Here we cover some of the more common questions that players ask us about playing at an online casino. Including how they work, whether or not they’re fair and what you should do if you think you have a gambling problem.
How Do Online Casinos Work?
The whole concept of an online casino is powered around a Random Number Generator (RNG). It’s this RNG that powers every game on site and continuingly brings up random scenarios and cards that appear on the screen in a dynamic and interactive way on screen.
Each game will work slightly differently in terms of the types of numbers that will need to be pulled, but the concept will reaming for each. For example, in a game of blackjack you could imagine that the deck is constantly virtually spinning and when you click the deal button that will be when the deck will stop spinning and whatever card it stops on will be dealt. You’ve also got to figure in that this is happening at infinite rate meaning decisions are taking split seconds to appear.
One thing that is important to remember is that the casino cannot control this RNG. It’s been this sort thing that from a legal perspective has been designed and implemented to be as random as possible and no outside (or even inside) presence can effect which outcome comes up next, along with no way of ever knowing.
What Games Can I Play?
As the online casino continues to grow, so does the amount of games that you can play. Once into the casino you will be able to enjoy all your regular games such as blackjack, roulette and video poker. These will be the most popular formats and generally where the casino will spend a lot of time in developing different types such as three-ball roulette or multi-hand blackjack.
New games are continuing to become available in a lot of online casinos with the likes of Tequila Poker and Scratch cards, to name but a few. The odd thing about these types of games is that they are continuingly being developed and improved, which is massively beneficial for the user.
The biggest range of games for most online casinos will undoubtedly that of video slots. Some casino will have hundreds of slots to choose from each with slightly different story lines and variations. A lot of brands such as Marvel, Disney and Warner Bros are starting to franchise out licenses for some of their bigger movies to be developed into slots.
Can I Play For Real Money?
In a word, yes. Most online casinos will actually be targeting you to sign up and play for real money rather than play money. You will need to register an account with the casino before entering some form of payment details. These can range from the likes of debit card, credit card, e-wallets and even cheques, with each offering you a safe environment in which to deposit.
Whilst the majority of transactions made online will be completely safe, we do recommend that you only use reputable brands from within the industry. We’ve made up a list of the some higher profile casinos to choose from; each will provide you with a safe and exciting online casino environment. As a final point, you must be of 18 years or older to register and play fro real money at any online casino.
How Does An Online Casino Make Money?
The casino makes money by providing what’s called a ‘house edge’. This is essentially the percentage in which the casino cannot lose from a certain game. They don’t actually take money from you directly, but the games on offer will mean that it’s guaranteed that over a big enough sample size, the casino cannot lose money in the long term.
Let’s look through a quick example using roulette (note that the percentages used for this aren’t a true reflection for many online casinos, just for the purpose of this examples). As you will know, the roulette table is broken down into several parts that you can wager on from choosing red or black all the way to choosing a specific number. The casinos house edge from a game of roulette actually comes from the inclusion of the number Zero or green if you’d rather. When betting on the outer cluster of numbers, there’s no way that green can be chosen. So if you bet on red or black and green lands, then house wins all bets, no mater what. If you bet on groups 1/12 and it lands on green, then house wins again.
The likelihood of this actually landing on green is very slim, in fact it’s 37/1 as there are 37 numbers on the table. What’s also interesting about roulette is that the pay-out for one single number is 36/1, when there are actually 37 numbers on board. A true price would be 37/1, but making a small reduction in price to 36/1 then gives the house, over a huge range of spins, an edge.
If you then think of the millions of times that the roulette ball spins on the millions of roulette tables around the world, having that single green zero and the price of 1 number at odds of 36/1 instead of 37/1, then the significance really starts to add up.
Are Online Casinos Regulated?
Online casinos have to be regulated to be able to operate to the customers in the UK. In fact, in 2014 a new gambling act was passed to make it easier for people to not only find out whether a certain casino or any gambling outlet for that matter was regulated, but also that online casinos had to make it easier for customers to understand terms and conditions from those online casinos. The act stated that all gambling outlets would undergo constant regulation checks for them to be of service to UK residents.
If you are familiar with the online gambling industry then there may be brands that you are aware of and trust. If you are new or if you are contemplating signing up with a casino that you’ve never heard of then you can check them out by clicking the web address below and see if or what license they have been granted.
Are Online Casino Fair/Rigged?
Online casinos are all fair and none are rigged (that are regulated, anyway). It’s a common question and a common misconception about online casinos being rigged against people, but not only is that completely illegal, but the casino actually has no reason to do so as they have the maths in their favour.
If you take our example of explaining how house edge works before with roulette, then over millions of spins the casino will always come out on top. Their edge is significant enough to make them small profits with each wager, but the number and frequency of wagers that are made allow these small margins to be turned into big profits.
It’s also worth noting that with new games and even some of the oldest games, each go through a strict testing process to make sure they are safe and fair. If they fail this test then they simply wont be allowed to publish them and then it also raises a red flag over that casino for trying to get it passed in the first place.
Do Betting Systems Work?
The top and bottom of betting systems is that they do not work. Each game is set up around the house edge and this edge is something that cannot be changed or manipulated in anyway, assuming that the rules for that game stay the change. The maths and house edge is something that can’t be argued in the online casino industry and as a result means that all betting systems will eventually fail over a big enough sample.
Having said that, the closest that’s ever come of a ‘successful’ system is that of the Martingale strategy, although it would only work if you had an infinite supply of money to play with. The concept was used in games where the odds could be as close to 50/50 as possible, such as betting on red or black on roulette, before then just doubling your money with each bet until you eventually won. What a lot of casinos soon implemented to overcome this was a table limit meaning that you could only go so high, but also with the game offering up the green zero digit, the edge would still be with the house in the long run.
How Can I Win At/Beat The Casino?
If you are looking to beat the casino, then the truthful answer, in the long term at least, is that you wont. The games are all set up so that over a prolonged period of time the casino will have the edge no matter what stakes or games that you play.
The best way to go about winning at online casino games is by taking a short-term approach. Look at games as if they were a bit of and try to get in and out with some profit a soon as you can. It’s very much possible that you can win millions of pounds from your first ever spin of an online slot, but just as probable that you can play your whole life and never hit that life changing jackpot.
Bonuses are a way that can make you money, if you can find ones that are +EV. Some, in fact most bonuses are heavily set up in the casinos favour, but there are some that are a little more player friendly which allow you to make some money from that bonus without having to play through tens of thousands of pounds for just a couple hundred pounds.
The top and bottom of it is that online casinos should be seen as a social activity that you can get enjoyment out of and never as a career or consistent source of income.
What Should I Do If I Think I Have A Gambling Problem?
The first thing you should do even if you think you MAY have a gambling problem is to immediately stop playing. Get away from the computer, laptop or mobile and stop playing immediately.
The next step is to go and seek help from a number of fantastic professional organisations that will have a dedicated team to help you with the next step of your recovery. Sometimes just admitting it is the hardest step, so once you’ve done this then you will be on your way.