Don’t get too greedy though, or you could lose it all!

written by Grameister777 \\ tags: , , , ,

Jul 23

Dealing with obnoxious blackjack players and dealers.

Blackjack is widely regarded as the most entertaining game in a land-based casino. Socialites who enjoy the communal atmosphere of a multi-player game gather at the tables, alongside those who prefer blackjack for its supremely high, strategy-driven RTP. It’s a win-win for all but the most casual, solitary-minded casino goers.

Casino Casualties: Dealing with Obnoxious Blackjack Players and Dealers

But sometimes, the experience at a blackjack table isn’t quite up to par. Every once in a while, you may run across an obnoxious player who doesn’t know how to keep his opinion to himself. Sometimes, the dealer may forget his place, treating customers like second-class citizens instead of the bread and butter they are for their employers, the casino.

What do you do when this happens without losing your cool? Here’s some pro tips to help you out…

Dealing with Obnoxious Blackjack Players

The last thing we want to put up with at the blackjack table is another player who thinks he’s smarter than we are. If you’ve ever had your game play criticized by another, you know what I’m talking about.

Some do it because they’ve had a few too many drinks. Others do it because they’re under the impression that your decisions are effecting their game, and they’ve decided to take out their bad luck on you. Either way, it’s not appropriate.

You could just get up and leave, but you shouldn’t have to feel bullied in such a way. You could explain to him why you made the move you did, and that mathematical probabilities do not change based on the decisions of others. But I promise you that won’t go over well. And there’s always the chance that his argument is correct – not yours – and you come off looking like a total idiot.

The best thing you can do here is completely ignore him. Don’t leave. Don’t argue. Just remain calm, play your game to the best of your ability, and don’t show any emotion whatsoever towards this player. So long as you don’t appear perturbed by him, odds are he’ll become so frustrated he gets up and leaves first.

How to Handle a Rude Blackjack Dealer

The job description for any professional blackjack dealer will include supporting the players in their endeavor to beat the house. No dealer is ever told to root for his employer. They are trained to be polite, helpful, and give the best advice whenever a player asks for it. His boss doesn’t care, because he already knows the rules of the game give the house an edge.

If you happen across a dealer who’s blatantly hoping you lose, something is terribly wrong. This dealer is obviously in a very bad mood. Maybe he’s running a double shift and/or has had too many run-ins with obnoxious players of his own. Maybe he’s a disgruntled employee hoping to get himself canned so he can collect unemployment. Whatever the case, he’s out of line, and you’re left to deal with it.

There are three ways you can deal with this blackjack dealer, depending on the severity of their attitude. If they’re just being annoying, don’t tip them. If they’re beyond annoying, you may want to get up switch to another table. As an absolute last resort, you can report them to the floor manager, but only in extreme situations. Again, it could just be they’re having a really bad day, and we’ve all had those before.

The best advice I can give you is to think before you act. Consider all angles – all reasons why a fellow blackjack player or dealer might be acting the way they are. Then approach the situation with a cool, calm and collected demeanor. The high road is always the best road!

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

Jun 29

Terrible beginner blackjack strategies could will cost you everything.

Terrible Beginner Blackjack Strategies that will Cost You Everything

I’ve spent plenty of time writing everything from tips to detailed strategies for the game of blackjack. I’ve described at length many of the pros most famous and effective card counting techniques. Today, I thought we’d try something a bit different – a reversal, if you will. Today we’ll be discussing the three worst blackjack game strategies that only beginners are known to erroneously invoke.

The problem is that, to a brand new blackjack player with no experience or foreknowledge of how effective tactics work, these concepts can actually sound like the perfect way to win the game. That’s absolutely not the case. So if you are new to the game, be careful you don’t fall for these all-too-common fallacies.

Three Terrible Beginner Blackjack Strategies to Avoid

I was passing through Edmonton a few weeks ago with a friend and we stopped in the River Cree Casino. While dining at the Kitchen Buffet (pricey, but ask for a 2-for-1 coupon when you join the players club, it’s excellent!) I overheard a conversation that made my gut wrench. This was obviously a kid who had never been to a casino before, and probably had one too many drinks before he got to the blackjack table… his “perfect blackjack strategy”, as he called, was this…

Follow the Dealer’s Rules

This poor kid thought that if he followed the same rules that the dealer is forced to abide by, he would have to have an above 50% win rate. It works for the dealer, why not the player? He was so excited by this idea of his that I felt guilty for correcting him, but I couldn’t let him go on believing that horrible distortion.

At first, he seemed to prepared to argue his point to the death, until he finally stopped long enough to ask me why mimicking the dealer’s moves doesn’t work. My response was simple – because you can bust before the dealer ever plays.

Think about it, I explained to him. If you have 16 and always hit it, you’re going to bust a lot (62% of the time, to be exact). The dealer must also hit 16, but only if the player has already completed their hand. The average player using basic strategy will bust about 16% of the time, thereby losing some of those hands before the dealer ever has to take that scary hit on 16.

Because the player goes first, and can bust before the dealer ever plays, following the dealer’s rules is a terrible way to play blackjack! It results in a house edge of about 6%; far worse than the ~1% edge in most games.

