Finding the Best Online Casino Games
In recent years, online casinos have become far more popular than their land-based cousins. It’s fairly easy to see why. When you’re playing from the comfort of your own home, you don’t have to worry about travelling, accommodation, or adhering to any dress codes. The biggest advantage of all, however, is that the choice of games is so much better. You’ll find everything from table games to slots available, as well as a few more unusual possibilities that you might want to check out. There really is something on offer for every taste!
Advantages of Playing Casino Games Online
Playing casino games online has opened the gates to a world of glitz and glamour for players with all kinds of bankrolls, even those on a budget. Now, you can place a bet for as low as a cent, or even try the games in demo mode without spending any actual cash. Live games allow for an authentic gambling experience as they bring the atmosphere of a land-based casino to your home, saving you the travel expenses. Mobile games have been helping us wile time away and play at our own convenience virtually anytime, anywhere. Technological advancements are further facilitating players’ instant gratification and seamless platform transition with single-wallet systems and omni-channel games. Online casinos are also offering many bonuses and rewards that will help you get some extra cash to spend on your favorite games. So, how do the bonuses actually work, and which are the hottest casino games you shouldn’t miss out on? Read on for the answers!
|Most Played Where?
|Video Slots, Bonus Slots, Retro Slots, Fruit Machines, 3D Slots, Progressive Slots
|2% – 15%
|888 Casino 888 Casino Review
|American Roulette, European Roulette, French Roulette, Multi-Ball Roulette, Multi-Wheel Roulette, Live Dealer Roulette, Spingo
|5% – 25%
|Ruby Fortune Casino Ruby Fortune Review
|American Roulette, European Roulette, French Roulette, Multi-Ball Roulette, Multi-Wheel Roulette, Live Dealer Roulette, Spingo
|5% – 25%
|JackpotCity Casino JackpotCity Review
|Jacks or Better, Deuces Wild, Tens or Better, Double Bonus Poker and Joker Poker
|Spin Palace Casino Spin Palace Review
|Punto Banco (American), Chemin de Fer, Baccarat en Banque, Super Pan 9, Three Card Baccarat, Live dealer baccarat
|5% – 25%
|888casino Casino 888 Casino Review
Exploring the Welcome Bonus Offers
You’ll nearly always be presented with a welcome package when you first sign up with one of the online venues, but these can vary considerably in how they are structured. Most special deals tend to be in the form of a match bonus. If this is the case, the amount that you deposit is equaled by the casino. For example, when you pay $50 into your account, the sum will be matched, so you’ll have $100 to play with. Many of the sites have some additional incentives too. You may receive a number of free spins when you play one of the nominated slots games, or you may be given some free tokens for one of the tournaments. Before you make any definitive decisions on which site you’re going to join, it’s best to shop around a few of them to see exactly what’s on offer.
Some Other Promotional Offers
The special offers aren’t necessarily limited to welcome bonuses. The majority of the online casinos provide their long-standing members with regular treats and rewards, and so it’s good to get into the habit of checking the promotions page regularly. Many of the sites change their deals on a daily basis, but you’ll also see weekly, monthly, and seasonal ones, too. These are very often for one of the newer games, and you’ll be given the chance to play a few rounds for free. It’s always good to take advantage of these types of incentives, if you can.
Checking the Playthrough Requirements
Before you accept any of the offers, you should look at the conditions that are attached in detail. Almost every deal will have playthrough requirements, which is the amount that you will have to play before you can make a withdrawal. This is shown as a number and a multiplication symbol, such as 35x. In this situation, you would have to play through your bonus thirty-five times before you could take out any of your winnings. The stipulations vary a lot, so this is something that you should check before you accept any of the promotional deals.
Knowing the Contributions of the Games
Another factor that has to be considered when you’re accepting a bonus is that not all of the games count towards your playthrough requirements. Again, this is something that varies a lot. For instance, in some online casinos, roulette is counted as 25%, but in others, it doesn’t contribute anything at all. For this reason, when you are choosing your category, slots tend to be your best option. Most of the sites seem to be fairly united when it comes to this particular genre, and so you are very likely to get 100% towards your wagering contributions.
It’s Perfectly Possible to Win!
It’s natural to have a few reservations when you first join an online casino, and so it’s always best to start in a measured way. Then, once you’ve got used to how everything works on the site, you can get a little more involved. Although there’s never anything certain or predictable about playing online, it’s worth remembering that the outcomes of all of the games are determined randomly. There is every chance that you can bag a few wins along the way, and you could even hit the jackpot! There are, however, a few key factors that you need to take into consideration.
