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Source: KnowTechie Call centre Hardware and Software in online casinos

At a purely functional level, call centre technology can be considered as a breakdown between hardware and software components. On the hardware side, this would include elements such as a Local Area Network (LAN), a voice-logging facility, automatic call distribution (ACD), a predictive dialling feature and computer technology integration (CTI). On the software side, the requirements can include a CRM (Customer Relationship Management) system, artificial intelligence features, and a number of marketing-focussed integrations necessary to manage all kinds of customer communication.

Types of software used by Canadian online casinos

Dependent upon their precise business needs, online casinos in Canada will deploy one of three software options: an in-house contact centre, a hosted contact centre or a cloud-based contact centre.

An in-house contact centre can be managed by the company IT team and will run as one strand of the overall IT network. This makes the system very secure and allows decision making to occur at a local level. This type of facility is also easier to customise and adapt. Thus an in-house contact centre is often the best option for a Canada online casino operating from one location whose needs are unlikely to change quickly.

A hosted contact centre offloads many of the hardware and software requirements to a third-party provider in a remote location. This scaling-down of the infrastructure and maintenance needs makes this kind of provision cheaper than an in-house facility. But on the downside, the level of customisation possible and ease of making adjustments is perhaps more limited in scope.

With the flexibility of a cloud-based centre, gambling sites can use on-demand services tailored to their specific needs and also revise those requirements at any time. In addition, a basic service can be quickly and smoothly upgraded to include advanced features.

In investment terms, both in-house and hosted options will be more costly overall. And furthermore, any scaling of these two options would also demand additional investment.

Computer Telephony Integration

Computer telephony integration (CTI) is an enabling technology which facilitates the interaction between computer and telephone systems. CTI-equipped call centres deploy computers to manage all telephone calls, leading to much-improved efficiency and thus better outcomes.

With a CTI system, as each operative receives an incoming call, an on-screen display automatically shows the caller’s account data. This time-saving feature benefits both parties and reduces the time it takes to solve a problem because the agent is much better-placed to lead the call from the outset. This kind of CTI screen pop-up can also be used in conjunction with a unified desktop, giving an agent complete access to all kinds of customer data.

Automatic Call Distributor

An automatic call distribution (ACD) telephony system will identify, answer, and route incoming calls direct to the terminal or agent that is most appropriate to the individual caller’s requirements. Understanding where to route incoming calls before they are answered and acknowledged is a massive benefit for any Canadian online casino handling large call volumes. ACD systems enable companies to service customer needs with much greater efficiency.

Intelligent Call Back Systems

An automatic call back feature gives callers the option to quickly register for a call back rather than continuing to hold and wait in a queue. That means the caller can resume their normal activity knowing an operative will get back to them to answer their query. When deployed efficiently, and with appropriate resources, this facility reduces much of the frustration callers can feel when held in a queue.

Call Recording Systems

A call recording system which captures call-centre interactions can have many advantages. For instance, it becomes a helpful tool where an agent or supervisor needs to review the detail of any call content. More sophisticated systems can not only record calls but also handle any related interactions relevant to a call. These may include e-mail conversations and chat sessions. While real-time call recording is clearly supportive, historical records can also be called up. As a result, a call centre supervisor is able to intervene in the event of off-script or unexpected call developments and also offer effective on-demand coaching support. Efficient call recording is one very useful strand of analytics reporting which can furnish contact centre leaders with authentic in-the-moment insights.

CRM Servicing application

CRM (customer relationship management) software provides operatives with the comprehensive customer data they require to rapidly troubleshoot customer needs. Furthermore, this servicing application can also document customer interactions, which can then be retrieved if the customer needs further help in the future. Access to records undoubtedly makes it easier for agents to resolve all kinds of customer issues more efficiently. In addition, it can also support the management of issues which should be transparent to a sales and marketing team lead for the purposes of future relationship development. Equipped with a good CRM system, an online casino will be able to supply insights into all customer interactions for the benefit of all business units. And given that a CRM system makes customer interactions highly visible within an organization, they also provide targeted support for case and issue management. Thus any event subject to internal processes can be constantly updated while also keeping the customer fully informed.

Campaign Management Systems

A campaign management system (CMS) is of great benefit to outbound call centres. It can make accurate contact lists and other information available to operatives. This saves time by ensuring calls are only made to appropriately targeted individuals.

Workforce Management Software

Workforce management software is employed to predict the volume of customer interactions which occur via phone, e-mail, or instant messaging services. Thus managers can use such projections to hire an optimal number of staff to meet peak demands and to maintain standards of service across all customer transactions. WFM systems are generally combined with other workforce optimization solutions to maintain efficiency and manage workloads for the benefit of call centre operatives.

Quality Management

Quality Management (QM) applications provide management with employee performance data and insights. This allows any weak areas to be recognised and addressed. QM also allows managers to verify that operatives are observing internal policies and procedures. For example, where a contact centre operative may not be taking a break as scheduled, which could have an impact upon the balance between customer demand and company support levels. Ensuring call centre operatives can comply with scheduling, training and workload arrangements makes any contact centre more efficient.

Universal Queuing

The purpose of universal queuing is to gather all customers on hold into one waiting list. This applies regardless of the method of customer contact (e.g. phone, email, chat, social media). The result is greater consistency and efficiency, especially from the customer’s perspective.

