Live Dealer Casino Guide: Blackjack, Lightning Roulette, Baccarat & Other Modern Games
Live casino games have been with us for some time now. Their popularity in the industry is increasing as players are seeking out more realistic and immersive game options to enjoy online. The stats show that more and more casino gamers are moving to online casinos to get their fix, which in turn, ensures that iGaming studios around the world must step up their game to keep their players happy.
Live dealer gaming plays a big part in player satisfaction. So, if you have never experienced this type of game option, then perhaps this guide will inspire you to try it. Explore our expert introduction to live dealer gaming and live casinos to learn more about the game’s benefits, what types of games you can expect to play, what technology is used, and what tips you should know when you take your seat at the live roulette or live blackjack tables.
What is Online Live Casino?
The majority of casino games online, like online slots or roulette, are virtually rendered like a video game. You can load and play them at leisure from your desktop or mobile device. This provides you with a rather private gaming experience, where you can move along at your own speed as you play against a computer dealer.
While there are those of you out there that may enjoy this, others may crave a bit more personal interaction – something realistic and a little more immersive. Well, fortunately, live casino games provide the perfect answer for you!
Live casino games are hosted by real live dealers/croupiers that interact with you via a live video stream while the game plays out on your screen. The studio environment in which they find themselves is set up to look just like a high-end casino floor. The chatter of the other dealers hosting games in the background all adds to the casino ‘buzz’.
So, live casino games combine the best of the online and retail casino worlds together in a neat and convenient package. You’ll feel like you are at the casino, when in reality you are while curled up on your bed or sprawled out on the sofa or lounger.
Live Casino Technology
Technology and innovation are what make all the difference in the live casino world. While the dealer uses real cards each time they deal, the smart interface on your computer or mobile device can identify each hand, thanks to state-of-the-art sensors and cameras. It picks up on what card is dealt to who and calculates the values for you automatically.
For instance, if you receive a natural when playing a hand of blackjack, the interface will register the win before your eyes do. While the dealer may call the blackjack, the interface knows how to reward you for the hand.
While your chips are virtual, the dealer knows what you have bet because it shows on a visible display on their end. Certain gestures of their hand will clear the chips and prepare the new round.
It all looks so real. Your screen will overlap the table perfectly so that it looks like they are one. It’s truly quite awe-inspiring at first.
One of the best things about live casino games is that they include multi-player gameplay. While you may not be able to talk vocally, you can chat to players (and the dealer) via a text chat portal. When referencing the dealer, they will talk back to you verbally.
The fact that multiple cameras capture the passage of play means that you can get right up close to the action. When playing live roulette, for instance, one camera can remain on the dealer while another can provide a cutaway closeup of the wheel. There is no need to miss out on a single detail of the gameplay.
The Advantages of Live Casino Games
There are some tremendous advantages of playing at live casinos. Of course, there are some cons, but these are far and few between. Here are some of the benefits that you can experience.
|1. A realistic gaming experience||There are no “free to play” live games available|
|2. You can chat to fellow players and the dealer||No time to learn on the go|
|3. The game results are natural and need no RNG input|
|4. Maximum detail is available|
|5. Access to the casino 24/7|
|6. You can observe the gameplay without placing bets|
Top 3 Live Casinos and Deals
Here is a list of our top-rated casinos that offer exciting live casino game options on their platforms. Be sure to take advantage of a top-notch Welcome Bonus to get your gameplay off to the finest start possible.
1. Las Atlantis (USA players accepted) – Review
2. Casumo – Review
3. VideoSlots – Review
Please note that the nature of the bonus offers and the exact values can differ from region to region. Click on the link to find out what exclusive deal awaits you.
Live Casino Bonuses and More – Start Well!
Like with any other type of online casino, some live casino operators offer special casino bonuses and promotions for those who play their live dealer games. Top providers, like Casumo, even have an exclusive live casino welcome offer for new players on the site. This provides a great way to bolster your bankroll and explore the game options with free credits. This way, you do not have to fit the entire bill yourself.
There are a few different types of bonuses that you can expect to find at live casinos, but the two most popular ones are deposit match offers and free bonus bets.
Live Casino Deposit Match Bonus
Here, the casino will offer you bonus funds when you make a qualifying deposit. For example, the operator may offer 100% up to €300 for play on live roulette. In this case, any deposit you make under €300 will be matched. If you place a €100 deposit, the casino will give you another €100 in bonus credits, thus extending your bankroll to €200.
