Fixed Odds Internet Casino GamesBy: Joe Valentino, Wednesday March 24th 2010
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There are many terms that through usage have come to mean different things depending on the context in which they are used. Players new to online gambling will sooner or later encounter the term "fixed odds games". This term connotes different things in different contexts and therefore can be very confusing. This article explains some of the usages of fixed odds games and then narrows down on the most common usage in the context of online casino games.
In the most literal interpretation of the term, fixed odds games are those gambling games in which the odds remain the same. In this sense all online casino games are fixed odds games. The single bet in roulette will always pay out at 35 to 1. The any seven bet in craps will always pay out at 4 to 1. A normal win in blackjack will always pay out at even money. The odds are fixed. Under certain interpretation of the term fixed odds games, blackjack is not included. This is because though the payout remains the same the probability of winning changes depending on the cards dealt. If the player is dealt a hand value of 14 he has a low chance of winning. If he is dealt a hand value of 20 he has a high chance of winning. The probability is different in each case even though if the player wins in either case he will receive the same payout.
Sometimes it becomes easier to understand what fixed odds games are by understanding which games are not fixed odds games. Gambling games in which the winners share the pot pool collected are not fixed odds games. In this case the payout as a multiple of the wagered amount depends on the collections and this is not known to the player at that time he places the wager. The totalizer system for making payments in certain horse racing events is an example of this. Another betting system that is not fixed odds games is live betting. An example is betting on the winner of a football match after the game has commenced. Depending on the current score and other parameters the bookmaker keeps on changing the odds offered.
If all online casino games are fixed odds games then why is a category of casino games referred to as fixed odds games. Online casino games that could not be classified into any of the normal groupings came to be referred to by various names. The normal groupings are slot games, video poker, table games and card games. The games that do not fit into these groupings are variously referred to as other games, specialty games, instant play games and also fixed odds games. The rationale in calling these games fixed odds games is that they offer fixed odds. The fact that the other games offered at online casinos also have fixed odds is neglected. Virgin Casino offers an excellent collection of fixed odds games, which it calls instant play games. One such game is Spin Win. The player chooses a number of balls at a certain cost per ball. As the wheels spin some of the balls fall into pockets that have a fixed payout multiplier mentioned. The players receive payouts that are products of the multiplier and ball cost. Balls that fall into cells that have no multipliers do not yield payouts. The various fixed odds games are so completely different from each other that only a non generic name like "fixed odds games" or "specialty games" can be used to describe them.
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