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I have a bit of an issue with what to call Portomaso Live Blackjack.
On one hand, the game has been created by Portomaso Gaming. On the other, the tables are located at the Oracle Casino in Malta, and on most casino sites the game is listed as either Oracle Live Blackjack or Oracle Lounge Blackjack.
For the purpose of this review I’m going to refer to it as Portomaso Oracle Live Blackjack.
Oracle Live Blackjack, produced by Portomaso Gaming, is one of those rare casino games that’s very close to being perfect.
Portomaso Gaming has remained true to its land-based origins. It’s produced an online live dealer blackjack game that is identical to the game you’d play in one of its land based casinos.
In fact, the tables are all located in a purpose-built studio attached to the land based Oracle Casino in Malta.
As the saying goes it’s as real as it gets!
When I say this is the Perfect game, I mean in terms of the playing rules.
On the surface, every Blackjack game looks the same.
While the objective of Blackjack is to beat the dealer, an experienced player is also looking for ways to increase their initial bet when the rules allow and the odds are stacked more in their favour.
Some games have rules that suit and encourage this while others are more restrictive.
It’s clear that Portomaso Gaming understands this from their background in land-based casinos.
They have produced a game with a set of rules that experienced players would say are near to perfect.
That’s what makes the Portamaso Live Blackjack something to cherish.
The tables, currently three are located in a studio area at the Oracle Casino a land-based casino owned by Portomaso Gaming in Malta.
They’ve also got a range of Live roulette and Live Baccarat tables.
As playing interfaces go this seems to include all the best bits from the other casino providers.
The one thing I don’t like is the Pre-Decision toolbar that comes up after your cards are dealt. It’s not defined by colour, so it’s very easy to miss or make a mistake.
As for the rest of the interface, you’ll find:
There are two viewing modes, 2d and 3d. Fullscreen(3d) is as the name suggests, it’s you, the table, and the dealer.
Mixed screen mode (2d) has the dealer and table inset into a computer-generated image of the table.
This gives a clearer view of the other cards that are dealt and has the chat window open all the time.
This mode is automatically selected if your connection is poor.
It’s all down to personal preference as to what you use as a default. For me, I prefer Full Screen mode.
In-play decisions are presented either as a toolbar, so you can select your next action before play gets to you, or as a box in the middle of the screen.
The latter contains details of yours and the dealers hand and your options of Hit, Stand, Split and Double.
The three side bets, 21+3, Perfect Pairs and Bet Behind are the same as those found at other live casino providers.
The payouts follow general standards except for the payout for a Flush in the 21+3, which is 5 points lower than elsewhere.
You can compare blackjack side bet payouts here.
When betting Behind as a seated player you can choose how you want to act by changing some of the configuration options, as shown in the diagram.
You can also decide if you want to allow other players to bet behind you.
I admit I’m a fan, even though this version of Blackjack is played to European Rules.
I love the fact you can double on a split and split up to 4 times. Watch my video to see it happen in real-time.
I’m disappointed that I personally can’t play at Portomaso casinos due to licensing restrictions as there is no UK License. I’m assured it’s on its way!
Until then I’ll have to remain a bit jealous and play at other live casinos listed on this site.