Free Bet Credits
Other operators may match a bet you use on live blackjack. The offer may state: Play live blackjack and bet €10 and get a free €10 to bet again.
While these offers resemble normal online casino bonuses, the difference lies in the playthrough requirements of the bonus policy. Live casino-friendly bonuses are weighted better for play on table games and live game shows.
Some live casino providers, like Pragmatic Play, include live dealer games in their Drop & Wins weekly tournaments. If you head to casinos, like TrueFlip, you can get in on the action and play live baccarat with Bitcoin or fiat currency.
Immersive Live Casino Game Options
When it comes to playing live casino games online, there is a tremendous selection of games you can enjoy across diverse game types.
Popular Live Casino Table Games
The best live casino sites will have myriads of table game options for you to try out. While you might see multiple options of live roulette, blackjack, or baccarat, the different variants cater to different risk levels and budgets. For instance, at Evolution Gaming casinos, most game variants will be available for either Standard, VIP, or Privé players. This caters to low-risk gamers, moderate risk-takers, and high rollers, respectively. It’s convenient to be able to play games to suit your game-style and budget.
You can also enjoy games like Speed Baccarat or Speed Roulette. These games are perfect for those of you who prefer to place as many bets as you can in an hour. A round of Speed Roulette, for instance, takes a mere 25 seconds from start to finish. A great compromise between this and normal live roulette would be Auto Roulette. Here, there is no dealer, so each spin of the reel is triggered automatically. This is a good option for those of you who would rather avoid staring at a real game host and prefer a speedier playthrough process.
Aside from the stalwarts mentioned above, there are various other types of card and dice games made available across the live gaming libraries. These often include Live Casino Hold’em Poker, Caribbean Stud Poker, Sic Bo, Red Dog, Hi-Lo, Craps, and many more.
Live blackjack and Live Baccarat – The top Live Casino Card Games
While live roulette is probably the most popular casino table game, it involves the roll of the wheel. As such, the runners-up, Live blackjack, and live baccarat are definitely hot contenders when it comes to card players. Live blackjack relies more on skill and therefore holds a better win rate than Live baccarat. If you learn live blackjack strategies, you could reduce the house edge to only 0.5%.
Live baccarat has been a misunderstood game for so long, but the rules and strategy are very simple. You can bet whether the banker will win the round, the player will win the round, or the result will be a tie. The hand closest to 9 wins the round. There are numerous side bets available in the game, which makes Live Baccarat the go-to card game for high rollers.
The Best Live Casino Game Show Titles
If you are looking for something a little different from the run-of-the-mill casino card games, you can always enjoy an exciting game show title. Evolution Gaming provides several super-popular games that are well received around the world. These include Dream Catcher, Crazy Time, Mega Ball, Deal or No Deal Live, Monopoly Live, and others.
Below is a summary of the top three attractions:
1. Crazy Time
Inspired by the Dream Catcher wheel game, Crazy Time is a glitzy and lively game where the spin of the wheel could reward you with massive rewards of up to €500,000. Simply place your bet on where you think the wheel will stop. Once the time runs out a multiplier will be added to a random spot on the wheel. If it falls on your chosen slot and the wheel lands in that position, you will learn the value of a Crazy Time.
2. Deal or No Deal
Based on the iconic American game show of the same name, this title can be played by any number of players. Pick the right briefcases, navigate the levels, and make tempting decisions along the way to tremendous prizes.
3. Monopoly Live
Based on the theme of the world’s most popular game, Monopoly Live uses the principles of the Dream Catcher game to keep the action spinning. Place your bets on which fields you think may land on the wheel to win various multiples of your prize back.
Be assured that exuberant hosts run the games. Their engaging personalities make you feel at home from start to finish. Let them spur you on towards success!
Lightning Games – Maximise Your Wins
If you enjoy many of the top hits at evolution gaming, but want to play for bigger wins, you can always play the ‘’Lightning’’ variant of a game. Lightning Baccarat, Lightning Blackjack, and Lightning Roulette present random multipliers into the game after you have made your bets. If you have the lucky cards or numbers (roulette) chosen by the RNG, you will receive bigger and better payouts for your hand.
The game studio atmosphere is electrifying, providing a little more action than the traditional games manage to muster on their own.
First-Person Games – Virtual Options
If you browse through Evolution Gaming’s library of titles, you will notice that many of the game variants come in a “First-Person” option. First Person Blackjack, First Person Dream Catcher, and more are player favorites.
