Top Rated Casino Table Games For September, 2020

Casino table games are the original table games, and while they have since been passed by machine gaming in popularity, table games collectively still comprise almost half of all real money casino gaming overall. While the popularity of slots overall dwarfs any particular table casino game, table games collectively remain a significant force in the casino industry and must be given their due.

Real money casino gambling is all about the quality of the experience, and while there is no question that the ability to make real money from gambling is a huge part of it, otherwise we’d just play these games for fun, we really gamble to be entertained overall, where we need to look at both how entertaining a game is in itself and the additional value of the excitement that real money gambling adds.

If we even aspire to seek maximum enjoyment from our real money casino gambling, we need to become familiar enough with all the different things we can be playing. Our casino table game guide will serve to provide to you a great introduction to these other games, and well prepare you to further your quest into getting the most out of your overall casino play.

Most Popular Real Money Table Games

Real Money Online BlackjackReal Money Online Roulette
Real Money Online BaccaratReal Money Online Poker
Real Money Online CrapsReal Money Online Keno
Real Money Online Pai Gow Poker

Table Games History

Real Money Casino Table GamesHumans have been gambling since ancient times, staking money on contingent events where the outcome of the events determine the outcome of the wagers. While modern casinos got their start in Europe in the 17th century, gambling itself predates recorded history, and there are records of people gambling with dice as far back as 3000 BC.

The Ancient Greeks used dice widely to gamble, and the Greeks believed that the gods used dice to decide the fate of the world. The Ancient Romans gambled by flipping coins with a game called “tail and head,” and the first gambling houses in China dates back at least 2500 years, at a time where betting on animal fights were common.

Just flipping a coin is pretty simplistic though, and the ability to use dice added complexity to the bets, such as we see in the game of craps. The invention of playing cards by the Chinese in the 12th century allowed for even more sophisticated gambling games to be devised, such as blackjack, various forms of poker, and baccarat. The Chinese also were the first to use tiles to gamble with, invented around the same time as playing cards, and traditional Pai Gow uses dominos instead of cards, which is still played today.

Add in the roulette wheel that was invented in France in the 17th century, as an offshoot of French scientist Blaine Pascal’s search for a perpetual motion machine, and we now have all the ingredients for today’s modern land-based and online casinos. The French also invented the precursor for modern blackjack, called twenty-one back then, and the game got its name blackjack from a promotion run by an Old West Nevada casino which ran a promotion paying extra for hitting twenty-one with two cards including a black jack. Soon, all twenty-one games became called blackjack.

The French also invented the game of baccarat, an unusual gambling game played with cards where one player becomes the banker instead of the house. The die was cast for all modern casino games centuries ago, and while we have come up with some different versions of these games, such as Ultimate Texas Hold’em, or come up with new ways to bet such as buying insurance with blackjack, table gaming in casinos hasn’t changed very much over the last couple of centuries, and players of today would not be in their element if they were transported in time back to 18th century France.

This is testimony to the sheer popularity and staying power of these table games, and while we have drastically improved virtually every aspect of our lives since then, casino table games were designed and thought out so well that we haven’t even figured out a way to make them better, although we sure figured out a way to use technology to make these games a lot more accessible than anyone could have dreamed before computers and the internet.

Technology has played a huge role in casino gambling, even though this has impacted slots and other electronic casino games much more than traditional casino table games, which are still played mechanically with dice, cards, or a wheel just like in olden days. You can sit at home on your computer or be anywhere on your mobile device and not only play table games, but even play at a real casino table through remote video now, live and in real time.

Casino Table Games Versus Casino Video Games

Real money casino table games and casino video games like slots and video poker appeal to a different kind of gambling taste. There are many who enjoy both types of games, the rapid fire action of slots and the much slower pace of table games, but each type has its own particular following.

The two compare to each other in terms of speed the way a lottery scratch ticket compares to betting on a sporting event. The ticket gives you instant gratification, where with betting on sports, a lot of the enjoyment comes from how these bets make watching sports more enjoyable.

