Are Video Card Games More Like Slot Reels or Card Tables?

 Are Video Card Games More Like Slot Reels or Card Tables?

One of the things that sets video poker and video blackjack apart from slot machines is that electronic games that use representations of playing cards must offer fair odds.


Nevada took the lead, naturally enough, but Mississippi followed suit when its casinos opened in the 1990s, and so did other states.


“Fair odds” doesn’t mean the games have to give you an even chance of winning. Games can be designed so there are fewer winning hands than losers, and pay tables can be set so that the house has an edge. After all, if the house didn’t have the edge, it wouldn’t offer the games at all.


But in games using 52-card virtual decks, the Ace of spades must have a 1-in-52 chance of appearing. So must the 9 of clubs, the 2 of hearts and every other card.


That’s not the case on slot machines, which can be designed so that low-paying symbols come up more often than high payers or bonus triggers.


So when I received an email asking, “Is a roll of the cards in video blackjack more like the slot reels, with a fixed payback percentage, or like video poker,” I told him it’s more like video poker.


Video card games have the same probabilities as if the cards were being dealt from a physical deck of cards. That applies to video blackjack, just as it applies to video poker.


Over the years, we’ve seen video Caribbean Stud Poker and video 3-5-7 Poker along with several video versions of Texas Hold’em, and the regulation applied to them, too. And if anyone ever decided to market video Casino War, it also would have random distribution of cards.


Every card would have an equal chance of being dealt, but rules and payoffs would be designed to give the house an edge just as they are at table card games including blackjack, baccarat, Three Card Poker and many more.

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