When you think of a casino, the first games that come to mind are blackjack, roulette, poker and maybe slot machines. These have enjoyed an extended period as the most well-known and popular casino titles, but could the next big casino game be on the horizon?
Baccarat is certainly not a new game, but it has generated a lot of attention in recent years. Could baccarat be set to dethrone the likes of roulette and blackjack and take the crown as the king of casino games? Let’s find out.
The History of Baccarat
Like most casino games, baccarat’s precise origins are up for debate. It’s widely believed to have originated in Europe in the 1800s, although there are reports that suggest it could have been developed as far back as the 15th century.
The game was popularised by French nobility who would play in dedicated baccarat rooms. From there, it spread across Europe before eventually finding its way to the US and Asia.
It was in Asia that the game really took off, and it remains one of the most popular choices at Asian land-based and online casinos.
While blackjack and roulette have ruled the roost in Western casinos for decades, baccarat has always been available and is slowly gaining traction among players looking to try something new, and many experts are predicting it could be the next big casino game.
How is it Played?
If baccarat wants to be the next big casino game, it’s going to have to be as easy to understand and play as games like roulette and blackjack.
Thankfully, the rules of baccarat are fairly straightforward. The basic premise is to bet which of two hands, the player’s and the bank’s, will be closer to a total of nine. There is also an option for betting on the hands being tied.
Once all bets have been placed, two cards are dealt to the player and the bank. The game pays out at 1:1 for correct bets on the winning hand. Tie rounds pay out at odds of 8:1.
These simple rules are a winning formula. Research has revealed that the human brain is wired to engage with simple rules and patterns. Players of all skill and experience levels can pick up baccarat quickly, which is a key factor in the game’s popularity.
The Benefits of Baccarat
Baccarat’s simplicity is certainly a reason why it is being touted as the next big casino game, but what else does it offer?
House edge is key in the gambling world. As an operator, it’s important you offer players a range of games with different house edge ratings. This gives players a choice between easier games and more challenging ones.
Baccarat has a particularly generous house edge when compared to other popular games. Generally, the house edge of baccarat is between 1.01% and 1.24%. This is important as it means players are going to win fairly regularly, which will keep them coming back for more.
Furthermore, while baccarat is easy to understand, it can also be played on a deeper, more complex level. Experienced players can develop their own systems and tactics in an attempt to beat the house, which makes the game a more engaging experience and will ensure it is enjoyed by the full spectrum of players at your online casino.
Finally, baccarat can be integrated into live dealer casino services. This offers players the chance to experience the game in an immersive, interactive virtual environment. In live dealer baccarat, players can interact with one another, choose from various themes and styles, select different language options and access tactical information and game history data.
How Popular is Baccarat?
Just how popular is baccarat? As we mentioned above, the game is extremely successful in Asia. In Macau in 2019, baccarat generated 120.77 billion pacatas. In the US, baccarat is estimated to generate approximately 30% of gaming revenue in Las Vegas.
These are impressive figures, and they clearly demonstrate that baccarat isn’t going to become a big casino game, it already is a big casino game.
As the operator of an online casino, it is absolutely imperative that baccarat is included as part of your product offering. Players today value choice, you need to offer them as many options as possible if you want to stay ahead of the competition.
While games like blackjack and roulette will always be popular, baccarat is hot on their heels, and the game has a number of benefits that are helping establish it as a mainstay in today’s casinos.
In the past, baccarat had a tendency to fly under the radar. However, the game has come to the fore in recent times and it’s quickly becoming apparent that baccarat is here to stay.