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The Gamble Feature in Online Casino Slots

April 30, 2010

Many online casino games incorporate a feature that is known as the Gamble Game. It is found in most video poker games and in many of the online slot games from Microgaming and Playtech. The Gamble Game comes into play when the player receives a payout in the main game. The player has the choice of collecting this payout and refusing to play the Gamble Game. Alternatively the player can stake his payout in the Gamble Game and try to multiply it. The flip side is that he may lose the payout altogether.

There are common ways in which the Gamble Game is played. In one format the player has to guess either the color or the suit of the next card dealt. If the player opts to guess the color and guesses right he doubles the staked payout. If the player opts to guess the suit and guesses right he quadruples the staked payout. In either case if the player guesses wrong he loses the payout. In the second format 5 cards are dealt, with the first card dealt face up and the remaining four cards dealt face down. The player chooses any one of the face down cards and if this card is higher in rank than the face up card the player receives double the staked payout. Some Gamble Games allow players to collect half the payout won and stake half the payout in the Gamble Game. Also usually an upper limit is specified and when the player’s multiplied payouts reached that limit he cannot continue with the Gamble Game.

The biggest advantage of the Gamble Game is that it has a zero house edge. This means that the average rate of return to the player is 100%. From this point of view the Gamble Game is better than the main game, which will have some house edge. Therefore there is the temptation to continuously stake the payout received from the main game in the Gamble Game till the player either reaches the upper limit or till he loses the payout. Therefore in a practical sense this advantage of zero house edge becomes a disadvantage. The upper limits are usually so framed that players can play the gambling game about 10 times and continuously winning 10 times is a tall ask.

In order to use the Gamble Game in a responsible manner, players need to formulate some mechanism of cashing their payouts. If the Gamble Game is of the type that it allows players to collect half the winnings and stake the remaining half, the recommended procedure is quite simple. At every step, including the first one, players should collect half and wager half their payouts. Even if they lose the Gamble Game after three or four rounds, they would not have lost their entire payout, but would have cashed a fair amount.

If the Gamble Game does not allow players to collect half their payouts then the following procedure is recommended. If the initial payout is more than the amount wagered then collect it and do not play the Gamble Game. If the initial payout is less than the amount wagered then continuously play the Gamble Game till the multiplied payout exceeds the initial payout and then stop. Depending on their risk averseness players can suitably modify this procedure.

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