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Source: Casino Hex

The appeal of rugby is global and fans have got lots to celebrate: An imposing All Black team who have turned game dominance into an art form, pulsating Lions tours, hard-fought autumn internationals, competitions like the southern hemisphere’s vibrant Rugby Championship and the titanic clashes during Europe’s Six Nations. And that’s before we even mention this year’s upcoming Rugby World Cup in Japan. If that’s not enough to get the rugby juices flowing, think of all the great rugby venues around the world: a Six Nation’s match in Rome in the spring; a game at Auckland’s Eden Park, the historic home of All Black rugby; or a visit to the bubbling cauldron of Cardiff’s Principality stadium.

Game layout

So why not build up to the World Cup by enjoying the Microgaming Rugby Star online slot, a game designed to capture the atmosphere and intensity of a top rugby game. Online pokies in New Zealand often feature sports themes but a rugby slot has just got to be a mega-popular option in the land of the Long White Cloud. This game’s layout doesn’t major on excessive stadium detail, but what is there is authentic and sets a great mood. Realistic imagery abounds, player action snippets using superb graphics are clearly modelled on live rugby action, and the personas of a number of rugby superstars loom large throughout every feature.

Game symbols

Like many other online pokies in NZ, there are high prizes to be won for matching symbols. As you would expect in this game, these symbols involve 5 different rugby players from Australia, England, New Zealand, Argentina, and Wales – all great rugby nations with proud sporting traditions. Rugby Star’s low paying game symbols include protective headgear, a pair of rugby boots, a rugby trophy, and a stadium. There are also game logos and a rugby ball (of course) is used as a valuable scatter symbol throughout the game action.

Game specs

Rugby Star was first released in 2015 and hails from the award-winning game developers Microgaming, whose online pokies are known across the world. This thrilling video slot action game has five reels and offers 243 ways to win. It’s rated as a medium volatility slot, so expect a nice mix of smaller wins plus an occasional bigger payout, and the RTP is quoted as 96.52, which most people who play online pokies for real money would say is fairly generous.

Bet sizes range from 0.50 up to 50.00 and really big jackpot prize winners could walk away with as many as 8,000 coins. Prizes can be won almost straight from the kick-off and can come in any order. There’s up to 70 coins for a pair of boots, protective headgear could clear up to 80 coins, with stadiums then bringing in up to 100 coins, and trophies up to 120 coins. Further prize money can be earned for finding players representing the five featured nations: Wales (player value up to 125 coins), Australia (up to 150 coins), New Zealand (up to 250 coins), South Africa (up to 300 coins), and England players (up to 600 coins).

Special Rugby Star features

Watch out for the rugby ball scatter symbol in this game. Each can bring game prizes – five balls, for instance, could net you a stunning 12,500 coins. What is more, collecting three, four or five balls will also give you access to the Free Spins game feature and win you 15, 20 or 25 free spins in each case. But on top of that, there’s also a Multiplier feature active during your free spins, and that could boost your win totals by as much as 10x!

There’s a Rugby Star Wild symbol too which can replace almost any other game symbol, giving you further chances to complete winning game combinations. And whilst the Wild Pass feature is active, you’ll find stacked wilds appearing anywhere on reels 2, 3 or 4. Players who are familiar with the Rolling Reels feature will also be pleased to see that it’s available in Rugby Star too. When rolling reels is operative, you’ll see some of your winning combination disappear from view. This is good news because you’ve already won, but rolling reels gives you further spin opportunities to come up with extra winning symbols. And that can mean consecutive prizes if you find yourself on a lucky streak.

Microgaming

With Microgaming’s long-established reputation stretching back as far as 1994, your gameplay enjoyment is assured. After all, you can’t really go wrong with a game designer supplying games to leading operators worldwide. Microgaming are responsible for creating literally hundreds of online pokies and casino games, including epic blockbusters such as Jurassic World™ and Game of Thrones™.

And if you enjoyed Microgaming’s Rugby Star Online Slot action, then why not get yourself some more sport-themed gameplay by trying out our Football inspired online slots too?

The post Online Pokies In New Zealand: Rugby Star video slot review appeared first on .

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Source: Pixabay

The highly respected online slot developer, Microgaming, has done it again with a game that is bound to please all sorts of enthusiasts for this type of betting. It has gore but presents itself in a friendly graphical way that is more fun than fearsome. Anyone who likes to play an online slot in Canada should check out what Zombie Hoard has to offer. Taking its design cues from old horror movies that feature the undead, Zombie Hoard has more in common with Sean of the Dead than it does with Dawn of the Dead, the classic film that spawned the sub-genre. Like other top-notch online slots in Canada, real money is on offer, so read on to find out more about the game and what you need to do to win!

Zombie Hoard Slots, the Basics You Need to Know

Released in March of 2019, Zombie Hoard is one of Microgaming’s latest online slots. Designed by Slingshot Studios, the game offers super stacked wilds and free spin bonuses. Visually speaking, the game is best described as whimsical with some fun-looking zombies as the main icons which look like they have been designed by a professional comic-book artist rather than a horror designer. The game has a healthy return to player rate of over 95 per cent. It is designated as a medium variance game so you won’t have to spin and spin and spin before finally obtaining one of Zombie Hoard’s special features.

Slots Game Layout and Symbols

Zombie Hoard conforms to the standard layout for most online slots. At the top of the screen, you will see the number of free spins you might have accumulated as well as any multipliers that are in operation. In the middle, your total win is displayed. When it comes to the game’s reels there are standard playing card symbols, specifically aces, kings, queens, jacks and tens royals as well as four different zombies to represent the hoard. These are the ones you want to see, of course, since they will maximise your prizes for a winning combination. Look out for the maid zombie who can multiply your winnings by 80. The corresponding figure for the mail worker zombie is 250 times. The other zombies are the nurse and the chef. These will multiply your prize by a maximum of 400 and 500 times respectively.

