The Truth About Gambling and Online Casinos

We’ve all heard the stories of players who have won millions of euros using secret tricks, not having to work afterwards and enjoying luxury holidays and sipping margaritas and pining on beautiful sunny beaches.

Most of these stories are false! Indeed, the mathematics behind casino games always favors casinos, so we can conclude that there is no guarantee of winning for players.

Don’t play for the long haul

Even if you were lucky in the beginning and won, if you keep playing in the long run, sooner or later the mathematics will turn against you and you will lose your money. Let me show you how the mathematics of all casino games work and why the casino will always be the big winner.

Money games such as roulettethe blackjack or else slot machines are called games of chance (or gambling) because their results depend on luck. In these different cases, you are playing against the casino and not against other players. No matter how talented you are, the result will always be the same: The casino will always have an advantage!

Let’s take a closer look at this to see how it works. All casino games are certified as random, meaning that the results depend solely on chance but remember, the random factor does not make the game fair.

Here’s an example: “imagine a coin toss, if it lands on heads, I’ll give you one euro, but if it lands on tails, you owe me two dollars.”

Although the random factor is fair to both parties, the game is clearly not, your chances of winning and losing are the same however the amount you risk losing is double the amount you can win.

So, does that mean you can’t make any money? ”

Well you can, but it will only be in the short term! Even in our imaginary game, you can be very lucky and win the first drafts giving you a few euros of profit. However, luck will always catch up with you very quickly. Real games in real casinos (whether online or offline) have better odds, which will not make you lose as quickly as our imaginary game (coin toss), but you can be sure that you have a great chance to lose in the long run.

Be well informed before depositing money

Now that you know all casino games are not fair to the players, let’s look at how to distinguish which ones are unfair and which ones are a little less so.

This is where the term “return to player” (RTP) appears. This is the long-term percentage of the money wagered that the player gets back from the casino in the form of wins. It tells you how much of your bets you can expect to get back from the casino by playing a specific game.

Let’s go back to the coin toss. In this game you have a 50 percent chance of winning 1 Euro and a 50 percent chance of losing 2 Euro. This means that you will lose an average of 0.5 euros.

Let us rephrase that a little to better illustrate the principle of RTP.

“You bet 2 euros and toss the coin. If you win, you get your 2 euros and another euro back, making a total of 3 euros. In other words, you pay 2 dollars for a 50% chance of winning 3 dollars. You end up with an average of 1.5 euros in winnings, which gives you a 75% return on the 2 euros bet.”

So the RTP of the game is 75%.

This means that you will only get 75% back on every bet over the long term. Which is not bad compared to most games. Indeed, the average RTP of most casino games is between 95% to 99%. The remaining percentages represent the advantage of the casino: the mathematical advantage that the casino has over the players, which allows them to have an extremely profitable business.

For example, roulette has an advantage of 2.7%:

“Does that mean you’re gonna lose 2.7% of your money playing roulette?”

The answer to that question is yes and no. It depends on how you play.

Playing with your money

If you bet your money in one go, you will lose an average of 2.7% of what you bet. However, if you bet multiple times, you will lose an average of 2.7% on each bet, which is a lot depending on how long you play.

This is why we need to differentiate between the RTP of a game and the expected return of a betting strategy. The expected return of a strategy describes how much money you can expect in return at the end of the gaming session on average when you follow a certain pattern (diagram). It is never as high as the RTP of the game you are playing but it can be lower. The top online casinos offer higher RTP rates than fraudulent casinos! That’s why we recommend that you turn to certified online casinos by European bodies such as Cresus Casino.

Let’s take two examples
: 2 people play European roulette with an RTP of 97.3% and a casino advantage of 2.7%

  • In the first case, your strategy is to place a 100 euro bet with the hope of winning. If you win, you take your money and leave the table and if you lose, you admit defeat and move on. In this case, the expected return of your betting strategy is the same as the RTP of the game because you bet only once. The statistics say that you lose 2.7% because the casino advantage is applied only once.
  • In the second case: let’s say you walk into a casino and start placing bets of 10 euros on the color red or black. You play until the 100 round or until you have lost everything. In this case, you lose 22 euros on average because you have bet much more in total and you have lost 2.7% on average on every bet you have made.

