Online Gambling School: Junior High

Moving along the learning curve.

After going through the basic introduction to the online casino world in previous lessons, the Junior High study program provides more in-depth and advanced lessons. Here you will learn not only about the games but also about managing your budget, the various banking options, the odds you are up against, and even the criteria for picking a casino. When you finish these lessons, you will agree that none of them is expendable.

Online Gambling: Code of Conduct

Based on the American Gaming Association Code of Conduct for Responsible Gaming 2013.

The American Gaming Association (AGA) Code of Conduct for Responsible Gaming includes pledges to the public, AGA employees, and its patrons. The following is a summary of that Code, an invaluable set of guidelines in the gaming world.

To the Public

The pledges to the public are to support research-based policies and to provide responsible oversight.

  • Promoting research-based policies means funding the National Center for Responsible Gaming's (NCRG) research. This is the premier scientific research and information on gambling and health.
  • Findings are used to determine best casino practices and to facilitate implementation towards the aim of more responsible Gaming.
  • Importantly, besides promoting research, the Code calls for educational efforts regarding findings for patrons, employees, and policy-makers.

By funding NCRG work, the AGA improves the public gaming experience and safety.

To Employees

The pledges to employees include education and training to support employees in ensuring responsible Gaming.

  • Employees will be educated on responsible Gaming and related policies and procedures and engage in specific responsible gaming training when they are first hired and throughout employment in refresher courses.
  • A culture of specific tools for constant open communication will be promoted towards supporting employees in increasing their understanding and facilitation of responsible Gaming.

The Code's pledges to employees focus on enabling them to be active participants in improving the gaming experience and safety for all.

To Patrons

The pledges to patrons include promoting responsible Gaming, preventing underage gambling, responsible advertising, and responsible serving of alcohol.

  • Towards promoting responsible Gaming, the Code requires the clear posting of information and assistance regarding responsible Gaming on casino floors, particularly by cash access devices. Information will similarly be posted on gaming websites.
  • Information on the probabilities of winning and losing will be made available to patrons and employees.
  • Patrons should always be allowed to ask for certain privileges to be revoked or denied access to gaming facilities; according to the Code, the facilities are responsible for making every reasonable effort to honor those requests. Similarly, casinos may only allow access when it has been requested.
  • The legal age for gambling will be posted and enforced; employees will be trained in protocols for unattended minors, underage gambling, and underage use of alcohol and tobacco.
  • Casino gambling advertising and marketing must contain responsible messages, taste good, and make no misleading claims. It may not appeal specifically to minors, including featuring anyone who appears to be minor. Nor may it claim that gambling will guarantee social, financial, or personal success.


A Little History

Always a good place to start - the beginning. A break from banking advice and casino game overviews.

The history of online gambling is relatively short and dates back to 1994 when the Antigua and Barbuda government passed the Free Trade and Processing Zone Act. This law made the issuing of gambling licenses legal and fueled the establishment of online gambling as an industry.

That same year, the world's first online gambling software, Microgaming, was founded and followed up by a safe online transactions system by Cryptologic in 1995. These technological developments gave way to the debut of the world's first-ever online casino - InterCasino - on August 18 that year. Intercasino offered 18 different casino games and access to the National Indian lottery draw, yet a real money bet wasn't placed until 1996.

Despite much legal opposition to online gambling, many significant industry leaps and bounds were made. For example, only three months after the release of Intercasino, Cassava Enterprises launched - an online casino and Pacific Poker website center and database. Owned by Israeli partners Avi and Aaron Shaked and Shai and Ron Ben-Yitzchak, this parent company was to become what is termed today as "the largest casino website on the Internet." Other major developments included the establishment of e-gaming software company Boss Media AB and Microgaming's "The Cash Splash" - the Internet's first progressive jackpot slot machine. Additionally, the growing success of the Internet increased access to this exciting new gambling experience.

The year 2000 saw many countries begin realizing the economic and social value of online gambling and slowly introducing the legalization of online gambling websites. Such countries included the Caribbean, the USA, Asia, Australia, Europe, and some British territories such as the Isle of Man, which brought the online gambling industry to international distinction. As a result, online gambling standards were rapidly raised, and many new features were launched, including live dealers, multiple gameplay, increasingly larger jackpots, and televised gambling tournaments.

By 2005, the popularity of the online gambling industry had reached a peak and was already accepted as a basic feature of the Internet. Millions of people worldwide were getting on board to share in the millions of dollars worth of jackpot prizes and discover this exhilarating new gambling technology for themselves. US residents constituted more than half of the regular online gambling audience. As popularity increased, so did the number of online casinos, poker rooms, gambling-related websites, and gambling software providers, and many had become listed as part of the stock exchange.