The kid finally caught on and realized the error of his ways. He then proceeded to question my knowledge, asking if this strategy would work instead…

Never Let Your Hand Bust

Oh, no, I told him, that won’t do either. Sure, it will save you from facing immediate disaster when the dealer drops a face card on your 12+, but it’s not going to increase your odds of winning – quite the opposite, in fact.

A more prosperous strategy requires hitting some hand values of 12 or more. When basic strategy instructs players to do so, it’s because your odds of busting are lower than your odds of losing against the dealer’s up card.

For example, if you’re dealt 12, and the dealer is showing a 10, odds are higher that you will lose with the 12 than the odds of busting if you hit it. There are 9 cards that won’t hurt you, and only 4 that will. That’s a 69.2% chance you’ll survive the hit. Thus it is the right move to hit.

Like our error-ridden ‘mimic the dealer’ concept above, never busting also proposes about a 6% house edge.

At this point, I told our young friend that he should take some time to study basic blackjack strategy, and warned him to stay away from this third and final bad tactic that’s cost some beginner blackjack players far more than they could ever afford to lose. I’m talking about the potentially expensive error of using a…

Blackjack Betting System

These systems are advertises as sure-fire ways to win at all sorts of casino games that pay even money. Blackjack doesn’t really qualify, since you can split and double down, but a lot of players make the mistake of using betting systems here anyway.

The idea behind a betting system is to bet progressively in such a way so that even if you lose many hands in a row, once you do win, you’ll make it all back, plus a small profit. These systems do not work. It doesn’t matter if it’s a straight double-or-nothing, a positive progression, or a negative progression system. They don’t work for one simple reason. Casinos have table limits.

You can only place wagers so high before you hit the limit, and all that takes is 8 consecutive losses. The odds of losing 8 hands in a row aren’t great, but if it happens, you won’t be able to continue. You’ll have lost hundreds upon hundreds of dollars, with no way to win it back. Learn more about the inherent flaws of betting systems here.

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

Jun 20

Reel in an authentic Aussie Adventure with Realistic’s newest online slot game.

Realistic Games launched its latest addition to the digital software firm’s extensive slots portfolio on June 1, 2019. They call it the Aussie Adventure Online Slot. It takes players on an authentic journey through The Land Down Under, featuring post-it stickers from some of the country’s most memorable locations.

Reel in an Authentic Aussie Adventure with Realistic's Newest Online Slot Game

Realistic’s Commercial Director, Robert Lee, calls the new Aussie Adventure Slot “an absolute beaut of a game” that’s sure to appeal to online casino operators and players alike. “With its exciting features and a Down Under take on the free spins mode, it will make you want to enjoy all the delights of the outback,” said Lee in a press release announcing the launch of…

Realistic’s Newest Online Slot Game, Aussie Adventure

The studio’s team invites players to pack their bags for the virtual outback adventure of a lifetime, accessible via desktop or mobile devices. The reels themselves are laid out upon a suitcase, with the majority of symbols matching the traveler’s theme. I must warn you, the musical score may get annoying very quickly. It’s a bit too high energy for my taste.

Various tourist destinations make up the high-paying symbols, depicted as luggage stickers. These include famous vacay destinations like The Rowdy Roo Hotel in Darwin, The Surf Bear Bar at Bondi Beach, and Brisbane’s Ruby Marlin Pub. The Jackpot symbol is an airport’s carry-on tag, and the wild is a road crossing sign. On the low end are thematically designed playing card values, Jack, Queen, King and Ace.

The game takes place across a traditional 5×3 reels with 20 paylines and a min/max bet range of $0.60 to $200. It carries a low variance, delivering frequent minimum-value wins. One of the game’s most notable negatives is its RTP of 95.25%, which falls below the industry average for online slot machines.

Aussie Adventure Online Slot Features

This new game isn’t exactly brimming with features. The wild does nothing special, only playing the typical role of substituting for other standard symbols. It will not multiply wins, nor does it stack, expand, wander or become sticky. It’s just a plain old wild, both in the base game and free games modes.

The Bonus scatter is the only way to make anything special happen. When 3 bonus symbols appear, the player receives a small scatter pay of 2x the triggering bet and 15 free spins. If 4 scatters appear, the player receives a 40x scatter payout and 15 free spins. If 5 bonuses appear, a jackpot of 250x the triggering bet is awarded, but no free spins, which makes sense only because the free game feature is limited to paying out no more than the 250x jackpot anyway.

During free games, Aussie Adventure lives up to its name, taking players Down Under as the reels and symbols turn upside down. More free spins can be triggered by landing additional bonus scatters – a feature known as the Retriggeroony! Technically, there is no limit to the number of retriggeroonies (extra free games) a player can receive. However, if the player does not run out of free spins, the feature will end immediately if and when the jackpot value of 250x the triggering bet is won.

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

Jun 18

Cheaters never win! Unless you happen to be one of these guys who won a fortune by cheating at different casino games.

