Understanding online casino games is critical to maximizing your enjoyment of playing at online casinos. Here at TopCasino.com we believe that a good starting point for any newbie player interested in playing at an online casino is to first know what kinds of games they can expect to find at an online casino and further how to play these games.
Having a better understanding will not only help you pick which games you choose to play but ultimately understand how each works to better your potential win outcome. Each of the games reviews we've provided here below also feature a listing of online casinos we suggest playing these games at. At Top Casino we only pick the most highly regarded online casinos in which we choose to share with our visitors.
Online slots are also known as slot machines, slots, fruit machines, or one-armed bandits. Although nobody calls them one-armed bandits these days, they were once called so because they had a lever on one side, which players needed to push to set the machine spinning, and also because of their uncanny ability to leave players broke and furious. Although modern slot machines still have levers on one side, they are operated through a push button. Slot machines are called “fruit machines” by the British, slots by the Canadians, pokies or poker machines by the Australians, and slot machines by the Americans.
Each slot machine comes with a currency detector that determines the value of the bets placed by players prior to play. Players receive payouts depending on the symbol combinations resulting from each spin.
Today, slot machines are immensely popular, and casinos rake in 70 percent of their profits through slot machines alone. Slot machines are alluring because they come in so many themes, such as animals, bugs, food, vacations, comics, movies, science fiction, horror, romance, and so on, and have so many features. Thanks to the latest casino gaming technology, players have a wide range of slots to choose from.
Players can choose from a wide range of online slots—simple classic slots; multiline video slots with myriad features such as wild icons, multipliers, bonus games, free spins, and gamble features; and progressive slots with huge progressive jackpots.
The simple 3-reel, 1-payline slots, also known as classic slots or fruit slots, enjoy a great deal of popularity simply because they are easy to understand and play. The multi-line slots, also known as video slots, have multiple paylines, enabling players to create winning combinations across horizontal, diagonal, or vertical paylines. Although video slots offer plenty of chances to create winning combinations, it does not mean that players will definitely win a lot of money playing video slots.
Progressive jackpots can be found attached to classic as well as video slots, but players will have to bet maximum if they want to hit a progressive jackpot. Progressive slots are very popular because they continue to grow till they are won; what’s more, some of them are so large that they can transform players’ lives.
One of the most delightful types of slots is the UK pub slot, a simple, but feature rich slot machine with trials, holds, nudges, gamble games, and bonus board games.
Players love slots because the game is a pure game of chance, which does not require them to develop extraordinary skills. Unlike poker, blackjack, or even video poker, players do not need to adopt any complicated strategies to enhance their chances of winning.
Playing online slots is as simple as placing a bet, pressing the “Spin” or “Play” button, and expecting the reels to create a winning combination when they come to a halt. Players will get paid if a winning combination is created and will lose their bets if a winning combination is not created.
Before playing an online slots game, players must read the rules of the game carefully and study the payout structure, which tells them exactly how much they can win for each combination of symbols. All online slots have fixed jackpots, but players are expected to bet maximum if they want to win the top jackpot. Some slot machines are associated with life-transforming progressive jackpots too, but the odds of hitting one are very low.
Players need not worry about casinos cheating them through online slot machines. Online slots are associated with random number generators that work continuously to create random numbers, ensuring that the results depend on chance alone.
SlotTracker.com - A system that runs as a plugin within the Chrome browser that allows you to track your online slots gambling activity. Very handy for keeping track of your spending, where you play and slot games RTP.
SlotsCatalog.com - The most comprehensive multi-lingual online slots website I've ever come across online. Find detailed reviews of the top online slots by most of the popular online casino software providers here.
Casino.guru - How Slots Work Article - If you've ever wondered how slots worked both offline and online then this detailed resource found on Casino.guru is a great place to start. You can also play a large selection of free slots games they make available on their site.
FreeSlots.com - This site used to provide Java based sim slots (simulated slots) and have converted thier games now into HTML5 so there's no need for any plugins. It's a great place to play some free slots unrelated to major developers of online casino software.