In 2006, the online gambling industry experienced a major setback when the ongoing legal battles against online gambling in the United States finally triumphed. The Internet Gambling Enforcement Act, signed by Bush on October 13, prohibits online gambling in all its forms for US residents and US-based gambling companies. However, valued at over US$100 billion, with more than 450 gambling-related sites and several thousand online casinos, it will take significantly more to abolish what is today a high-powered, highly popular industry.

Industry experts predict that the online gambling experience will only improve. The unassailable odds, user-friendly graphics, and constantly developed multi-player features are attracting more and more people to join in. However, the online gambling industry is yet to take the world by storm!

In later lessons, you will learn about the specifics of the gambling experience, from the games offered to the banking options available and playing for real.

If you wish to revisit a past year later, visit our industry timeline, where we break up the history of online gambling in a fun and engaging way.


Choosing a Casino

Now that you know what methods are available to deposit funds in an account and withdraw winnings, follow these tips for choosing the casino that will benefit you the most.

You'd think picking a casino is about the biggest payouts. Wrong! Deciding where you want to gamble should be based on various things to make your initial gambling experience good. Also, choosing the wrong online casino can lead you to some dangerous pitfalls. To help you make the best selection, we've ranked the most important things to look out for when choosing an online casino.

1. Make sure that the casino is licensed

Reading online reviews and recommendations is a great way to know whether a certain casino is good. Hundreds of reviews offer an honest and detailed evaluation of some of the best and worst online casinos. Some sites also have message boards and chat rooms you can visit before gambling. Most people are more than happy to share their thoughts, and you can ask questions of your own without any form of registration. So let someone else do the dirty work for you!

2. Look for awards

Some online casinos have areas where you can vote for the site. At the end of each month, service sites collect all the votes and rank the casinos from most popular to least. Usually called a "top site" award, it is a good indicator of what's hot and not in the gambling public.

3. Get a feel for the software

There are heaps of gambling software providers these days, and all are different; some require download while others don't, some have better graphics than others, some are more user-friendly, etc. Unless you already have a favorite, there are several ways to get a feel for the software before actually using it. Firstly, the better casinos will provide you with a preview of the gaming software, such as screenshots and "how to play" instructions. Secondly, many casinos allow you to set up a guest account and play for fun. It's always better to see what you're in for before paying for it!

4. See what games the casino offers

Some casinos are game specific, while others offer up to 100 and more different casino games. Make sure the casino offers your favorite games before signing up or your preferred game variant. Also, beware of using online flash versions of software, as this usually means a limited choice of games (as opposed to the download version, which has more).

5. Does the casino provide support?

Online support and customer services help you when you get stuck, need help figuring out what to do, or have questions. As a beginner, you'll need this service a lot, and it's good to know that you're not alone. Try to avoid casinos that don't offer full-time support, and give them a call before gambling to see if they're legitimate.

6. Check the approved payment methods

Most people favor a specific payment method. Yet online casinos will only offer you some of them, so be sure the site approves your preferred payment option. Also, check the site's terms and conditions to see how long it takes to receive your winnings, as some casinos will only pay up once a month! One week should be the maximum, yet instant transactions are the best.

7. Search for good deposit bonuses and payout percentages

Almost all online casinos will offer new users a first deposit bonus, yet they differ greatly. For example, today, it is reasonable for a site to offer a 100% match on a deposit of up to $100 and a continual monthly bonus. As for payout percentage rates, reputable casinos generally offer 96 - 96.5% payout percentages. Rarely will they take less, but if they take more, stay away!

If you can checklist everything above, you have found a good site. In that case, move on to the next lesson, which will guide you in your first real money game. If not, however, we recommend you keep looking. Just in case, we have added a blacklist of all the online casinos you should keep clear from.

Some licensing jurisdictions are more in tune with industry standards than others. Such places include the Isle of Man, Gibraltar, and Cyprus. This can improve the site's quality and ensure fair gameplay and reasonable conduct.


About the Games

The basic rundown on the various casino games you will encounter in your gambling experience, fundamental vocabulary and terms, rules, and more.

Gamblers can play a wide range of games, and each game can be grouped into one of four categories: card, dice, table, or slot games. Here we will give a brief overview of each game category and provide links for further reading:

Card Games - card games have been around since the late 1300s and vary between countries. The playing cards can be either traditional or game-specific, and the list of card games available is extensive. Gambling mostly involves three main card games; Poker, Blackjack, and Baccarat. However, many others can be played for real money wagers, including Bourré, Primero, Red Dog, and thirty-one.