Cheaters Never Win? These Guys Won a Fortune Cheating at Different Casino Games

Cheating the casino isn’t exactly the best way to make your fortune. It’s not so easy, either, especially considering the last few decades or so worth of advancements in technology. Security surveillance is far superior to what was available half a century ago. But it does still happen.

We don’t hear about casino cheats too much these days for two simple reasons; mostly because there aren’t many willing to try it anymore, but also because those who succeed aren’t blasting the news across social media.

Cheating at Different Casino Games

Although not intentional, some casino games are designed in such a way as to be more vulnerable than others. An entirely computer based game can be hacked and its software re-engineered to perform differently. A deck of cards offers no such mechanized manipulation.

Similar rules apply to the number of people involved in the deception. Any single-player game – a slot machine for instance – is going to be easier to manipulate with special tools or hacking software. The fewer eyes upon you, the better. In the same token, a multi-player game like blackjack is easier to exploit via distraction, wherein the deceiver gives prying eyes something else – something less suspicious – to train their scrutiny upon.

Famous Casino Cheats of Past and Present

I certainly don’t recommend cheating casinos – or trying to, as the case so often turns out to be. I for one would never have the gumption to attempt it, and I hope you would make the same smart decision to keep your gaming on the up-and-up. But there are a lot of people out there who did and do take the renegade plunge. Most of them failed miserably, paying a high price for their crimes. But not everyone…

The following is a list of famous fraudsters who pulled off some of the biggest gaming heists in casino history. Between the most successful tricksters of old and the biggest failures of all time, we’ve got a lot of ground to cover, so for now, you can consider this an ever-growing compilation of casino game cheats.

Richard Marcus – The Drunken Master

I’m starting here because his story is my personal favorite. Richard Marcus, a former card dealer, was a supremely cunning individual who used the commonality of social vices against the very casinos that promoted them. In this case, slovenly drunken behavior.

Marcus’s skulduggery relied upon excellent acting skills, and a great deal of courage, of which he had both. He was so adept at this method, he gave it a name – “Savannah”. It’s awfully similar to the comparably lame technique of past-posting, in which a player uses slight of hand to inconspicuously add chips to a winning bet. But Richard’s method was so much more convincing, if not a bit backwards.

In one of his more vividly detailed exploits, Marcus would play roulette with all the vigor of a drunken master. Upon entering the game, he would place two chips on a bet. The top chip would be small; maybe $5. The chip beneath would be of much greater value.

If he lost the bet, he would irately grab his chips from the table – going against every casino rule in the book – and fling them straight at the croupier! In the process, of course, he would cleverly replace the higher value chip with a second $5 chip, which is exactly what the croupier would expect to find.

If Marcus won the bet, however, he would make a valiant show of the fact that the chip beneath the $5 was of greater value, ensuring he got paid for his acceptable, albeit unorthodox manner of chip stacking. If security were to go back and observe the surveillance video, nothing out of place would be seen. Such was the wisdom of Richard Marcus, who managed to dupe the casinos out of an untold fortune by doing the exact opposite of what was expected – cheating on a loss, rather than a win.

“Savannah” was Marcus’s lucky lady, and she walked him across the fiery coals of many gambling adventures without ever getting caught. We only know of his insurmountable success because he wrote of his duplicitous exploits in his best-selling books. Of course, by the time he told the world what he’d done, he was already beyond wealthy and retired from that swindling lifestyle.

Unfortunately, I’ve lost all respect for the man in recent years. Now, he makes all of his money by bragging and pitting his own kind against the enemy. He runs a blog that supposedly teaches others how to cheat at poker and casino games, and at the same time, offers services to the very casinos he once cheated, teaching them how to catch the people he is supposedly training to bilk them. Not cool, Richard!

Dennis Nikrasch – 2-Step Teaming & Scheming

Dennis Nikrasch World's Best Slot Machine Cheat

Dennis Nikrasch (aka Dennis McAndrews) was a very talented man, particularly skilled in lock smithing mechanics. He used those talents to his lucrative advantage, taking the casinos for an estimated $15 million before the FBI got hold of him.

Nikrasch’s story begins as a teenager, when learned the trade of a locksmith. His unscrupulous ways began there, stealing cars and burglarizing luxury homes in his community. His reputation grew quickly, earning him a respected position with the Genesse Crime Family. The police caught up with him in 1961, and by the time he was released, he began eyeing new locks – the ones on casino slot machines.

By simply observing the keyhole on a slot, he found he was able to fashion a key that would open it. Once in, he used a series of strong magnets to manipulate the machines into releasing their jackpots. His actions went unnoticed for eight long and lavish years before one casino’s security time finally caught on. He was arrested shortly after.

Following a 5 year prison sentence, Dennis eventually returned to Vegas in 1991, thinking he’d get right back to his old ways. Slot machines had changed a lot since then, and Dennis had to come up with a new way to cheat them. So he did. Nikrasch teamed up with tech wizard Eugene Bulgarino, a former associate from the Genesse Crime Family.

