If we look back at all the changes in the online casino industry over the last decade or so, it’s arguable that the live dealer technology is the most important advancement bar none. It really took hold around the middle of the 2010s, and now every (good) online casino provides you with the chance to play poker, blackjack, and roulette with real dealers.
However, and this might seem like a controversial take to those who love live dealer games as they are, there is also a perception that this new genre of casino games has yet to find its feet. Make no mistake, the games are fantastic, popular and it is perhaps underappreciated just how cool the technology is that brings those games to your device. But there is also a sense that they can go further and really capture the imagination of players.
The reason we can make such a bold claim is that it is also apparent to the creators of those games, and you can see how new releases of live dealer games are ripping up the script somewhat. A typical example is Quantum Blackjack Live and Quantum Roulette Live, which are new games you can see at the site of a top online casino operator like casino.com. Below we are going to discuss Quantum Blackjack, and theorise whether the model could be used for poker games.
Quantum Blackjack Launched in 2019
Quantum Blackjack is a new variant of blackjack that fuses a real card game with RNG technology to provide bigger prizes. In a nutshell, the blackjack game plays out as normal, but there is the extra incentive – the “quantum” part. As the blackjack hand is played out, on the side of the screen three other cards are dealt (from a virtual deck).
Each card has a multiplier assigned to it (X2, X3, X5, X10), and if your real hand matches any of the cards from the virtual deck, your win will be multiplied by that amount. If you were to match more than one card, the multipliers are multiplied in an accumulator fashion. So, it’s possible to receive 1000 times your stake for a winning blackjack hand, i.e., matching three cards each with a 10X multiplier.
So, how is Playtech able to create such a game, given that we know blackjack has a really low house edge? Well, the trade-off is that the dealer pushes when they bust with three cards, so that evens up the score in favour of the house.
Three-Card Poker Looks Like a Likely Candidate
The pertinent question, then: Would such a model work for casino poker games? It’s a difficult one to answer. One could argue that the reason this has been such a big hit for blackjack fans is due to the fact blackjack has relatively low payout rates, e.g. 1:1 for a winning hand and 3:2 (but not in all variants and casinos) for a winning blackjack hand.
Obviously, many poker games don’t need such an incentive, because the payouts can already be many times greater your stake. However, there are exceptions, including three-card poker at online casinos. The game has a similar payout structure to blackjack, paying even money for a winning hand. Yes, there are side bets where you can usually win 100:1. But that requires placing an extra bet, whereas the “quantum” payouts are built into the main game.
We could easily see a developer like Playtech release a quantum version of three-card poker sometime soon. However, the exciting bit here is the fusion of live gaming and virtual technology. It points to many exciting possibilities for live dealer casino games in the future, including online poker games.