Most card games are modified versions of existing card games, yet some are invented. In any case, rules are subject to adjustment according to the wish of the players. The rules agreed upon in any group of players are known as the "house rules." A standard "deck" or "pack" refers to a set of 52 cards of suit and rank and is used for almost all gambling card games. Likewise, the games almost always require dealing cards, necessitating a dealer.

Dice Games - According to findings, the use of dice dates back to approximately 2000 BC. Dice were used in ancient history for Gaming, other decision-making, and recreational purposes. For example, it was shown that Roman soldiers tossed dice for Christ's clothing while standing guard during his crucifixion. Also, it is believed that dice were used to cheer up soldiers between the Trojan War battles. The dice themselves differ from game to game; although ordinary dice are most commonly used, many kinds exist, including polyhedral and psychic dice.

Dice are usually used as a random device, yet are the most central component of any given dice game. In gambling, such games can include Liar's dice and Craps, which have many versions. Craps is also considered the world's most popular and alluring dice game.

Table Games - are games of skill whereby balls or disks are propelled across specially-designed tables. Table games emerged around the same time as card games in the mid-1300s, and each game has significantly developed since. Some table games are even miniaturized versions of outdoor sports. For example, the list of different table games available to gamblers includes roulette, darts, and billiards - which in itself comprises four variants, including Snooker and American Pool.

In gambling, table games will encompass a table covered with a printed felt layout and may even provide seating arrangements for players and dealers. The area in which the dealer deals is known as "the pit," and players are required to sit on the opposite side of the pit. The games are played with various playing equipment, such as dice or card, and can sometimes be a mix of other game types.

Slot Games - A precursor to the modern slot machine is Sittman and Pitt's machine, developed in 1891 in Brooklyn, New York. The simplest version, however, was invented by Charles Fay from San Francisco in 1887. Yet it wasn't until 1964 that the first fully electromechanical slot machine called "Money Honey" was developed.

Slot games today are a coin-operated kind of casino game in which players must pull a lever to activate the spinning of three or more reels. The combination of symbols seen on the reels when the spinning stops will determine a win or loss and to what degree. In casinos, winnings are usually collected as credit for other games, and the odds are pre-programmed. Sometimes a line of machines will be linked to create a large "jackpot" prize, known as a "progressive jackpot."

Many of today's slot games are based on poker card games. This means that the slot machine reels will contain various card faces, and the final combination of card faces spun will determine whether or not the player has won. This is decided according to the poker variant's winning hand rules. For this reason, slot games in Australia are called "poker machines."


Playing For Real

A few remarks concerning playing for real money - the risks involved and the benefits that lie henceforth.

After learning the basics of online banking, reading about the different casino games, and practicing them for fun, you are ready to play for real.

Here you will find the information you're still missing, as far as we're concerned. First, you must understand that wagering real money throws online gambling in a new light, which differs greatly from simply playing for fun. Understanding all its aspects is important to maintain fun no matter how serious your wagering gets.

An earlier lesson taught you the key elements in picking a casino, yet we will need to delve deeper into this area for you to be able to make a truly wise decision. This involves learning how sign-up bonuses and free chips work. You probably already noticed many sign-up deals flashing at you when entering an online casino, but be aware! As you will see, there is more to them than big sums and too-good-to-be-true offers.

Something else you might have yet to consider is how you are required to wager and what is expected of you as a real money gambler. This can include a wide range of things, such as legality, the kinds of financial transactions available to you, game-specific wagering, and more. Also, how do you get your winnings? As you will learn, it is all about the fine print, and we will teach you what to read, how to read it, and where!

Once you begin, you may play for real regularly. As a frequent gambler, knowing about all the benefits available to you will be worthwhile. VIP clubs and loyalty programs have their perks, and once you know what they are, you won't miss out.

Finally, many legal aspects should be covered before you start depositing money. For example, to gamble responsibly, you should always know where gambling is allowed and prohibited, which payment methods are in tune with the law, and how online casinos handle transactions and player accounts.

It sounds daunting and heavy, but we'll explain all these aspects in more depth as you go. You'll see that learning things step by step makes it much simpler. Another few lessons, and you'll be able to begin raking in those winnings.


Online Banking

Before playing for real money, consider the options for managing your account. We survey the four payment methods and teach you how they work. All you are left with is picking the most convenient method.

