How live casino games are bringing customers closer to the action

With BETBAZAR’s B2B worldwide iGaming marketplace supplying buyers with a wide range of best-in-class live casino products, European Gaming caught up with the company’s Business Development Manager, Stefanos Patsourakos to discuss how these fully immersive games are bringing the thrill of a bricks-and-mortar experience directly to players’ homes.

In terms of your casino content, BETBAZAR seems to have placed a big emphasis on live casino. What is it about live casino that you think particularly appeals to players over normal table games?

While traditional land based casino tables will always be the main attraction for players because of the unrivalled atmosphere that an actual gaming floor can provide, the reason more and more of them are joining online live casinos is the comfort and speed they offer. Online live casino games are able to supply the closest thing to a bricks-and-mortar casino experience thanks to high definition streaming that’s available 24/7 and live chat that allows for interaction with dealers and fellow players alike. This makes them a great alternative to visiting your local casino that’s provably fair and 100% safe to play.

Though live casino games have always been popular, did the COVID-19 pandemic and the temporary closure of real, bricks-and-mortar casinos see an even bigger surge in demand for them?

It’s another one of those situations where one thing doesn’t necessarily preclude the other. Sure, the live casino tables were closed during the COVID-19 pandemic, but the live casino services that were available online were already a well-known alternative. Even when people were able to play at their local casino, they were still spending some of their time online due to convenience and availability of games, so I wouldn’t call it a “bigger surge” as such. That said, there was definitely a change in direction for operators that saw them focus on their live casino offerings to ensure all players were catered for.

Fraud prevention and the provable fairness of games are extremely important points for clients. Do live casino games have an advantage here because players can see exactly what is happening?

I think in land based casinos, there’s a sense of reassurance that comes from seeing real dealers working with real cards and roulette wheels – and the same could certainly be said for live casino games online, where you can watch the action unfold from start to finish on every hand. In addition to that important psychological aspect, however, the real reason more and more people are playing online live casino is that the fairness and integrity of games is guaranteed by the many safety measures providers are required to have in place, making them arguably some of the most secure titles around.

One of the nice things about live casino games is that players are able to interact with one another and the dealer. Is making online gambling a social experience important for customer engagement?

It’s absolutely imperative that an online live casino experience authentically resembles a land based one – and being able to interact with fellow players and the dealer is certainly a big part of that. Generally speaking, most software providers are seeking to make their titles as immersive and engaging as possible by making them virtually indistinguishable from the real thing. When players are able to interact with one another, this effectively mimics the important social aspect of attending a land based casino by making them feel like they’re part of a community, rather than just a lone bettor.

What does BETBAZAR look for in live casino supplier? Is being able to offer things like unique side bets important or do you focus more on the quality of the production and reliability of the stream?

Quality is the main factor that we look for at BETBAZAR when it comes to adding live casino suppliers to our marketplace. Of course, titles that feature side bets, bonus multipliers and innovative game mechanics are a big advantage for providers, as these help them stand out from the competition by offering customers something that’s totally unique. BETBAZAR will always look to support this type of innovation, but above all else we want to promote best-in-class live casino games that feature high quality streaming, good production values and safety measures that make them 100% fair and reliable.

In addition to live table games, we’ve also seen the popularity of live game shows grow in recent years. Does BETBAZAR have any plans to add some of these to its product line-up in the near future?

We’re always interested in new products at BETBAZAR and if we see something that we think could fit our vision for the online market, we’ll always endeavour to add it to our product line-up. We keep a very close eye on how player preferences are developing from month to month, so we’re always ready to jump on any emerging trends as they happen. If our research suggests that live game shows look like they’re going to be the next big thing, we’ll certainly aim to add some options to our portfolio – especially if we can find something that we feel fills a gap in the market that’s not yet been addressed.

Given the advancements in VR technology and its affordability, how do you see live casino games evolving in future? Will we soon see fully immersive games that replicate a real casino experience?

There are already aggregators that offer the Metaverse experience in slot games – and it will only be a matter of time before live casino games get the same treatment. As VR technology has improved and the availability and affordability of headsets and other devices has increased, more and more developers are waking up to the huge potential that this new medium can offer. Within the Metaverse, it’s incredibly easy to imagine how one might go about developing a virtual live casino where players can explore, socialise and play; and that in itself is a very exciting development for the igaming industry.