Together, the two got their hands on some of the newer slot machine models and dissected them from the inside out. It didn’t take long to discover that the computerized machines ran on a microchip, as opposed to the old mechanical reels, and that the microchip was responsible for triggering jackpot payouts. After months of hard work, he was able to replicate the chip, except that his version would command the game to pay out its top prize the very next time the reels were spun.

Nikrasch’s biggest problem now was finding a way to switch out the microchips in a busy casinos without drawing suspicion or setting off a machine’s tamper alarm. The solution was easy enough – recruit a large team of helpers to disguise his actions.

While Dennis was sitting at a slot machine, appearing to play the game, an entire crew of helpers were moving about the casino, ensuring that his view was blocked from the casino’s security cameras at all times. Once he had finished replacing the chip, he would leave the machine and one of the team members would come along to play instead. One spin later, that inconspicuous member struck the jackpot.

There’s nothing uncommon about one player walking away and the next one striking paydirt, thus the casinos didn’t catch on to what Nikrasch’s team was doing for several years. Odds are they never would have figured it out if Dennis hadn’t been betrayed by one of his own partners.

Exactly who turned on him and why is a matter of speculation, but it’s believed it was a woman from the team who wanted more than Dennis was willing to give. When she tried to turn him in to the police, the FBI was eager to get involved, but try as they might, they could not find a single scrap of evidence that he had tampered with any slot machine. The security cameras showed nothing, and he left no trace of manipulation on any machine. Even IGT, the company that manufactured some of the games he cheated, could find no hint of tampering.

Slot Machine Cheat Dennis Nikrasch Arrested

The FBI resorted to tapping his phone, but of course Nikrasch and his colleagues were too smart for that. What they didn’t prepare for was the bugging of Dennis’s home. The FBI overhead a conversation in which Nikrasch invited Bulgarino to his home. Just hours before, agents snuck in and planted listening devices throughout the house. During the meeting, the two discussed every aspect of their previous crimes in an effort to find areas of improvement. They spoke of upcoming hits, and ways to spend their ill-gotten gains.

That was more than the FBI needed to storm the home and arrest them both. Dennis Nikrasch plead guilty to all charges and agreed to reveal all of his slot machine cheating secrets to help casinos catch other people like himself. For his cooperation, his sentence was reduced to 8 years.

Tommy Glenn Carmichael – Monkey Paw, Monkey Do

Tommy Glenn Carmichael was a product of the mid 1950s, a time when technology was all the rage. Electronic wonders were coming out of the woodwork, and they fascinated Tommy. He was that kid that ignored his friends pleading to visit the soda shop, and instead stayed in his room, dismantling a ham radio just to see how it worked.

Infamous slot machine cheater Tommy Glenn Carmichael

When he grew up, Tommy’s love of small machinery led him to open Ace TV Sales & Services in Tulsa, Oklahoma. The business was going great, but then everything began to fall apart. Prior drug convictions had him on probation and doing community service. He was in the midst of divorce proceedings from his third wife. Similar shops were opening all over town, driving his revenue into the basement.

Tommy Glenn Carmichael was in shambles.

That’s when Ray Ming, an old high school buddy, walked back into his life and change everything. Ray led Tommy outside to his car and told him that the object inside his trunk would change his life forever. He was right.

Within the confines of Ming’s trunk was a small-scale slot machine and a cheater’s tool known as a “top-bottom joint”. Neither Ray or Tommy knew how the gadget worked, but they were determined to find out. Carmichael took the slot machine home and disassembled it, learning the inner workings of the game and how to exploit it with the mechanism. Finally, after fiddling with the tool for many hours, he felt he was ready to use it in a real casino.

His first trip to Vegas started with a nickel machine, which he was to strike a $35 win on. He then moved up to quarter slots, and by the time the weekend was over, he had taken the casino for nearly $10,000.

His cheating ways continued with great success for the next few years before casinos updated their machines to RNG technology, forcing him to rethink his strategy. Unable to use the top-bottom joint on the newer models, Tommy limited his gaming habits to smaller casino joints beyond the strip, where the older machines were still in use.

Smaller crowds made for easier detection though, and it didn’t take long for police to catch up to him. They followed him for a week gathering evidence before he was arrested, charged and convicted of running an illegal gambling enterprise. Since he was already on probation, he was sentenced to five years in prison.

Years later, in an interview with USA Today, Carmichael said about this time in his life:

You think about what you did, and the mistakes, and how to correct them. You either get straight or get better.”

Carmichael got better.

In the years he was away, machines continued to evolve, so Tommy decided to go back to school, so to speak. He worked multiple minimum wage jobs until he’d saved enough money to purchase one of the newer machines. Not a slot machine this time, but a video poker machine. He spent more than a year learning the how the RNG and micro-processing units worked before he was ready to head back out into the casinos with his new invention – The Monkey Paw.

It’s engineering was genius, yet its operation simple. Built with guitar string and steel springs, it did resemble a monkey’s paw. And when it was inserted up the payout chute of a gambling machine, it triggered a mirco-switch that released a payout.

Tommy was “winning” thousands of dollars every outing, but just as before, times were changing, technology was evolving, and casinos were updating to newer machines. Carmichael decided to save some time and play it cool, disguising himself as an affluent with interest in purchasing one of the new slot machines.