It is important to know about the different payment methods available to online gamblers because:

  • you can choose the one best suited to you
  • some online casinos accept only certain payment method types
  • some payment methods are available only for residents of certain countries or cities
  • some casinos offer bonuses and deals upon using various payment methods.

There are four main payment method categories:

  • Credit card - most of the fears associated with using a credit card online are because of the requirement to provide personal details. However, online credit card use is safe when a privacy policy is provided, and all reputable casinos will do so. A privacy policy acts as a legal agreement between the site and the user (you) not to use your details for other purposes. It lists the steps taken to ensure your information remains private. Despite these doubts, thousands of people use their credit cards for online payments, as it is quick and easily accessible.
  • Electronic wallet ("e-wallet") concept - an online funds transaction service. By registering at such a service (e.g., Neteller), you may deposit money into an online account designed specifically for gambling purposes, utilizing a credit card, ATM card, or an online banking account from your bank. Once funds are deposited, they can be withdrawn and transferred to any merchant website that supports the service. The system is very fast, trustworthy, and secure.
  • Direct transfer from your bank account to the website - if you worry about providing personal details, this is your best alternative. Transferring money directly into an online casino account doesn't let the casino see your bank details, yet it still allows you to make transactions as you please. Transferring funds will depend on your bank and their response time, yet this system is completely secure. Echeck is a good example of such a system.
  • Manual direct transfers are similar to method #3, only that transfers to your online casino account are made manually via your regular banking account. Once the bank confirms the deposit, they automatically transfer it into your online casino account. Again, the time taken for this process to complete depends on your bank's response time.

Due to gambling laws and regulations in the US and other countries, some credit card companies and banks have been blocked from providing money transfers and payments to online casinos and gambling websites. So check your local and national laws to ensure you are choosing a government-approved payment option and not wasting your time.

Once done with this stage, you can move on to the next lesson, where you will learn the basic rules for managing your budget.


What are Payouts

Odds, finance, banking, and payments are at the end of the day. But, you want to walk with some cash winnings. So, this is what payouts mean to you, the player.

There are several main factors a gambler must look into and consider. These include the odds on hand, software issues, the law and regulations, and more. One of the factors is the Casino Payout Percentage.

Also known as the Payout, this figure should appear on the online casino sites you visit.

It indicates what proportion of the total money bet by players is being paid out as winnings. It is usually around the 97% mark, which means 97% of all the money bet at the casino is paid out to winners; the casino keeps 3% of the money in this example.

Alternatively, casino payouts could be calculated per game, not globally, for the entire casino.

Seek the signature

Furthermore, the payouts should be accompanied by third-party verification. Audited payouts are a sign of the site's trust and fairness.

A verification certificate usually appears on the casino's main page. They should be updated once a month, and the reviews are updated, so they vary slightly from time to time.

Three famous independent auditors are known around the industry. They are the Online Players Association (OPA), PricewaterhouseCoopers, and eCOGRA (e-Commerce Online Gaming Regulation and Assurance). Others exist, too, and can be looked up.

Payouts in perspective

Online casino payouts are calculated as much as they have always been at land-based casinos. They are, however, higher online compared to the brick-and-mortar casino payouts. Much higher. This advantage is achieved by the fact that the expenses of the web casino are much smaller than that of the land-based casino, leaving more money to be handed out to the players.

What makes for good payouts is not only the number, the percentage quoted. It is also the verification issue, and your feeling, too.


Personal Finance/Budget

This lesson's importance cannot be overstated. We offer basic rules to help you keep up with your budget, avoid losing uncontrollably and maximize winnings.

Keeping gambling fun involves knowing your limits and "budgeting" your funds. If you cannot control your finances, you may lose more money than you have or develop an addiction. The following techniques are recommended to maintain control over your finances and never lose sight of gambling's fun side:

Set up a secure account.

A good way to ensure that you will have money to your name no matter how much you gamble is setting up a "safe" account. A secure account is a checking account that doesn't have Internet banking, credit card, or debit card facilities. When you receive your wages, set aside a limited amount for gambling and recreation, and put the rest into a secure account. This way, when your gambling money runs dry, you won't be able to eat away the rest of your hard-earned salary.

Set up a maximum daily deposit limit.

Gambling online with debit cards is an important advantage over other payment methods. Before you begin gambling, contact the casino support line, and set a daily deposit limit for your card. This will guarantee that you don't spend more money than you have when gambling, and once you've reached your limit, continue gambling only if you're winning additional funds.

