Live Casinos Canada
The online casino space has been a revelation for gamblers the world over, and it has brought with it a number of innovations that weren’t possible with physical casinos. These include a greater range of games, more betting options, and, of course, convenience. That being said, the online casino experience can sometimes feel lacking when compared to the experience you get in a real-world casino.
As you can imagine, not everyone can or is willing to visit a land-based casino.. Consider La Belle Province du Québec, over 2.5x the size of France, with just four provincially run land-based casinos offering live blackjack, live roulette, live baccarat, et cetera. You can just imagine what a road trip would cost in time and money! The situation doesn't get any better if you live in Northern Ontario or under the shadow of the Rocky Mountains in Western Canada. Throw in the harsh Canadian winters, and the suggestion becomes even less appealing.
What is a Live Casino?
Live casinos are often couched as an alternative to online casinos when the reality is that they are a subset of them. Live casinos are often presented as an option within the online casino’s range of ways to play, so it’s important to understand a little about the nature of online casinos in order to know the difference between them and live casinos.
When you play an online casino game, you are essentially playing with a computer for a dealer. A random number generator is used to do things like deal cards. While this has the advantage that you can play any time, it often leaves people who want a more authentic casino experience disappointed.
There can also be an element of mistrust towards computer-controlled gambling experiences (although, as long as you choose a reputable casino, there is no reason to worry). This can lead some people to seek out the more recognizable experience live casinos offer.
So what is a live casino Canada experience? The easiest way to think of it is gambling over a video call, though obviously, there is more to it than that. Essentially, you are given a live feed of the table and dealer, your view being from the position of a player at the table. The software of the online casino will show you the relevant information and allow you to make bets and carry out other actions depending on the game, and the dealer will carry out their role on the other side of the stream.
The crucial part here is that the dealer is real and live. It is not a pre-recorded video or a virtual dealer, but a real human who deals real cards (assuming it is a card game, of course) and interacts with the players in real time. The quality of these live casino experiences can vary, but they are often filmed in an authentic-looking setting, meaning it is common to see other active tables behind your dealer, all within a typically casino-like space.
These experiences are increasingly delivered in high-quality video, so it is necessary to have a good internet connection in order to enjoy the full effect. Of course, the live casino Canada experience is limited to games that involve a dealer, such as blackjack, roulette, and poker.
Introducing Live Casinos
Since Canadian casinos tend to be provincially run, one could argue that each casino is a carbon copy of the other. While this may not be a fair statement, another issue crops up if you don't particularly care for the casino closest to you. What do you do then?
The introduction of the online casino allowed players to enjoy classic table games against a virtual dealer from the comfort of their remote location. It eliminated the necessity of playing with other players or a croupier, which invariably removed the need for trips to land-based casinos.
Of course, online blackjack, roulette, baccarat and other games aren't all smooth skating. A computer-controlled dealer removed the social element from the equation, which for some was part and parcel of the enjoyment. You can no longer chat with the players seated at your table nor the dealer. Somehow, the human element of being at a land-based live casino was lost. Enter live casinos Canada!
The emergence and growing popularity of live casinos is a way to bridge that gap, giving players the convenience and flexibility of online casinos while recapturing some of the atmosphere and experience of a bricks-and-mortar casino. Still, live casinos are far from ubiquitous though they are certainly heading towards being offered everywhere—so we have put together our top ten live casinos so you know just where to go to get that authentic casino experience.
The Best Live Casinos Canada
Finding the best live casino can be difficult if you don't know what to look out for. Of course, a good selection of live casino games from top providers is essential. However, also consider that some casinos offer a live casino bonus on select live games. Here at OnlineCasinoList, Canadians can find our choice of the best live casinos that accept Canadians. These are licensed and regulated with fair, live casino bonus wagering terms. Of course, Canadians can still find many of their favourite slots and online casino games too.
Best Live Casino Games
The introduction of live to play casino games restored the social aspect that was lost when the most popular brick-and-mortar casino games shifted online. For instance, it brought back the real-life croupier, allowing players to participate in a group chat visible to the dealer and each other. Players have the option of asking a question or engaging in social banter between rounds.
Live casino games are streamed in high definition to a player's desktop PC or tablet/mobile (Android or iOS). This means that another advantage of live casino is that players can watch the game unfold on their screen at all times, making it feel like they're part of the action. If you like to keep your eyes glued on the croupier, you may particularly appreciate live casino online.
Although many online casinos offer to play live casino games, the software providers often boil down to a few familiar names. The largest provider of live dealer blackjack is Evolution Gaming by a wide margin. Their games are found at most of the leading licensed and regulated online casinos. Indeed, they can even be found at some provincially run casinos like the British Columbia Lottery Corporation's playnow.com website.