Under this presumption, he convinced a casino employee to open up one of their new machines and explain how everything worked. In that limited space of time, he conceived his next big invention – The Light Wand.

The Light Wand Slot Machine Cheating Device devised by Tommy Glenn Carmichael

As is turned out, the new games were just as easy to cheat as the old ones, but instead of making contact with the trigger, he needed only light to pass over it. Like before, the light wand was inserted into the payout chute. When the light shown on the sensor, coins were released.

Tommy Glenn Carmichael became extremely wealthy at this point, not only because his new slot cheating device worked so well, but because he was making loads of money on the side selling them to fellow casino cheats. He was so rich at this point, he took a 6 month vacation from Las Vegas, pilfering the machines on casino cruises in the Caribbean.

Upon his return, Carmichael decided to set up a team. He partnered with Ramon David Pereira and his old prison buddy, Michael Balsamo, among others. Each member had an important role, scoping out the machines, keeping a watch for security, blocking the line of vision from security cameras at just the right moments.

If the stories are true, these guys were so successful that at their peak, they were raking in upwards of $5 million a day, virtually raiding the vaults of every casino on the Las Vegas Strip. Then one day in 1996, it all came crashing down.

The group was running their scheme at the Circus Circus Casino when authorities closed it. Tommy had no idea the casino had updated its security cameras. His blockers were no longer effective. Security saw everything. The moment Carmichael inserted his light wand into a machine, a team of guards pounced.

He was charged with cheating, manufacturing of a cheating device, and possession of a cheating device. However, authorities didn’t have enough evidence to make all the charges stick. They had to release him the next day.

Tommy Glenn Carmichael was arrested again in 1998, to no avail, and one last time in 1999. That time it stuck. He was sentenced to 1 year in prison and 3 years probation. After his release, he turned his life around, sort of. Carmichael began working with the casinos instead of against them, and made his new fortune developing tools to help stop cheaters. Might as well, since he’s engraved in Nevada’s Black Book of life-time banned players.

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

May 14

A fond farewell to mechanical horse racing games.

A Fond Farewell to the Nostalgia of Mechanical Horse Racing Games

I often talk about the variety of casino games found in today’s major gambling establishments. Everything from slots and video poker machines, to blackjack, baccarat, roulette, craps and other table games, not to mention keno, bingo, and today’s big-ticket skill-based games slowly invading Atlantic City. One game I don’t believe I’ve ever mentioned before is the Sigma Derby.

We’re not talking about genuine horse race betting. The Sigma Derby is a mechanical race simulator. It takes place at a massive table that seats up to 10 players, with 5 figurine horses racing around a miniature track. The results are random, the payouts are real, and that one minute of excitement is more than enough to draw beads of sweat as the mechanical ponies jerk their way ever-closer to the finish.

How Mechanical Horse Racing Games Work

Sigma Games Inc., based out of Japan, introduced the first electro-mechancial horse racing game in 1985. Named after their own company, the Sigma Derby was a big hit out of the gate. The set-up features 5 horses on an oval track. Each is pulled along from beneath by individual gear chains. To make the games fair and unpredictable, each gear runs at a random speed each time it’s initiated.

The only available wagers on Sigma Derby games are “quinellas”, meaning that the player must select two of the five horses to win and place (finish 1st and 2nd). It doesn’t matter which order they win and place in, so long as the two horses selected are the first two to finish. As such, there are only 10 betting options. Eligible quinellas and their respective payouts are as follows:

Much like a slot machine, the probability of the speed being high or low is predefined, but is determined at the moment the game starts by the algorithmic density of a random number generator (RNG). Suffice it to say (and this is only an example), horse #4 may only win or place in 8 out of 100 races, but no one – not even the manufacturer – can predict which of those races he will finish.

Horses Pays Horses Pays
#1 + #2 5 to 1 #2 + #4 20 to 1
#1 + #3 39 to 1 #2 + #5 2 to 1
#1 + #4 200 to 1 #3 + #4 160 to 1
#1 + #5 19 to 1 #3 + #5 15 to 1
#2 + #3 4 to 1 #4 + #5 79 to 1


Mechanical Racing Simulator a Dying Breed

The Sigma Derby fell from the grace of casino management many years ago when it was decided that the games just weren’t profitable enough to keep them around. It certainly wasn’t a popularity issue. Everywhere these games existed, the seats were occupied, and almost always at capacity.

Why the Sigma Derby is a Dying Breed

So why weren’t they making money? They can’t blame the house edge. Those horses were providing anywhere from 10-20% edge for the casino. Players didn’t even care, though. Even knowing how bad the odds were, the game provided plenty of excitement, at a low enough cost, to keep the seats filled. And with 10 players participating, wins occurred often enough to attract more bettors whenever one left the table.