In addition, you can see sub-symbols that are attached to the main ones. These are brains and they’re useful because they will augment the number of free spins you have available. Once you have passed the thirty mark, the free spins bonus comes into play. Finally, you should also keep an eye out for the game’s own logo because if you see the Zombie Hoard symbol, you will gain access to the game’s wilds.

Source: Microgaming Reels, Paylines and Special Features

There are a total of five reels in Zombie Hoard, arranged over three rows. The game offers nine different playlines, or chances to get a winning combination of symbols. Zombie Hoard has five low-paying picture card symbols as well as the four high-paying ones which are represented by the cartoon zombie characters. The standard card symbols pay as little as ten times for a combination of three 10s across the five reels. However, you can get up to forty times if you see five tens appear. The picture cards get progressively good and you can see as much as eighty times for a set of five aces, for example.

If you are lucky enough to see three Zombie Hoard symbols on a win line then it will pay at sixty times your line bet, so long as it is active. It gets even more interesting when you have four on the same line because this means you see a payout at 400 times. Five of the game’s wilds in winning combination means a prize that is 1,200 times your bet. In the base game, wilds are super stacked on the third and fourth reels.

Worth a Play?

Zombie Hoard allows you to play online slots for real money in Canada in a fun and engaging way. Not only do you stand a reasonable chance of winning with this game, but you are bound to have fun while doing so. One of the key points about Zombie Hoard is that it truly is easy to pick up so it is highly enjoyable even if you have never tried your luck with an online slot ever before. In fact, if you choose to play it and find that you liked the style of Zombie Hoard, then why don’t you try Alaxe in Zombieland, too?

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Source: Wikimedia Commons

It’s a long way back to 1994 when a small tech company called Microgaming launched the first viable online casino games. Before then, anyone who wanted to play games like poker and roulette would have had to travel to a land-based casino. But soon this new technology was creating opportunities for online gambling on a scale never seen before. As the new millennium arrived, online players in Canada could access a whole array of casino games, bingo, poker, sports betting and more.

But online casino technology never stands still, and once gaming operators realised how the Internet could extend the reach of their businesses, the upgrading of facilities and their associated technologies became a priority. Mobile gambling came of age around 2003, and soon became the gateway of choice for millions of Canadian online casino gamers. And by 2010, cross-platform software games had made the whole process even simpler. Recent trends have shown the massive popularity of video slot games and new technologies like VR and AR have given more traditional online live dealer games a new lease of life – perhaps in a way reconstructing the legacy of the older-style land-based casinos, but with easy access and none of the travel barriers and other restrictions.

But present-day live online casinos in Canada require the coordinated support of a suite of specific technologies:

Streaming technology

Streaming technology is a way of sending large volumes of video, audio and other data at very fast speeds across the Internet. The advantage of this for the online gambler playing a live Canada online casino game is that, because this media is streamed, it can be accessed instantly as it arrives. Think for a moment of an e-mail message, perhaps with several file attachments. These packets of data all have to be downloaded and opened once they arrive – a process which is far from instantaneous.

Casinos use powerful software programs which allow smooth streaming through their gambling sites. Without the facility to stream data in real time, the gaming experience for the players would be downgraded, and many games now live-streamed would be virtually unplayable. High-speed streaming software helps to transmit players’ feeds rapidly, virtually eliminating latency (time delays over the Internet) and other types of glitches caused by data arriving in large bundles instead of flowing through in a continuous stream. Another advantage for the player is that an efficient streaming technology places far less strain on the user’s own computer setup. If any home computer was required to perform to its maximum capacity and CPU power for long gaming sessions that would simply invite all kinds of additional hardware and software problems.

Provided the laws of Canadian online casino home jurisdictions allow it, players too can access streaming software developed specifically for online gaming. Such programs not only allow a rapid game response, but they also enable players to capture a recording of their gameplay action. So anyone wishing to stream their own game feeds on a platform such as Twitch or YouTube would be able to use streaming software for that precise purpose.

Source: Pixabay Web Cameras

Live online casinos in Canada use technology very similar to other kinds of live video streaming. Web cameras capture real-world action transmitted lightning-fast to facilitate seamless linking between players and dealers. Players will obviously use a computer, tablet or smartphone, while at the casino end there will be cameras set up to give each player a mix of at least three viewing angles on the game. What this does demand of the player is a high-quality web camera plus a stable and reliable Internet connection – for instance, not subject to dropouts and slow or erratic transmission speeds. These are essential pre-requisites for playing and communicating successfully with live casino dealers.

Live dealer access is available across the Internet, but most online casinos set up their own studio rooms with real casino gaming tables and other equipment. Other players in the game will also be online-based but the live dealer you see and speak to will be standing at an actual casino table, and the cards you see are those you would encounter in a land-based casino. All this makes the online player’s experience very real indeed.

Game Control Unit

A Game Control Unit (GCU) operates just like many other digital computer programs. Once the GCU picks up the video feed sent from a player’s web camera, that video is instantly converted into a data stream intelligible only to digital equipment. This data is then swiftly decoded again as it is transmitted to the dealer and other participating players in a format which will enable them to understand your actions and anything you may wish to communicate.