Some other providers of online live casino games include Pragmatic Play, Ezugi, Authentic Gaming and Playtech. These are growing competitors to Evolution Gaming with quality products.
One of the most popular table games on the planet is Blackjack. Its popularity has only grown with the introduction of live dealer blackjack. Live blackjack is available in a wide variety of variants, delivering loads of fun. The largest provider of live dealer blackjack is Evolution Gaming. It has pioneered live blackjack games, including multiple standard and VIP blackjack variants. The games retain the same low house edges of land-based casinos.
Some blackjack tables offer side bet options such as Bet Behind, Perfect Pairs and 21+3, delivering variety that enhances the overall experience.
Bet Behind is available in variants like Blackjack Party. Here, players waiting for a seat at a table can back one or more of the 7 players. Perfect Pairs is an opportunity to win higher payouts when a player's first two cards combine to form a perfect pair, coloured pair or mixed pair.
The 21+3 side bet allows a player to win on various poker-style card combinations of his/her initial two cards and the dealer's face-up card.
While these side bets can make the game that much more exciting, they also increase the house edge.
Live roulette comes in many variants, which are primarily based on a European wheel, but players can also find French Roulette and American Roulette. Each table is designed to exude a certain degree of refinement and prestige to add to the overall gaming experience.
Some of the tables, such as Immersive Roulette, dazzle with exceptionally immersive visuals, capturing the game action from multiple camera angles. A Canadian player can follow the ball until the precise moment when it falls into a pocket at 200 frames per second in high definition. Slow-motion replay may also be available if you want to savour a victory. Imagine reliving Paul Henderson's goal against Russia in slow motion for comparison.
Since variety is the spice of life, players can find various live roulette variants, starting with Lightning Roulette. This table has a random number generator (RNG) where payouts can range from 50x to 500x bet.
Not all live roulette casino games use croupiers. In fact, Auto Roulette does away with the live dealer by using a fully automated wheel. The game is designed to take speed to the next level.
Speaking of taking speed to the next level, Evolution Gaming also has Speed Roulette. It is an even faster version of Auto Roulette and packs more action into a shorter time. To be exact, it takes 25 seconds between spins in part because betting takes place during spins.
We bet you thought that all roulette wheels are played with just one ball? Double Ball Roulette proves otherwise with potential payouts of up to 1,300:1. There is never a dull moment when playing live roulette.
Aside from standard roulette, there's VIP roulette for high rollers.
Among live card games, live baccarat has found a place in the hearts of many Canadian players. Perhaps it's the simplicity. Whatever the reason, live to play baccarat is another popular gaming favourite by novices and high rollers alike.
As with live blackjack and live roulette, live baccarat comes in several variants to choose from. All of these are designed to resemble a Macau-style live casino game.
Some come with familiar side bets, such as Pairs. This allows a player to bet on whether the player's or the banker's first two cards will be a pair. It has a payout of 11:1. Some other side bets are more lucrative, such as Perfect Pair where two pairs offer payouts of up to 200:1.
Evolution Gaming's Salon Privé is the ultimate in high roller, VIP treatment with different starting bet levels. Some other exciting variants include Live Baccarat Squeeze, Speed Baccarat, Live Baccarat Control Squeeze, No Commission Baccarat, Lightning Baccarat, Baccarat Multiplay and Dual Play Baccarat.
Live Game Shows
You may not have realized this, but live casino games are not only based on traditional table games. In fact, there is a growing category of live to play casino games based on the concept of popular game shows and board games.
Evolution Gaming remains at the forefront of this innovation. However, other developers like Playtech have introduced their own version of these alternative games.
Dream Catcher was the first game show from Evolution Gaming. Its success has acted as the blueprint for follow-up games like Crazy Time, Monopoly Live, and Deal or No Deal Live. Much of the appeal stems from using immersive technology such as augmented reality and 3-D. These games work on the concept of a money wheel, similar to the game show Wheel of Fortune. Players can collect win multipliers or trigger bonuses that can lead to massive prizes.
Gonzo's Treasure Hunt is the latest game from Evolution Gaming based on NetEnt's popular slot Gonzo's Quest. It combines slot-style gameplay with a live casino game. Players can go on a treasure hunt for prizes of up to 20,000x!
Live casinos are undoubtedly a welcome bridge between the personal experience of visiting a casino and the convenience of an online casino. There’s something about sitting opposite a real human while you play your hand that makes the experience that much more enjoyable.
When looking for a live casino to try, there will likely be less of a risk of encountering untrustworthy providers due to the higher risk of being caught and the greater costs involved in running a live casino. That being said, you should still make sure any casino you choose has a good reputation.
It is also important to make sure you have an Internet connection that is up to the task. Live casinos want the best possible experience for everyone, and if your stream is lagging and you take too long to make your play, you could find yourself being skipped over so as not to hold the other players up.