Traditional online casinos use Random Number Generators (RNG) to power their games, so when you play conventional online blackjack, there are no cards and no dealer, just the computerised representation of a game with the cards “chosen” at random by RNG technology.
However, live dealer casino games seek to recreate something of the look, feel and authenticity of a real life casino and rather than using RNG they use real people, real cards (or wheels, or whatever is relevant to the casino game you are playing) and play out in real time.
The dealer or croupier is filmed, either in a purpose built casino studio or in an actual casino, and you interact live and in real time with them when you play, just as if you were in a real bricks and mortar casino.
The croupier – invariably an attractive and scantily clad lady (though there are some male equivalents out there for the ladies!) – uses real cards and responds to your computer-generated bets and commands and you can even interact with them verbally via a messaging facility, as you can with other players at the table.
Because live casino games involve real dealers and casino staff you will almost always find other players at your table, as, unlike RNG casino games, it isn’t possible to have an almost infinite number of tables and so, just like in a “real world” casino, you play alongside fellow gamblers.
This is very much part of the appeal of live dealer casino games – they create a much more lifelike experience. As said, you can interact with you’re the dealer and your fellow casino players and the game proceeds at the same sort of pace that you would find in a traditional casino.
Many people prefer a live dealer casino because they feel they can trust them more. All of the top online casinos we work with are 100% trustworthy and can certainly be guaranteed to use technology that is both fair and random, however, if you have any doubts then maybe a live casino is for you as you can actually see the cards being turned and the wheel being spun before your very eyes.
Live dealer casino games are certainly worth a try if you’ve never played them before, not least because they often have their own dedicated casino bonuses that can be claimed in addition to the main casino welcome bonuses casinos offers to new customers. They also make a pleasant change from the standard online casino games and are also very good if you want to settle in for a long session because they generally play out at a slower pace than RNG casino games, meaning your money will last longer, especially if you happen to be on a bad run of luck at the time.
Live Dealer Casino Game History
Live dealer casino games saw a large rise in popularity from about 2012 onwards but in actual fact they have been around significantly longer. The first live games were played in around 2003, so they have been around considerably longer than many people think.
Software supremo Playtech, who power many of the best online casinos, brought out the first ever live dealer games but in the early days the technology, both hardware and software and for both the casinos and the users, meant that live dealer games were nowhere near as good as they now are.
Live dealer games use optical character recognition (OCR) technology to effectively convert a visual image into a form that allows the player to interact with what’s on their screen, and improvements in this technology, as well as more reliable and ever-faster internet connections, are what have helped live dealer casino games take a huge leap forward over the last few years.
Live dealer games remain more expensive for online casinos to operate, due to greater staffing requirements (both in terms of technical support and the lovely ladies – and gents – who deal) and the need for a physical location in which to host and from which to transmit the games. That said, more and more casinos are offering better and better live deal games and with this great option now available on mobile too there really never has been a better time to try a live dealer casino, either on your desktop, tablet or mobile.
How To Play Live Dealer Casino Games
Playing live dealer casino games is just like playing the standard version of the games so please check out our blackjack or roulette game guides for information on how to play, or our main game guide page for other casino options.
The only real difference that you will encounter is, as said, the slower pace of the games, which is good if you prefer a natural speed but not so good if you have a large casino bonus to work through. The other factor to consider is, again, as mentioned, the fact that there will be other players at your table and as such you can’t always guarantee you will be able to grab a seat at the blackjack or roulette table that suits your stake. Waiting times are rarely long though and some casinos will allow you to join a waitlist or be notified when a spot becomes free.
What Games Can I Play In Live Dealer Casinos?
The main live dealer games, and certainly when it comes to those that are available on mobile, are blackjack and roulette, quite simply because they are by far the most popular casino games around. Certain sites do also offer one or two other games, including baccarat, craps, casino hold ‘em and/or a few other card games, but in general it does tend to be very blackjack- and roulette-orientated.
That said, as the other games grow in popularity and the technology improves – and the cost of hosting the games drops – we would expect more and more casinos to expand both their main live dealer games portfolio and their mobile live offering.
Live Dealer Facts, Stats and Odds
As with the details of how to play the specific games, please see the main game guide section and the specific game information for odds, facts and stats.