Online casinos are in business to make money. They do not manage to keep their doors open because they are lucky, but because the odds in the games that they offer are stacked in their favour… always. This casino advantage is called the “House Edge”.
A sober thinking gambler will always be someone that understands that the moment they begin to gamble they have a better chance of losing than winning. Although many casino games are marketed by advertising the “Return to Player” percentage instead of the “House Edge” percentage, the two are calculated in very different ways and mean very different things.
Return to Player percentage is the average percentage that will be paid out to players throughout the life of the game, which means that you may not win anything at all, but the next player may win it all. For every single game, the upper-hand that the casino has is called the "House Edge". If a house edge is 3% (RTP is 97%) In this case, for every €100 you wager, the house expects to win an average of €3. That is their profit.
While understanding the concept of the house edge, there are ways of minimising your losses. The primary method of doing this is to play games with a far lower house edge, as this will give you a better chance of walking away from the victor.
This guide lists 6 of the most popular games played at online casinos today, in order of the best player odds against lowest house odds, along with vital information you may need on each game.
You will notice that the top rankers are all table games. This is because there is an element of the strategy behind playing these titles. We wish to educate you on what games are more likely to make you money online.
Often this game is excluded from play when you are using casino bonuses. This is because the casino knows that you have a far better chance of walking away with winnings playing Blackjack than with any other game at the online casino.
The house edge is a measly 1% to 2%, depending on the offering, which is far less than the commonly punted video slots. Though wins may not be as big when landed (highest paying 1.5:1), they are frequent and steady.
Blackjack relies on a little luck, but true success in this game is down to strategy and decision making. If you can out-strategise the dealer, you could possibly double your money. Many people think that Blackjack is merely a game of whoever gets closest to 21 wins. This is not the case. The primary objective is to ensure that the dealer loses. This can either be accomplished by forcing him/her to “stand” or force him/her to “bust”.
Common strategies involve knowing how many card decks are being used, so that you can almost predict the type of card you will be dealt next based on the value of the cards already dealt at the table. While this is called “card counting” and is frowned upon at land-based casinos, it is fair game at online establishments.
Although this game may not be as well known as games like Poker or Roulette, Baccarat is a rather easy game to get into. The fundamental principles of the game are easy enough, encompassing the need to be able to calculate your hand based on card values.
What lowers the house edge on this game to as little as 1.41% is the ability to bet against yourself, if the need arises. The base game requires a little bit of human intervention (choice), which raises your odds tremendously. You can either bet for a tie between the dealer and yourself, bet in favour of the dealer, or bet in favour of yourself. Each bet carries different odds and therefore a unique house edge statistic:
Stay away from betting for a “tie” and you could produce frequent favourable wins. The highest win in this game is however made when engaging in an optional side-bet aimed at ties. If you can predict the exact number of cards used in creating the tie hand, you will win the “Egalité Bonus”, which should reward 220:1. Though not all online Baccarat games will offer this side-bet, you can read more in our guide to online baccarat basics to better understanding.
Who would have thought that a game of tossing the dice would land itself so highly ranked on this list? It is true that the outcome of the dice is based purely on luck, but the edge can be adjusted in Craps depending on how you bet.
“One roll bets” can win up to 30:1 of your bet, but the odds of winning sit at around 35:1. This is a house edge of 13.9%. On the other hand, there are “Pass Line Wagers” and “Do Not Pass Line Wagers”. These bets may only have a payout ratio of 1:1, but they come with a low house edge of 1.41% and 1.36% respectively.
The rate of wins that you produce relies completely on the way in which you wager your bets. Reckless play can result in bad losses, but careful, the calculated play could see you walk away with more money than when you started. There are no other tactics involved in this game, just keep your head and you could keep your cash.
A good idea is to read our guide to online craps basics if you are still not sure about the game.
This is probably one of the most popular casino table games played in the world. As with Craps, the roll of the wheel and the outcome thereof is purely down to luck, but with a minimum house edge of 2.8% on French and European games (Single zero “0”), and 5.26% on the American equivalent (double zero “00”), you must realise that your strategy will determine a lot of the outcome.
There are many bet variations available in Roulette, the highest paying “Straight-Up Bet” on an individual number could pay you 35:1, but with odds of 36:1 (European) and 37:1 (American), the house edge increases exponentially.
Playing on outside bets will improve chances of great wins. These types of bets include “odds or evens”, “black or red”, and “1st 12”, “2nd 12”, and “3rd 12”. Of these the lowest house edge of 2.8% is attributed to picking either black or red. Although this will only double your money with a 1:1 payout ratio, you have almost 49% chance of winning. The variable that ups the casino edge by a percent is the fact that there is a green “0” position. But, when wagering €100, who would shy away at the chance of winning another €100?
If you like the idea of playing on a virtual machine, we advise that you set yourself before Video Poker instead video slots, for a consistently better return. But, you will need to know the game of Poker before playing blind at the machine. Knowing the hands increases your winning potential.
With a house edge of 5%, you stand to lose more frequently than at one of the table games, but your betting increments are usually far lower. The highest bet is usually 5 credits and landing a “Royal Flush” could transform that into 4,000 credits.
Play wise though. Go for the “three of a kind” or the “straight”, as these wins will be your bread and butter wins that will increase your profits slowly.
A lot of marketing effort is put into playing slots online. Just about every casino bonus includes slot tiles. The frequent “free spins” promotional offers are in designed to entice you to enter the high-risk environment of video slots. You should know by the sheer effort put into promoting these games, that this is where the casino makes most of its profit.
Slots are the riskiest games to play at any casino, be they land-based or online. The reel combinations are based purely on luck and are controlled by a random number generator, so there is not even any way of predicting when these machines will payout.
Sure, progressive jackpot slots offer massive rewards, and if you are ever lucky enough to win one, you could end up changing your life, but for the average slots player, this is not how life goes.
Though games are marketed with Return to Player ratings of 96% and 97% (house edge of 4% and 3%), actual house edge statistics should be looked at over a long play scenario. The longer you play a slot game the higher the house edge grows. Long-playing sessions could increase the house edge up to 15%. In this case, your bankroll will most probably be declining at a rapid pace.
Slots are extremely popular online because of the entertainment value that they offer amid all of the bonus features included. If this is why you play slots, then fair enough, but if you are into gambling to make money, it is best you take up a table card game and invest your cash there instead.
We at CasinoWow truly trust that you will be able to make the correct game selection to meet with your expectations when gambling. Should you want any more in-depth information on any one of the above-mentioned games, as well as some tips on how best to make a profit with each title, then please view our Game Guide section.
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