Table games are more of a social event, where gamblers not only enjoy the table game but each other’s company as well. The more deliberate nature of cards being dealt, wheels being spun, or multiple dice rolls being made also adds to the experience. While slots do employ some of this effect with things like spinning reels, it is only used momentarily as opposed to the longer time it takes to reach decisions on bets with table games.

If you are the sort that craves a lot of action, there’s nothing like slots to provide you this, as you can just keep pulling the lever with live slots or clicking with your mouse with online slots. Slot players desire quicker results, and do so with a series of small bets, where table game players tend to make bigger bets but less bets per hour and often less betting overall per hour money wise, which is why casinos favor slots so much.

If you are the sort that enjoys proceeding at a slower pace, table games are for you, and it’s not that you need to bet less per hour as you can just increase the size of your bets to become satisfied, within table maximums. Table games also have minimums though, at least the land based ones that have physical tables do, in order to cover their fixed costs, which are higher than with slots where an attendant can manage many slots, and tables all require a dealer to pay.

Other Differences Between Table Games and Slots

There are some on a small budget who may not be able to comfortably afford playing land based casino table games, where they may be able to get in on a few hands but their money just won’t last. However, since table games often will allow for a variety of bets, like games like craps and roulette, players looking to gamble for extended periods with a smaller bankroll can pick even money bets if they wish, and play for a lot longer than making longer shot bets where you have to wait a while to collect or might not even do so before your chips run out.

While slots can be designed to pay out smaller amounts more often, or pay out bigger amounts less often, giving players at least some control over their variance, there is a lot more control available with table games due to the ability to select close to even money betting. You can put all your money on a single number at roulette at 36:1 or bet on red or black and get paid almost half of the time, where you can really stretch out your money if you wish.

Slots have minor strategic variations, but for these games are really purely based upon luck, where there is no real difference statistically between optimal play and the worst way to play. Table games may still have a house edge but there can be a big difference between playing them well and poorly, where if you do hit everything at blackjack less than 21 or play in any matter that is suboptimal, the house edge goes up, and this includes betting on longer odds which have a bigger house edge built in. Those who play certain table games skillfully can therefore significantly reduce the house edge.

While real money table games don’t include all that much strategy, at least there is some, and with the game of poker, strategy is paramount. Casino poker is nothing like that, as there are a few things that you need to know in order to play as best as you can. Casual real money casino players usually don’t want to do too much thinking when they gamble, and the little that this and other games such as blackjack provide can suit them just fine. If not, the real poker tables are waiting for them.

Types of Table Games

We cover all 7 of the major casino table games for you, which are roulette, blackjack, poker, craps, baccarat, keno, and pai gow. Most of these games have several variations, like American vs. European Roulette, or Texas Hold’em played against other players and Ultimate Texas Hold’em played against the house.

For those new to casino table games in general, either new to real money casino gambling, new to table games, or familiar with some of these games but not so much with others, we are going to provide you with all you need to fully enjoy any and all of these table games, either at a land based casino or at an online one.

Roulette is a game played with a ball and spinning wheel, with 37 or 38 slots depending on whether it is a single or double zero game, and allows a wide variety of bets from red or black or high or low to bets on individual numbers or combination of numbers.

Blackjack is a game which puts players against a dealer’s hand with the potential to draw cards to come closer to 21 than the dealer.

Poker is a game that many are familiar with, and casinos will offer players the opportunity to play several forms of casino poker, or the ultimate, head to head against other players.

Craps is a community dice game where players can make a number of different bets, including even betting against the shooter.

Baccarat is perhaps the most interesting of all the casino table games, and is a particular favorite of high rollers. This is a player banked game where players place various types of bets with the house edge built into the payouts as usual. The player plays the role of the house and you bet for or against the house basically.

Keno is a lottery-style game that isn’t actually played at a table and gets put into this category more by default, as it’s certainly not anything like slots. While casinos do have keno rooms, most of the action goes through runners who roam the casino taking keno bets while players enjoy other games.

