Live dealer casinos aren't a fad; rather, they are a new, progressive twist for online casino gaming that has actually become the preferred way for many players. It involves playing against live dealers, who are coming through the video feed on your computer screen, and the games they are dealing are no different than what you would experience if you were sitting in an actual casino in Las Vegas, Atlantic City or Monte Carlo.
Live dealer casinos have also spawned exciting variations such as televised games, which currently air in the United Kingdom and allow the players at home to play through his or her computer against a dealer who is dealing any of a number of casino games on the TV screen simultaneously.
Interestingly enough, one of the things that has drawn online casino players to the live dealer experience is that they take greater comfort in playing against a dealer they can actually see than what is, in effect, a computer program. And there is little doubt that if you are sitting in your living room, playing at a live dealer casino is the next best thing to actually "being there."
Commonly there are three games that are played in live dealer casinos: baccarat, blackjack and roulette, along with certain variations thereof. In some cases, Sic Bo and Texas Hold'em are offered, and the general consensus is that more games will eventually be offered, including craps, with bingo on the way as we speak.
That is because the upward trend is that live dealer casinos are more than just a novelty.
The way it works is actually very easy to explain. You will log into the live casino and pull up the game you want. Let's say, for example, that it is a blackjack game. You will be watching a live video stream, with the dealer standing at the table literally right in front of you. The dealer is in a physical, "brick-and-mortar" location; sometimes it's in an actual casino, and sometimes it is in more of a studio setting.
There are no players literally sitting at the table there, because they are all getting the same view you are. As the cards are dealt out, you see them physically and at the same time they are appearing on your computer screen because they are being entered into the program by someone off-camera as they are being dealt. Those players who want a hit will get a hit, etc.
The dealer can speak to you, and you will hear him or her making comments. But there is generally no chat apparatus associated with it, because the dealer is, well, dealing.
Players, for the most part, enjoy the more personal aspects of live dealer casinos. It gives many of them more of a feeling that they are in an actual casino, because, in a sense, they are. And it also offers a "real" shuffle that the dealer in front of you actually performs.
Live dealer games are, obviously, more labor-intensive then they are in the virtual casino, and partially because of that reason, the minimums and maximums are often higher. And casinos that have the feature (and there are more and more with each passing month) tend to offer nice bonuses for players who want to sign up specifically to play the live dealer casinos.