Blackjack, which also goes under the name of 21, is one of the most popular online casino games. Although there are innumerable variations of blackjack, the basic rule is the same—players have to create a hand equal to or close to 21 without exceeding it. They will win the game if they create a hand equal to 21, also known as blackjack.
The ancestor of blackjack was a game called 21, whose origins are unknown. Miguel de Cervantes, the writer of Don Quixote and a die-hard gambler, has mentioned the game in his works. Other Spanish and French writers have also made references to this game.
When 21 got into the US, gambling houses offered special bonuses for certain card combinations to lure gamblers. One of these bonuses was a 10:1 payout for a combination of a Jack of spades or clubs and the ace of spades. The hand came to be known as blackjack, and was slowly used for the game although casinos withdrew this bonus. The game, of course, evolved; and in the modern version of the game, blackjack means any hand that equals an ace and a picture card or a ten card, irrespective of its color or suit.
Online casinos offer a wide range of blackjack games, all based on the rules of the original blackjack, but with slight variations that make them unique. Some of the unique variants of blackjack are Super Fun 21 Blackjack, Spanish 21 Blackjack, Atlantic City Blackjack, and Perfect Pairs Blackjack.
Super Fun 21 Blackjack is based on the same rules of classic blackjack; however, there are slight differences between classic blackjack and Super Fun 21 Blackjack with regard to payout structure and bets.
Spanish 21 Blackjack also enjoys a great deal of popularity at online casinos. The variant is played with a maximum of 8 decks with the ten cards removed and has a generous payout structure. Atlantic City Blackjack is also played with 8 standard decks of playing cards and pays out 2:1 for natural blackjack. Perfect Pairs Blackjack is played with a maximum of 6 decks and comes with a special perfect pairs bet.
Other attractive variants of blackjack are Bonus Blackjack, Blackjack Surrender, Blackjack Switch, Double Exposure Blackjack, Pontoon Blackjack, European Blackjack, and Vegas Strip Blackjack.
Triple 7s Blackjack is associated with an attractive progressive jackpot, but players will have to place an optional fixed bet of $1 if they want to win it.
Blackjack is based on a set of simple rules and is very easy to play. A group of 1 to 7 players can play blackjack. All the number cards are taken at face value, the picture cards are assigned the value of 10, and the ace can be either 1 or 11 depending on the circumstances of the game.
The objective of the game is to create a hand equaling 21 or better than that of the dealer, but without exceeding 21 or going bust. If players create a hand exceeding 21, they will lose the game; but if they create a hand equaling 21, which is also known as blackjack, they will win the game and will receive a payout of 3:2.
Blackjack gives players the options to stand or refuse any more cards, hit or receive more cards in the hope of creating a better hand, double down or double their original bet on the assumption that they will win the round, split pairs into two hands and play them simultaneously, or purchase insurance. If they win their insurance bets, which are placed on the assumption that the dealer will get blackjack, they will get a payout of 2:1.
PokerNews.com - New players looking to get started with blackjack but don't know where to start should read a comprehensive guide such as this one found on PokerNews.com
BlackjackInfo.com - Great resource by a blackjack veteran Ken Smith who I've met and know personally. This website provides information for both beginners and advanced players and can assist you in improving your blackjack skills both offline and online. Of particular interest the school section found on the homepage of his site provides links to get you started.
BlackjackApprenticeship.com - This is a subscription / paid service but is highly regarded. The creators of this website and tutorials claim that they have won in excess of $4.0 million dollars using the techniques they teach. Even if you decide not to make use of their paid service they do offer several free videos that are useful to those getting started with playing blackjack.
Ken Uston - Million Dollar Blackjack Book - Every true blackjack player knows the late Ken Uston. A fantastic blackjack player and writer who has graced the world with this fantastic book about blackjack. It a quick and easy read and worthy of your time and money.
HTML5Blackjack.net - Free Blackjack - On this page you'll find a simple HTML5 blackjack game that you can play right within your browser with no plugins necessary in order to do so. This game is very basic and lacks the features and bells and whistles of what you find in real online casinos.