The GCU is another link in the transmission/communication chain which must operate at high speeds to enable a live game to progress smoothly. If there are any issues with the GCU processing speed, this will inevitably result in data latency and perhaps even game errors. Once the action and communication start to lag, playing an enjoyable game soon becomes impossible.

Source: Pixabay Digitized Casino Wheels

Any online casino offering live roulette will once again use wheels, tables and machines which replicate the land-based casino environment. But with the roulette wheels used in live online play, there is one important difference. Whereas traditional wheels rely upon the announcements of the dealer and the observations of players to explain what is taking place, online casino wheels are digitized. This means that they can send real-time data to players automatically, which is not only quicker and more efficient, it also gives players the opportunity to keep a record of the gameplay if they should wish to do so.

Dealers Monitors

The live dealer in online games needs a powerful monitor in order to facilitate game play and direct all of the participating players. This screen replicates the function of each player’s computer, so all players can see the dealer and vice versa.

Not only does such monitoring support a good social atmosphere, which is a core requirement of enjoyable live casino gameplay, it also allows the dealer to guide the players, tell them what to do and exclude them from the game if they should ever attempt to break the rules.

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Source: Online Casinos

Players of today’s online casino games can enjoy a fascinating experience provided by a modern industry but casino software has had to evolve to reach this stage of maturity. Back in the early 90s, it might take anything up to three hours just to complete one game, and both audio and graphics were low quality. As the millennium approached, the first improvement was to create multiplayer games downloadable packages to improve the online gaming experience. Once casinos learned how to harness the power of the Internet, live poker dealers arrived in 2003 and online gaming improved fast and gathered a lot of new fans. In 2005, the next major development was producing gaming software which was mobile friendly, and once this was refined and came of age in 2013, online gaming then surged to new unprecedented levels of popularity.

And now the online casino product is a superb package showcasing flawless games and incorporating the latest technologies. However, this is now a very competitive environment in which cutting edge technologies are forever emerging and changing the gambling landscape. So all online casinos in Canada need to stay up to date with their casino software otherwise they risk falling behind in a field where new thrills and excitement count for everything.

Online casino games software

Just like gaming console manufacturers, online casinos don’t develop their own software games. They outsource the task to a variety of specialist games developers who create the games. This is a practical and cost-effective solution which has allowed the likes of Microgaming, NetEnt and others to develop into major businesses within today’s gaming industry. Canada too has a number of leading software games developers including 3 Oak Gaming, Aberrant Software, Blaze Soft, GaleWind Software, Jackpot Digital and others.

It’s the task of experienced engineers and designers to create entertaining games from simple blueprints and Photoshop images. This demands facility in programming languages such as C and C++, familiarity with integrated development environments such as Turbo C++, and the ability to use tools such as Windows SDK ( a software development kit used to develop software applications for Microsoft Windows and .NET Framework).

As well as creating the graphic environment and programming the software, the games development process involves putting together an audio track of music and sound effects, as well as executing quality control and software testing and refinement to remove any possible bugs. And at the heart of any gaming software, there is a random number generator. This vital piece of equipment must generate entirely random sequences to contribute the essential element of chance which makes online casino games such a thrilling experience.

Types of online casino software

Casino gaming software can be divided into two categories: First, there is casino software which can be accessed for gameplay directly in any web browser without the need for downloads, while the second category offers gaming experiences which can only be accessed by downloading and then installing some kind of separate client program. In addition to these two options, many online casinos now feature games where customers may choose whether to play via online flash-technology, or else download their own software version.

Canadian online casinos also have to cater for a rapidly growing mobile-access market. Although the games are usually the same, in each case the software must be mobile-optimized so that it functions in almost exactly the same way as access via computer. This requires careful refinement to accommodate the mobile world of small screens and touch navigation. More specialist kinds of software are required to support the latest developments such as participation in live dealer games as well as game environments utilising AR and VR technologies.

Things to consider when choosing an online casino software

When choosing which online casino software to use, it’s important to remember that in many respects your global audience will have different tastes. Some may prefer slot games which reflect, for example, Asian cultures, while Canada audiences and others may want a broader mix as well as access to online versions of traditional casino games. As mentioned, there is a growing market for gaming experiences driven by newly emerging technologies. Such choices will do much to establish the ‘character’ of each particular online casino.

While the style of games a casino offers is an important element, the companies who supply the games are equally vital to success. Some long-established companies, like Microgaming for instance, will have titles that will appeal to audiences on brand reputation alone. On the other hand, a new game by a cutting-edge start-up may take the market by storm, even though they may have no reputation of any kind.

The Random Number Generator

An essential part of player confidence is the knowledge that all Canada online casino games are scrupulously fair. This function is performed by the RNG (random number generator) component of every software game. From a technical perspective, the RNG generates a continuous stream of random numbers which a game uses to perform spins and other random functions. This process can never be externally interfered with, so the process is entirely a matter of chance. And just to ensure it always remains that way, reputable online casinos are regularly audited for fairness by independent international regulators.

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Source: videoslots.com

Ready to get your sneakers on for a game of basketball? Why is it a game we all love to play? It’s surely got lots to do with the game atmosphere. And maybe that’s down to the fact that, just about every 20 seconds of NBA action there seems to be something to cheer or moan about. With such continued, fast-paced excitement no spectator ever has any time at all to get bored. And it’s the top NBA teams like the Toronto Raptors and their star players, as well as those in the national BasketBall league of Canada, who take that excitement to the limit. But if you can’t get to see a live basketball game, you can still enjoy lots of basketball action playing online slots in Canada – and BasketBall Star is a great slot game to choose.