Earnings volatility

All right, now you know how much money you’ve lost, but how you lose it over time is just as important as your chances of hitting the jackpot.

This is where the term volatility comes in.

“So, does volatility really matter? And if it really matters, which games are the best? The games with high volatility or the games with low volatility?”

Well, volatility matters and more than you think.

Although player preferences differ, games with high volatility are much better mathematically speaking.

Here are a few examples to show you:

  • In the first one, you start with a working capital of 100 euros and you only bet 5 euros on the color red or black until your hundredth game or until you lose your working capital. By playing like this, you have a 36.5% chance of ending up with more money than you started with, however you will only make small wins in most cases. Your chances of ending up with more than 200 euros are only 1.5%. On the positive side, you will lose everything before reaching the hundredth round in only 4.3% of the cases. On average, you will lose 13.2 euros.

Now, let’s increase volatility by keeping the same bet size and placing bets on a specific number instead of placing only on colors. When betting on colors, you are very likely to double your bet, while with numbers, you have a lighter chance of multiplying your original bet by 36. So it is pretty clear that the volatility is much higher. In this example your chance of profit is much lower. It is 24.6% to be exact, which is 11% lower than the previous example. However, if you win, you will earn much more on average. Surprisingly, you are more likely to win between 500 to 1000 euros rather than 100 to 200 euros. In total, you will lose 6.5 euros on average. On the negative side, your chances of reaching the hundredth round are more below 25%. This is a warning sign that we may have gone too far in terms of volatility, but it is not really a problem because higher volatility allows you to place smaller bets and get the same (or even higher) chance of hitting the jackpot.

Let’s take a look at the same strategy with bets at 2 euros: as you can see in the table, this strategy is superior to the first one in almost all aspects, with a 46% chance of winning money, as well as more than 13% chance of winning between 200 and 500 euros and even a very slight chance of winning more than 500 euros. The only thing that is worse is the possibility of reaching the hundredth round. You are guaranteed to play at least 50 games, however you need to win at least one to have enough money for another 36 rounds. And if you win at least two, you will reach the 100 game mark. Taking all of this into account, the 100 round chance is 61.4%. In exchange for the higher risk of running out of money prematurely, you get a higher chance of winning a larger amount, as well as a low average loss of only 4.7 euros since the overall amount of your bets is low on average.

Before you ask, to get all these statistics, we ran a simulation of 1 million players for each betting strategy to get reliable results.

“What do you need to remember? ”

High volatility allows you to have the same (or even higher) chance of winning big even if you place small bets, while small bets make you lose less on average because the casino advantage is applied on less money. Even if you lose less in general, you lose your money faster in most cases. This might sound bad, but it’s a good sign for your profitability since you won’t always have the chance to bet your money over and over again, statistically losing part of it each time.

In short, high volatility gives you a better chance of hitting the jackpot, but it also increases your chances of losing your working capital, which is something to keep in mind when deciding how and what game to play.

Despite the level of volatility you choose, keep in mind that you are always playing at a disadvantage.

You’re probably wondering, “Is there any way to win the casino?”

Not to lie to you, there have been cases in the past where people have been able to beat casinos at their own games by finding tricks that worked. And there are strategies that you can use to get a slight advantage on your side like card counting in blackjack or bonus hunting in online casinos.

However, these techniques are very complicated to implement and are not for everyone. However, if you are good enough to use these techniques, then you can make a lot more money by investing your time on other things.

Everyone else will have to satisfy themselves by always playing at a disadvantage, so keep this in mind the next time you enter a casino.

In conclusion

Because you’re always going to lose money if you keep gambling, you’re probably wondering if you should play games of chance at all. The answer to this question depends on what you want to achieve. If your goal is to make money, you should not gamble because it is not a way to make money or solve financial problems. However, if your goal is just to have fun and you see casino gambling as a way to have fun in exchange for financial gain with a disadvantage, then go ahead and play but remember to be responsible and only bet what you can afford to pay. And don’t hesitate to discover all our tests and guides on !