Live casinos have been hailed as the next big thing in online gambling for some time now. It’s a platform that combines the convenience of being able to play blackjack, baccarat and roulette from your PC, with the peace of mind that the deal is not reliant on a random number generator (“RNG”) to dictate game outcomes.
In principle the offering is an enticing one. Unlike traditional RNG online casino games where a computer dictates event outcomes, live casino games offer a real human dealer dealing real cards, or tossing a real ball into an actual roulette wheel all viewed over a live webcast. With a reasonably fast internet connection, the smoothness and clarity of vision at most offering casinos is impressive, as are the bet interfaces that the vision is delivered through.
That is of course if you have a reasonable connection. And this leads us to the main contention of this article. This platform is not without its shortcomings, and being aware of them may temper any disappointments you may otherwise have trying any live casino games out for the first time.
As intimated above, one of the key problems many players may encounter with live gaming is problems with the vision. Remember, the vision is live and not an mpeg that you play once loaded. While the platform providers spruik their fantastic video streaming technologies and file compression capabilities with patents pending and a whole list of other wonderful claims, what you will find is that in the end the web-cast is only as good as the connection speed supporting it. If you are on a dial up connection, forget it. Even if your connection speed is reasonable, don’t expect uninterrupted vision at all times.
What you will also find, is that vision quality from certain platform providers is far from impressive. The spinning roulette wheel is an amorphous blur until it finally stops and the card deals in blackjack and baccarat are more like a series of low resolution freeze frames. To be fair, this is not the norm though and with a fast connection vision quality from most providers is pretty good – in some cases very impressive.
Are you an impatient gambler who can’t stand a slow game? If so this may not be your ideal game format. Unlike in RNG casino games, where you can call the deal in most instances and control game speed, live games are a little different. While you are viewing a single dealer, he or she is dealing to a number of players and must allow ample time for all bets to be placed and hit/stand/double/split decisions to be made in blackjack. In fact, this time is fixed according to the casino’s (platform provider’s) game set up and can be anywhere from 15 to 40 seconds between deals/bet decisions.
Imagine playing a live blackjack game in multi-play format with 7 players at the table. You are give 40 seconds to place your bets. Then, each player is given a further 30 seconds to play their hand. If all players take their full time allotted to play their hand, by the time the last player is reached it’s almost 4 minutes since conclusion of the last hand. Now this is an extreme case but you get the idea. Live gaming can be slow.
Fortunately for impatient players not all live games will have full multi-play tables. Some don’t offer multi-play and have a 15 second count between bets – but this is the exception rather than the norm.