Updated 24th September 2020
A Guide to Live Casino
While our online betting markets are the main draw for many of our players, our online casino continues to grow in popularity here at Bet UK, and many bettors are now branching out into the world of online slots and table games. However, the likes of live casino games such as live Blackjack and live Roulette maintain a level of sophistication and intrigue that is rarely replicated in any of these other casino games. If you’re a new player, yet to peruse our wide selection of offerings, then this handy guide will assist you as you make your first foray into the world of live casino.
What is Live Casino?
Live casino allows players to try their hand at several popular table games, but unlike basic online casino table games, these feature real dealers in a real casino environment. The main boon is that you can engage with these classic games without having to leave the comfort of your own home, and all of them are fully immersive to replicate the land-based casino experience. You can even communicate directly with the live dealers, and they can interact with you, just as they would in a real casino. Many live casino games even allow for you to tailor the visual settings - such as camera angles - in order for you to view the game in your ideal way. The popularity of live casino continues to grow, and more and more players are choosing to get involved, by placing bets on the spin of a Roulette wheel, or trying to beat the dealer by getting a strong hand in Blackjack. The overall simplicity is what many players appreciate about these games.
Is Live Casino Better Than Land-based Casino?
A recent survey by the Gambling Commission found that amongst those who gamble, the percentage of those who do so online has overtaken offline bettors for the first time. There are many benefits to playing casino games in an online setting rather than a land-based one. Chiefly, the accessibility of live casino makes it perfect for those who like to be able to play a round of Baccarat or Poker at any time, and the system also lends itself to playing from anywhere at the touch of a button. The convenience of live casino also means that you can switch between tables and games incredibly swiftly, as opposed to a real-world setting. Another boost is that live casino affords players a degree of privacy that is otherwise unavailable in land-based environments. Finally, some casinos have dress codes, which is obviously not a factor involved in playing live casino. You can do so in your Sunday finery, your dressing gown, or even in your birthday suit (if that’s what you’re into) - there are no judgements at Bet UK.
What Live Casino Games are There?
There are lots of different live casino games available in our dedicated section, including live Baccarat, live Poker, live Roulette, and live Blackjack. We’ll explore each in slightly more detail below, so you know exactly what to expect when you play live casino games at Bet UK, on mobile, desktop, and tablet devices.
Roulette is a popular live casino game, played the world over, with a few different variations. Essentially the aim of the game is to predict which numbered segment of a spinning wheel a small ball or marble will land in. There are a variety of wagers that can be placed, with ‘inside bets’ (such as ‘red or black’ and ‘odd or even’) having shorter odds than ‘outside bets’ (straight bets on single number, or split bets on two numbers, for example). The main draw of Roulette is that it is a classic game of chance, and can’t be influenced by croupiers of players in any way.
At Bet UK, we have a variety of Roulette options, including but not limited to; Lightning Roulette - which sees the addition of Lucky Number and Lucky Payout features, Speed Roulette - which is the standard game, but played at an increased pace, and VIP Roulette - which offers even more sophistication along with higher stakes.
Blackjack is known by a few other names, but the aim is always the same. Erroneously, a lot of people believe that the objective of the game is to construct a hand with a value of 21. In fact, the real target of Blackjack is to assemble a hand closer to that value than the dealer. This is one of the live casino games with the most player agency, along with Poker, as players are able to directly influence the outcome of a round - in part - as they can choose whether or not to draw additional cards.
Blackjack makes up a decent proportion of our live casino collection, although Evolution Gaming’s Blackjack lobby is the hub for all of the games at Bet UK. If you're wondering exactly how to play Blackjack, you may be interested in our ultimate guide.
Baccarat is, in our opinion, simultaneously one of the easiest casino games to play, and one of the hardest to remember the rules of. Thankfully, you don’t have to do the latter, as all moves are completed by the dealer in accordance with the pre-established rules. This essentially means that all players have to do while playing Baccarat is place their wager on their predicted outcome. Unlike Blackjack, they don’t have to decide whether or not to draw an additional card, as this is already established by the rules of the game.
At Bet UK, there are many versions of Baccarat available, including Speed Baccarat - the standard version but played at a greater pace, Baccarat Squeeze - in which cards are revealed at a slower rate to enhance the way in which players interact with the game, and No Commission Baccarat - where the usual 5% commission paid on winning Banker bets will be waived.
Poker is a blanket term for several different games, but they all involve the same objective of accruing the best possible hand of playing cards. Poker arguably involves the highest level of skill of all live casino games, with players having a larger degree of influence than in other games. It’s a game that generally also sees players compete against one another, rather than against a dealer, and to that end it often rewards players for their knowledge of probability, psychology, and game theory, amongst other skills. It’s also important for players to know the order of the best hands available, which in ascending order are:
High Card: The hand has nothing of note, so the highest value card is declared.
Pair: The hand contains two cards of matching value, e.g. two Queens.
Two Pair: The hand contains two sets of matching cards, e.g. two Queens and two Kings.
Three of a Kind: The hand contains three cards of matching value, e.g. three Jacks.
Straight: The hand is made up of a consecutive sequence of cards, e.g. 9, 10, J, Q, K.
Flush: All of the cards in the hand are of the same suit, e.g. Diamonds.
Full House: The hand contains a Three of a Kind and a Pair, e.g. three Jacks and two Queens.
Four of a Kind: The hand contains four matching cards, e.g. four Aces.
Straight Flush: This combines a Straight and a Flush, so all cards are sequential, and of the same suit, e.g 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 - all Clubs.
Royal Flush: The strongest hand in a game, a Royal Flush is like a Straight Flush, except that the cards involved are the highest card values. For example, 10, J, Q, K, A - all Spades.
There are several varieties of Poker, but to be fully understood they must be explored in further detail, or even played in demo mode. The main variants we have at Bet UK include Three Card Poker, Ultimate Texas Hold ‘Em, and Caribbean Stud, and all are fully immersive and playable on all devices.
Something we’re beginning to see more and more of that isn’t really a phenomenon in land-based casinos are live games that have a game show setup. Some of these are inspired by game shows from the world of television, such as Deal or No Deal Live, while others are based on board games, as we’ve seen with Monopoly Live. Either way, they’re on the rise, and we’re hoping to see even more in the near future from Evolution Gaming, so watch this space. In the meantime, you can also take a look at the incredibly popular Live Dream Catcher.
Bet UK’s Live Casino Guide
We hope that you now have a better understanding and appreciation of live casino games. Feel free to explore our live casino if you’re keen to learn more about the table games we have available. There are a couple of other games or variants that we host at Bet UK, and haven’t quite covered in this list. Super Sic Bo gives UK casino players the opportunity to engage in one of the most popular games in Asia. Elsewhere, NetEnt Live Roulette offers a wide variety of games to those that are fans of the developer and their online slots such as Starburst slot and Gonzo’s Quest.