Casino games are simple. They have an incredibly steep learning curve – you can sit down in front of a gaming machine in Vegas or load any one of the countless online games at spin-onlinecasino.com and figure out how to play them within seconds. Perhaps this simplicity makes casino games a bit too repetitive and boring for some. But not all casino games are created equal. Some of them are, indeed repetitive and dull, but there are many that are captivating enough to keep you glued to the screen for hours at a time.
Unlike most other casino games, blackjack puts your brain muscle to the test – if you know what you’re doing, that is. The game that, from the outside, looks like one that’s driven by little more than chance becomes one that requires a bit of strategy and skill if you sit into the player’s chair.
Blackjack is one of the very few casino games that can be played professionally – and we’re not talking about card counters. The thing is, it allows players to actually make decisions that can indeed bend the odds in the players’ favour.
While players never touch the cards, blackjack is way more interactive than the vast majority of other casino games and can be captivating and interesting even when you don’t play it with any real money stakes involved.
2. Video slots
Video slot machines have been around since the 1970s – at first, they were little more than a digital version of their real-life, electromechanical counterparts but as time passed, they have become much more. Like all other casino games, slots made the transition to the great online in the 1990s and in time, they became the staple of the iGaming industry. Today, there are thousands of online video slots available from dozens of developers, each one with its unique theme, perks, and bonuses.
Not all video slots are created equal, though. Some of them are little more than a low-effort attempt to push out another game, others are mere ‘skins’ of tried-and-tested games (re-releases of games that were once successful, with the exact same mechanic and features but with a different theme).
There are, in turn, a select few that add something extra to the mix, becoming more than just another video slot. This can be a side game, an entertaining spin on the classic mechanic of the game or a single feature that makes all the difference.
There are a few casino games that have earned the recognition of both the industry and the players. Among them, NetEnt’s “Aliens” slot machine (discontinued) that borrowed elements from its big-screen namesake and various video games to make it as captivating (and, let’s face it, a bit chilling) as possible, or Microgaming’s (also discontinued) Battlestar Galactica slot machine that took all the best bits of the cult series and adapted them into the game, giving it a unique look and feel.
It’s not easy to spot truly entertaining slot machines among the dozens of new games launched each month – but with a bit of trial and error, you can find those that are truly heavy on the entertainment side.
3. “Cluster” slots
Slot machines usually consist of spinning reels and symbols stopping on win lines. But there’s another game that, while retains the basic format of a slot machine, is way more captivating and interesting: “cluster” slots. Here, the symbols fall into place from above – a bit like they do in “match-3” games like Candy Crush – forming clusters of symbols that disappear, allowing others to fall into their place.
While these games are just as interactive as traditional slots (i.e. not at all), they are still far more captivating and exciting, perhaps because they use a recipe that’s tried and tested by some of the most successful casual games ever built.
4. Casino poker
While chance does have an important role in the game, poker is much more a game of skill than it is a game of chance. Having a good hand is just part of the secret to success in poker – knowing what to do with it and how to play it is a completely different matter altogether. This is probably why there are so many people who play poker professionally.
As such, poker is not suitable for a casino where speed and randomness are the most important factors. But casinos solved this problem by introducing various games inspired by poker variants.
Perhaps the most widely played poker-based casino game is video poker. It is similar to Five Card Draw – but it’s a single-player variant with an incredibly fast pace and winnings paid according to a paytable. It’s a captivating game, even for poker players – while it does take most of the skill out of it, there is still enough of it left for the players to have a bit of influence on the outcome of every hand.
Poker made it into land-based casinos as well in the form of casino games based on community card games. These also focus on speed and chance rather than skill so they probably won’t work for a seasoned poker player but for those with just some quick fun in mind, they are the perfect fusion of chance and skill. Among them, there are games based on Stud and Hold’em (called Caribbean Stud or Caribbean or Casino Hold’em) that are truly captivating for the players, offering a bit of complexity along with the thrill of a fast-paced table game.
Craps is perhaps the most boring game you can find at an online casino – no wonder it hasn’t become a hit. In land-based casinos, in turn, it is one of the most exciting games ever created.
What makes it special is that it doesn’t have a dealer – the shooter (the person throwing the dice) is one of the players themselves. As such, there are always others around the table wagering on the shooter’s hand (or against it), constantly cheering – or booing when a throw goes awry. Craps tables are almost always surrounded by a small crowd that’s noisy and cheery, turning the game into a fun opportunity to win a bit of cash.