Best Online Live Casino – Classic Games Brought to You Via Streams

Online games with a live dealer have risen in popularity over the last few years, which is hardly surprising when you consider what’s on offer. Playing live dealer games is exciting and it’s never been easier. Now that there are so many options out there, it’s hard to know where to look. We’ve written this helpful guide to the best live casinos for you to make that task just a bit easier. From the quality of a stream to the live casino bonuses available, there are all sorts of factors to consider when looking for a good online casino. This article will give you an insight into the most important factors for choosing the best live casino for you.

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The Advantages of Online Live Casinos

There’s no hiding from the fact that software-based gambling products are developing a murky reputation in this country. The crackdown on FOBTs and the subsequent press has resulted in a lack of trust in games that use a random number generator to decide the result. If you are one of these cynics, live dealer casinos could be the answer to your problems. The transparency offered by a live dealer moving around real playing cards is unparalleled. Some people ask me: is live casino rigged? Well, the evidence is right in front of your eyes. The dealer cuts the deck before every hand, so you know it’s truly random. Live casino is a growing area of the industry, with more and more people flooding to it every month. It’s also nice to be able to communicate freely with the person running the game and your table buddies. It creates a live casino social scene with a fantastic atmosphere. There’s a range of tables available these days and live casino rewards can also be found at the best sites.

What Live Dealer Games Can You Play?

Everyone knows roughly what to expect in a real-life casino, but what about an online live dealer casino? Below, we’ll briefly profile the games you can expect to find in all quality online live dealer games and mention some of their interesting variants.

Live Roulette

Live Roulette game and a dealer from Evolution Gaming This extremely popular casino game can be found on pretty much every live gambling site around today. Live roulette is one of the biggest draws for online casinos and there’s quite a range out there, from Multi Wheel and Mini Roulette. To see just how well and with what superb detail a live game of roulette can be brought online, check out Immersive Roulette from Evolution Gaming – winner of Game of the Year 2014 from the eGaming Review. Evolution Gaming’s title represents the pinnacle of online casino gaming for live roulette.

Live Blackjack

Live Blackjack table and a dealer from Evolution Gaming No casino, online or otherwise, would be complete with blackjack. Unlike other casino games, blackjack enjoys an unparalleled position in TV, films, and books. Instantly recognisable and compellingly simple, this game against the dealer has entertained players around the world for centuries. Given its popularity online, you’re always bound to find a table with players. To keep players engaged and in the game, plenty of live dealer casinos also offer side bets in the live blackjack games, such as Perfect Pairs and 21+3.

Live Baccarat

Live Dream Catcher EvolutionWhilst not the most popular pick online, baccarat is a game well-worth checking out. All the major operators – certainly those listed here – offer live baccarat tables, though there are considerably fewer baccarat tables than blackjack or roulette. Punto Banco, the most common version of baccarat, can be found almost everywhere, though my personal preference would be for the William Hill live baccarat selection, which boasts six live baccarat tables and limits up to £25,000. The betting options are a perk unique to live baccarat; players can bet on the banker, other players, or even a tie. This is all because players in live baccarat don’t have to play against the dealer.

Live Poker, Sic Bo and Others

The games mentioned above are pretty much standard fare in the best live casinos, but what about more unusual games? Most operators that offer online live tables also offer variants on the classics available to play to keep things interesting for players. When it comes to unusual variants, live poker leads the pack. Poker fans will want to check out Casino Hold’em, a live version of Texas Hold’em with a low house advantage. Playing against the dealer, the aim is to get the best possible hand from the two drawn cards and the five community cards. 3 Card Poker is a much faster version of normal poker and perfect for speedy online play. More recently, games such as Ultimate Texas Hold’em, Caribbean Stud and Casino Hold’em Jumbo 7 have entered the market as well. Evolution Gaming now also offers a poker game with a progressive jackpot in Live Ultimate Texas Hold’em Bonus. Aside from poker, live dealer suites have revived and popularised games that few English-speaking countries have heard of. For instance, the centuries-old Chinese dice game Sic Bo, which is playable live and online.

Non-Traditional Casino Games

Live Dream Catcher, a new money wheel game from Evolution GamingAs online live casinos grow, providers are expanding their game libraries. Evolution Gaming is leading with a couple of non-traditional game formats that are really shaking up the scene. Dream Catcher is a game show-style title heavily inspired by TVs Wheel of Fortune. The basic premise is similar to roulette but with a simplified betting system and a lot more flair in presentation. Dragon Tiger and Football Studio are very simple, 50/50 chance games that are designed with speed in mind. Both feature the drawing of two cards, with players given the opportunity to back either card A or card B. In Dragon Tiger, the game is Chinese-themed. In Football Studio, the cards represent either the home or away side.

