Casinos in the United States have gotten complacent. The lack of information and control given to players when it comes to slot machines in particular is a shame.
Fortunately, online gaming seems to right many of these wrongs, with many of the same providers and games that you can find in a physical casino. While an individual player may have specific pros and cons to playing online vs. a casino, I think there are a number of advantages online real money gaming casinos offer that are more player friendly, so it’s worth a look.
Here are 5 ways online gaming is better for players.
Availability of Smaller Bets
Physical casinos have a lot more overhead. The old joke goes that someone had to pay for all those chandeliers. But it’s true – there’s staffing requirements that an online casino simply doesn’t need to have.
One area where this becomes evident is in the slow growth over time of the minimum bets on physical casino floors. Where 20 years ago you might have found 20 cent bets, and 10 years ago 40 cent bets, oftentimes it’s 60 cent, 75 cent and even $1 bets as the floor for a penny denomination game.
By comparison, many online games have 20 or even 10 cent bet minimums, allowing for playing with small amounts of money. You’d be hard pressed to be able to last very long on a physical casino floor with $20 unless you caught a lucky break early, but online that $20 can often last awhile if you choose to bet small.
Better Payback Percentages
Another benefit alongside the ability to bet smaller is that payback percentages online are generally much better than they are in physical casino counterparts.
Publicly available payback data generally indicates that penny denomination slots will pay somewhere between 85 and 90 percent back to the player over time, depending on the casino and the market. By comparison, those same smaller bets will often pay somewhere between 94 and 96 percent back to the player online in an online casino game.
That’s a significant difference – going from 85 to 95 percent payback means, all other things like bet size equal, your money will generally last three times longer. Or, if you play for the same amount of time, you’ll generally finish with more money remaining in your bankroll with online gaming vs. if you played in a physical casino.
Transparency of Payback Percentages
The knowledge that payback percentages are better is in part because there’s also more transparency in the online space about payback percentages to begin with.
Physical casinos are often protective of the information around what a slot machine is set to pay back in the long run. But online casinos often share that information right in the pay table. You can compare the payback of one casino to another just by checking the same game on both sites.
Video Poker, Blackjack, Roulette and other games where the payouts are clear, and the overall odds known, have long given players the ability to compare and contrast to make sure they’re getting the best payback they can find at their casino or in their area. But slots players haven’t had this advantage until online gaming came along.
Broader Game Selection
A lot of innovation has been happening in the online gaming space, certainly at a faster clip than in physical casinos. While some slot makers like AGS and Ainsworth are tinkering with formats that will bring online gaming concepts to a physical casino, the vast majority of innovation is happening and staying in online games.
This means when you visit an online casino, along with more traditional game formats (and brands) you tend to come to expect, you’ll also see some more unusual and out there concepts that will yield fun new gameplay experiences.
Physical casinos have space limitations and will prioritize games that have popularity, which means more quirky games don’t often have an opportunity to find a place on the casino floor and take off.
By comparison, online sites don’t have that limitation. Just like Amazon can carry a broader selection online, online casinos can carry a broader selection of games online.
Buy a Bonus Feature
Buy a Bonus lets you effectively skip the normal spins and go right to a bonus feature. With the games making bonuses more lucrative, and harder to get naturally, this seems like a great way to shortcut things.
Of course, bonus purchases can be expensive – it’s not unusual for them to be 100x or more the standard spin amount you have selected. But the chances of winning a whole lot more than that are enticing, and for some players lets them get right to the good stuff.
While this feature is available on a handful of physical slot machines, the availability on online real money gaming slots is a lot broader.