Most of us had our first blackjack experience in a land-based casino. There,
a very patient dealer probably put up with your questions, your slow play, and
your mistakes in etiquette. However, at the end of the session, you probably
felt way more comfortable with the game, and if you were sitting with other
people at the table, then you likely also had a decent social experience.
The invention of the online casino brought with it a level of convenience
gamblers had never experienced before. For the first time, you didn’t need to
get up and leave your house and go to a casino to play blackjack. Players who
didn’t live near a land-based property now could sit at home on their couches
and play the same game they had come to love in a casino. However, for many
players, the online version of blackjack is missing the level of enjoyment that
comes from the interaction with a human dealer.
Thankfully, some very smart people determined that you could combine the best
of both worlds, and with the increased strength of internet connections came the
live dealer version of blackjack. This page is dedicated to that game – its
history, the benefits of playing the game, and some of our favorite places to
Best Places to Play Live Dealer Blackjack
Before we get into all the details about how live dealer blackjack differs
from RNG games or why so many people like this version better, we know there are
some of you who just want to jump in and start playing! For you folks, we
thought we would start with the best places to play live dealer blackjack.
This site was built with the goal of informing players on all aspects of the
gambling industry, and that includes comprehensive reviews of hundreds of online
casinos. Our team of experts has looked at all the places you can play live
dealer blackjack. After taking into consideration factors like the software
being used, the bonuses and promotions being offered, and the mobile
compatibility of the sites, we have come up with this list of our top-rated
online casinos for live dealer blackjack play. You will not go wrong selecting
any of these sites.
As with many innovations, a perfect storm of events needed to occur for live
dealer blackjack to be built and distributed. First, there had to be a demand
for the game. As we explained in the last section, the standard random number
generator version of the game can feel very cold, as the computer deals cards at
an alarmingly fast rate. Players were definitely looking for more of a social
atmosphere, and online poker proved that players wanted to be interactive even
if gambling for thousands of dollars.
The biggest impediment to being able to offer a dealer on your screen was the
speed of most people’s internet connections. In the early 2000s, video streaming
was becoming popular, but the connections were very choppy, making even simple
communication a challenge. Adding in the gambling aspect would have caused all
sorts of commotion, which we already saw in the initial non-download casinos of
the time. However, the strength of broadband connections continued to improve
year after year, and by the middle of the decade, video streaming services like
YouTube were proving that people wanted to be able to stream video to their
computer rather than having to download a file.
With everything in place, it was then up to a company to step up and start
building the product. One of the first industries to offer live streaming on a
regular basis was the porn industry, so the model was already there – set up a
studio featuring multiple tables and dealers, essentially mimicking a casino
floor, and you were a step closer.
Evolution Gaming, considered to be the leader in the live dealer space, was
one of the first companies to build one of these casino studios. They also built
software that allows you to make your bet from your computer, but to have the
cards being dealt on a table in that studio by a human dealer. The initial
offering from Evolution Gaming came in 2006, but it was full of bugs. One of the
biggest issues was that players were having a hard time seeing the cards on the
screen, so specialty decks needed to be created. Evolution spent the next couple
of years working through the issues, but even with all the troubles, one thing
was becoming evident – players really liked the game!
Today, Evolution has 8 studios around the world to handle the demand for
their live dealer blackjack games, and other companies have thrown their hats in
the ring. From independent companies based in Asia and Latin America to industry
giant Playtech, there is no shortage of live dealer blackjack software now, and
this continues to be a fast-growing segment of the market.
How to Play Live Dealer Blackjack
So, now that you have an idea of how live dealer blackjack came to exist,
let’s talk about the game itself. The game is played with very similar rules to
the ones you would find in a land-based casino. The first thing you are going to
want to do is to select a table to sit down at and play. When you go to the
casino lobby, you will likely see a live casino tab, and when you open that, a
series of games will be visible. Similar to a land-based casino, you may find
multiple versions of live dealer blackjack available – these games tend to have
slight variations on the rules, and if any of these are unfamiliar, you can
check out our blackjack page for a review of all the top variants.
Once you have selected a game type, you are then going to have to select a
stakes level. This is because it is conceivable that you are going to be sitting
“next” to another player, so just like in a land-based casino, they want players
gambling in the same range sitting at the same table.
