The growth of live casino play at online operators has given players a better choice than ever before. By playing with real life croupiers and dealers, the experience is as close as you will get to the bright lights of Las Vegas or Macau without ever having to leave your home.
The original version of each game is still available so, if we are taking blackjack as our example in this article, players can elect to play with computerised graphics and a virtual dealer. The choice is yours but if you remain undecided, allow us to give you some pointers and by the end of this review, you have a better chance of making an informed decision.
If you’ve ever played Live Blackjack at a bricks and mortar casino then the live rooms at Unibet may be the best option for you. It’s tough to match the thrills and the atmosphere that a real life gaming hall can bring but live online casinos come pretty close.
The action is played out in real time, 24/7 and you can interact with the dealer as long as you remember to maintain a professional approach and to keep the game moving at all times. The turn of each card is as real as you can get online so, if your desire is to match the experience of a casino in Las Vegas, London, Macau or any of the world’s great locations, this is the option for you. Unibet of course also offers Live Roulette, and our Live Roulette Guide.
There is a contrasting view to the above theory and it revolves around the ability to close out all distractions and to focus on the game. With a live dealer available, there is the potential for some players to become distracted. The live casino requires high concentration levels, particularly in a game such as blackjack where there is a degree of skill involved.
When playing the original online version of the game, everything else is shut out. It’s just you versus the graphics with little or no potential to become distracted. It’s easy to see why this might be a better option but if you’re yet to decide, there are other points to consider.
Which Option has the Greater Choice?
In a number of online casinos, the traditional method of playing blackjack can offer more variants. Games developers are looking to be innovative and to keep things interesting so more and more unusual variants are being produced.
Not all of these versions translate perfectly to the live tables. As a general rule, live dealers will only be involved in the more traditional versions of blackjack so if you like things a little weird and wonderful, there may be greater choice in the original online methods.
That isn’t to say that you will struggle to find a game if you head for the live rooms. At the time of writing, Unibet offer marginally more virtual online options and available tables but they are only just ahead of their live counterparts.
Are You Experienced?
The next point to consider relates to your skill and experience level. Are you an old hand at this game or are you a blackjack beginner? For those that are relatively new, we would suggest starting with the online version first.
Remember that our dealers are all professionals and are highly trained in their art but, if you are slightly nervous about heading to the tables, you may not want a human being waiting to deal the cards. A better approach for those still learning the game is to play with small stakes at one of our online blackjack tables or, you can simply take it for a free demo with no money at stake.
If, however, you’re supremely confident in your ability, the live tables may be the better option. Aside from offering the big thrills, there is an element of convenience here too. We might all like to head into the great outdoors and to visit a live casino but it may not always be possible to do so.
Establishments are closing and the nearest location may be many miles away. We would still recommend a real life casino as an experience not to be forgotten but when it’s just not convenient to visit one, the live tables online are certainly the next best thing.
Timing isn’t Everything
Some may suggest that the online, anonymous approach is best if you are a casual player but we don’t subscribe to that theory ourselves. As long as you are confident in your skill levels, anyone can head across to the live rooms and get the best out of live blackjack.
If you’re online once a day, once a week or once a month it really doesn’t matter and we don’t feel that regularity of play is key to making a decision on this.
Assess the Situation
For gaming on the go, a few hands of blackjack in a traditional online casino may be the best approach. Perhaps you’re stuck on the train or waiting for an appointment and you’d like to start playing while you wait. In either of these scenarios, it’s going to be a case of muting the sound and putting your headphones in while you take in a few hands.
Of course, you can play in silence with a live dealer but it seems a little pointless to do so. If the option is there to play live and interactively then it makes sense to make use of that rather than hitting the mute button. Conversely, if you are at home and have an hour or two to spare, the live casino rooms offer a more relaxed and friendly environment. Your situation doesn’t have to dictate your choice but this is just another suggestion that may help you to decide between the two options that are available.
The Speed Factor
Speed is of the essence and, if you only have a few minutes to spare, the traditional online dealer may be your better option. With virtual dealers and graphics, the game moves as quickly as you hit the bet button and you are in control to a much greater extent. In contrast, live dealers dictate their own pace and while there are no hold ups, it’s a marginally slower game.
You may also feel somewhat self-conscious of entering a live room and leaving again after five or six games. That’s a personal view but once again, it’s all about feeling as relaxed and as comfortable as possible. If you feel that you may struggle with any distractions, head to the traditional online room and be sure to shut them out.
Find Your Perfect Match
If you’ve read through this guide and are still undecided as to whether to play traditional online blackjack or the live casino version, there is a definitive way in which to find out. All of our online casino games come with a demo version which allows for free play. This means that you can play blackjack with notional stakes while you’re getting used to the gameplay.
No money is on the table so you cannot come away with a cash win but by playing a few hands, you can judge whether this style of play is for you. Do you like the basic graphics and the lack of external distractions or do you think you might prefer the live casino experience with it’s noise and enhanced atmosphere?
The demo play option isn’t available at the live casino but you can start to play here with small stakes. A large financial commitment isn’t needed to test things out and, by taking both options, you should be able to make a final judgement.
It’s a valid question: Do you really have to make a choice between the live dealers and the static online version? Many of our customers at Unibet continue to play both options happily and they will cross between the two whenever it suits.
If the mood dictates that they just want a few quick games of blackjack in complete solitude with no external distractions, speed and situation might mean it’s easier to get on board with the traditional version.
Alternatively, if you are in a relaxed and sociable mood and have time on your hands, the live casino experience is going to be difficult to match. Here, you can get as close to the real thing as possible and enjoy all the thrills that a live casino can provide.
In short, you don’t have to choose between the two and commit to one option at the total exclusion of the other. When you arrive at Unibet’s main page, simply make a selection between casino and live casino depending on your mood and situation. Feel free to follow your own pattern and don’t let anyone influence your final decision.
It’s now over to you but whatever you decide, be sure to get involved with our blackjack options - live or otherwise - and you can start to enjoy one of the most thrilling card games around.