A Few of the Software Stars of the Online Casino World

Many people wonder about the software that makes online casinos work. There are quite a few companies out there in cyberspace that provide us with the wondrous entertainment that is online gambling. Here are a few of the major players in the industry.

You may have come across Aqua Online (or sometimes called Cytech) and never known that you have. They are the company that have brought such games as Casino Depot, and Geisha Lounge. They seem to have that familiar Microgaming feel, leaving you to wonder if they escaped from them. Aqua Online bears a striking resemblance to the Microgaming software in a number of ways, like the rules, the game selection, payment method. If you look really close even the account numbers seem to suggest Microgaming.

Then of course there is the Microgaming Software, which is one of the most recognizable names in the industry. Back in 2003 they broke new ground with the introduction of their Viper software which had a remarkable auto-play capability. In their blackjack game it manifests as an adjustable basic strategy it follows, where as in poker there is an actual strategy engine that determines the optimal play on the fly. If you are in doubt wither the software is the old platform or the new Viper check for the auto-play feature. They also offer a flash version if you are hesitant about downloading software.

From the country of Sweden comes Boss Media who are one of the oldest software companies around. Their software platform gives realism like few others in the business. Talk about feeling like you are in a real casino. They provide both multi-player and private tables, solid records are kept of every bet you make up to 30 days and transaction records of every deposit/withdrawal and bonus ever made by you. Also, for your safety, when you open an account a PIN is sent to your physical posta;l address which is needed for withdrawal.

A smaller name is Random Logic who are most familiar as the software behind Casino on Net and Reef Club  with both downloadable and Java types available. From Canada comes the Cryptologic company providing downloadable online casino software since 1995. They were the first to provide multi-player games in 1998. Players may earn monthly deposit bonuses, prizes, or cash back incentives and they set the standard of safety followed by Boss Media of sending your account PIN in the postal mail. Always professional, the play is always realistic with sound effects and such as well as a solid, efficient customer service.

Next is WagerWorks who are subsidiary of Silicon Gaming who make video slot machines. WagerWorks always has well designed games with excellent graphics and has licensing to offer such The Price is Right and Wheel of Fortune as well as their proprietary games like Caribbean Stud Poker, Three Card Poker. All of their games are implemented in Flash, so no download if you don’t want more software on your computer. They have a good rep in the business for ethics.

Playtech is another familiar name that offers downloadable casino software. The graphics are solid with an easy to use interface that supports both multi-player and single player modes. They also provide separate accounts for both real and play money. Playtech as of the last few years is perhaps the largest software provider and has some excellent casinos.

And finally there is Real Time Gaming software which come in two versions; download and Flash. The casinos that use their software are generally good bonus givers and feature fast play, but there are some questionable ones. In 2002 Casino Merlin, who was a generous bonus giver, went down and with it the player accounts are likely lost. So choose which Real Time Gaming casino to play carefully.

A Few Words about the Basics of Blackjack

Chance plays a large part in blackjack, but the skillful player still enjoys a big advantage over the novice one. Certain players have been banned from blackjack in casinos, which is proof that they have, however momentarily, been able to transfer the hypothetical house edge from the bank to themselves.


Blackjack has been for a time the most popular card game in Las Vegas casinos (poker has superseded it) and has become popular elsewhere. The name “Blackjack” arose when an American casino, in an effort to popularize the game, paid a bonus to any player holding the ace of spades and either the jack of clubs or jack of spades. The hand, and later the game, took the name Blackjack. Only comparatively recently have rules become standardized, and even now conventions differ in various casinos. Personally, I prefer to play online blackjack and being from Australia it is more convenient. You can find good offers, tips and reviews at


Four packs are used which are shuffled by the dealer and cut by a player. All cards have their face value, with court cards counting as ten except the ace, which when held by the player has a value of one or 11 at his discretion. When the dealer holds an ace, it might also have a value of one or 11, but its value is governed by the casino rules.


The object of the game from the player’s point of view is to obtain a total card count, with two or more cards, higher than that of the dealer, but without exceeding a maximum of 21. Should the player’s count exceed 21 he is said to have busted, and loses his stake. Before the deal, each player puts up a stake in the betting space before him. A player may play at more than one space, but must play the hands independently from his right to left. The first card dealt is discarded. The dealer then deals a card to each player face down and one to himself all face up. He then deals a second card face-up to each player, and a second card, face down, to himself.


If the dealer’s face-up card is an ace or a ten count, he must look at his other card (if it is an ace he must first ask players if they wish to insure, as is explained later). If he has a total of 21, he faces it and announces twenty-one or blackjack. A two-card total of 21 is known as a natural or blackjack. A natural 21 is the highest hand, and the dealer wins all stakes, unless a player also has a natural, in which case his bet is a stand-off. When the dealer does not have a natural, he deals with each player in turn. If the player has a natural, he wins, and is paid at odds of 3-2, as the table stakes. All other bets are paid at 1-1. Otherwise he may stand or draw a further card or cards. He will stand if he is satisfied with his count, or if he judges a further card night bust him. If he wishes to draw he will beckon for another card, or, as is common in America, say ‘hit me’, when the dealer will give him another card face up. The player may continue to draw cards until he is satisfied with his count. If in drawing he busts, he must announce it, and the dealer collects the stake and burns the cards into the discard pile.

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