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Spin to Win: The Future of Roulette

Roulette wheel turning with ball
Roulette – the game of chance and skill that requires players to choose numbers from 1 to 36 to place their chips across in order to win the cash payout – has already lived a full life. Yet, with technological innovations, there is no chance of the momentum of the wheel stopping. So, what exactly does the future of roulette look like?

The History of Roulette
Roulette has a rich and varied history from its humble beginnings in the Jaques Lablee penned 1796 novel, where it appeared as the "small wheel", a game unique because the bank had a significant mathematical disadvantage with only one slot reserved for its own payout, zero. Some even credit the creation to physicist Blaise Pascal, who invented a perpetual motion machine in the 1600s. The red and black variation we know came to fruition as its popularity took off throughout the 18th and 19th centuries before landing its position at the very top of the premium games found in casinos and betting houses. Since then, roulette is largely considered one of the most high-end and exciting games in gambling.

The Gameplay of Roulette
Roulette is a fairly simple game but, with the right mastering, can be one of the most lucrative ones found in the casino. While players can choose to place their chips on one number, they can also choose to split the numbers into odds and evens, or into reds and blacks. The outcome of roulette is independent of the previous outcome and ranges from a 2.67% probability of a payout (for single numbers) to 48.65% probability of a win (for choosing 18 numbers, one colour, evens/odds etc.). The independence of each spin limits the amount of skill needed – although mathematical knowledge can give players an edge of the probabilities, and allows each spin to take a different amount of skill not affected by what’s gone before. Indeed, looking into strategies that involve probabilities can be lucrative but the amount of chance involved keeps the game unpredictably fun. The more a player practices roulette, the better equipped they are to effectively play the game. Indeed, roulette is so illustrious that it even comes as a product to buy for many consoles, and many different ways of playing, to allow players to further get to grips with the gameplay involved.

Variants of Roulette
Roulette actually has many variants, with some gaining more popularity due to recent technological advances that make them more accessible through online providers. The major difference is the range of numbers on the board, which affects the house advantage – so some variations are perceivably more difficult. The European version has a house edge of only 2.78%, and allows players to bet on banks of numbers, as well as the traditional betting options. The American version adds a 00 slot, which ups the house edge to 5.40%, making it slightly less likely for the player to win. The French version adds in the La Partage rule, which allows a bet to be recouped if it lands on 0 if the player has placed their bet on Evens. Progressive roulette, specifically for online users, allows the jackpot to increase if the same number is landed on consecutively, which is easier to calculate when playing online.

Live Roulette
One way in which roulette is updating to keep up with the future is through live roulette. Live roulette amplifies the atmosphere of online gaming and allows players to immerse themselves in the action by meeting the dealer and other players through live videos. Playing live roulette online allows players to grasp the key principles of roulette while also benefiting from the realism of the live variations. The multi-angles available on the site also allow players to get a good scope of the entire roulette table which replicates what it would actually be like to be in a land-based casino - without having to visit one. Live roulette’s benefits come from the ease of play at home (or on mobile on the go) while retaining the positives of visiting an actual casino. Asia Live Tech are set to reveal their version of live roulette at the ICE Totally Gaming 2018, which showcases the future of iGaming.

Multiplayer Roulette
Taking advantage of the number of people playing online at the same time is multiplayer roulette, which harnesses the social connectivity that being online allows by marrying up players to play simultaneously on the same roulette wheel. Major online casinos will offer multiplayer variants to attract more players, especially millennials, who Forbes is adamant take every opportunity for social interaction online. For instance, Betway Casino offers a range of online roulette games Multiplayer Roulette Diamond Edition among its ten roulette variants - which also includes Multi Wheel, for those who like to play more than one roulette wheel at once. By having "opponents" for a friendly rivalry, such online games will mimic the competitive edge that sometimes comes from gambling in a land-based casino. The aforementioned Diamond variant also allows players to chat with each other and view each other's wins. Software developers such as Playtech utilises multiplayer slots in a variety of the games they develop in order to capitalise on the market growth of technological advancements in iGaming.
Roulette table layout and chips
VR Roulette

VR roulette is the epoch of technology matched with the ease of play of roulette. Players will be able to don VR glasses in order to feel like they are truly sitting at the roulette table. The VR experience is another way that VR technology is being rolled out on a consumer basis, and will help to normalise VR and AR for other gaming pursuits. Choosing the relatively simple roulette as an almost beta-test of the technology will allow players to be comfortable trying something potentially out of their comfort zones. The VR game, developed by Microgaming, uses the latest Oculus Rift VR technology and received a positive reception at the ICE Totally Gaming 2016 conference. Still in its early stages, the development shows exactly what could happen by marrying one of the oldest games with some of the newest technology.

Roulette has been a strong game for centuries, and the leap of technology looks to be helping roulette reach out to even more players, while helping those who have been playing for years to stay in touch with the technological advancements. It is one of the most successful casino games and the wheel looks likely to spin for centuries more to come. Pascal was certainly right about the perpetual motion of the popularity of roulette.
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