Cash-out frequently

Leave if you're on a losing streak and nearing your gambling limit. If you're on a winning streak, however, cash out small amounts of your winnings as you go. This way, you avoid leaving empty-handed and even ensure yourself extra gambling funds for next time.

Look for special deals.

Be on the lookout for casino games that have calculated bets to maximize your gambling budget's value. Also, promotional offers and bonuses can give your gambling budget a boost. One helpful resource to consult is the elementary school lesson, where we list the casino games with the highest odds. Hence those are the most profitable to play.

It is important to remember that gambling is a recreational activity - not an occupation! Winning is naturally its most rewarding aspect, yet losing money is just as natural, so don't rely on winnings as your income. Once you stop having fun, it is a sign that you are losing control over your finances. The most enjoyable gambling experience is a responsible one!

Return to this lesson.

Having read this lesson carefully, you are invited to move on and read the next lessons. However, you are always welcome, and it will be wise to return to this lesson and refresh these recommended practices to keep on top of your funds.


Understanding the Odds

A moment before choosing an online casino to play at, learn how the odds are calculated for the different games and what it means for the house to have an advantage.

The word "odds" might not mean much to the beginner gambler. This is completely understandable, as odds are complicated by many complicated calculations. But don't let this discourage you from gambling! - the fundamentals of odds are easy to grasp and put into practice. This brief explanation of the odds will give you all you need to know to make sensible gambling decisions.

You must understand that odds are always designed to benefit the casino rather than you. For this reason, they are also called house advantage or hold percentage. For example, if the house advantage is 5%, then for every $100 you wager, the casino will receive $5. So the higher the house advantage is, the more you are expected to lose. Accordingly, the longer you play a single game, the more money you will lose.

The odds are always pre-determined and calculated according to external factors. Therefore, they will vary greatly between games. When gambling, "odds" means the ratio of money that may be won versus the ratio of money that must be bet. For example, if the odds on a particular game are 2-1, you must bet $1 for the chance to make $2. In addition, some games incorporate a skill level, which can give you better odds when playing.

Take Blackjack, for instance. The odds of Blackjack are calculated according to the percentage of times you would lose if you decide to "hit" with a certain card value in your hand. Therefore, you can hit or stand by looking at your card value. If it is 11, you have a 0% chance of busting because no other card is valued at more than 10. As your card value increases, so do your chances of busting. Also, the fewer packs used when playing makes it easier to estimate the percentage of a certain card being dealt.

Another good example is Craps. To calculate the chance of a specific number being rolled, divide 36 (total number of dice outcomes) by the total number of combinations for that number. Rolling a seven is made up of the most dice combinations and consequently has the highest chance of being rolled. This explains why a pass line bet has the highest odds and is a bet on most commonly(For example, a three can be rolled in 2 ways: 1+2 or 2+1. Therefore 36/2 =18, meaning you have a 1 in 18 chance of rolling 3.).


Easy Gambling Math

Learn the subtle art of calculating how much you could win or lose on any game, and make your school math teacher proud.

Mental Maths Helps You Tip the Odds

The wonders of mathematics can achieve more than just building spaceships and engineering bridges. They can also help you win vast sums of money and permanently put you ahead of the game.

Knowing how to calculate your odds allows you to plan how much to bring to the table when to pitch in more cash, when to hold, and when to book out. This will give you a fighting chance against the casinos and, if nothing else, will make your elementary math teacher proud.

How to Calculate Your Average Expected Winnings

A really easy formula will show you what your expected winnings or losses will be. Of course, hearing the word formula is usually enough to cause flashbacks to the horrors of high-school math class, but let me assure you, this one is as easy as pie.

It goes as follows:

Your Average Bet

x Hours Played

x Speed of the Game (meaning the number of decisions per hour)

x House Edge

= Expected Win/Loss.

For Example:

If you played Blackjack at $10 a hand (Your Average Bet) for one hour (Hours Played) using Basic Strategy (80 decisions per hour - Speed of Game) at a 0.005% disadvantage, your expected win/loss amount would be $4.

($10 average bet x 80 decisions per hour x 1 hour x .005 house edge = $4).

This formula can be used with any game you like, but like everything else in the world, it follows the basic principle of the universe: that nothing's perfect.

The Fortune of Risk

As the old proverb goes, Hell hath no fury like a woman's scorn, and Lady Luck spares no expense when following this rule.

This means that the crazy and unpredictable fashions of chance can sweep away your gambling mathematics on a single evening without asking for permission, leaving you with a mountain of money or none.