- The House Has the EdgeIt’s true to say that the casino has the upper hand over the players. The online sites have been structured so that they have a built-in advantage, which means that the odds are always set in their favor. Whilst this might seem a tad unfair on the surface of it, the reality is that this margin is incredibly small. It differs between categories, but it can be as little as 0.5%. These percentages are usually listed on the websites, so you can easily check the statistics, and opt for a game that has a smaller house edge.
- The Payout Rates DifferAll of the leading online casinos feature the return to player (RTP) figures on their websites. These are the payout rates, and they are calculated by comparing the number of bets with the amount of winnings. In general, when the percentage is higher, it’s better for you. For instance, if the RTP is set at 90% and you bet $100, you’ll receive $90 if you win. Each of the genres has its own percentage, but this varies between venues. Some provide this calculation for each individual game, which is really useful when you’re deciding what to play.
- The Games aren’t FixedThe top casinos use random number generator (RNG) software, which means that everything is arbitrary. Every aspect of your play is carried out randomly, whether it’s the spinning of the slots machines, the shuffling of the cards, or the rolling of the dice. This ensures that the outcome of the games can’t be predetermined, and that nothing can be rigged. In truth, there isn’t any need for the online venues to cheat you. They already have the odds in their favor, and they’d much prefer to have satisfied customers.
- The Free Play PossibilityNot all of the online casinos provide you with the chance to try out their games before you place any real bets, but there are a few of them that do. If you see the free play option on any of the websites, it’s always beneficial to try out a few of the titles to find out how they are played. This will give you the opportunity to get an idea of how they are structured, and to understand the rules of them all in a little more detail. You’ll also get the chance to see which of them appeal to you before you part with any money.
Who are the Leading Games Providers?
The number of games developers continues to increase, but there are three names at the top that stand out from the rest. The longest-established of these is Microgaming, which was one of the first to dip into the online casino industry. Consequently, the company has a huge catalog of games in its arsenal. Playtech has been in the business for almost two decades, and has developed a full range of products, with new titles regularly being released. The last of the leading lights is NetEnt, who continues to impress with its innovative approach to gaming.
Some Other Recognizable Names
There are countless other providers who are considered to be household names in the online casino industry. BetSoft is mostly known for its 3D slot games, but has developed several quality table games, too. Play’n Go and WMS both have a number of unique titles in their collections. Next Gen and IGT have specialized in one area, and they each provide a range of top quality slots. You’ll probably come across some offerings from Realtime Gaming, as well, as the company includes a couple of jackpot versions in its selection.
Playing Games with Rolling Jackpots
When you feel ready to engage in some more serious online gambling, you should take a look at the progressive games in the casinos. In these versions, the amount you win isn’t a fixed sum. Every time a new player joins in, the money in the pot increases, and you can watch the numbers changing on the screen as the amount on offer grows. These variants tend to fit into the slots categories, and if you participate in one of these, the advice is to always use the bet max option. This means that all of the paylines are covered in your wager, and it ensures that you’ll be eligible for the prize fund. You’ll also come across some table games that are structured in this way, and many of the live games have rolling jackpots, too.
Getting Involved in a Multiplayer Tournament
If you feel like pitting your skills against some of the other players, you can participate in one of the online tournament games. These vary in their formats, with each casino adding their own touches to the way that they are set up, but the basic premise is the same. Each of the players buys a designated number of tickets or pays an entry fee before the competition commences, and this collective amount becomes the prize fund. All of the participants then play for a specified time period. This can be anything from a few minutes to several months. The person who is at the top of the leaderboard at the end of the contest is declared the winner.
Participating in the Live Dealer Games
The live games bring a whole new dimension to the online casino experience. You’re no longer limited to virtual play when you go for this option. Instead, you’ll be able to watch events happening in real time. Everything takes place through your computer interface in the standard way, but you’ll be able to watch the dealer issuing your cards or spinning the roulette wheel. You can even take part in a bit of interaction with the dealer and the other players, if you feel like it. There are a number of live dealer games on offer at most of the venues, so you’ll have plenty of choice open to you. These are predominantly in the table games categories, but you’ll find several variants of them, as well. The betting limits on each of the games differ, as does the language used during play, so make sure you select one that suits your particular requirements. It’s really easy to join in – you just need to look for a spare seat at a table and take your place.
