Today, gambling is popular worldwide. Whether you prefer to play card games or test your luck with the dice, most casinos have something to suit every preference. Despite the differences between casino games, they all have one thing in common: they’re designed to take your money. However, some gamblers use certain methods to put the odds in their favour. These techniques are known as advantage play. In this article, we explore advantage play in more detail.
For most casino games, the casino has an edge over the players. Known as a ‘house edge’, this advantage means that the odds are stacked in favour of the establishment. Advantage play aims to reduce the house edge and make it easier for players to win the game.
Advantage play, or advantage gambling, describes any legal method used to gain an advantage whilst gambling. However, the term doesn’t cover cheating. Instead, advantage play is all about looking for ways to stack the odds in your favour and make it easier to win the game. While advantage play isn’t illegal, it is frowned upon by most casinos. In fact, you may even be banned from the venue if you’re caught using it. Below, we explore some examples of advantage play and discuss the risks of using them at a live dealer casino.
One of the most famous examples of advantage play is card counting. Although the method is frowned upon, some players still use card counting to win a game of blackjack. Overcoming the house edge, this strategy allows you to increase your winnings and minimise your losses. Essentially, card counters keep track of all the high and low cards to determine whether to hit or stand on the next hand.
Whilst there are different variations of card counting, most are based on evidence that high cards benefit the player more than the dealer, while low cards help the dealer and hurt the player. With this in mind, card counters keep a running tally of the high cards to achieve a natural blackjack. Although this method isn’t illegal, most casinos forbid it. However, if you’re able to keep a mental note of the cards, there is no way for the dealer to prove you’re using advantage play.
Edge sorting is another advantage play method used in card games. This technique involves using natural marks on the cards to win the game. While marking the cards yourself is classed as cheating, taking note of wear and tear or manufacturing defects is perfectly legal. Surprising, the majority of cards have irregularities in their designs, particularly on the back. These defects are often visible along the edges of the cards and can be used to keep track of certain cards.
This technique works best on games where there are certain cards that you want to identify. For instance, in blackjack, these would be the ten-valued cards and aces. Being able to spot these cards will help you decide whether to hit or stay and ultimately increase your chances of winning the game. While edge sorting can work well with a familiar pack of cards, it’s less easy to use at a live casino. Unless you are a regular customer, it’s unlikely that you’ll spot the irregularities on the cards being used.
Also known as dice control, controlled shooting is an advantage play method used in craps. The technique involves throwing the dice in a consistent manner to determine the outcome of the roll. With a standard roll, the result is completely random. Players that use controlled shooting limit this randomness by getting the same numbers each time.
When using controlled shooting, it’s important to hold the dice a certain way before throwing them. This process is known as ‘setting’. When you take your roll, throw the dice lightly so that they barely touch the back wall. When used correctly, controlled shooting can control the outcome of the throw.
The best thing about controlled shooting is that most casinos allow it. Unlike other forms of advantage play, you’re unlikely to be removed for using this method. This means that you can spend time setting the dice without the fear of getting caught. As the technique is allowed, you can use it freely in any type of casino – even those with a live dealer!
Also used in craps, dice sliding is another popular method. To use a standard roll in craps, you must throw the dice so that they hit the back wall. This type of throw is required to ensure the results of the throw are completely random. Dice sliding, however, differs to the standard roll in that you don’t throw the dice across the table; instead, you slide them towards the back wall.
While dice sliding is an effective advantage play method, the majority of casinos forbid it. As you must throw the dice for the roll to be legitimate, the casino staff watch closely to ensure the dice aren’t slid. However, as long as the casino staff feel as though you have attempted to throw the dice, the roll should be accepted. This means that you can sometimes get away with dice sliding, even though it’s not technically allowed. To avoid getting caught out, your best bet is to roll one dice and slide the other. While this technique takes practice to perfect, it can drastically lower the house edge if you can pull it off.
Although advantage play gambling is perfectly legal, most techniques are frowned upon. If you’re hoping to increase your odds at a live dealer casino, the safest option is to use controlled shooting. As the technique is permitted in most casinos, you don’t have to worry about getting caught out and banned from the venue. Ultimately, the choice is yours. If you’re willing to risk it, advantage play can put the odds in your favour – even in live dealer casinos.