These are not live casino games. Instead, they are the virtual version of the original live game. Here, RNG software determines the outcomes of the round. The principle behind the offering is to ready new players for the passage of play before exposing them to live dealers and real players.
Once you feel you have got the game waxed in the virtual first-person environment, you can press on the “Go Live” tab to take on the live version of the same game. Please note that although these games are great for practice, they are not free to play.
Top 5 Live Casino Game Providers
When it comes to picking a live casino, you will want to make sure that they support the best software on the market. There are five main market leaders. Each offers a unique twist and will be worth your time and effort.
1. Evolution Gaming
This is the out-and-out leader in the live dealer industry. They have more games than anybody in the market and have multiple industry awards to prove their dominance. With Evolution Gaming, you can enjoy both table games and live casino game show options.
2. Pragmatic Play
Pragmatic Play is a newbie to the market, but its offering is sublime. The quality of their software and the experience of their live casino dealers speaks for itself. They offer a good contingent of table games which include live blackjack, roulette, baccarat, and more.
Though one of the smaller live gaming studios, they cater predominantly to the Asian market. Fortunately, they have the power of Evolution Gaming behind them and are a subsidiary company of the giant game maker, along with NetEnt.
4. Microgaming Live
The oldest casino game maker in the world brings its experience to the fore with some quality live casino games. They focus mainly on card game options.
5. Playtech Live
Like Microgaming, Playtech has a lot of experience in the market, and they provide a similar offering of table games. Playtech probably has a further reach than the other providers on this list because they are unafraid to service markets that the other game makers won’t touch.
How to Play Live Casino Games
While the game rules from one title to the next differ massively, the basic passage of play is the same.
- Register your casino account and claim the welcome bonus.
- Make a qualifying deposit to load your account with credits.
- Click on the “Live Casino” tab on the homepage and select a game of choice.
- Choose a table with a suitable limit and take a seat. You may have to wait for the game round to end if you joined in the middle of a round.
- The dealer/host will welcome you.
- The dealer or host will invite you to place your bets.
- The passage of play (taking new cards etc) depends on the game being played.
- Once the game round is over, your selection/hand is evaluated, and you will either lose your chips or receive rewards for your wins.
- You can select to cash out and leave the table or place another bet and play another round.
While the basic passage of play is similar across all live table games, you can learn the specifics by searching our guides and learning more about the most popular casino games out there. Learn keen strategy and all the game rules at the same time.
Top 4 Tips for Playing the Live Casino Tables – Basic Etiquette
Always be cordial and polite at the table, always adhering to the instructions of the live dealer. Never be rude to the dealer or any other players. Instead – be positive and supportive to enhance the mood and atmosphere at the table.
2. Know the rules
Be sure to know how to play live blackjack before you take a seat at a table. The game follows a set timed procedure, so there is no time to learn on the go. There is also no tolerance when it comes to arguing about the game rules. The dealer’s interpretation is always correct.
3. Know the Passage of Play
Watch some clips of the live casino game you want to play to familiarise yourself with the order of the gameplay. This will avoid embarrassment in the long run.
4. Know the table limits
Be aware of the minimum and maximum wagers allowed on each table. Once again this ensures that you remain dignified when it’s your turn to play.
Stay Safe – Choose the Best Live Casinos
Finally, you are ready to hit the world of live dealer gameplay. But before you set out, you will want to be able to choose the most suitable online live casino to suit your escapade. Read through the table below and adopt our vetting process to make sure that you stay safe online.
|Payments||We always promote operators that offer a good list of payment methods that work in multiple jurisdictions so that you can make your deposits and withdrawals without a hitch.|
|Security||Playing safe is a priority. Top casinos will always have reputable licensing and SSL browser security and a professional customer support department and responsible gambling tools to help you manage your gameplay better.|
|Loyalty and VIP||The best live casinos will reward you for playing on their platforms. Tiered VIP programs and comp points always make regular players more satisfied. We suggest that you look for a casino with a great loyalty program.|
|Promotions||We always evaluate the promotions available at online live casinos. The top-rated deals provide suitable playthrough requirements for live dealer games and will help boost your gameplay with extra casino credits.|
|Games||We explore the casino menus for a dedicated live casino collection. The best live casinos are the ones that support a good diversity of real dealer table games and live game show options.|
To make things easier, you could always head to our recommended casino list to play at an operator that already has our PokCas seal of approval.