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Is it really Business As Usual for Live Casinos?

During this time of uncertainty, I examine the potential impact on the delivery of live casino games and how that might affect playing online during this challenging time.

live casino business as usual

A Players Guide to Live Casino Games during a time of Disruption

As I sit here in self-imposed isolation, I’ve been mulling over whether the Live Casino operators will still be able to operate and provide their live casino games during this period of uncertainty.

Most of the major live casino providers have issued statements explaining what they are doing about the situation.

At the moment – 23rd March, It’s pretty much Business as Usual everywhere, except for suppliers with studios located in the Philippines, which have been forced to shut by the government.

The major risk to Live Casino games is Staff being able to operate and run them. Any restriction on the movement of people is likely to impact the delivery of Live Casino games at some level.

The situation we find ourselves in is changing on a daily basis, hopefully, the following will explain what you’re likely to find during this period as the situation develops.

Will Live Casino Games Continue to operate during a lockdown?

I hope so. But, it all depends on the sanctions imposed by the governments where the studios operate.

The level of resilience the operators have in place will determine the service levels they can offer if staff numbers are dramatically reduced or their studios are forced to shut.

Operators with multiple studios, across many geographical areas, are likely to be in a better position to continue some level of service unless a complete lockdown of business occurs across the world at the same time.

What Live Games are most at risk?

Games that require lots of tables, dealers and seats will really suffer if staff numbers are reduced. Fortunately there is really only one, Blackjack.

All other games are One to Many, which means they can scale easily and only require a table & dealer to function.

What if there are not enough seats available on blackjack – what are the alternatives?

Thankfully there are many alternatives to 7 seat blackjack. They are all One to Many games and are offered by different software providers:

  • NetEnt has Blitz Blackjack & Perfect Blackjack.
  • Playtech has AllBets Blackjack, Unlimited Blackjack, and Quantum Blackjack.
  • Evolution has Infinite Blackjack & FreeBet Blackjack.
  • Ezugi has Unlimited Blackjack with Auto Splits.
  • Visionary iGaming – Blackjack with Early Payout.

What do you mean by one to many games?

One To Many is the term used to describe a game where multiple players bet on the same situation, be it a hand of cards, numbers on a roulette wheel, wheel of fortune, an entertainment game, lottery, etc.

Players can choose the outcome they want to bet on and that is locked in. No other player’s bets or the way they play the game interfere with the playing decision another player has made.

Examples of one to many games are:

  • Roulette.
  • Baccarat.
  • Poker games like Casino Hold’em, Ultimate Texas Hold’em, 3 Card Poker, 3 Card Brag, Caribbean Stud Poker, Side Bet City, etc
  • Hi-Lo.
  • Dragon Tiger / Football Studio.
  • Dreamcatcher, Monopoly, Spin A Win.
  • Deal or No Deal.

What happens if the dealers aren’t allowed into the studios?

If the live casino provider has other studios in different locations they will be able to switch players to access those tables. However, that is dependent on the games also being available from the alternative studio. Some games might become unavailable because of this.

The use of Auto live dealer games will be promoted. At present only Auto Roulette is available in this format.

The stream from Land-based roulette tables will continue for as long as the casinos remain open. In the UK we’re already seeing Land Based casinos closing – it’s only a matter of time before others follow.

What are the Software providers doing to reduce the impact?

All of the Software providers I’ve been in contact with have implemented new procedures to limit human contact.

For example:

  • Cleaning regimes have been enhanced.
  • The staff that can work from home are encouraged to do so.
  • Staff temperatures are taken before entry to the building.
  • Fingerprint recognition scanning has been revoked.
  • Social Distancing between shufflers and dealers.
  • Hand washing and sanitisation actively encouraged.
  • Business Continuity Plans have been enhanced to recognise the evolving threat.

What will the operators do if there are no live casino games?

This is an area where there isn’t a great deal of clarity. Perhaps the operators think this is unlikely.

