Live dealer casinos have become more and more popular in recent years. Gamblers love how this style of gaming blends the feeling of land-based casinos with the convenience of online gambling.
Live dealer sites are also a great alternative when you don’t feel like playing at brick-and-mortar casinos. After all, not everybody wants to travel somewhere to enjoy casino games.
However, live gaming sites aren’t completely perfect. You should definitely consider the following downsides before depositing at a live casino and playing.
1 – You Can’t Control the Game Speed
Traditional real money online gambling allows you to dictate the action. You have sole control over when hands, dice tosses, and roulette spins play out.
Furthermore, you can stop the action and take breaks whenever the mood strikes. If you want to hit the restroom really fast, you just leave the game as is and go. You don’t need to worry about if the casino will save your seat.
This situation isn’t exactly the same with live dealers.
You also have to place wagers and make decisions within a certain timeframe. These casinos feature counters that determine how much time you have to make a decision.
You should eventually be able to adapt to the stricter timeframes of live casinos. But the point is that you simply have less control with live dealer gaming.
2 – Limited Seating
Land-based casinos only have so much seating in their table games area. On busy nights, you may have to wait for a seat and/or play at stakes that you’re not interested in.
Virtual online casinos solve this problem. They feature software-generated tables that can seat as many people as their servers can accommodate.
The same advantage, though, doesn’t translate to live gaming sites. Given that live casino games run out of land-based studios, they have limited seating to some degree.
Sites have partially worked around this problem with bet behind. The latter has a feature that allows you to gamble on another player’s action who’s seated at a table.
Bet behind is a nice solution for when you can’t immediately sit down at a live casino table. It gives you a way to enjoy the action when a live site is at full capacity.
Then again, you don’t get to actually make decisions when using bet behind. Instead, your success, or lack thereof, depends upon the gambler who’s in the seat.
Bottom line, live gaming sites aren’t as accommodating as standard internet casinos in terms of space. Bet behind is the only way to get action when the tables are completely packed.
3 – Higher Stakes
Online casinos offer the lowest stakes available for table games. You can play most online table games for just $1 per hand. Certain sites even offer special blackjack variations where the minimum bet is only $0.10.
Some live dealer casinos match the low wagers available at traditional internet casinos. For example, you may be able to play live baccarat or blackjack for $1 per hand.
However, live dealer sites aren’t always so cheap to play at. Some require up to $5 minimum wagers per hand/round.
Of course, a $5 minimum bet isn’t terrible in the grand scheme of gaming. Many gamblers wager around this amount. Going further, the cheapest land-based casino bets are typically $5.
But if you’re a true low roller, you’ll want the option to only bet a dollar. You may not always have this chance at every live dealer casino.
4 – Live Casino Bonuses Have High Playthrough
You can earn bonuses through live casino games just like you can with traditional internet games. Some of these offers are free bets while others are match deposit bonuses.
A free wager provides an opportunity to win back losses from your first bet. A match bonus matches a percentage of your deposit up to a certain amount. If you deposit $100 under a 100% match deal, for example, then you’ll have a chance to earn $100.
A free bet makes you eligible to get losses back from your first wager. If you lose $25 on your first bet, for instance, then you can earn back the $25 loss.
Low playthrough (a.k.a. rollover) allows you to earn your bonus quicker. Unfortunately, live casino games feature high rollover.
Casinos attach bigger rollover to these bonuses because most live casino games feature low house edges. They don’t want to give you an opportunity to earn a bonus while assuming very little risk.
A live casino bonus may feature anywhere from 60x to 200x playthrough. Contrast this to a slots bonus, which typically carries between 30x and 45x rollover.
5 – Still Not Quite the Same as Land Based Casinos
Why would anybody choose a physical casino where they’ll be forced to play higher stakes? The answer: atmosphere and social elements.
A brick-and-mortar casino gives you the opportunity to gamble amongst other people. You can even visit with your friends and sit next to each other on slot machines or tables.
All of these elements were previously lacking in online casinos up until the late 2000s. It’s at this point when live dealer gaming sites rolled out.
Live casinos definitely offer a more of a social experience than regular online casinos. They provide a chat box, which you can use to communicate with the dealer.
In turn, the dealer can respond to all of your questions and comments. Assuming you like a particular dealer’s personality, then you’ll have a fair amount of fun at gaming sites.
However, you’re still not getting exactly the same social experience as with brick-and-mortar casinos. You aren’t physically sitting across from the dealer or next to other players.
Furthermore, you don’t get to enjoy the sights and sounds of the casino. Instead, you’re looking at all of the action through a smartphone or computer screen.
Are Live Dealer Casino Games Still Worth Playing?
I’m not trying to sway you away from live dealer casinos. In fact, I myself play at these sites a fair amount. Instead, I just want to make you aware of the various downsides to this style of gaming.
You may not be overly bothered by the drawbacks to live casinos. This is especially true when considering that these sites provide the perfect mixture of live and online gaming.
Again, though, you should at least consider the downsides before rushing to play. Ultimately, you may find that you’d rather stick with virtual table games and/or slots.
Whether you decide to play at live dealer gaming sites comes down to a personal decision. These casinos aren’t entirely perfect, but they can definitely be worthwhile if you want a social gambling experience through your smartphone, tablet, or computer.
Live casinos are far from perfect. They contain several issues that may make you question whether playing at them is worthwhile.
Perhaps the biggest problem is that, unlike with regular online gambling, you don’t control the action. Instead, you must play at the dealer’s speed. Another issue is that live casinos don’t quite replicate the land-based atmosphere.
Nevertheless, live dealer sites are close enough to brick-and-mortar casinos to where they’re nice if you don’t feel like traveling. This aspect alone can outweigh every drawback if you’re looking to get a live casino experience through your smartphone.