Basketball Star’s great graphics, vivid animation and brilliant lighting and big-game crowd effects get you straight in the mood for an NBA duel in a big arena. So search out those sneakers because you’ll soon be itching to get on that court. The Basketball Star slot is from the renowned Microgaming developers and is a five-reel video slot offering 243 ways to win. Just as you would expect from great Canadian online slots, it’s jam-packed with exciting bonus features and beautifully drawn game symbols. So if you really are hooked on hoops, you’re sure to connect with this game right from the very first jump ball. Maybe you won’t get to play a starring role in an All-Star game, but you sure will get the chance to slam dunk!

When it comes to game symbols (all in HD quality), there’s a Basketball Star logo (which is wild), and watch out too for a basketball symbol which works as a scatter. Other symbols to look out for include a coach’s game chalkboard, a set of essential drinks bottles, basketball sneakers, some inspiring gold medals and some basketball players captured in a variety of game-action situations.

Basketball Star slots game features

Watch out for the Rolling Reels feature which gives you extra ways to win. Basically, whenever you trigger the Rolling Reels, your winning symbol is logged but then disappears and the reel continues to spin to give you a new chance to win. And if you keep getting consecutive wins, that brings a multiplier into play which keeps on increasing up to 10x.

Don’t underestimate the importance of the Basketball logo, which is wild in this game. That means it can substitute for many other game symbols, which will give you lots more chances of gaining a winning combination of symbols. And what is more, this wild can turn up anywhere on reels 3, 4 and 5. Beyond even that, there’s also a Wild shot Feature in the game that triggers at random and turns 2 reels wild – but only on the three middle reels.

Basketball Star also features a scatter symbol, which is a basketball icon. This not only brings you scatter pays, it also triggers the free spins round. If three or more scatters should land on the reels, then you’ll gain up to 25 free spins – and remember that with the Rolling Reels feature in play too, that gives gamers multiple opportunities to win payouts with an increasing multiplier.

Basketball Star online slots specs

This superb game will perform equally well on PC, tablet and mobile platforms. Basketball Star is a medium volatility slot so you should end up with a good balance between a few big wins and more regular smaller wins. The reported RTP (return to player) average is a very reasonable 96.52%.

Even before you get down to the business of shooting hoops to win this game, you will need to adjust the bet to match your own game preferences. Just use the arrow on the on-screen “Bet” button, followed by +/- to set up your chosen coin value. And lastly, select the number of coins you want to wager. But if you just want to set the highest bet possible, then simply press “Max Bet”.

Microgaming slots game software platform

This is yet another sporting game from those award-winning game software experts Microgaming, one of the industry’s top game design platforms. With over 500 casino games released, branded games like Jurassic World™ and Game of Thrones™, and new game releases each and every month, you can be sure that your chosen gameplay title will always reflect the standards all gamers have come to expect.

After you have got to grips with Basketball Star and all its great features, you’re probably looking for even more sport themed casino online slots to try. So why not have a look at some soccer action by trying your luck with slot games such as Football Star, Shoot Out or World Cup Mania – all available on the top-rated Microgaming platform.

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Source: Pixabay

For those who may be a little unsure, doubling down in blackjack is a move which allows you to raise your bet by an amount of up to 100% (i.e. to double it). Once your raised bet is on the table, you are then allowed just one more card. In a game scenario, that means once you have been dealt your initial two cards, that’s the thrilling moment in online blackjack when you could decide to double down.

Of course, there are strategies involved, and doubling down can sometimes be a risky blackjack gamble. It almost invariably ends your betting options too. The double down pressure decision usually resolves itself in a fairly predictable way: Those players who are much too cautious rarely double down, and so miss out on an opportunity to improve their winning odds, while over-confident players try the move far too frequently, and thus crash out of games they could perhaps have handled a lot better.

When to double down when you play online blackjack

Blackjack is reputed to be one of the casino games with the lowest ‘house edge’, which can make it more profitable for the average online casino player. However, experts will remind you that this actually means an average player who knows the rules of blackjack and follows a logical and optimal blackjack strategy during online blackjack games. No tactics in the world can ever help a player who just bets and selects card play options on a whim.

But one important point about choosing to double down at the right moment is that used correctly, it can gain you an even better house edge. So this really is a move worth becoming well-acquainted with. So much so that online blackjack players would be well advised to try a few cash hands away from the screen to develop a better feel for when to call the move before you try it out in online blackjack games for real money.

Hard 9 double down

If you get dealt a hand totalling 9, double down whenever the dealer reveals a card between 2 and 6 (so any card under 7, but not including the Ace). This has to be a hard 9 hand – so you cannot hold an Ace. Your combinations might be 4-5, 3-6 or 2-7. But if you’re dealt A-8 (a soft 9) you should always stand.

Hard 10 and Hard 11 double down

When you hold a hard 10 or 11, you’re in a powerful position. Two card combos that might give you this are: 2-8, 2-9, 3-7, 3-8, 4-6, 4-7, 5-6. So if the dealer reveals a lower total, go for the double down.

Source: Pixabay Soft 16 to 18 double down

When you hold an Ace plus 5, 6 or 7, that gives you a ‘soft’ total of 16 to 18. So if the dealer reveals a card from 2 to 6, you should immediately double down. Don’t risk this move on an Ace plus a lower card (2,3 or 4); it’s better to just hit instead.

