How to Write a Review of an Online Gambling Game
So you want to know how to write a review of an online gambling game? You’ve come to the right place, as we’ve written reviews for dozens if not hundreds of Internet casino games. Many of the reviews we’ve written were for slot machine games, specifically, but the same guidelines apply to writing about card games or blackjack games, too.
Here are the kinds of things we like to do and the kinds of things we like to avoid when we write online gambling game reviews:
1. Write in clear, direct prose
Keep your sentences as short as possible. Write in the active voice. Be direct. If you hate a game, write, I hated this game.
No one is served by vague, unclear, pompous writing. Many people who have no experience or education as writers try to make themselves sound smarter by using big words and long sentences. Don’t do it.
Clarity is more important than anything when writing for the Internet. That’s as true of online gambling game reviews as it is of any other subject.
2. Write short sentences and describe what you see and hear
I read an essay by Roger Ebert, the movie critic, once. In it, he lamented that he had no understanding of a particular movie. He felt like he couldn’t write a coherent review.
But of course, he was a newspaperman, and newspapermen can’t just not turn in their assignments. So he told himself, write short sentences. Describe what you saw and heard.
He was able to complete his assignment.
The best online casino game reviews do the same thing. They describe, in clear prose, what the player saw and heard. If you know anything about casino games, you can also describe how you responded to the game.
Was it fun? Were you bored? Did you win a lot of money or lose a lot of money? Did the game seem loose or tight?
3. Avoid hype or anything that sounds like hype
Most webmasters are in it for a buck. That’s no big deal—our site is monetized via advertising, too. But nothing is more boring to read than an advertisement for a casino game that claims to be a review.
So forget about the advertising speak. Don’t use words like “stunning” and/or “state of the art”. Just be clear and factual about what you saw and heard. Describe your reactions to the games as clearly as possible.
You’ll be surprised when you find that readers respond better to factual information and observations than they do to marketing hype.
4. Research relevant facts and include those, too
If you’re writing about a specific online blackjack game, for example, from a particular casino or software provider, do the research to find out what the actual house edge is for that particular game. In fact, in the case of blackjack, if you know the game rules, you can include information about the correct strategy to use when playing the game.
Don’t just include facts and figures about the house edge, though. Many slot machine games, for example, are inspire by other intellectual property, like superhero movies, etc. In those cases, it’s appropriate to include facts about the intellectual property behind the game, too.
5. Give credit where credit is due
When you’re doing your research for a particular game, you should cite the Web pages you consulted when you were doing your research. This usually means linking to them. A lot of gambling webmasters are reluctant to do this, because they’re afraid of hurting their own site or helping a competitor’s site.
Here’s the thing, though:
If you’re generous when you’re linking out to others’ sites, they’re more likely to be generous when they start looking for sites to link to. You’ll be the beneficiary of that, especially if the links you included in your reviews actually refer traffic to these sites.
6. Include strategy information when there is any
Many gambling games don’t have any kind of strategy advice that needs to be offered. Slot machine games are one example. You put your money in and hope. That’s just about the only advice anyone can offer about slot machine strategy that makes any sense at all.
On the other hand, with video poker and blackjack games, there are specific strategies which allow you to gain on the casino a little bit. This usually means paying less for an hour of entertainment. In almost no case can you get an actual mathematical edge over an online casino.
But you can make sure that the cost of your entertainment is reasonable. You do that by following the correct strategies for the games you’re playing.
7. Include screenshots
They say a picture is worth a thousand words. So why not include a screenshot of the game you’re reviewing?
Multiple screenshots are even better. On most slot machine games, you’ll see several different screens besides just the reels spinning. Most of them have bonus rounds, too. Try to include a screenshot of every aspect of the game that you can.
Don’t be cheap and only include small screenshots, either. Spend some money on some bandwidth and publish some big pictures that actually give your readers an idea of what they can expect. Multiple pictures of a decent size give a reader a much better idea of what to expect than a lot of small thumbnails.
8. Include a playable version of the game
Not all online casino games are available in a free no download version. But if you’re a webmaster, you might want to check with your affiliate manager to find out if it’s possible to include an embedded version of the game on your page.
If a picture is worth a thousand words, then an actual playable game is worth 10,000 words.
Writing reviews of online gambling games can change your perspective on the world of Internet gaming in surprising ways. If you focus on giving your readers a clear idea of what they can expect from a game, you’ll find your diligence repaid tenfold over time.