Pai gow is a Chinese game that traditionally involves using tiles, but the game has now been Westernized, or rather, a game was created called Pai Gow Poker which does not resemble traditional Pai Gow at all. It is an interesting variation of casino poker, where players are dealt two hands which are pitted against the dealer, which can be other players. Pai Gow itself is played with dice and dominos and is of a complexity that requires more dedication than Western casino players are accustomed to.

Playing Real Money Table Games at a Land Based Casino

The first big difference between playing table games at a casino versus an online casino is that you have to physically travel to a land based casino. This is a lot like travelling somewhere to vacation rather than watching a video of the place at home, as these are quite distinct experiences.

The ambiance of a real money brick and mortar casino is an experience in itself, and many find that the experience of the casino itself adds greatly to their gambling pleasure. Online casino gambling replicates the gambling but really can’t replicate the experience itself, the sights and smells and sounds of a real casino as they call them.

This is gambling in public rather than in private, the way they used to do it hundreds of years ago when casinos were fresh and new. While slots at a real casino place you in isolation in a way similar to online gambling, gambling at a table with a dealer and other players allows players to enjoy a level of social interaction and camaraderie that is just on a whole different level than online chat can reproduce.

Table game casino gambling does have its limitations though apart from their needing to be travelled to physically. Their reach as far as the pool of players they draw on is a lot more limited and this can impact the number and extent of their table game offerings, as well as requiring table minimums to make enough per seat to make a profit, which can exclude those whose budgets are too modest to fit in.

Playing Real Money Table Games at an Online Casino

While about half of the gambling that goes on at live casinos consists of slots, with the other half consisting of table game action, slots are considerably more popular than table games at online casinos.

Absent the feel and ambiance of real tables and players, many players feel that this turns these games into video games, and they prefer slot based video games. What they may not realize is that these virtual table games can be quite enjoyable in themselves, where they perhaps have been reduced to video games but are felt to be pretty entertaining video games that you can gamble real money on by a lot of players, on par or better with slots overall.

All players should at least be open to trying online real money casino games, and this especially includes slot players. Table games are at the very least more involving, and players who are click happy can click plenty fast at these games should they wish, to their heart’s content.

Online gambling takes care of the problem of needing to make a certain amount an hour per seat to host table games, as computers work much more cheaply and the marginal cost per deal is virtually zero, at least with virtual table games.

For those who prefer the real thing, placing bets on real tables with real dealers and real dice, cards, and wheels, online casino sites also offer live dealer games where you gamble at a real table game through electronic communication and see the outcomes by video feed.

The popularity of live dealer games online is testimony to the fact that some players just prefer real tables and real gambling implements, although plenty other players prefer the faster action of a virtual gaming table where the player controls all the action.

We invite you to read on and explore the basics and some of the nuances of these popular casino table games, regardless of where you enjoy playing them.

Casino Table Games FAQs
  • What are the differences between land based and online table games?

    Playing at a real money online casino limits your involvement to interacting virtually, playing at computer generated tables or actual tables with dealers dealing cards, rolling dice, or spinning wheels live while players around the table watch the outcome of their bets. Land based casinos are limited to games that the people who visit them wish to play, where online, you don’t have to worry about this because it’s so cheap for them to set up tables and you can play all the popular table games at whatever stakes you wish up to the maximum.

  • Why do a lot of players prefer table games over slots?

    While there is some variety between different slot games, they are substantially similar. Table games are a whole different beast, especially ones at land based casinos, which deliver experiences so good that people have been playing essentially the same games at casinos for hundreds of years. Online table games give players the option to play all the popular table games solo or with a group, fast or slow, and they can even see their bets placed on real casino tables to make real money table gaming as close to the real thing as possible.

  • Why do many players prefer slots over casino table games?

    At a land-based casino, banks of slot machines beckon players to enter their private world of entertainment, a world which delivers fast paced action in addition to all the sights and sounds that modern slots provide. Slots are more pure gambling, where at a land based casino, table games are more of a social experience, where the gambling proceeds at a more deliberate pace much like scratching a lottery ticket very slowly versus much more quickly. Players can get their fill of both types of experiences at a casino.