Advantages and disadvantages of doubling down

Executing a double down is a way of giving yourself an extra bet when you have a pretty good idea things ought to go your way. Even though you risk more of your bankroll, you have some good information out on the table to support your decision.

Don’t forget some games also let you double down on a split pair. For example, holding a 10-10 hand with the dealer showing a 3, 4, 5, or 6, you immediately have an option to split your pair of tens, double down on each, and go for 21 on both of those hands!

But remember too that you take a risk when you choose to double down. The dealer always plays his cards after each player and therefore has a little more information on which to base his card play. Of course, this is precisely what constitutes a house edge. And don’t forget also that when the hand is tied, all you get back as a player is your original stake money.

Pay Attention to the Rules

The double down blackjack strategy described here should work well in virtually every blackjack game. But just be aware that, even in a land-based casino, the rules of blackjack can be subject to some variation. And online casinos can seem to be awash with variant versions of the traditional blackjack game.

Sometimes this won’t matter too much, but sometimes it can (or should) influence your decision making.

In almost every blackjack game this strategy should stay true. However, be aware that the rules of blackjack do vary between casinos, which can affect your decision making. For instance, if you’re allowed to double with a hand of three or more cards, then there will be additional hands you could double down using the principles explained here. And also, the game rules may stop you from doubling down when your usual gaming strategy says you should. So if you are prevented from executing a double down, take another hit instead.

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Source: Pixabay

The beautiful game has an atmosphere all its own: the crowds, the weather, the tension of cup games, the highs and lows of league games as your team’s fortunes forever ebb and flow. And nothing beats the excitement of a great goal which bursts the net and sends fans into ecstasy.

Real fans just want to be there to savour the moment and urge their team on. But when that’s not possible, TV highlights capture the moments but miss out on the vibe and spirit of the occasion. Thanks to Microgaming you can now enjoy football betting and experience those same game thrills in or out of season with superb football action online slots. So now you can bring soccer-themed gameplay to life on your PC or mobile wherever and whenever you choose. Here’s a quick comparison of four of the best football-inspired online slot games:

Football Star

As a wanna-be football star, you need to be right out there on the pitch every minute of the day building your skills. But when that’s not possible and you want some soccer-related downtime with the rest of the fans, then check out Microgaming’s fantastic ‘Football Star’ slot game which you can access online in the JackpotCity Casino.

This game action takes place inside a sold-out football stadium depicted in world-class graphics. Your gameplay features a lush green playing strip, team strips in vibrant colours, as well as a full-capacity crowd eager to see what you can do. Once the match gets underway, look out for game symbols like the referee, a soccer pitch, several action snapshots of high-octane game action, an eye-catching pair of red football boots, and, of course, a whooshing football.

Football Star is a five-reel online slot game with a medium volatility, which gives regular payouts and offers 243 ways to win. There’s a return to player average of 96.42% – an extremely reasonable return for players looking to play online slots in Canada for real money. The gameplay Wild Symbol logo pops up on reels 3, 4 and 5 and can represent all other symbols except the Scatter feature.

Your minimum bet is 0.50 but you can go right up to 50 and scoop a massive 250x jackpot. In Free Spin mode you’ll encounter Rolling Reels and an increasing multiplier. Your Scatter symbol is the key to free spins and there are a possible 25 up for grabs. And if you land a Striking Wild Bonus you’ll turn one reel completely wild!

Source: Pixabay Shoot!

If you’re a fan of Canadian online slots action, then Microgaming’s Shoot game harks back to the great days of Pele and Diego Maradona. It’s a five-reel slot game with 50 payline options which allows you to stake up to 20 coins, and you’ll also get the chance to go for the huge 20,000-coin game jackpot.

Game symbols are mostly great players from the past – so watch out for inspiring football icons like Cruyff and Beckenbauer. But there’s also a bonus game with two red cards to avoid! You need at least three football sticker type Scatter symbols to trigger more fun with the Bonus Game which has a choice of 12 cards (10 prizes and 2 reds). You have four picks to win cash prizes, but choose a red and your bonus game ends.

There’s also a ‘Shoot Football’ wild symbol. Land yourself five wilds on any game reels and you’re a happy, top jackpot winner! The game’s Free Spin option will gain you between 10 and 35 free spins and includes a multiplier feature to help you ramp up a match-winning score.

Soccer Safari

Bet you guessed this video slot features gameplay in Africa! But were you expecting to see an animated buffalo, jackal, rhino and more to be strutting their game before a wild crowd of hyenas? This sunny football game you can play online at JackpotCity Casino is refereed by a giraffe and zebra. And with players egged on by antelope cheerleaders, the on-field rules seem to stretch footballing credibility to the limit, and beyond. You’ll be knocked out by the great audio effects track, which highlights the game’s fun atmosphere.

Soccer Safari has 30 paylines with 5×3 reels. Bets must be at least one coin per line but can be up to 20. Your coins can be from 1 – 20 cents, and if you get lucky, the jackpot prize will bring you winnings of up to 60,000 coins. The RTP percentage is a decent 96.5%.

The game’s stars are the crazy animal footballer symbols, and the Wild Symbol is the referee giraffe which can stand for any other game symbol except the scatter. There’s another special symbol too; the free-floating trophy. This can crop up on any reel at all. With two trophies you’re into scatter winnings, and with three or above you qualify for a ‘Go For Goal’ bonus round. As the name suggests, this is a penalty shoot-out action feature which never disappoints. So expect to profit every time you take a penalty – and if you hit the back of the net you also get access to a random multiplier. The game’s Free Spin feature is activated via the wild symbol which bags you five free spins.