The real problem was that Sigma designed the game to take quarters only. Players would bring a cup of quarters with them to the derby game, and could bet anywhere from 1 to 20 coins per race ($0.25 to $5), but most stuck to one quarter. With 10 players betting 1 coin per minute, even with a 20% edge, the casinos were only generating about $2.00 per minute. Removing a game of such considerable size and replacing it with a bank of slot machines, or a single $5-minimum blackjack table, could earn them so much more in the same span of time. So that’s what they did.

At the time of writing, it’s believed that just one Sigma Derby game remains in North America, occupying a small piece of property on the second floor of The D Las Vegas. More recent remakes are being introduced, but they lack the tinny nostalgia – as well as the cheap betting options and 5-horse build – of the original, mechanical horse racing games.

written by Grameister777 \\ tags: , , , ,

May 08

Five fast ways to ruin your chance of winning video poker.

Five Fast Ways to Ruin Your Chance of Winning Video Poker

Did you know that video poker is one of the very rare gems at a casino that can afford a house edge of less than 0.5%? That’s a theoretical return to player (RPT) of 99.5% or better! Find the right rules and pay table, and that could rise to 99.92%. Even a perfect blackjack strategy can’t harvest that kind of RTP – not without a precision card counting team.

That 99.92% RTP is about the best you’ll find online (Microgaming’s All Aces VP), but a few land-based casinos do still offer machines that pay over 100%. The highest I’ve seen is 100.76%. They are insanely rare, but they’re out there.

5 Ways to Ruin Your Chances of Winning Video Poker

As generous as some of these games can be, it’s very much possible to win at video poker. Even online, all you’ll need is a smidgen of luck to beat those odds. That is, if you don’t make these common mistakes… The following is a list of 5 easy ways to ensure you will not win playing video poker.

#1 Overlook Pay Table Value

The pay table in a video poker machine is the most important piece of information for players. It holds two key things to look for.

First are the payouts for a Full House and Flush. A Full House should pay 9, and a Flush 6/ This is called a 9/6 Full Pay. Second is the progressive value of a Royal Flush per coin wagered. Betting 5 coins should offer a payout higher than the 5x multiple of a 1 coin payout. (Hint: Bet all 5 coins!)

Win at Video Poker with a 9/6 Full Pay and Max 5-Coin Payout Multiplier

The image above shows a 5-coin wager is worth 4,000 coins, as opposed to an even multiple of 1,250. If the payout is 1,250 for a Royal Flush, or the Full House/Flush pays are anything less than 9/6, do not play the game… unless it’s got wild cards (see below).

#2 Only Play Jacks or Better

Despite popular belief, Jacks or Better isn’t the only good video poker game on the casino floor. In fact, with the right pay table, Deuces Wild, Joker Wild, Aces & Eights and Double Bonus machines can all pay over 100% RTP. And, as I mentioned earlier, the best online video poker game is All Aces by Microgaming.

#3 Ignore Video Poker Strategy

There are three basic ways to play video poker.

1) You can randomly click cards to hold.
2) You can rely on your gut instinct to decide what card to hold.
3) You can employ a video poker strategy that determines exactly what cards to hold for the highest possible odds of winning.

If you want to win, the third option is the only way to go. There are some really good hand calculator apps out there for VP strategy, too. Find one that offers the same rules/pay table as your machine, input each hand as it’s drawn, and the app will tell you exactly how to proceed. It really is that easy.

#4 Not Knowing Where to Play

Visit a casino often enough, and you’ll realize the layout rarely changes. Be extremely observant, and you’ll notice that, despite the unchanging layout, the machines themselves tend to move. The most popular games move the most, which means that video poker machine you found last month that paid so well, probably won’t be in the same spot next time you go.

Thankfully, there’s this amazing website called www.vpFREE2.com. This website provides a searchable list of casinos all over North America. It lists the video poker machines they offer, including their RTP and exact location in the casino! It’s updated daily by actual players who visit these casinos and play the games. Pretty amazing, right? You’re welcome 🙂

#5 Don’t Use a Player’s Club Card

To get the maximum value out of any casino experience, you have to join the rewards club. At online casinos, it’s usually automatic. Land-based casinos, however, require a bit of work on your part. You’ll have to visit the Player’s Club desk and give them your basic info to receive a card. Swipe this card in every machine you play before inserting money, and the casino will track your play. Doing so will earn you casino comps – everything from a free meal to a weekend stay in the penthouse suite!

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

Apr 30

AML laws to blame for Parq Vancouver Casino losing money?

Parq Vancouver Casino Losing Money, Some say AML Laws to Blame

Since 2018, money laundering has been the most abundant topic surrounding British Columbia’s once-flourishing gaming industry. Hundreds of millions – perhaps even billions – of dollars have been identified moving through BC casinos over the last decade. Provincial leaders are cracking down on the situation, and while putting a strangle-hold on the activities of organized crime syndicates is a huge positive, the impact it’s having on the Vancouver gambling scene is not.

According to recent reports, the Parq Vancouver, the areas largest casino opened in 2017, is not fairing so well. In its first year, the integrated gambling and entertainment venue made nearly $20 million. Following the implementation of new anti-money laundering (AML) regulations, this latest year’s profits are non-existent. The property recorded a staggering loss of more than $150 million.