There tends to be only the classic version of blackjack available at most casinos, but you’ll have the options of side wagers. Depending on the version being played, you’ll be able to split your pairs, use insurance bets, or double down in the usual way. Baccarat is another option, as it is listed in most online venues. You might like the Squeeze variant, in which the cards are slowly revealed by the dealer. Alternatively, you can go for some faster play with Baccarat Speed. In this game, each round only takes around 27 seconds, so there isn’t any time for mulling things over!
There is a great variety of live roulette on offer. You’ll find the European games online, with the option of placing bets on the racetrack, too. The French version incorporates the La Partage rule into the game, which gives you much better odds. If you like to take a bit of a risk, you might prefer to play by American rules. In this variant of roulette, the double zero on the wheel increases the house edge significantly. For something a little bit different, you could try Evolution Gaming’s Double Ball version. This game uses two balls during play, so your chances of winning are increased.
The live poker games tend to fall into three categories. Most online casinos have the 3-card version on offer. In this game, you pit your cards against the dealer, who has to have a queen high hand in order to win. For a variant, you should check out Texas Hold’em, in which you have to use your own cards and some of the community ones to form five-card hand. The most innovative game in this genre is probably Evolution Gaming’s Caribbean Stud Poker, which has an optional side bet. The jackpot for this is progressive, so the prize fund continues to increase until it is won.
Which is the Best Game for You?
The Benefits of Using a Mobile Casino
The recent advances in technology havе been incredibly rapid, but the gambling industry has been very quick to adapt to these changes. All of the top venues now provide mobile versions of their sites, which are fully compatible with most modern devices. It is, therefore, incredibly easy for you to access your games from any location. You can use the same account too, so you’ll be depositing and withdrawing your funds in the usual way. There isn’t any loss of performance either, as everything has been modified for the smaller screen. The only downside is probably that the games selection is a bit smaller than on the regular websites. Nevertheless, there are still plenty for you to choose from, so you’re bound to find something you fancy playing.
The Difference between Native Apps and Instant Play
There are two different types of mobile casinos, and both of them have some positives and negatives. The advantage of the native apps is that they are downloadable. This means that even when you don’t have an online connection, you can still play your games. It has to be noted that they do take up quite a bit of memory though, which isn’t always desirable. If this is the case, you might prefer to opt for an in-browser app. In this scenario, you don’t have to download anything. You simply have to use your device to log onto the casino, and once you’ve logged in as usual, you’ll be automatically directed to the mobile version of the website. The only drawback to the instant play option is that you need to have access to the internet. However, wi-fi is so readily available nowadays that this isn’t usually a problem.
The Categories of Games
There is such a wide selection of games available that most sites divide them into categories. The way that they are categorized differs between venues, but broadly speaking, you’ll find headers for slots, table games, and for video poker. Sometimes, the more popular sub-genres are given individual classifications. For example, you might find that all the blackjack variants have been grouped together, or that Baccarat has its own section. Before you make any decision about what to play, you should check out the basics of each of the genres.
Three Alternative Table Games
If you’ve grown a bit tired of playing the regular table games, there are some alternative ones to check out. Red Dog is played with three cards, and the aim is to guess whether the third card will fall between the value of the others. NetEnt offers a progressive version, in which your winnings are left on the table and used for the next round. If this doesn’t appeal to you, then take a look at Stravaganza. The object in this game is to have a total that’s higher than the dealer’s. At the start of play, you are dealt two cards and the dealer receives three. Your points total at this stage determines your next action. If you choose to continue, you’ll place another wager, and you’ll get a third card. The points are calculated, and the highest score wins. There’s a side bet option too, with a separate jackpot for the winning combinations. This is progressive, so the prize fund keeps growing until it is won. A final option to explore is Sic Bo, which looks very similar to craps on the surface of it. However, this variant relies more on luck than on strategy, and every roll of the dice will either count as a win or a loss.
Some Variations of the Standard Poker Game
Poker is one of the best-known games and is always a popular choice in the casinos. Although the classic version can usually be found online, there are several variations available that you might wish to try. On the whole, these adhere to the standard rules of poker. For instance, you’ll still be aiming to beat the dealer in the usual way, and you’ll do this by forming a hand that has a higher ranking. The payouts will be the same too, with a Straight Flush being the ultimate goal. There will, however, be a few key differences in the way that these variants are structured.
