Over the last decade we’ve experienced the rise and rise of Online Casino games. A combination of factors have aligned to create the perfect environment for online casino gaming to truly flourish.
Reportedly, over half the population of the world now owns a smartphone with access to a multitude of apps and infinite more websites in the palm of their hand, from wherever they happen to be. Apps are consistently getting better and safer, too.
Aside from fast & easy access to online casino games, smartphones also have the effect of removing any stigma attached to visiting land-based casinos, too. It’s unsurprising that there’s been such an increase in casino games participation across all legal age groups.
Now more than ever it’s important that you, as a player, are equipped to maximise the odds in your favour should you decide to play online. Here are some basic tips which might help to improve your chances of leaving the casino with a profit.
“Fail to prepare, prepare to fail”. This saying holds true for all types of games — especially if the odds aren’t in your favour to start with.
Before playing at an online casino for the first time, learn the rules of your chosen game(s) and take note of the house edge attached. If you intend on playing blackjack (a wise choice), try your hand at some demo rounds first — most sites have a free play option. Take this opportunity to play through the optimal strategy. Get a feel for how big the swings in your results are likely to be.
In addition, you also need to be aware that not all casino sites are the same. Each site or app has differing layouts, features and games. For instance, you might need to take care to select the correct version of your chosen game. If that’s Roulette, then you’re probably looking for French Roulette (with a single 0) rather than American Roulette (with a double 0).
Essentially you need to familiarise yourself with the the site/app that you’re using to reduce the risk of making a simple, yet costly, mistake.
Take Note of the House Edge
There are brilliant minds at work optimising and streamlining online casino experiences. It’s very easy to be suckered in to the bright lights of a fruit machine or a “once in a lifetime” spin on the wheel fortune.
It’s fine to enjoy slot machines — but know the odds you’re up against. The house edge for slots games ranges anywhere between 2-15%, and playing them is as easy as pressing a button. That means there’s no easier way to lose your money in an online casino than to play slots.
There are far safer games to play at an online casino. As a general rule, the easier a casino game is to play, the worse the odds usually are. So it’s a smart idea to invest a little time into learning slightly more involved casino games in order to reduce the overall house edge.
But bare in mind that the impact of the house edge is realised as you total up more wagers. So if you enjoy the slot machine experience, and do so at low stakes, this can in fact be better for your bankroll than a much larger total stake on low-edge games.
Beware of ‘Systems’
Remember there’s an element of luck involved in every casino game you play. You can win in the short term — but there’s no system that’ll improve your chances of earning long term profits.
To maximise your chances of winning at an online casino, optimise your skills in games with a modest house edge (e.g. Blackjack, or Jacks or Better video poker). But recognise that you can only reduce the edge, not shift it in your favour — unless there’s some form of bonus attached. After all, if you could turn the odds in your favour, casinos wouldn’t be in business!
Roulette is a particular magnet for systems that claim to give you an advantage — but the truth is none of them work. The ones that mathematically do offer some promise — like the Martingale or Labouchere — involve exponentially increasing your bet on each miss. This means if you hit a few misses in a row this will quickly lead to frighteningly high figures needed for comparatively scant rewards. That’s not mention most tables will have betting limits that stand in the way of these systems.
Don’t be suckered into systems. If finding a player edge is your thing, you’re best off focusing on mastering Poker, or even looking to find an advantage at sports betting instead.
Play Within Your Means
It’s a hackneyed intention, but for good reason. Keeping the fun in the game is paramount, and you should set limits for your session to avoid over-playing should things not go your way (or trying to multiply winnings when they are).
If you’re a regular at the (virtual) table you will undoubtedly have some days when your numbers aren’t coming up. It’s particularly important to know that there’s the possibility this could happen from time to time. You have to accept it rather than allow it to spiral. So Set a loss limit and stick to it.
During play it’s advisable to keep to a comfortable stake limit per hand/wager and to quit after a certain upper or lower limit has been reached. For example, betting £5 hands on Blackjack and quitting once either a £50 profit or loss has been reached. Or even better, after X hands — regardless of the outcome.
Consider Playing Blackjack
Blackjack is a firm casino favourite, due in part to the well known fact that the house edge is one of the lowest of all casino games. It’s also easy to master; you can improve your odds on Blackjack by learning basic Blackjack strategy.
Ultimately the optimal strategy comes down to acting on probabilities of winning each round depending on your hand and the dealer’s up-card. Learning these moves, or simply referring to a the strategy chart, can reduce the house edge by around 3%. This can be the difference between leaving the table on top, or in the hole. There are ample Blackjack charts available online for each variant of the game.
Games with notoriously high house edges include Craps, Bingo, slots and Double Zero Roulette (American roulette). So these should be treated as games for enjoyment only.
If you’ve become proficient at a particular casino game, poker being the obvious candidate here, tournaments are a fun way to maximise your return on investment.
Normally, poker tournaments have a flat entrance fee with big prize pools so if you’re able to get to the final table, you’ll be in with a chance of walking away flush!
Play For Fun
The buzz of a win is hard to beat — but the primary goal of participating in any game should be enjoyment, not investment.
Casino games are just a form of entertainment. Yes, you play to win money — but you shouldn’t expect to do so every time. So if you’ve had a good time and kept your bankroll, that’s a decent outcome.
Given how accessible online casino gaming has become, it’s worth keeping the advice from this article in the back of your mind. Hopefully it’ll improve your experience, and maximise your chances of winning.
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