Is Parq Vancouver Casino Still Viable?

The Parq Vancouver is an imposing structure located in the heart of British Columbia’s most populous city. Its copper-tinted window-wall exterior and unique shape are unmistakable, and are home to a two-story casino, a pair of luxury hotel towers (JW Marriott and The Douglas) on each end, eight diverse restaurants and lounges, and a plethora of other amenities. It is, as its owners describe it, an “international entertainment destination” that proffers “everything in one place.”

At the time the casino was being built – a process that took nearly 3 full years to complete – such a facility was in high demand. It was no secret that some of Asia’s most affluent tourists are drawn to BC, Canada, and that they are keen high rollers on the gaming floor. No doubt, the Parq Vancouver was hoping to capitalize on that foreign cash crop.

What the property’s owners did not know was that Asian VIPs were about to become a thing of the past in Vancouver as exhumed records would soon reveal a deep dark pattern of money laundering, resulting in a strain of new AML policies designed to thwart cash-cleaning by organized crime units.

AML Regulations to Blame for Revenue Loss?

In its first fiscal year, despite hefty loans and mounting debt, the casino drug in a profit of about $18 million. However, when the Office of Attorney General David Eby uncovered a history of money laundering – one that was highlighted by suitcases and duffle bags stuffed with mostly $20 bills amounting to $13.5 million being deposited at the River Rock Casino in nearby Richmond, BC in a single month’s time – began re-scripting the province’s AML laws, BC casinos didn’t look quite so appealing to all those high rollers anymore.

Dundee Corp, minority owner of Parq Vancouver, filed its annual earnings report on March 28, 2019, and the results weren’t nearly so vibrant. On the year ending December 2018, Parq Vancouver lost nearly $153 million. According to research analyst Andrew Hood of M Capital Partners, $112 million of that was spent covering loans. Owners declined to comment beyond the revelations of the report, but Hood took no issue addressing the pink elephant in the room.

“The anti-money laundering regulations in British Columbia have been a problem,” explains Hood. “The regulations were supposed to cut down on illicit gambling but, of course, that hurt volumes across casinos.”

Furthermore, data from Bloomberg reveals Parq has a pair of loans out. The first is a US$220 first-lien term-loan, and the second is a $150 million second-lien term-loan. Being owned by two privately held companies, Dundee Corp and its majority owner, PBC Group, specific details like interest rates do not have to be disclosed. But it’s clear that the Parq Vancouver Casino is drowning in debt.

Global market ratings experts at S&P say there’s every chance Parq will default on its loans. “We still believe that, absent a debt recapitalization, the company will be unable to materially address its high fixed charges and financial sustainability,” notes S&P.

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

Apr 17

More online blackjack rules than you can shake a stick at!

More Online Blackjack Rules than you can Shake a Stick at!

If there’s one thing land-based casinos have taught us, it’s that all blackjack games are not created equal. To the untrained eye, all they may appear to be the same. But any veteran gambler knows there are many differences to be observed. Every rule variation, no matter how slight, will impact the expected return to player (RTP).

Most casinos know that delivering blackjack tables with an affable set of rules is crucial for attracting wise players to the casino floor. But they usually have a little extra room for those less valuable games, making them look more attractive with lower limits or special side bets – something less educated gamblers are often drawn to.

Online casinos, on the other hand, have taken this concept to the brink of RTP destruction! They aren’t bound by spacial limitations. They can proffer as many variants of blackjack as they wish, never running out of room or seats. And if you’ve visited any of the bigger online and mobile casinos, you know exactly just how many variations that can be!

More Online Blackjack Rules Than You Can Shake a Stick At!

As a quick example of what I’m talking about, let’s take a glance at the game variety provided by LeoVegas Mobile Casino. This particular operator is among the industry’s most popular, in part because it employs so many software brands; nearly 50 of them, plus its own proprietary software as the cherry on top.

Many of those big-name brands offer one, if not a few, blackjack variants. And when you put them all together as LeoVegas has, it creates a plethora of blackjack titles to choose from; all with slight (if not monumental) rule alterations. All told, this popular mobile casino currently supports 27 RNG-based blackjack titles, and no less than 9 live dealer blackjack offerings.

That’s at least three dozen ways to play blackjack. And if you don’t know what to look for – if you can’t recognize the differences in the rules and pay tables – you may be getting terrible value for your bankroll budget.

Best Blackjack Rules for Minimal House Edge

Some rules have a minuscule effect on a blackjack game’s RTP, while others can be significant. At the same time, some rules benefit the player, while others benefit the house. The following list contains all common rule variations and their effect on the casino’s edge. Note that a positive integer is good for the player. A negative integer benefits the house.

Number of Decks

The number of decks used can have a large impact on the house edge in blackjack. A shoe can contain anywhere from 1 to 8 decks. The golden rule here is to play with the least number of decks possible.

Number of Decks      House Edge Effect
1 Deck0.48%
2 Decks0.19%
4 Decks0.06%
6 Decks0.02%
8 Decks0.00%

Payout for Natural Blackjack

The payout for a natural blackjack can be one of the most significant differences in a game. A 2-to-1 payout is best, but extremely rare. You should generally look for the standard 3-to-2 payout. Anything less will decimate the house edge.

