Casinos have always kept the edge over gamblers. They design their games to have a small, or in some cases large, advantage.
It is therefore not surprising that in most cases the house wins. What is surprising, however, is that players fail to fill the gap and win more often.
I’ll explain why this is surprising below, along with statistics showing that players can’t beat casinos any better than they did decades ago.
Why players should be better educated
Up until 20 years ago you had to visit bookstores and / or subscribe to magazines to gain knowledge of gambling. Books and magazines have been by far your best path to becoming a successful gamer.
The problem with this, of course, is that you had to physically go to a store and spend money on those resources.
Alternatively, you could have subscribed to a gambling magazine. That subscription would have cost you $ 10 a month or more, however.
The internet is the great trailblazer in terms of gambling strategy these days. Although the Internet existed two decades ago, it didn’t have nearly the amount of information it contains today.
You can quickly learn how to become a skilled blackjack player or minimize the roulette house edge to its lowest point. All you need is 5 to 10 minutes worth of online research to find these services.
You even have the option to become an advantage player who wastes little time these days. You could learn a card counting system and then use online counting trainers to improve your skills.
I shouldn’t say these resources are absolutely free. You need a computer / smartphone and a Wi-Fi connection beforehand.
However, you can use your smartphone and your Wi-Fi connection for much more than just gambling. The same goes for the How to Master Blackjack book, which you may have bought 15 to 20 years ago.
Simply put, the widespread availability of strategies should make today’s players much better than they have in the past. Players can easily study a game with just a simple internet search.
What the Vegas numbers show about player winnings
Anyone can go online and learn in minutes what the players have mastered in the past few hours. Hence, you would think that players would crush casino games today.
Statistics from the University of Nevada’s Las Vegas Center for Gaming for Research show otherwise. The UNLV Center for Games Research has compiled statistics on the house win rate from 2000
These numbers don’t show the casino is losing any more. In fact, they show that gambling establishments actually take away more money from players.
Here is a breakdown of some numbers from their research:
All casino games
- The casino win rate for all games in 2000 was 6.76%.
- The casino win rate of all games in 2019 was 8.32%.
- +1.56 change
- The casino win rate for blackjack in 2000 was 12.56%.
- The casino win rate in blackjack in 2019 was 14.12%.
- +1.56 change
- The casino win rate from craps in 2000 was 13.53%.
- The casino win rate from craps in 2019 was 16.03%.
- +2.50 change
Poker (House Banked)
- The casino win rate for all games in 2000 was -0.28%.
- The casino win rate of all games in 2019 was 19.27%.
- +19.55 change
One armed bandits
- The casino win rate for slot machines in 2000 was 5.23%.
- The casino win rate on slot machines was 6.90% in 2019.
- +1.67 change
I want to point out that not all factors responsible for the house’s increasing win rate are related to player skill. However, the simple fact that casinos win more shows that the average gamer doesn’t get any better.
Reasons why players lose more
The casino’s improving odds go beyond the laziness of the gamblers. As you’ll see below, the latter plays a role in how much Vegas is winning these days.
Many players do not use the available resources
One would think that with the ease of finding a gambling strategy, players would hone their video poker skills before heading to the casino. However, this does not appear to be the case.
I don’t know the habits of every single person who enters a casino. However, I know enough players to realize that not everyone takes the time to learn games beforehand.
Some people don’t think strategy is worth the time. Others feel overwhelmed by something like a basic blackjack strategy.
Another crowd just feels that learning game tips is detrimental to enjoyment. People can play casino games however they want, but they also miss out on additional winnings by ignoring strategy.
You still rely on luck
Even if you are a seasoned gamer, you need a little luck to win. This statement only doesn’t apply if you are an advantage gamer (e.g., a card counter) who makes money over the long term.
Given that luck is still a huge part of gambling, many people only rely on this aspect to the fullest extent. They feel like they can only play and hope that Lady Luck will smile at them.
Of course, if you can use strategy to reduce the house edge, you don’t have to rely so heavily on luck. Even so, many players still think that they need some mystical power to intervene in order to win.
Casinos have increased their lead
Las Vegas used to be more generous with its rules and gave players better chances. For example, there were common single-deck blackjack games with a house edge of around 0.5%.
These near-coin toss situations are becoming increasingly rare in Sin City and elsewhere.
Casinos these days are more focused on their all-round resort offerings and rely less on gambling for profit.
They feel very comfortable giving the players worse chances. After all, those who still want to play live will do so regardless.
Of course, these same casinos also risk alienating serious gamblers who know the rules and odds. But they seem to be completely comfortable with that for the time being.
Casinos market even better today
The gambling industry doesn’t just rely on their edge to make money. It also uses clever marketing to lure you back to the casino.
For example, if you haven’t been to Las Vegas in six months, you might suddenly get an email with a free buffet.
This buffet pass has nothing to do with gambling. But if it gets you in the door, the more likely you will play casino games afterwards.
Some companies even use RFID technology (via casino chips) to track your betting habits and better tailor promotions to you.
What to do in the casino to win more with casino games
You don’t have to settle for being a statistic and losing a lot like many other players. Instead, you can increase your chances of making money by using the tips below.
Play games with the lowest house edges
Casinos offer a wide variety of games across the board. You can spin the slots reels, play baccarat hands, try out Caribbean stud jackpots, and much more.
While this variety is great from a entertainment standpoint, it doesn’t help your bottom line. Assuming you are spreading your game over the wrong games, you face house advantages between 10% (certain slot machines) and 30% (Keno).
In contrast, Baccarat, Blackjack, Craps, European Roulette, French Roulette, and Video Poker all offer some of the best odds.
My main point in this post was that a lot of gamers are not using easily accessible resources. You can go against the grain by using the myriad of strategy materials available.
For example, if you want to learn basic blackjack strategy, you can simply google the term “blackjack strategy chart”. This search brings up tons of graphs that show the right movements in every situation.
Or you can search for “Video Poker Strategy” online and find both charts and trainers. The latter refer to online programs that point out when to make the right decisions and when not to.
Take variance into account
In terms of gambling, the variance indicates how often casino games are paid out in the short term. Slot machines have a high variance because they don’t provide many short term payouts. Baccarat, on the other hand, has a low variance because you win about 50% of the time.
Understanding this term alone will improve your profits. Return to Player (RTP) is a more relevant concept if you’re looking to find out how much you can gain in the long run.
However, when you are dealing with a small bankroll, you definitely want to know the variance behind each game. You can target low variance games to win more often and to maintain your bankroll.
Have a bankroll management plan
Bankroll management plays two key roles in your gaming success:
- You can keep playing with it.
- It prevents you from risking money that you cannot afford to lose.
Both concepts make bankroll management a good cause. In addition, you don’t even have to spend a lot of time creating a bankroll plan.
All you have to do is put aside an amount of money that you want to lose. From here you can set a stop-loss limit to ensure you don’t lose your entire role in one session.
Here is an example of performing bankroll management:
- You start by going through your bills and expenses.
- You determine that you can afford to lose $ 500.
- You set a stop loss limit of $ 100 for each session.
- You will stop playing every time for the day you lose $ 100.
Gambling is all about entertainment. Some people just don’t find it entertaining to look for strategy before playing.
These cases aren’t a big deal when the same people with bigger losses are perfectly fine. But if you want more control over profits and losses, you should definitely learn the strategy and the odds.
Fortunately, the internet has made learning gambling strategy a lot easier. Unlike previous players, there is no need to visit bookstores or get magazines to study.
Instead, with a simple online search or two, you can quickly study the strategy for any game. As a result, you avoid being one of the many players who lose more and more to Vegas, online casinos, and other destinations.