Online gambling has vastly grown in the past two decades. It started small in the 90s as a subsidiary of the overall gambling industry. However, it has recently become a multi-billion market in its own right. And as more and more people discover iGaming, many are curious to learn more about the industry’s inner workings. To that end, in this article, we will discuss some critical terminology regarding online casinos. A few of the terms we will cover include the following:
- House Edge
- Return to Player (RTP)
- Game-specific Odds
Hopefully, by the end of this article, you will know everything about online casino sites and the gambling industry in general. So, without further ado, let us get into the specifics.
Starting easy, we will review what people mean when saying “gaming odds.” As many of you may know, “odds” refers to the chance and opportunity gamblers have to win the game.
It is important to note that while the odds are based on mathematical deductions and calculations, they are not always set in stone. Most odd calculations refer to the long-term. So, it is difficult to rely on these numbers when playing a quick hand.
Odds are also a considerable part of the sports betting industry. Bettors pay close attention to the odds laid out by the experts and incorporate their knowledge when designing a strategy for the future.
When most people talk about odds, they discuss the general idea of a numerical representation of a gambler’s chance to win. However, gamblers know better. Experienced gamblers already know that different games offer different player odds. And the genuinely savvy ones know precisely which game offers the best odds.
It is no secret that Blackjack has the best player odds out of any other game. As we said, it is essential to note that odds are a mathematical approximation of a player’s chance to win. It is not a promise of short-term victory. So, when gambling, always take possible losses into account.
In contrast to blackjack, slots odds are volatile. Most slot machines, whether land-based or online, have variable odds that the player themselves or the casino can adjust as they see fit. The luck-based nature of slots is one of the biggest draws of online casinos. On top of that, when playing slots, you can gamble with just $10, or sometimes even less.
The phrase “the house always wins.” is a huge part of gambling culture. For those who don’t know, this phrase comes from the fact that casino games often come with a “’ house advantage.” In other words, the house has a greater chance of winning than the player. Different casino games come with a different house edge.
House edge is often displayed as a percentage. The percentage refers to the amount a casino will make over the long run from a game. For example, if the game’s house edge is listed as 5%, the house will make $5 for every $100 wagered on the game.
For example, the house edge in most blackjack variants is between 0.5% to 2.5%. In general, blackjack has among the lowest house edge percentages in gambling, which is one of the reasons that the game is so popular.
A game that is untouched by the house edge is poker. In most casinos, players do not play poker against a casino but rather among themselves. So, the game’s difficulty relies entirely on how good the players are compared to each other.
Return to Player
The inverse of a house edge would be the Return to Player (or RTP). The RTP displays the amount a player should expect to get from playing a game over the long run. So, an RTP of 96% means the player should expect a $96 return for every $100 wagered on the game.
As we explained, though, RTP relies heavily on odds and long-term calculations. In other words, players should expect short-term bets to pay large sums only if the RTP number is high. If you go into the casino with such an expectation, you will undoubtedly be sorely disappointed.