Video Poker, which is also referred to as Draw Poker, is widely played in both online and land casinos. The game is popular, especially among poker players, because it is skill based, has a low house edge, and can be played against the house. Moreover, the game is based on the simple rules of 5 Card Draw Poker. Video Poker games available at online casinos resemble slot machines.
Video Poker was born in New York in 1891 with Sittman and Pitt Co. creating the first video poker machine, which comprised 10 drums with 10 cards in each of them. Players had to insert a coin in this machine to set the drums spinning. The cards revealed when the drums came to rest were considered to be the players’ cards.
More video poker machines made an appearance in the mid seventies although they were nothing like the sophisticated modern video poker machines. The machines, however, rapidly evolved, and today video poker is a sophisticated game available at both online and brick and mortar casinos.
Moreover, there are innumerable video poker variants for players to choose from, and all players need is basic knowledge of poker rules and hands to enjoy a game of video poker.
There is a wide range of online video poker variants for players to choose from. The major difference between these variants is the payout structure. The most popular video poker variant is Jacks or Better, which has a payback percentage of 99.5 percent.
Jacks or Better is a great game for beginners who have never played video poker before because it is not only easy to play, but also has a great payout structure. Online video poker variants, which offer better payout structures, are not as easy to play as Jacks or Better and involve intricate strategies. Jacks or Better machines and their payout structures, however, depend entirely on the casino that offers the game.
Another popular video poker variant is Deuces Wild, in which the four deuces serve as wild cards. However, players should create at least a Three of a Kind to win because they will see a lot of deuces in this variant.
Jokers Wild bears a resemblance to both Deuces Wild and Jacks or Better; however, in case of Jokers Wild, the Joker acts as the wild card. Owing to the presence of this wild card, players should get at least 2 pairs to win a payout.
Video Poker is a game of skill, but simultaneously, it is not as complex as poker or blackjack, owing to which it forms a nice cross between slot machine games and table games. The game is based on the rules of 5 Card Draw Poker, but players have to play against the house and not against other players.
Once players have placed their bets, the machine deals 5 cards, after which players can draw a maximum of five cards. The objective is to create the strongest hand possible by using the “Hold” button to retain a few cards or to discard unwanted cards and then using the “Deal” button to receive new cards. Once players have created their hand, they can use the “Draw” button and collect payouts, if any.
Video poker games require a standard deck of 52 playing cards; but variants such as Joker Poker use a standard deck plus a couple of extra Jokers. The payout structure of each video poker variant alters the house edge, and players can enhance their odds of winning by studying the payout structure thoroughly. Fortunately, there are a number of online resources where players can get all the information they need on video poker strategy.
VegasClick.com - Video Poker Lessons - A great place to start for players just getting started with video poker. This helpful resource can assist you in learning how to play video poker at a basic level.
VideoPoker.com - This site offers both free and paid video poker content. You can learn about video poker for free with their free lessons and guides and register for an account and paid service if you wish to play their wide range of video poker games.
Roulette is actually derived from a French word, which means “small wheel.” Players of Roulette bet on colors, single numbers or number ranges, and odd numbers or even numbers on the Roulette wheel, which makes it a pure game of chance.
The game has an interesting history and is believed to have originated in France in the eighteenth century. The Roulette wheel gets its design from a wide range of games such as the English Roly Poly, Ace of Hearts, Biribi and Hoca, and a French board game called Roulette, which was already in existence when the Roulette wheel appeared on the scene. An early reference to the game can be found in La Roulette, a French novel penned by Jaques Lablee, which gives a detailed description of a Roulette wheel in Paris.
In the mid-nineteenth century, the game was taken to Germany; and toward the end of the nineteenth century, the earliest forms of American Roulette were born. By the end of the twentieth century, Roulette had become a popular game of chance all over the world. While the Roulette wheel with the double zero became popular in America, the Roulette wheel with the single zero became popular in Europe.
