Author: Daniel King | Posted on: 2021-04-21 | Last updated on: 2023-03-13
As everything finds its place online, live casinos are no exception. There are hundreds of online casinos on the web, and you’re a thrill-seeking gambler on the hunt for the right one. You want the best games, and more importantly, you want to gamble somewhere trustworthy.
A couple of problems: you don’t know where to start, what to look for, and you don’t have the time to scour the Internet for the best online casinos. This complete 2023 online casino guide will educate you, like a beginner, about the most common American casino games, best practices and compare online casinos to real-life ones!
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There are many popular games available at online casinos-some are even mobile-ready! However, it’s essential to ensure the casino site is licensed and regulated by reputable bodies like the Malta Gaming Authority.
Doing so will ensure that your money is protected, and there will be no shady practices to make you lose purposefully. Below, you’ll find quick rundowns of the most popular online casino games and what to expect.
Blackjack is one of the most popular players vs dealer games for casinos because of how straightforward it is. A regular deck of cards is used, and each has a point value equal to the card’s number. So, a 2 of spades, clubs, diamonds, and hearts are all simply worth 2 points, and so on. Face cards, like the King, Queen, and Jester, are worth 10 points. Lastly, the ACE is worth 11 points.
Players (and the opposing dealer) begin with two cards. They can either take more cards from the deck or stand on their current sum. If their ending point total is higher than the dealer’s and remains under or precisely at 21, you win. If the dealer’s score is higher or players are over 21, you lose your money to the dealer.
Most online casinos host dozens of variations of Blackjack from software providers like Boss Media or Gamesys. Too many options are to get you confused into picking a higher house-edge game (more long-term return for the vendor). You can play Blackjack straight from the browser if you don’t like downloading software. You also can’t count cards on the Internet because the software shuffles the cards every hand, eliminating any edge you might have gotten in real-life.
In roulette, players just need to pick numbers between 1-36/37, sit back and socialize, and let the wheel tell their fate. Straightforward, no?. Although it’s a high-reward casino game, roulette also has some of the most extensive house edges so that it can get expensive for lousy betters.
Because players are online, they’re probably at a table by themselves, giving them control when the game starts. So, before hitting the “Spin” button, players bet on which spots the ball may land. After which, the bets are locked in, and the digital wheel starts to spin. Keep in mind that unlike in real-life casino roulettes, last-second bets aren’t possible. Then it’s about waiting to see where the ball lands.
There are different Roulette game types. Canadian gamblers, for the most part, will encounter American or European Roulette. The critical difference is that Americans add an extra 0 to the wheel (1-37 number range), while Europeans don’t (1-36 number range). Players should always choose European roulette because they have a lower house edge and therefore are less risky.
So, players should always look for casino sites that offer both American and European variants so they can limit their risks at tables. Additionally, live dealer roulette games are great because it enables players to socialize using the chat and allows multiple bets at once. They may be a bit slower and with a higher minimum bet, but it’s more fun to play with others at the moment.
Online casino players should focus on sites with generous deposit bonuses and those that consider roulette play when earning those bonuses. Many online casinos don’t fully consider roulette when offering bonus cash to players, forcing players to play longer to amass enough points to convert the bonus earnings to cash.
Many roulette players may occasionally have marathon sessions. Why not be rewarded for them? The best online casinos give importance to their VIP programs. Every bonus or reward a casino gives out goes right to your long-spent time. So, keep an eye out for online casinos that don’t hesitate to reward their players.
Being able to gamble anytime, anywhere with your smartphone is a huge convenience factor that players should consider. Top-rated online casino sites have built-in HTML5 or Flash that deliver seamlessly zero-lag gameplay unless you are on a lousy internet connection from your phone.
Slot machines are yet another straightforward casino game. Using a random number generator (RNG), slot machines connect game symbols relevant to the game’s theme to each number in the algorithm. If all the numbers (or symbols) match in a row, you win.
At licensed online casino sites, slot machines are regularly tested to ensure randomness by gaming regulators. Since slot games are naturally designed to pay out less money than they take in, they don’t have to be rigged to be profitable anyway.
By definition, free slot games don’t require a real-money bet. They’ve become increasingly popular with mobile games, where they’re an excellent pass-time while riding the bus. They also serve as trial games before investing real money at online casinos. You can play from your browser or download the game to play offline. Online casinos tend to provide numerous slot games, including 150+ free games at your fingertips.
A video poker game is quite similar to slot machines. Players must use cash to buy credits on the machine for chances at hitting winning combinations of symbols.
The difference is that In Video Poker, you wager between 1 and 5 coins and then press the “deal” button. The system then presents you with five playing cards that you choose to either keep or discard. If you discard some, the game consequently deals with replacement cards. The value of your final poker hand determines your payoff.
Unlike slot machines, you can calculate the house edge for video poker. This is because the computer that generates results bases the probabilities of actual playing card probabilities, common knowledge. For instance, we know that there’s a 1 in 4 chance of getting a card of a suit.
