Can online casinos provide the same thrill as their land-based counterparts?

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Can online casinos
Roulette” (CC BY 2.0) by  Sonny Side Up! 

Online casinos have sprouted up and multiplied in every corner of the internet, as sites look to capitalise on this lucrative market. There is no doubting the popularity, but can playing casino games online really provide the same kind of rush as playing in a real casino?

There is something about the atmosphere of a casino that just can’t be replicated in an online setting. The flashing neon lights, the tense, thrilling sense of anticipation that lingers in the air, and the screams of joy and despair as dreams are made and shattered can only be found in the land-based casino. Up to now, online casinos haven’t even come close to matching this. But they make up for it in other ways, and after facing criticism about this aspect, steps are being made to make the online experience feel more real.

Take roulette for example, a lot of online sites have links to roulette games where a video will show a virtual roulette wheel with a virtual ball spinning around it, while a random number generator chooses the outcome. This can hardly rival the thrill of watching the ball rattle around on a real-life reel, in what is one of the casino’s purest games of chance. To rectify this, some online sites are now offering video links to real live roulette tables, where players can see a real human croupier spin the wheel and place the ball on the track. Players can trust the results when they see that it is an actual person setting the wheel in motion, and can also get a sense that they are at the casino, from the comfort of their own home. But it still doesn’t quite emulate the proper casino experience.

What online casinos lack in atmosphere, they make up for in other ways. Because they can’t outdo the exciting, buzzing setting of the casino, they have to make their games more intense and interesting. Sites will offer huge selections of variations on particular games, such as European, French, American, and multi-wheel forms of roulette, and double exposure, big five, and Vegas strip forms of blackjack. Where online sites really have the upper hand is with the amount of slot machines they can offer. With no concerns over physical space to house the slot machines, sites can offer hundreds of different games. All the games have distinct themes based on films, TV shows, and sports, and there is something that will appeal to everyone.

In the future, online casinos may be able to make further steps to emulate the authentic casino experience. The live links to the casino are one positive move forward, but when virtual reality hits the mainstream, players may be able to put on the headset and actually explore a virtual casino. This should serve to bring the full casino experience to players’ homes.

Online casinos are improving rapidly, and as technology becomes more advanced, they should soon be able to recreate the thrill of their land-based counterparts.

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Iris Johnson

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