Online casinos offer five exciting variants of roulette—American Roulette, European Roulette, French Roulette, Mini Roulette, and Racetrack Roulette.
Players usually prefer European Roulette to American Roulette because it is player friendly and has a lower house edge. While American Roulette has one zero, which greatly increases the house advantage, European Roulette has two zeros, which lowers the house edge considerably.
American Roulette is similar to European Roulette except that it has one zero and, therefore, a greater house edge. Roulette experts advise beginners to start their gaming adventures on European Roulette, and not on American Roulette, if they have a choice.
French Roulette, which is similar to the above-mentioned variants, is a nice way for players to learn French. It has only one zero and a lower house edge and has the instructions and betting terms written in French.
Mini Roulette is an exciting variant for beginners, having just 13 numbers and a collection of 15 bets. Racetrack Roulette is another unique Roulette that many players are fond of. Like French and European Roulette, it has only one zero and is, therefore, quite player friendly. However, the table layout, the bet types, and the way the numbers placed are totally different.
Playing Roulette is simple; players only have to bet on the number, number range, odd number or even number or red or black, whichever they feel will help them win their bets.
As previously mentioned, European Roulette has only 37 numbers from 0 to 36 while American Roulette has 38 numbers because of the extra double zero, which takes its house advantage to 5.26 percent. Roulette tables have minimum and maximum bets, and combining inside and outside bets to get the table minimum is not permitted.
Players can place inside bets such as Straight Up, which is betting on one number; Split Bet, which is betting on two numbers; Line Bet, which is betting on a row of numbers; Corner Bet, which is betting on four numbers; and many other types of bets such as Basket Bet and Double Street Bet. The outside bets include betting on red or black, odd or even numbers, the Dozens Bet, the Column Bet, and others.
Playing Roulette is as simple as betting and waiting for the wheel to stop spinning to see if the bets have won. This is purely a game of chance and players cannot improve the odds in their favor by employing strategies.
Caesars.com - How to Play Roulette - Here on this page of Caesars (which is part of one of the most well known gambling groups in the world) you'll find a 4 minute instruction video teaching you everything you need to know to get started with playing roulette both offline and at online casinos.
BetVoyager.com - Roulette Rules - This detailed resource provides information on the rules of roulette as well as most other popular games found in both land based and online caisnos.
Baccarat is a popular casino card game, which can be played for fun or for real money in a number of online casinos. The game is believed to have originated in Italy and later taken to France during the late fifteenth century. The game bears a striking resemblance to games such as Basset and Faro.
Baccarat is played by the comparing the banker’s or dealer’s hand against the value of the player’s hand. The game is played against the dealer and is associated with three major types of bets—Player Bet, Banker Bet, and Tie Bet.
Europe is believed to be the place of origin of both Baccarat and Roulette. History says that the game originated in Europe somewhere in the fifteenth century. In fact, both Italy and France say that they invented Baccarat because the word “baccarat” in French as well as Italian means “zero” and is also pronounced the same way.
Baccarat experts, however, believe that the game is definitely Italian in origin and later caught the attention of the French elite. The game was later brought to America and became quite popular in American casinos. The advent of the Internet made this simple card game popular throughout the world.
Online casino players can choose from Baccarat variants such as North American Baccarat, also known as Punto Banco; Baccarat Chemin De Fer; and Baccarat Banque. While Punto Banco is purely a game of chance, the other two variants are games of skill and strategy, and players can definitely adopt strategies to bend the odds in their favor.
Punto Banco, which is also popular as the American version of Baccarat, is played in Canada, US, Sweden, and Australia with eight decks of standard playing cards. The French variant of Baccarat is Baccarat Chemin De Fer and is therefore found only in France. The variant has a few strict rules. Baccarat Banque is played with three decks of standard playing cards in European as well as American casinos.
Besides, players can also enjoy the immensely popular Mini Baccarat, which is offered at almost all prominent online casinos. The game is called so because only three players can play it at an oval table.