Also, unlike in slot machine games where everything other than clicking a button is out of your control, you control which cards to keep and not keep in video poker. So, players are strategically making decisions that impact your odds of winning–also known as “agency.”
Even if players aren’t skilled or experienced, the payback is almost always more incredible on a video poker game than on a slot machine game–capping at 95%. Simultaneously, most video poker games start at that number, with a percentage of 99% or higher.
There are over 100 variations of video poker. Most differ through adding extra elements of chance to increase available jackpots. Jacks or Better is the traditional and most popular form of poker. The lowest paying hand is, you guessed it, a pair of jacks or better. A 52 card deck starts the game, and the top jackpot is paid off if you hit a royal flush.
Next in popularity comes Deuces Wild. Wherewith wild cards, some cards can substitute for a card that’s needed to make a more substantial hand. If all the 3s are wild, for example, you’ll always see stronger hands. Bonus Poker is similar to Jacks or Better, except you get different payoffs on sure four-of-a-kind hands. Double Double Bonus Poker is a variant where payouts for all four-of-a-kind hands are increased.
A paytable is a grid-like cross-table used in slot games and video poker games that shows how much your wage pays off when you hit a particular combination on a gambling machine. The far-left column lists the best possible hands to the worst. The row sitting on the table’s top is how many coins a player bets (1-5).
When you cross-reference those columns and rows to meet at an intersection, you learn the payoff for a specific hand with a certain amount bet on it.
It’s recommended that you always bet five coins when playing video poker. This is because, on virtually all variations, the royal flush is the top-paying hand. Players win 250 for 1 if they bet 1, 2, 3, or 4 coins. But if you bet five coins, it pays off at 800 for 1, making up a big part of the game’s payback percentage.
Even before COVID-19, online casinos have been a thing for over a decade. Many love the idea of playing practically any game they want in the comfort of their homes.
Sure, we can all admit that dressing up to look fresh to go out to the casino is loads of fun. On the other hand, it’s a lot of work and costly. For starters, if players don’t live near a casino, the journey is burning gas, accumulating tolls, parking, and administrative fees just to get your foot in the door. Regular gamblers must be ready to make the trip.
Then they’re faced with potentially heavy traffic (especially near the casino area). Of course, we can’t forget about family either. Kids and pets must be taken care of while you do your thing. So many things are holding you back!
Once you’re there, get ready to squish through the drunk crowd to try and get in line for a spot at a crowded table. For many, this is the best part–the people, the interactions. But for others, it’s a loud, sweaty, expensive nightmare.
Online gamblers save themselves the time and cost of travelling to the casino—along with no stress for parking and peace from the obnoxious drunkards. And best yet, you’re always guaranteed a seat at your favourite game, with no stay-limits and closing hours.
Don’t give online casinos the medallion just yet. Brick-and-mortar casinos are winners for the extroverts out there. Going to a casino isn’t just for gambling; for some, it’s also about the experience and interactions. With the right group, you can have twice the fun, make memories, and meet new people.
But, maybe you don’t feel like going out that day, whatever the reason may be. Online casinos will always be an option for you. One way online casinos are tackling the socialization aspect is through live dealer tables–where you can play games with a human dealer on the other end of the screen and other players you can chat with.
Players will find that they’ll probably have an easier time contacting a representative online than in real life, where hundreds of others are lining up with problems at the reception. Additionally, all communications with live chats, emails, or calls are recorded (with trusted casinos, at least), so everyone is held accountable, ensuring proper service.
It’s arguably safer (financially) to gamble in the peace of your home where everyone isn’t watching you and can’t influence your decisions into perhaps becoming self-destructive. You could earn more money with smarter decisions and avoid a target on your back in worst-case scenarios.
In Canada, top-rated online casinos that are credibly licensed by institutions like the MGA or government bodies conform 100% with the law. Though this may be true for the U.S., Canada, and parts of Europe, it’s important to note that no universal laws permit or regulate gambling. Online casino laws are regionally dependent. Before creating a casino account, players should check that the website is licensed in a jurisdiction where it can operate legally.
Your money will be perfectly safe in most online casinos. The top-rated online casinos are longstanding with no hints of fraud. They also offer a wide range of securely encrypted payment methods like Visa, Mastercard, and Paypal--who will protect you against theft. Always read the payment policies page, where you will find details on your deposit processes and payout terms that arrive in a reasonable timeframe.
Yes! Most large online casinos are browser-compatible with mobile devices--at least for some games. Others have dedicated native apps downloadable to your device.
Taxes on casino winnings exist in some parts of the world, but not in Canada. Generally speaking, your winnings will be treated the same as lotteries: tax-free. However, over the past few years, the Canadian Revenue Agency (CRA) has begun identifying professional gamblers, categorizing their winnings as business income and taxable like any other business income. If a large sum is won, consulting a professional is recommended to double-check.
As we said, the best casinos have been around for a long time, are licensed, and offer great games and bonus deals.