Operators with a Special Live Casino Bonus

Given the rising popularity of live casinos, it’s totally understandable that sites have begun to offer dedicated bonuses for live dealer play. However, bonuses unique to live casinos are still relatively difficult to find. Oftentimes these bonuses are much more profitable than the standard bonus package for new users or specific games bonuses. You can click through above to claim your special live bonus from a couple of our top-rated providers. Enjoy!

Of course, any player that signs up specifically for live bonuses would be wise to check out the conditions particular to this unique bonus. It’s also important to realise that usually players can only sign for one bonus and not both the welcome package and live bonus, so choose carefully and choose according to your style of play. If you’re going to spend the vast majority of your time at a site playing live dealer games then a live bonus offer definitely makes the most sense.

The Biggest Live Casino Software Providers: An Overview

In the next section, I’d like to introduce the biggest and best casino software providers online and mention some of the features that make them worth checking out. Choosing the best live dealer casino is all about knowing your software suppliers. You’re bound to find at least one of these providers on any online casino you visit, so it’s a good idea to know what they’re about. From interactive live environments and engaging and chatty croupiers, there’s plenty to sample. There are a lot of providers out there, but these are the pick of the bunch. Check out the providers below…

Playtech – Quality and Excellent Games Selection

Playtech LogoAmongst the software providers, one name stands out. Playtech has been around longer than any of its competitors and offers more games than any other provider. Aside from the huge range of live dealer games on offer, there are plenty of reasons for Playtech’s popularity. This provider offers table limits as low as 10p, which is especially good for beginners and low stakes, casual players. Playtech’s standout game is Speed Roulette. As the title suggests, it’s a super-fast variant on roulette that’s bound to thrill and challenge fans of the original.

Evolution Gaming – The Market Leader

Evolution Gaming LogoEvolution Gaming are without a doubt one of the best live casino providers out there and they have the awards to prove it. Six years in a row, Evolution Gaming has been named the Live Casino Provider of the Year by the eGaming Review. The Evolution Gaming live casino has plenty of fun options for experienced live players as well, such as Blackjack Party, a quirky game with music, hilarious chat, and two lively TV-trained dealer, as well as numerous variants of live roulette, blackjack, casino poker, and baccarat.

  • Live Roulette from Netent
  • Live Blackjack from Evolution Gaming
  • Live Baccarat from Evolution Gaming
  • Live Blackjack from Extreme Live Gaming
Image of a live dealer in an Evolution Gaming studio
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NetEnt – Decades of Innovation

NetEnt logoLaunched in 1996, NetEnt is easily one of the older companies on the market. The quality of the site’s live stream and the site’s ease of use make for a winning combination. For certain tables, the dealers and croupiers are filmed in front of a green screen, so that players can change the background of their live gaming environment if they wish. NetEnt also offers an excellent live mobile casino experience to complement its desktop one in over 22 different languages. As players increasingly turn to mobile for their online gaming kicks, NetEnt’s trendsetting and innovative live mobile casino is sure to come into its own.

Extreme Live Gaming – Table Games & Slots

Extreme Live Gaming logoThere’s a lot to be said for Extreme Live Gaming. Launched in 2013, Extreme Live Gaming boasts a live mobile casino, a London-based live dealer web studio, and even a live casino system for real-life casinos – get your head round that. Though the company is relatively new to the game, there’s plenty to be said for this innovative crowd. Extreme Live Gaming was shortlisted for two awards – Best Live Casino and Best Live Streaming Supplier – from the Electronic Gaming Review in 2016, which is an incredible achievement for such a new addition to the market.

Live Casino Tips for Beginners

These are the most important factors when getting started with live dealer games for real money. Don’t be a noob, read our tips to get yourself up to speed in double time. The world of live casino awaits you. You need to know this stuff if you are going to be able to pick the best live casino.

What Is Live Casino and How Does It Work?