Although Baccarat has so many variants, they are all based on the same rules. Players are required to create a hand coming close to a value of eight or nine. However, a few slight differences make each variant unique.
The aim of Baccarat is to create a hand of two or three cards and get a value as close to nine or possible. Six or eight decks of cards are required to play Baccarat.
In case of Baccarat, tens and face cards have zero value; all numbered cards from deuce to nine are taken at face value; and the Ace is equal to one. The suits of the cards have no significance in Baccarat. Double digits are always broken down to single digits by deleting the digit to the left. For instance, the value of 15 is only five and the value of 20 is just 0.
Baccarat players have to bet that the banker’s hand or the player’s hand will win the game or that the game will be a tie. Some casinos take a 5 percent commission on winning Banker Bets. Experts advise beginners to steer clear of the Tie Bet because it has a high house advantage.
At the beginning of the game, the players and the dealer receive two cards each; and a third card is dealt only on the basis of rules that are different for players and dealers. The hands are then compared and payouts given accordingly.
Wikihow.com - Play Baccarat - Simple guide that provides information on how to play baccarat at a basic level.
Baccarat.net - Strategy Guide - Here in this strategy guide related to baccarat you'll find tips and advice on how you can improve your baccarat game play.
Craps is a game of dice, requiring players to place bets on the results of a single roll or a number of rolls of a couple of dice. Based on the type of Craps played, players can either play against one another or against the house or casino. Craps enjoys a great deal of popularity because one needs just a couple of dice to play it, owing to which it can be played anywhere.
The pages of history reveal that an ancient English game called Hazard is the ancestor of Craps. The game might have originated in the days of the Crusades, after which it might have attracted the attention of the French.
A wealthy American entrepreneur and politician Bernard de Mandeville brought the game to the New Orleans casinos. Players used a few flaws in the game to cheat the house during the game’s initial days in New Orleans. Later, John H. Winn fixed all the flaws and introduced the Don’t Pass bet to increase the house edge of Craps.
The name Craps might have been derived from the French crapaud, which means toad. The African Americans were fond of a Craps variant called Street Craps, in which the game was played in informal places.
Craps is a basically simple game of dice, but has a set of several complex betting strategies. Casinos today offer a wide range of Craps such as Bastard Craps, High Point Craps, Simplified Craps, New York Craps, Bank Craps, and Die Rich Craps.
Bastard Craps or Crapless Craps is one of the simplest of Craps variants. The winning dice combination is a come out of seven. The house advantage of this variant is 5.38 percent.
Simplified Craps declares as winner the player who turns up with two, three, ten, eleven, or twelve. The house edge of 2.8 percent makes the variant quite attractive.
In case of High Point Craps, the come out roll is completely ignored if it results in two and three and the dice is rolled once again for a more desirable result. Players will win if they get a result of eleven and twelve. This is another Craps variant with a low house cut of 2.3 percent.
The table layout for New York Craps is totally different; what’s more, this variant lacks the Don’t Come and Come bets. Whenever players win their bets, they have to part with 5 percent of it as commission to the online casino.
Players can learn a game of Craps easily, but will find it difficult to master it and start making a profit of it.
As previously mentioned, Craps is a game of dice and players’ fortune depends on the results of a single or a series of rolls of a couple of dice or many dice. The dealer, also known as the shooter, begins by rolling the required number of dice on a Craps table. Depending on the combined value shown by the dice, the shooter can win or lose and the game will come to an end or the shooter neither loses nor wins and the game of Craps continues.
The dealer or the shooter places the first bet before rolling the dice. The other players also place a wide range of Craps bets, which are a bit complicated for the beginner to follow. The most common of Craps bets are the Pass/Don’t Pass bets placed on the results of the first roll of dice. If the come out results are seven or eleven, the shooter wins even money. If the results are two, three or twelve, the shooter loses. If neither of these are the results, the game continues for some more rounds.
WizardofOdds.com - Craps - This page provides information on craps including rules of the game, strategy and also a selection of craps games you can play for free.