Yes, very rude. But, over a long enough timeline, the rule of the averages that are stated above becomes true and gives you a clear idea of how to win.



Gambling Term Dictionaries

Lists of gambling and gaming terms abound on the Internet.

Gambling Glossaries

Gambling dictionaries are fun to read and determine whether you can define the listed terms without cheating. But, of course, they're helpful too, especially to the beginner who can easily be overwhelmed by the breadth and extent of the meta-language that resides behind all gambling and casino activity.


The Internet is probably the best place to find a list of gambling and gaming terms. A quick Google search will likely churn out dozens of these lucky lexicons. In addition to definitions of terms used in general gambling, such as dirty money, grind, and vigorish, you can also find terms and definitions specific to each particular casino game. Other lists will steer you through the maze of technical terms used in online gambling, such as sign-up bonuses and online payment systems.

Online Gambling Websites

Many websites host glossaries of gambling and gaming terms, and you can flick back and forth to these pages while playing your favorite games. But, of course, you'd be well advised to play the practice games before laying any hard-earned cash on the table if you need to be 100% familiar with the terms used in any online game of chance.


The greatest challenge in picking up any new activity is not learning the rules; it's learning the slang or jargon. Gambling is full of such language. For example, a whale is not an immense seafaring mammal in gambling terms. Instead, it's the name for a serious, high-net-worth individual who places high bets. A stooper is not a person with bad posture; he skulks around the race track picking up discarded betting slips in the hope that he'll find one that represents unclaimed winnings. Top hatting is not dressing up for a night on the tiles. Instead, it refers to the sneaky practice of placing bets after the outcome has been decided.

Gambling and casino gaming is replete with these jargon words, and the only real way to keep track of them is via a good gambling dictionary.


What are Live Dealer Casinos

Face real-life dealers as you play online. Live Dealer Casinos: what are they, who plays them, and why should I?

A new revolution for gamblers online offers more than the mechanical spin or dealing of cards from an ambivalent computer dealer. Instead, players looking for a land-based casino feeling can have it right in their living room or wherever their computer may be.

So what are live dealers?

Just exactly what it sounds like, in this type of gaming atmosphere, a live dealer via a webcam, chatbox, and microphone allows players to interact not only with the dealer themselves but also with the players at the table with them.

Some casinos have better interfaces than others, and Playtech casinos are coming out on top, but the setup is the same. You will see three boxes on the same screen. One will be a streaming video screen of the dealer, a real-time chat box, and a view of the table itself.

Who will I be playing with?

Many regular online gamblers are joining in this new Internet gambling wave, but more and more players who crave the "Las Vegas" or "Monaco" atmosphere in their homes have signed on.

Expect to see higher bets and bigger pots, as most people feel more comfortable being able to see the tables played or wheel spun, etc. There is a sense of more trust and comradeship between the dealer and players in these games, but beware; just as in real life, if a table is full, you will have to wait your turn until a seat has opened up.

What games can be played?

Blackjack: As the most popular game, hands down, the dealers use oversized cards which the camera can pick up on and zoom in on when the hand is dealt. As a result, many players feel more at ease when they see a dealer cut and shuffle the cards in front of them rather than rely on the random shuffling of a computer algorithm.

Roulette: Unlike Blackjack, which may have slower playtimes waiting for each player's hand, there is a set time limit to roulette live dealer games. You will have to wait until the next spin if you miss the time limit.

Baccarat: Betting on two hands, "player" and "banker" hands, money is made if the hand you placed money on wins or not, resulting in an even 1:1 payout. There is also a tie bet which, if bets are placed on both hands, and they tie, an 8:1 payout is possible. However, a tie usually occurs once out of every ten hands.

Sic bo: This ancient Chinese game is less well known than the former games and is usually not a full table played online or land-based, but played right, it can be quite profitable. Wagers are bet on the outcome of the three-dice roll. First, players choose chip size, then place corresponding bets on tiles and wait for the dice roll outcome to see what has been won or lost.

So why should I play?

Well, there are plenty of reasons, but everyone has their taste. For some, there are superstitions that real humans spinning or dealing equal better luck and odds. In contrast, others believe their strategy deals with various dealers and how they deal individually.

The greatest draw of all is the joy you can share in real-time and with audio with players like you all over the world without ever having to leave your own home, which to some is a jackpot in and of itself.


Online Poker - Know Your Limits

Figure out how much to bet.

Once new online poker players have figured out the rules and picked up a playing strategy, they need to focus on understanding how to bet.

The excitement of poker may push you to the edge, but this is one game where knowing your limits is crucial.