World Cup Mania

Yes, this is a World Cup themed game but the symbols may not be what you were thinking. With symbols like beer and hot dogs, pizza slices, fries, hamburgers, ticket stubs, boots and a foghorn, it’s more like a cup winner’s celebration party. Nevertheless, there’s plenty of spectator noise, plus a soccer ball wild symbol and a free kick trophy bonus symbol, as well as a referee’s whistle scatter symbol.

World Cup Mania is a five-reel, 15-payline video slot featuring wilds, free spins and a bonus game option. Collect three or more scatter symbols and you’ll get 10 free spins at a 10x multiplier. And if you can grab three or more golden trophies, you’re into the World Cup Mania free kick bonus game. Players entering with five golden trophies, for example, could walk away with 60-2500 coins.

Look out for the soccer ball wild which can replace anything in the game except scatter and bonus symbols. It’s your gateway to the grand jackpot prize win of 7500 coins! This game has an RTP percentage of 96.56.

These four soccer titles are all from the excellent Microgaming stable, so they all feature award-winning software from the industry’s leading games developer.

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Source : Pixabay

Le football est un sport qui rassemble de nombreux fans, notamment lors d’événements exceptionnels comme la Coupe du Monde. Mais comment passer le temps et s’adonner à sa passion entre tous ces événements ? Plusieurs choix s’offrent à vous : soit vous pouvez améliorer vos performances en football directement sur le terrain, soit vous pouvez profiter de cette ambiance de folie directement sur votre canapé en jouant à l’une des meilleures machines à sous et ainsi tenter de gagner le jackpot pour assister à tous les matchs de football de votre choix ! Mais comment choisir la bonne ? Dans cet article, nous comparons et analysons quatre machines à sous en ligne en Suisse disponibles sur JackpotCity Casino sur le thème du football !

Football Star

« Football Star » est une machine à sous rappelant les montées d’adrénalines qu’on peut ressentir devant un match de football : il n’y a pas de doute sur le fait que vous trouverez en cette machine à sous un moyen de lier vos deux passions, le football et les jeux de hasard ! La machine à sous Football Star, proposée par Microgaming, se compose de 5 rouleaux. Sa variance est moyenne : vous toucherez ainsi des gains assez régulièrement en y jouant. Vous avez 243 lignes de paiement, soit 243 manières de gagner, avec un taux de retour établi entre 96 % et 97 %.

Les animations en 3D et la musique immergent le joueur dans l’univers du football pour de longues sessions de jeu. Parmi les symboles que vous croiserez lors de votre aventure au sein de Football Star, vous verrez un ballon, un arbitre, des joueurs en pleine action, un terrain de football et même une paire de chaussures de foot ! Vous serez forcément charmé par le design de ce jeu.

En jouant à la machine à sous en ligne Football Star, vous remarquerez de nombreuses fonctionnalités qui rendront votre jeu bien plus amusant. Les symboles Wild sont bien sûr de la partie et sont représentés par le logo Football Star. Les Scatters vous permettront d’obtenir 25 tours gratuits. Les Free Spins et les multiplicateurs qui augmenteront vos gains, jusqu’à 10 fois, ne sont que quelques-unes des fonctionnalités dont vous pourrez bénéficier.

Shoot !

« Shoot ! » est une autre des machines à sous en ligne sur le thème du football proposée par Microgaming. Mais si vous recherchez les stars actuelles du football, vous faites fausse route. En revanche, si vous êtes nostalgique des années 1980 et 1990 et que vous appréciez les machines à sous classiques, ce pourrait bien être la machine à sous idéale pour vous. Shoot ! reprend les stars d’il y a quelques décennies pour vous faire vivre vos deux passions. Vous retrouverez les avatars de Cantona, de Pelé ou de Keegan ainsi que de nombreux autres anciens joueurs de football célèbres, sur les 5 rouleaux de la machine à sous en ligne ! Ce sont ces visages que vous verrez défiler lors de vos sessions de jeu sur Shoot !

Shoot ! propose 50 lignes de paiement avec une mise maximale de 100 dollars par jour. Le symbole Wild représenté par le logo du jeu pourrait bien vous rapporter gros ! S’il apparaît cinq fois dans n’importe quelle rangée, c’est bel et bien un jackpot de 20 000 crédits qui pourrait vous tomber tout droit dans les poches ! Microgaming a également rajouté un symbole Scatter pour vous permettre d’obtenir un tour gratuit si vous en sortez trois d’un coup. Le taux de retour est d’environ 96,5 %. Enfin, si vous êtes chanceux, vous pourriez bien tomber sur la fonction Free Spins !

Source: Microgaming Soccer Safari

La machine à sous en ligne Soccer Safari a été conçue par Microgaming à l’occasion de la Coupe du monde 2010 qui s’est déroulée en Afrique du Sud. On retrouve donc ici une ambiance africaine, colorée et dynamique dans une machine à sous sur le thème du football ! Comme le nom « Soccer Safari » le suggère, ce ne sont pas des joueurs qui manient le ballon ici, mais des animaux africains. Soccer Safari est certainement la machine à sous la plus délirante de ce comparatif !

Dans Soccer Safari, les symboles sont tout simplement des animaux bien dessinés qui jouent au football : vous avez des buffles, des rhinocéros, des phacochères, mais aussi des zèbres dans le rôle des arbitres ainsi que des hyènes spectatrices et des antilopes en guise de pompon girls. Malgré ces dessins qui sont loin d’être sérieux, les animations et les effets sonores plongent le joueur dans la machine à sous.