  • Can players play both real money and play money table games?

    Land based casinos may host brief sessions where they explain certain table games to newer players, but they cannot afford to be tying up valuable floor space and hire staff to manage tables that aren’t generating real money action for them. Online sites will let you play all you want for free, and this costs them virtually nothing, but the thinking behind this is that once people get a feel for a table game they will very likely want to play it with real money on the line, and can get started with the smallest of bankrolls.

  • Why do land based table games have minimum wagers?

    Land based casinos have considerable overhead costs which they need to cover in order to stay in business. Casinos also want to populate their table games with the biggest rollers they can, and they would hate having to see players with bigger money waiting to play or even leave because their tables are full of low rollers. There are therefore two issues here, making enough to pay the bills from a table and making as much as they can over and above that. However, even the lowest rollers can find all the real money action they want at online casinos.

  • What are the most popular table games at casinos?

    Blackjack is very popular around the world and especially with American players, and being familiar with a game is a real key in it becoming popular. Roulette is less popular in the US but is the most popular table game worldwide. Head to head poker doesn’t come close to measuring up to the bigger table games, but casino poker has really caught on with its far simpler strategy playing against the house. Craps is particularly popular among those who love the social side where players are joined together on each roll. Baccarat is considered a high roller’s game but still gets some interest from smaller staked players.

  • How do live dealer online casino games work?

    Online table games involve graphical representations of table games, much like video games represent various things. You can place a lot more bets over a given time with a solo table game, and for those who want company, they also offer multi-player table games. Online casinos have taken this one step further where real tables are set up at remote casinos and players are assigned real seats, and real cards, dice, and wheels are used. This makes playing real money table games as close as you could possibly get to playing at a real table in person.

  • What kind of edge does the house have with table games?

    Table games have the best odds you’ll ever find at a casino, although this depends on the type of bets that you make on them. There are some table games like Wheel of Fortune or a lot of off the beaten track bets on other games that have a lot bigger house edge than slots do, but the even money bets at table games tend to be considerably better, less than 1% in some cases. As a rule, the lower the odds that a bet will pay, the lower the house edge, and the bigger the odds payout, the higher the house edge will be. Among the most popular games, craps have the best odds, followed by baccarat, blackjack, single zero roulette, and then casino poker games.

  • Can you win a lot of money playing real money table games?

    There are two elements that determine how much you can win in a gambling session, which is how much you are wagering and the payout odds. The biggest odds are with progressive jackpots, which was once limited to slots but we are now seeing jackpot table games as well, although the odds aren’t anywhere near as high as you can get with slots. Some table games like blackjack have fairly standard odds which are all low but other table games allow you to shoot for bigger scores, like betting on a single number in roulette. Players who crave bigger payouts than even money can therefore find plenty of extra excitement at table games.

  • What is the difference between poker and casino poker?

    Head to head poker, like Texas Hold’em, put players at the table against one another where the house takes a small percentage of pots in order to make money from these games. Casino poker has players playing various forms of poker against the house, in a way similar to blackjack in that players can make a limited number of strategic decisions, with the moves of the house being forced like a blackjack dealer is but with an edge built into the game. Players who find playing poker against other players too daunting or complicated can enjoy playing poker in a much simpler format.

  • How might real money table games be improved?

    While casino table games have seen at least some innovation over the past few years, with new games being introduced, particularly with new casino poker games, we could certainly do more to create more variety and even more enjoyable real money gaming for players. While it is charming to have a real dealer at a table with real physical implements, play could be made more efficient by automating the process more, including using cards and terminals instead of chips. Players may also benefit by designing games that put players against one another more, adding more strategy to the game as well as making the games beatable in the long run like poker is.

Associate Writer: Suzie has extensive experience writing on a number of different topics, but writing on slots remains her first love, and it really shows.

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