Natural Blackjack Pays     House Edge Effect
2 to 12.27%
3 to 2 0.00%
7 to 5 -0.45%
6 to 5 -1.39%
1 to 1 -2.27%
Blackjack Tie PaysHouse Edge Effect
3 to 20.32%
1 to 20.11%

Other Blackjack Rule Variations

Next up is a list of all common rule variations that don’t fall into the above categories. That doesn’t make them any less important, though. Pay close attention to all rules that deliver an added advantage to the player.

Common Rule Variations       House Edge Effect
5 Card Charlie 1.46%
Early Surrender against Dealer’s Ace 0.39%
Early Surrender against dealer’s 100.24%
Double on Any Number of Cards0.23%
Draw to Split Aces0.19%
6-Card Charlie0.16%
Double Down Rescue0.10%
Late Surrender0.08%
Resplit Aces Allowed0.08%
Late Surrender Against Dealer’s 100.07%
Split up to 3 Hands-0.01%
Double Only on Total of 9-11
-0.09%
Split up to 2 Hands-0.10%
European Blackjack (No Hole Card)-0.11%
No Double after Split-0.14%
Double Only on Total of 10-11-0.18%
Dealer Hits on Soft 17-0.22%
Dealer 22 is a Push-6.91%

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

Apr 15

Exploit your swag to fleece extra casino comps in Las Vegas.

Exploit Your Swag to Fleece Extra Casino Comps in Las Vegas

Earning casino comps doesn’t have to be a long, tedious or costly process. Sometimes, playing the part of a high-roller is all it takes to generate VIP treatment. You won’t have to rob a bank to pull it off either.

Flashing just enough cash can do the trick, but only if you bring the entire package. A full high-roller ensemble includes fancy attire and a trendy hair do to match. Keep reading to learn how a sharp dressed man, or woman, can have the casinos eating out of the palm of their hand!

Fleece Your Swag to Earn Extra Casino Comps

There’s an age-old adage that says, “The clothes make the man”. If you want to get a good job, you don’t walk into an interview in jeans and a Led Zeppelin t-shirt. If you want to impress a girl on your first date, you don’t wear socks with sandals. And if you want to attract the attention of the VIP managers in Las Vegas, you never, ever show up in a polo.

If you’ve ever caught a glimpse of the usual Las Vegas tourist scene, it’s surprising how many people think quarter-button down shirts and khakis are “cool”. Maybe if you’re heading to the miniature golf course, but the Bellagio? Not even close.

The better dressed you are, the more heads you’re going to turn. You don’t even have to be a good actor. As it turns out, simply dressing in formal attire has the ability to provide you with all the swag you’ll ever need.

Don’t believe me? It’s a scientific fact!

The Science of Formal Attire

In 2015, research was conducted by Columbia University Professor of Psychology Michael Slepian. The study revolved around the impact of dressing sharply, both on the mental and physical prowess of the wearer, and his impression upon those he interacts with. The study culminated into a research paper titled The Cognitive Consequences of Formal Clothing, published in SAGE Journal’s Social Psychological and Personality Science.

Dr. Slepian found that “wearing formal clothing enhances abstract cognitive processing.” He conducted five separate studies, concluding the donning of fancy, formal attire could be associated with…

Study 1: …higher action identification level.

Study 2: …greater category inclusiveness.

Study 3: …greater category inclusiveness.

Study 4: …global processing advantage.

Study 5: association between clothing formality and abstract processing was mediated by felt power.

According to Slepian:

The findings demonstrate that the nature of an everyday and ecologically valid experience, the clothing worn, influences cognition broadly, impacting the processing style that changes how objects, people, and events are construed.”

Clothing, Confidence, Cognition & Coinage

Once you’ve got the clothing, all you need is the confidence of a high roller, the cognition of a strategic gambler, and the coinage to back it up. Two of these should come naturally, as Dr. Slepian points out. The right attire gives a person confidence, and that confidence equates to higher mental capacity. The thing it won’t give you – quite the opposite if you have to pay an arm and a leg for the clothes – is money.

As I said, you won’t need to rob a bank, but you should save up a decent size bankroll before attempting to exploit the casino. You can’t possibly pull off the persona buying in for anything less than $1,000. This doesn’t mean you have to wager the whole 4-figures. You just have to look like you’re ready to do so.

Take a leisurely stroll across the casino floor. Check out the tables. Spend a few moments observing the action at various mid- to high-stakes tables, but steer clear of the VIP room. Let them feel like you’re thinking about playing, but shrug it off as something a bit too boring for you taste and keep on walking. Before long, someone should take notice and approach you. They may ask if you’re looking for something in particular, or if you’ve considered partaking in their VIP games. This is your moment!

Act interested, but disconnected. Tell them you were about to play one game or another, but you haven’t eaten yet and your throat is parched! If you can pull off the debonair of James Bond or one of his seductive lady friends, you’ll be dining free of charge before you can say “Hit me!

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