Soccer Safari propose 5 rouleaux sur 3 lignes, avec 30 lignes de paiement. Le symbole Wild est représenté par un zèbre et vous permet d’obtenir 5 tours gratuits. Le Scatter est représenté par le trophée. Si vous tombez sur trois trophées ou plus, vous aurez un tour bonus : le Go For Goal qui vous permettra d’obtenir un multiplicateur plus ou moins important.

World Cup Mania

World Cup Mania est la dernière machine à sous de ce comparatif. Évidemment, celle-ci porte également sur le thème du football. Elle fait partie des meilleures machines à sous en ligne sur ce thème. World Cup Mania est une machine à sous dans laquelle vous serez le maître du destin d’une équipe nationale qui tente de gagner la Coupe du monde ! Les images, les animations et les sons rendent l’action encore plus excitante ! Cette machine à sous est idéale pour patienter entre les vrais matchs de football.

World Cup Mania se compose de 5 rouleaux avec des symboles tels que des sifflets, des cornes de brume, des chaussures, un trophée, mais aussi des symboles surprenants tels que des parts de pizza, des hot-dogs ou encore des frites. World Cup Mania propose 15 lignes de paiement et un jackpot de 7500 crédits ! Le taux de retour est de 96,56 %.

Lorsque vous obtenez trois sifflets, dix tours gratuits vous seront offerts, durant lesquels des multiplicateurs pourraient bien vous récompenser. Le Wild sera représenté par le symbole football. Enfin, le bonus Free Kick vous permettra de tirer au but et de tenter de gagner le gros lot !

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Nothing much beats playing your favourite casino games at home. You can play when you want, play as long as you want, choose what games you want to try, and stop for a drink or something to eat just as you please. And the whole experience of playing costs no more than you want to stake: there are no travel costs, and no journeys to plan.

But you’ll only have a fantastic gaming experience if you can be sure that you’ve chosen the right online casino to play in safety. That means ensuring you never let your personal information or banking details fall into the wrong hands. But how will you know when you’ve found a secure online casino in Canada? Here are some checks you can make to be really sure:

Does the online casino follow Canadian legislation?

It’s entirely legal to play online casinos in Canadian jurisdictions and in fact, Quebec’s Kahnawake Commission also acts as a respected international regulatory authority. So any casino regulated by that organisation will be safe to use.

The Canadian regions effectively monitor web-based casinos as they see fit. But this will only ever effect casino operators located in some areas of Canada. What that implies is that you should check out any regulatory information posted on a casino site very carefully to ensure that the casino does have the clean bill of health it claims.

Is your chosen casino site audited and licensed?

To be allowed to operate legally online, your chosen casino must have been issued with a licence from a recognised regulator. As explained above, the Kahnawake Commission are Canadian online casino regulators who have gained a worldwide reputation, and the Malta Gaming Authority is another well-known body with regulatory responsibilities.

Regular casino auditing is another important feature of a secure online casino. This guarantees that the random number generators central to the functioning of online casino games operate entirely fairly. That means players can gamble with confidence knowing that legal requirements have been observed. The primary body for conducting casino audits is the UK-based eCOGRA (eCommerce Online Gaming Regulation and Assurance).

Does your chosen casino use SSL protocol?

The best way to keep your personal data protected during online transactions is to use a website which safeguards your details by encrypting any data which is stored or transmitted. SSL (secure socket layer) encryption employs a technology which scrambles information before it is processed. So even if the site is hacked, your data cannot be accessed.

You should never risk passing your data to any gaming website which does not provide this form of protection for its users. Check to see whether this protocol is in use by looking carefully at the website URL address. If it begins with “https” you will know that SSL encryption is in use.

Source: Pixabay Are the casino website’s terms and conditions available?

Online casinos are required to observe data protection laws. So making their terms and conditions and data protection policy available for players to read is a responsible way to show the website respects its obligations to the customer and acts entirely transparently.

It’s always advisable to read the terms and conditions through to make sure you understand them. You will learn much about how the casino operates, and there may also be information you should know about how the casino will treat you in certain circumstances.

Is the casino’s Welcome Bonus properly explained?

When players first sign up to an online casino, it’s normal for them to qualify for a free welcome bonus offer. There may also be promotions, free spins and other features on offer too. What should also be clarified on the website is that certain terms and conditions apply. These will usually include asking the player to deposit an amount equal to the free bonus on offer.

This practice is entirely legal, but bonuses should be for the relatively modest amounts appropriate for a novice player, or indeed any player new to the site. If bonuses seem rather high – which means your deposit will also be high – you would be safer finding a more responsible Canada online casino.

Are the available banking methods reliable?

What marks out safe online casinos in Canada most of all is that they offer safe and trustworthy methods of completing online financial transactions. Some of the safest deposit methods of all are international debit and credit cards such as Visa Card and MasterCard. However, many other methods are equally secure and services offered by institutions such as Visa Electron, Maestro, PayPal, PaySafeCard, Neteller, InstaDebit, Instant Banking and EntroPay should all be very secure.

Does the casino have customer service with proper language support?

Helpful and efficient customer care is also the sign of a responsible site. But these services must reflect the realities which local users face. In Canada, for instance, the French language is spoken by a substantial proportion of Canadians. So it is both unhelpful and disrespectful if native language speakers are not available to speak with customers who need help.

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