Now, here comes the fun part. At most live dealer casinos, once you have
selected the table and stakes, you can select what dealer you want to deal your
games. Most software companies have multiple dealers in their studios, and this
means you can choose from a roster of the on-duty staff. Whether you want to
have a male or female dealer, or a certain ethnicity, you will be able to choose
who gets to deal your cards!
Okay, now that all the game options are set, it is time to get to playing! A
screen will pop up where you will see everything you would see at a land-based
blackjack table…except for the chips. Those are still presented in digital form,
so you simply click on the amount you want to bet, and then the dealer deals the
cards. Multiple hands may be dealt at your table, so you will watch the game
progress until it is your turn. You then play the hand as you would any
blackjack hand, and the result of the hand determines if you get money back in
your account or if you have to ante up again.
It is that simple! You can stay as long as you like, and when you are ready
to leave, you simply close the window, and your seat is relinquished.
Benefits of Live Dealer Blackjack
The live dealer blackjack experience has completely changed the way that
online blackjack is played, and the general consensus is that players really
enjoy this new delivery method. There are some significant benefits to playing
the game with a real dealer, and we will have a look at some of the top benefits
Gameplay and Odds
This is where we see a huge difference between a live dealer online blackjack
game and a typical RNG game. When you play at either table, you are playing with
a shoe of cards, which is typically 6 or 8 decks of cards. What you may not know
is that in the RNG version of the game, all the cards are shuffled after every
hand. When you are playing with a live dealer, the shoe is dealt until the cut
card is revealed (usually this happens about 2/3 of the way through the shoe).
Now, not everyone is a card counter, but having the cards being reshuffled every
hand actually increases the house edge slightly, which is obviously not good for
The other thing about the gameplay that is different between the RNG and live
dealer versions of the game is the speed of the hands. When you are playing
against the computer, there is no time between hands, so you are able to play a
significantly higher number of hands per hour. Some players prefer that from a
gambling perspective, but the recreational blackjack player will enjoy the speed
of the live dealer game, which more closely replicates being in a land-based
One of the biggest drawbacks to playing online casino games has always been
the lonely feeling you get sitting at a table by yourself, even though you know
that there could be thousands of players all playing at the same casino. For
many of us, the social interaction adds to the overall player experience, and
that is definitely missing at an RNG blackjack table.
Having a human dealer increases the social interaction, even though the
dealer cannot see you on your end of the camera (which is probably a good thing,
especially given what you may look like in your bed playing the games). Also,
the fact that there are other players at the table gives you the feeling that
you are not alone. Adding a chat window to the live dealer blackjack screen
gives you a way to communicate in real time with the other players at the table.
All of this in combination makes live dealer blackjack far more social, which
tends to keep players at a table for longer as well.
The introduction of live dealer casino games has completely changed the
landscape of this industry. As players look to replicate the emotion and
enjoyment that comes from being in a land-based casino, the popularity of games
like live dealer blackjack will continue to increase. If you haven’t tried a
live dealer blackjack table yet, we think you are missing out! Now that you have
read this page, we think you should have all the information you need to find an
excellent casino that offers the game, and you can make a deposit and start
Where Can I Try Live Dealer Blackjack for Fun?
This is not typically a game that is available for play money. After all,
there is a human dealer that has to be paid, along with the expense of the
studio and the bandwidth to broadcast the live stream. Unfortunately, if you
want to try live dealer blackjack, you will need to use real money, but with
table stakes as low as $5, you don’t need a huge bankroll to get started.
How Do I Know Live Dealer Blackjack Isn’t Rigged?
This is a common question we get about the live dealer games, and our answer
is simple: who would benefit from the game being rigged? The casino operator
wants the game to be legit so you will play longer and so they can attract more
players. The software supplier relies on licensees putting their games in the
lobby of the casino, so having a game be considered rigged would ruin a
reputation pretty quickly.
Now, to be as safe as possible, you do want to ensure that both the software
provider and the operator are licensed by a gaming jurisdiction. If they are,
then the software is regularly audited to ensure its integrity.
Can I Play Live Dealer Blackjack on My Phone?
Yes! The software that the platform is built on is compatible with the
majority of mobile phones and tablets. However, you will be at the mercy of your
device’s connection, so bear that in mind when you decide to sit down at a
table. We wouldn’t want your experience with live dealer blackjack to be
dampened by a slow or choppy video stream.
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