Poker Limits

A 'limit' in poker is the amount a player can bet. Different game variants and tables have different limits available; here are three limits online poker newbies should know about.

No Limit

Texas Hold 'em is a breathtaking version of poker that is the most televised of all the variants. Part of the thrill is that players have no limit on the number of chips they can bet in each round - the only rules are that each round, the amount must be at a minimum, the size of your last round's bet, and as much as the big blind.

Pot Limit

This limit sees the size of the pot influencing your bet. You can only bet or raise to or equal to the amount in the pot. You can bet any amount up to and including the size of the pot.

Fixed Limit

You'll see many of these games at online poker halls as these offer controlled, fixed betting. You can only bet or raise according to the table level (equal to the blind). Great for newbies - no need to fret over how much to bet, just whether to bet or not in the first place.

Limitless Fun at Cool Hand Poker

Where are these handy tips from? Cool Hand Poker offers newbies the best advice and a safe, comfortable, supportive environment to learn the ropes.

Gen up on the rules, strategies, and playing tips, and then move on to their practice and low-stake play, where your table is filled with learners, just like you. No pressure, no sharks, just the time and space to master online poker.


Understanding the House Edge

Everyone knows that casinos make money through the 'House Edge,' but many need clarification. Well, Online Casino Reports is about to demystify the term.

What is it?

The House Edge is the built-in profit casinos expect to make on every bet over the long term. Therefore, it is also referred to as the Casino Advantage.

How much is it?

It depends on the bet. Individual wagers have different probabilities of winning (and losing). The House Edge is expressed as a percentage, the difference between the True Odds and your winnings.

True Odds would mean that you got 100% of your bet, i.e., a dollar back for every dollar wagered. In casinos, however, this is not the case. Roulette tends to have a House Edge of around 5%. This means that the casino keeps 5¢ of every dollar bet. Conversely, the player receives 95¢ for every dollar bet.

How do I find out what the House Edge is?

The House Edge is displayed with the betting odds for all to see. It varies for different casino games and different bets.

House Edge Charts provide a summary of all their games. All except for Blackjack and Video Poker have set odds. These two are exceptions because the advantage can shift from player to house depending on the number of decks used, the draw of cards, and the player's skill.

How do I Use the House Edge?

The House Edge is the casino being transparent. It allows players to make informed choices, such as comparing games and selecting those with a lower house edge.

The House Edge shows the average profit made by the casino on all bets by all players.



Casino Games House Edge

All players know that the relative advantage rests with the casinos, but understanding the house edge can greatly assist players in making intelligent bets.

Whether you're playing at a real-life Las Vegas casino or an online gaming paradise, chances are you've heard the term 'house edge' before. To many players, the house edge is why they either partake in certain games or refrain from gambling entirely. But the concept itself requires further clarification.

An accurate description of the house edge defines it as the average loss ratio to the initial money wagered. These figures are certainly not uniform across gaming variants, but they are fixed among identical games playing by the same rules. These points are crucial to understanding the house edge.

How the house edge differs from game to game

Recall that the house edge is certainly not the amount of money lost to the total money wagered. That would be grossly inaccurate for definitional purposes and heavily biased against the casino. Let's take a rather simplistic example to clarify what this means:

  • If a player places a $50 bet at the blackjack table, this is the initial bet. Suppose the house edge at a game of Blackjack is listed as 0.5% (an arbitrary figure). In that case, we can assume - by deduction of statistical probability ratios - that the player can expect to lose $0.25 on every $50 initial bet he places.

We do not include secondary bets as part of the calculation because they have their own probability ratios. Players can raise at will in games like Blackjack and various poker games. When the house edge is determined, it works off the first bet placed only. And to be frank, this method of calculating the house edge makes it easier for the player to figure out how much will be lost per bet theoretically.

It's certainly tough guesstimating the average bets per game because those are determined by the fall of the cards and strategic gameplay.

It is worth mentioning that the definition of house edge across gaming varieties may lead to some misunderstanding. For example, the game Caribbean Stud Poker lists a figure of 5.22% as its house edge. This would lead a player to believe that for every $10 wagered, they should expect to forfeit $0.522. However, the ratio of average money lost by players vs. the average bets wagered is only 2.56% - significantly lower. This is why for example, in terms of money lost/won. Roulette is a far riskier proposition than Caribbean Stud Poker. In most cases, the option of a tie is excluded for calculation purposes.

