If you’re going to play at an online casino, there’s one thing above all others you need to know about: the odds. These dictate how likely you are to win while you’re playing, and they vary from game to game. Some games, such as video poker, can have astronomically high odds. However, others are best avoided, as they favour the casino massively and give you a poor chance of walking away with any money.
But how do online casino odds work? And what are the odds for popular online casino games? You can find out the answers to these questions, as well as many more, when you read through the rest of this handy page!
Understanding Casino Game Odds
The first thing to discuss on this page is what odds are. The odds at a casino are generally expressed as a percentage, and this is called the return-to-player – often abbreviated to RTP online. This is a figure that tells you how much money, on average, a game pays back. So, if a game has an RTP of 95%, the average person will receive back £95 for every £100 they spend.
However, it’s vital to remember that the RTP is only an average. When testing the RTP, a testing house will simulate millions of turns. In reality, you almost certainly won’t win back the exact RTP. Just think: many people manage to win significant sums of money while playing a game. Therefore, many other people will need to lose money to get to the average.
You might also hear the phrase “house edge” at a casino, and this is another way of describing how much a casino game will pay out. While the RTP tells you what you will win back on average, the house edge represents what the casino’s average take will be. So, if a game has an RTP of 95%, the game’s house edge will be 5%. The lower the house edge, the better for the player, while the higher the RTP, the better for the player.
Now let’s take a look at the odds of some of the most popular games in a casino, and the first game to look at is blackjack. It’s tough to state exact odds for this game, as there are so many tweaks to the rules that can be made, such as changing when the dealer has to hit. However, in general, you should expect blackjack to offer an RTP of approximately 99.5%. This means that the house only has a fractional advantage over the player.
However, there’s something essential to remember about the RTP in blackjack. The RTP only applies to those who play perfect strategy – something that only a few people can do. Every mistake and piece of poor play will bring the RTP down, giving the casino a better chance of winning money. Blackjack is one of the only games in a casino with an element of skill, so it pays to practice. Quite simply, the better you are at blackjack, the more likely you are to win money.
Next up, we come to the odds for roulette. There are three main types of roulette, and they all have different RTPs, thanks to slight tweaks to the rules. The version with the best RTP is French roulette, which has an RTP of 98.64%. This version of the game only has a single zero, plus it has the la partage rule. This means that players making an even-money bet will receive half their bet back if the ball lands on zero. Of the major versions of the game, French roulette has the best RTP. Therefore, it’s the game to play if you’re only interested in making money.
The second version of roulette to talk about is European roulette, the most popular roulette game with UK players. There’s only a single zero in this game, but there’s no la partage rule, which means that the RTP decreases slightly to 97.30%. This still isn’t a bad RTP, especially when compared to American roulette.
Of the three main versions of the game, American roulette has the worst odds by some considerable distance. This is because American roulette has no la partage rule, plus it has a double zero, as well as a single. This means that there’s twice the chance of the ball not landing on either option in an even money bet. This tweak to the game leads to an RTP of just 94.74%. This is why, given a choice, experienced roulette players will always stay away from American roulette.
There’s something vital to mention when it comes to the RTPs of different roulette variations, and it’s this: they only apply when placing an even money bet. There are three of these available in roulette: red/black, odd/even and low/high. These even money bets have the lowest prizes. However, they are the bets with the best RTPs available. If you choose to place any other type of bet, you’ll find that the RTP drops. It might be boring, but if you’re looking to win while playing roulette, only ever place even money bets.
Baccarat is another popular game in online casinos, and it’s also another game with an excellent RTP. This RTP comes in at 98.94%, making it a better bet than any of the main variations of roulette, but not quite as good as the average game of blackjack. There is no skill at all in playing baccarat, meaning that brand new players have the same chances of winning as those who’ve played the game for years.
You’ll only get the RTP of 98.94% when you bet on the banker, however. The banker bet is the best in the game, even though there’s a commission paid to the house every time you place a winning bet on the banker. If you bet on the player, you’ll have an RTP of 98.76%, which is nearly as good. However, bet on the tie, and the RTP drops to 85.64%. This is why you should always avoid betting on the tie when playing baccarat, even though the tie offers the highest potential prize.
When looking at the odds of games, it’s tough to talk about slots. This is because there are thousands of different online slots, and they all have varying RTPs. At the top of the scale, you’ll find some slots with RTPs over 98%. However, you’ll find slots that have RTPs of lower than 90% at the other end of the scale. Because the RTP varies wildly between different slots, it’s crucial to check the RTP before you start playing a slot machine.
We’ve listed the RTPs of some of the most popular online slots below:
- Mega Moolah: 88.12%
- Mega Fortune: 96.60%
- Starburst: 96.09%
- Gonzo’s Quest: 95.97%
- Bonanza: 96.00%
- Rainbow Riches: 95.00%
- Fluffy Favourites: 95.39%
- Thunderstruck II: 96.65%
- Immortal Romance: 96.86%
- Fishin’ Frenzy Megaways: 95.02%
You’ll find that many casinos have a page on their site listing the RTPs of all their slots, as well as the RTPs of all other games. It’s also straightforward to find a game’s RTP simply by conducting a quick search on Google.
Video Poker Odds
Finally, we’ll take a look at the odds while playing video poker. This isn’t the most popular game at casinos, but there’s a reason we still include it: some versions of video poker offer the highest odds around. In fact, there are some variations of the game that have an RTP of over 100%. This RTP means that those who play perfectly over a very long period will make money. Of course, perfect play is challenging, and only a few people can play with optimum strategy.