I’m going to let you behind the curtain for a second here and let you know how this all works. Live dealer casino games are streamed from (mostly) Eastern European cities where the labour is cheap and the people are pretty. Riga, in Latvia, is the de facto capital of the live dealer streaming we get in the UK. The studios there are state-of-the-art and run around the clock to beam cards and dice into our homes. Integrated software allows players to move chips, place bets and chat to the dealers and fellow players. Dealers respond by speaking to camera. Multiple casino sites use the same stream, so you can find your favourite dealers at more than one of the best live dealer casinos on the market.

Be On Your Best Behaviour

When playing live dealer games, it’s important to remember that you are dealing with real people. Respecting not just your dealer but your fellow players is an absolute must. Just be polite and nice to people, win or lose. That’s the main thing. We’ve all been there when you suffer a big loss and you want to break something, but that is not an excuse to be a dickhead in the chat. On the contrary, gloating over big wins is also unlikely to go down that well with your table friends. Finally, don’t be a creep to the dealers. There are plenty of handsome boys and girls dealing these cards, but they do not want to hear chat-up lines or sleazy comments from faceless usernames in a live casino chat room.

Respect The Speed of the Game

There is no autoplay feature on live dealer games. Before you start to play, be aware that the pace is a lot slower than when playing software-based games. If you are used to smashing through 200 hands of blackjack in 20 minutes, then the live dealer world might be a bit of a crawl for you. My advice is to sit back, enjoy the pace of the game and don’t get frustrated at the others who may be slower than you to make decisions. There are quicker games available if you really do miss the rush or very fast gambling games, such as Dragon Tiger and baccarat.

Why Can’t I Play for Free?

Sure, when a computer is running the game and feeding you your wins and losses, it’s no big deal to allow players to try games for nothing or offer free demo play. The operating cost is minimal, and players might end up switching to real money action. This marketing method does not exist in the live dealer casino world for several reasons. Firstly, live dealers need to be paid, servers and live streams need to be maintained, studio equipment and lighting suck up energy like nothing else, and all of this costs money. It makes no financial sense for an online gambling firm to invest the funds to run these games if they are not guaranteed to bring in revenue. For revenue to be earned, players need to lose money. For players to lose money, they need to be staking real cash. It is simple economics, but it’s amazing how many times I am asked this question by beginners in the live dealer casino business.

Branded Tables or Non-Branded Tables

Several casinos offer branded live dealer tables that appear to be exclusive to that particular brand. This exclusivity is not a complete illusion. Whilst the table games are delivered from the same Latvian studios as all of the other live tables, casino operators strike deals with the streaming provider to cover the backdrop and playing surface with its own branding. A good example is LeoVegas’ Chambre Séparée line of tables. Playing at these tables will, of course, mean that you are only playing with other LeoVegas customers but, in reality, the tables are identical in terms of rules and gameplay as non-branded tables.

Look Out for Live Casino Events

Throughout the year, special events such as the FIFA World Cup provide opportunities for special promotional events. These timed bonuses and competitions range from lucky card prize draws to leaderboards for accumulated wins. Often, you will have to play the games at certain times of the day or over pre-determined periods of time. Keep an eye on the regular promotions page of your chosen online casino operator for details of any live dealer events.

An image of a typical live casino promotion.

Do You Need an App to Play at a Live Casino on Your Mobile?

Live streaming technology has already taken off on mobiles. Mobile phones and apps already have the technology to stream live dealer games directly and in high quality. For that reason, you don’t actually need to download an app to take part in a live casino game. These days, you can simply stream a game on your iPhone or Android tablet straight through your chosen browser. Of course, there’s a big difference in data usage between an app and a live stream, so take that into account when deciding between the two – your wallet will thank you! In an ideal setup, you should stream a live dealer game on your mobile whilst connected to a WiFi source. Plenty of players also find their device’s screens are just too small to get really engrossed in a game and for that reason live dealer games on your mobile are probably best suited to quick, short bursts on the go, as opposed to long stretches of hands and rounds over a few hours. Personally, I find playing live on my tablet to be a happy compromise between the freedom of movement of a game on my phone and the high-quality graphics and easy interface of my desktop computer. For more about mobile gameplay check out our main mobile page here.

Conclusion – You Are Ready to Pick the Best Live Casino

We hope this overview of online live dealer games and providers has been useful.  Playtech, Extreme Live Gaming, NetEnt, and Evolution Gaming really are the best of the bunch. There are a lot of providers out there and it’s sometimes hard to know where to look, but this guide should help you get started.  If you’re looking for more info on specific casinos head to our review pages here. In the meantime, enjoy the live games that the great casinos above have to offer.

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