Examples of games and house edges

  • Roulette Single zero - 2.70%
  • Roulette Double zero - 5.26%
  • Blackjack (Liberal Vegas Rules) - 0.28%
  • Baccarat (Banker) - 1.06%
  • Baccarat (Player) - 1.24%
  • Baccarat (Tie) - 14.36%
  • Video Poker (Jacks or Better) - 0.46%



Which Online Games Offer the Best Jackpots?

Jackpots generally appear in slots, but they can also be found in Blackjack and roulette.

Jackpots are generally associated with slot machines and video poker but are not exclusively limited to these games.

For example, certain poker games sometimes include a progressive jackpot, while some online casinos offer progressive jackpots on Blackjack, roulette, and other casino games.


Slots are typically the most common form of games that offer jackpots. These can come in the form of regular jackpots, where players can win a fixed maximum amount, or in progressive jackpot form, where each bet placed by any player causes the total jackpot to rise but where the odds of winning are also much slimmer.

Famous slots games

The more well-known slot games generally offer the highest progressive jackpots, which is why names like Mega Moolah and Major Millions are household names in online casinos.

Mega Moolah, a five-reel, 25-pay line progressive slot game, is available at many top online casinos, including Royal Vegas and All Slots. The minimum jackpot starts at $1 million, and in 2008 a player struck gold with a $5.5 million jackpot hit.

Other types of games

As mentioned earlier, there are progressive versions of several other casino games, notably Caribbean stud poker.

The goal of Caribbean poker is to have the highest hand out of three to five players at the table. But the inclusion of a progressive jackpot adds another element, as the jackpot rises each time a hand is dealt, meaning a bigger maximum prize for the player who eventually hits it.

Similar concepts exist in other non-slot online casino games, such as the popular Blackjack Pro.


How to Find Online Progressive Jackpots

Chase big money!

How do you find the best progressive jackpots? All online casinos, poker rooms, and slot sites have progressive jackpots advertised on their home page or a special page devoted to games and bonuses. Finding the biggest jackpots can be confusing with many online progressive jackpots.

Rather than surf around hopelessly, OnlineCasinoReports gives you the best tips on finding the most exciting progressive jackpots out there.

Tip 1: Know Your Progressive Jackpot Games

Certain games have eye-popping prizes, and these are the ones that regularly pay out big time. Mega Moolah, King Cashalot, Millionaire Genie, and Major Millions are some of the most famous progressive jackpot games that have a reputation for six-figure wins.

Tip 2: Know Your Progressive Games History

Find out the stats - jackpot histories, record-breaking wins, etc. Then, a little homework can steer you toward those games with a history of making millionaires.

Tip 3: Keep up to date with Online Progressive Jackpots

Progressive jackpots steadily rise; the higher they get, the more likely they are to pop. You can play games that are due a hit by keeping up to date with the latest payout figures.

Tip 4: Let Us Find the Best Progressive Games for You

Keeping track of the best progressive jackpots is hard, so OCR is here to help with Money Train, our real-time list of the top progressive jackpots. Here you can identify which games currently have the biggest jackpot totals across the net and then find out where you can play them.



In-Play Betting

In-play betting allows you to place live wagers on sporting events worldwide, with the odds updated in real-time during the game.

In-Play Betting Explained

There have been many innovations in online betting during the Internet era, but none have been more impressive and exciting than in-play betting. Live betting, as it is also known, basically allows you to place a wager on a sporting event, match, or tournament as it is being played.

How Does It Work?

In-play betting works in essentially the same manner as regular pre-match betting, in that the bookmaker changes the odds according to a formula that takes into account the likelihood of a wager (like, say, Team A winning) occurring and the amount of money that punters have already bet on this wager. The only difference is that it all happens quicker and in real time. So, for example, if a football match takes 90 minutes, the odds constantly change during the match, as time, score, and the amount of money wagered all have an immediate impact.

Why Should This Interest Me?

Live betting should interest all interested in online betting, no matter what sport you follow. It provides another chance to place a wager on a sports match that interests you but with far more excitement. It is also a good option for those looking to increase their winnings on their pre-match bets or to win back some of their losses if the team they bet on in pre-game looks likely to lose.

Where to Make a Live Bet

Any good online sportsbook should have an in-play betting function, but the leading bookies like William Hill and Winner Sports set themselves apart from the pack by offering more real-time events. Visitors to William Hill, for example, will find hundreds of professional sporting events from around the world on any given day, all laid out conveniently in their In-Play betting calendar. So whether it's a UEFA Champions League match, a Tennis Grand Slam match, or some obscure game from a small country you're after, they will likely have an in-play betting option.

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