Live dealer roulette
One of the great developments in online casino play has been the advent of live dealer games.
You can play blackjack, baccarat, roulette and other casino favorites at secure websites, with an attractive dealer adding that extra element to help personalise your experience.
Maybe you don’t 100 per cent trust games powered by random number generators to deliver fair results. Maybe you want a more realistic experience, not the feeling that you are playing a simple video game. Or maybe you crave some of the excitement of being at the casino, minus the drunk clown at the next table abusing the dealer or spilling their pina coladas on the felt.
Whatever the reason, these live dealer games are being rapidly refined: high-quality, secure video feeds delivered to your home from safe and trusted online casinos registered in respected jurisdictions.
How does live dealer roulette work?
You have a digital betting board on which to place your bets, just the same as you would in an online game powered by a random number generator.
But that is where the similarities end. Instead of pressing spin yourself, your live dealer will operate in much the same way as they do in a real casino, only via a live video feed. The dealer will spin the wheel and then drop in the ball and at the appropriate time say, “No more bets”.
You can then sit back and wait for the ball to land on your number/color/row.
You can also chat with the dealer to make the experience even more like the real thing.
Is live dealer roulette safe to play?
Yes. Well, at least it’s as safe as playing any other game at an online casino.
The casinos we recommend all conform to high standards of encryption, often matching those used by the biggest banks around the world.
We only recommend online casinos licensed in respected jurisdictions and those at which we have played for extended periods ourselves.
Do your homework. It would be foolhardy in the extreme to simply Google “online roulette” and play at the first casino that catches your eye. You need to know your money is safe and you will be paid if you are lucky enough or skillful enough to have won some cash.
Play live dealer roulette at online casinos
If you have decided to play live dealer roulette, the next step is to find a website to play at. Most online casinos will have live dealer these days, although the ease with which you will find a quality one will vary depending on where you are and how you wish to deposit.
For instance, a player in the United Kingdom, where it is completely legal and regulated to play at online casinos, will have a lot more options than someone situated in the USA. So in essence it comes down to what the gambling laws are in your country; many of us reside in places that have not specifically addressed online wagering, and this means we often will gamble at online casinos based “offshore”.
Roulette is one of the staples of any live dealer set-up, almost guaranteed to be available if your casino has live dealer. There are generally both European and American versions available to play. As always we recommend playing the European variety because it has a more favorable house edge (if you don’t know what we are talking about, read about roulette here).
Live dealer roulette titles to look out for:
No.1. on the list is anything by Quickfire, whose parent company Microgaming will be well known by most. The European game offered at hundreds of online casinos is simply top notch, and the stringent quality control put in place by this software provider is some of the best in the business. Included in the Quickfire roulette titles is a multi-wheel game, although our tester burnt through his bankroll quickly with his “lucky 17s” (don’t ask) tactic while playing this variation.
While Playtech does not offer the best roulette games, nor is its interface as smooth as some other live dealer games, it has a huge reach around the globe, catering to many countries. While not all casinos will have every variation of Playtech’s live roulette games, they do provide both European and American roulette.
Evolution Gaming’s roulette games are right up there with Quickfire’s in terms of quality, and they are always looking to push the limit further. This is proven by their emergence in mobile live dealer play. Yep, you can play Quickfire games on your smartphone or tablet device. More on that below.
Up-and-comers Ezugi have made quite a splash with their smooth live dealer offering, with many casinos adopting this software. One of the real highlights of Ezugi is the chat interface, which allows you to interact with other players and the croupier. Another sweet thing is the ability to play on many different platforms; your usual methods are complemented by being able to play on your smart TV.
Other online casinos will provide in-house live dealer play. Just be smart about it, and play at casinos with good reputations. Read reviews of the casino before depositing real money, to make sure they run a legitimate operation.
Minimum & maximum bet limits
Most online casinos will have live dealer roulette wheels catering to both the whale and the less economically blessed. While the actual limits will be set by the casinos themselves, you should have no trouble finding a table with bets as low as $0.50 for an inside bet and $1 for an outside bet.
In terms of the upper limits, the World Gambling List has seen online tables where the inside bet limit was $50,000, while the outside was $75,000 – surely high enough to satisfy even the biggest gambler. For those of us who can only dream of such huge numbers, this means a straight bet on a number in a game of European roulette stands to return $1.8 million. To find a game of high-stakes roulette you will need to find a good VIP program.
Mobile live dealer roulette
Roulette as a live dealer game is sensational on your desktop or laptop computer, and it’s even pretty good on smart TV. But as of 2016 there is still some way to go before it is a huge hit on mobile. It’s just a bit more complicated than playing blackjack or even poker on a smartphone – you need to be a bit more precise.
The drawbacks include the size of the display, although some people do get around with small TVs in their pockets. But for this roulette fanatic, playing on my iPhone 5, I always felt I was in danger of betting on the wrong number if the subway gave me a slight jolt, or my dear wife hit a pothole while I was playing. In conclusion, play on a tablet or large phone at the very least.
Another drawback is that a Wi-Fi connection is a must in most places, although the emergence of 4G and promise of future technologies are ensuring this will not be a problem soon. For now though when playing on a 4G connection, the video feed can be glitchy.
The newer your device the better experience you will have, too. As you already know technology changes fast, and the providers of these games are using the best, so for the best experience you should, too.