Slots Games with a Theme
The slots are one of the largest of the categories, as most of the online casinos carry a huge array of titles on their websites. The majority of the games have a bit of a theme to them, and so you’ll come across several that are set in the Wild West or in the jungle. Ireland is another popular choice among the developers, with lucky symbols like leprechauns and four-leaf clovers being strongly featured. There are also many versions that allude to mythologies, such as the Greek or the Roman Gods, and others that are based around traditional stories and legends.
The Branded Slots Games
When you sort through the selection of slots in the online casinos, you’ll see that there are lots of branded ones to choose from, and that the majority of them have been based around TV shows or movies. Playtech has a series that feature the DC comic heroes, such as Superman and Batman, as well as many titles that are linked to films. The Matrix, Gladiator, and Ace Ventura are all on the company’s list. Not to be outdone, NetEnt teamed up with a few rock bands to produce unique games with some of the best soundtracks to date. Guns N’ Roses, Motorhead, and Jimi Hendrix have all been contributors to these innovations. Microgaming has iconic characters like Lara Croft, the Terminator, and Hellboy in its catalog. It also has the gaming rights to the Game of Thrones television series.
The Combination Games
As the games developers explore new concepts, there is often some blending of the standard genres that are found in the online casinos. The Age of the Gods Roulette is the perfect example of how roulette, slots, a popular theme, and a progressive jackpot have all been combined to create one title. The basic play follows the customary European roulette rules, with the additional race track available for special bets. There is, however, an extra pocket on the wheel for you to wager on. If the ball lands on this, you’ll be taken off to a separate bonus round. This is a 3-reel slots, with characters from the popular Age of Gods game featured, and by matching three of them across the payline, you can increase your winnings. You’ll also be given the option to participate in the progressive Jackpot. This has four levels with different prize funds on offer, and if you match three of the symbols, you’ll win the corresponding amount.
The Banking Options
Once you’ve decided what kind of games you’d like to play, you’ll be ready to join one of the online casinos. Before you decide upon which casino you’ll be registering with, you should check that the banking options are suitable for you. Most of the venues will accept the leading credit and debit cards, and will usually cater for money transfers, as well. You’ll often have a few ewallets listed too, and occasionally, you’ll be able to use a pre-paid card or vouchers. The payment methods sometimes differ for withdrawals, so this is another factor to look at. Also, you should consider the clearance time attributed to each of them, as these can vary quite considerably.
Transferring Your Funds Securely
Before you deposit any of your cash into your account, you should make sure that you are doing so under secure conditions. Most online casinos will use SSL technology during any financial transactions to ensure that your payment details and your personal information are encrypted. You can be sure that the site is using this security method when you see the padlock symbol in your browser bar. As always, if you have any doubts while you are going through the process of adding or withdrawing funds, you should cancel the transfer immediately, and contact the casino’s support team for assistance.
Playing at a Legitimate Club
It’s usually fairly straightforward to register with a casino, but before you go through the enrollment procedure, you should take a bit of time to check who you’re signing up with. This is usually very straightforward to do. To be certain that you will be playing at a legitimate venue, you simply need to establish who the licensing and the regulating bodies are. This information is usually found at the foot of the website. You’ll also be able to see if the company has signed up to any of the independent monitoring authorities, such as ECogra. If they have, it’s another indication that you are joining a reputable establishment.
Contacting Customer Services
It’s important that there is a professional customer support system in place at the casino, so that you will be able to get some assistance if you have any problems while you’re playing online. Most of the leading venues offer this service 24/7, and many have a live chat facility available, so you can instantly contact a staff member. For the majority of people, playing games online remains a fun activity, but on occasion, it can develop into a problem for a few players. If you ever feel that your gambling has become an issue, you can easily get some help as there are several organizations that will assist you with this. The customer service team members at your casino will be happy to guide you in the direction of one of these, and you can be assured that everything will be handled with complete discretion.
A Final Check Before You Join
There are many things to consider before you join an online casino, so it’s worth stopping to make a final check before you enroll. That way, you can be sure that you’re making an informed decision on the best establishment for you. Although you’ll need to take the practical issues into account, such as banking methods and security, it’s also important to think about the games selection that’s available. It’s good to browse through the site to ascertain that there is something within one of the genres that you’d like to play. You’ll also have to decide if you want a live version, or if you’d prefer to use a mobile app. See what bonus offers are available too, as this might affect your choice. Once you’ve done all of that, you’ll be ready to sign up and enjoy your gaming!