However in the scenario where studios are no longer able to operate we may see some operators offer just their Auto Roulette games, or push RNG alternatives if they have them.

As a player, there are loads of RNG alternatives, from multiple software providers.

They can be found in the Casino section of the online casinos under Table/ Card Games.

Will any live casino operators go out of business?

I sincerely hope not. They will suffer the same challenges as other businesses; they all have high fixed costs – for staff, premises, and technology.

If income is compromised they, like other businesses, will need to find solutions to keep operating even in a reduced capacity for as long as the situation remains

What’s happening with Land-based streamed roulette tables?

Land-Based roulette tables will continue to be streamed online for as long as the land-based casino remains open.

We’ve already seen UK Land-based Casino, Genting & Grosvenor, announce the closure of their casinos, with others sure to follow.

Will the tables get busier?

Tables will initially get busier, as more people are at home and more restrictions are put in place for other betting, like Sports.

Sports Books are already recommending to their customers to try Live Casino games as an alternative, so in the short term, there will be an upturn.

What are the Live Casino Suppliers saying?

Betgames, Authentic Gaming, Playtech, Evolution & NetEnt have all said its pretty much business as usual at the moment.

They are all following government advice and implementing suitable controls.

Providing a safe environment for staff is a priority while trying to maintain a business as usual service.

All have contingency plans in place that they will discuss with their clients to ensure they can meet customer requirements and demands.

Are Casinos offering extra promotions or incentives to play live casino games during this time?

In general, I’d say the responsible online casino operators are not using the current situation as a marketing opportunity.

Those that are, you should keep well away from.

Is online Live Casino a good alternative to Land-Based play?

Generally I’d say NO. There is nothing like playing casino games in a real casino.

But online Live Casino does offer a viable alternative, espacially if you can’t make it to your favourite land based casino.

Playing at an online Live Casino is not quite the same as playing in a land-based casino. You don’t get the social aspect when playing online.

However, what you do get is great quality games you can play in the privacy of your own home.

If you’re a land-based player and been locked out of your usual casino, first check that your casinos doesn’t have a online live dealer site where you can play at.

If not, try one of my recommended Best Live Casinos.

Will Live Casino Operators and online casinos benefit from the current situation?

In the short term, live casino operators will benefit from an increase in players.

How long the upturn lasts will depend very much on what the government recommends to people and businesses.

Whatever your individual circumstance, only gamble what you can afford to lose. The only winners are the casinos. Have fun and enjoy playing. When the fun stops, Stop.

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About Neil’s Casino Comparer Reviews

I have tried to be objective and consistent with all my live casino reviews. Hopefully they will strike a chord with you, but I thought it might be helpful to explain the criteria i used to mark each of the casinos. Hopefully, the categories and explanations make logical sense.

Playability – What is the overall impression of the casino. Did I have a good time?, are the dealers nice and chatty?, is everything easy to understand?. Does it have a good set of games, is there a comprehensive set of betting options? Are high stakes players taken care of?

Software – What is the software like to use, does it integrate well with the rest of the casino?. Are the images clear and the video streaming fast.? Have they taken more than the default shared tables? Is it available on mobile?

Payment Options – Does the casino have a good variety of payment options?. Do they payout quickly & on time.?

Security – How good is the reputation of the casino amongst other players? Do they hold a valid gaming license? Are they transparent about the security measures they have in place. Are they regularly audited. Do they publish this information?

Support – Do they have multiple methods for communication with me? Is support available 24×7? Do they have instant chat?, are they quick to respond?. Are they able to help me immediately?. Do they have an online FAQ and self help library? Are the support people knowledgeable about the product i’m playing?

Bonuses – Do they have bonuses?. How strict are the wagering requirements? Do they offer repeat bonuses?. Do they offer loyalty points and can they be redeemed for cash or playing credits.

After all that would I play there regularly?

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