Online Casino vs Land-Based Casino: What’s the Difference?

Should you gamble in an online casino or a land-based traditional casino? The traditional Casino experience is more like the movie Casino starring Robert De Niro and Joe Pesci. Small time hustlers and high-rollers stream in hoping to have their dreams come true or just to release themselves from the pressures of an uptight living and imbibe the cathartic hedonism. People reminisce about the old casino experience the same way they do about the golden age of air travel.

It was luxurious and peppered with lots of fun and entertainment beyond just the playing, wagering and blowing their fortunes way. Shows, flashing neon lights, music, dining experience and hedonism and all kinds of guilty pleasures have long been part of your traditional casino experience.

Fortunately, unlike the “golden age” of jet travel, that experience is still around, at the right price. But it has been hollowed out by the proliferation of the online casinos. The advent of the World Wide Web proved quite fortuitous for casinos around the world and the millions of gamblers hoping to land a fortune. As a result, some of the lure of the casinos in the gambling meccas such as Las Vegas or Macau is being absorbed by the online web-based casino.

The online casino is here to stay and with the emergence of immersive technologies such as virtual reality and augmented reality, it will be possible to replicate a virtual casino experience that will be as close as to the real thing as possible. You can still choose to log into an online casino or a land-based one. Here is a look at the main differences between the two.

The setup of land-based casinos

Land-based casinos cater to the various categories of clientele just like in every other service industry. They provide an almost Disney-esque, carnival like, resort-like feel designed to deliver maximum enjoyment. At the top tier are high-rollers who gamble fortunes and get VIP treatment from the casinos.

Just like its online counterpart, the land-based casino is designed to maximize revenues. There are slot machines and a massive lineup of games and activities to entice the player to spend money. With all the complimentary services and activities, the land-based casinos also to derive some ancillary revenues from players with non-casino-related perks. The casino income does not just come from the players but in the extras that it offers such as food, entertainment, accommodation and much more.
The players are given a euphoric atmosphere to indulge in and the casino wants to keep them in the house playing and spending as long as possible to derive maximum revenues from them.

Escape from Reality

Your typical land-based casino immerses players into a dreamy world of fun and pleasures where the player won’t be able to tell even the difference from night and day. There is a very strong social component in the land-based casinos. There are lots of people and plenty of room to interact with them and have fun together. The atmosphere is euphoric and exciting with lots of people chatting and with the tempting sounds of the slots drawing you in to try your luck just one more time.

Land-based casino technology

The land-based casino may seem archaic but it is also a high-tech offering. However, in land-based casinos, there is the abstraction of the complex underlying technology. Players are presented with the simple and familiar environment but the casino runs on a cutting-edge tech infrastructure that begins with the face-recognition cameras that capture the image of everyone getting in and compares it to that of the people on the casino’s blacklist.

Besides, all the chips in casinos today are embedded with a radio frequency identification (RFID) device to ensure that they are genuine. The casinos are right in step with the most sophisticated scammers in the casino-world. The sophisticated tracking of chips also reduces theft as the casinos can simply deactivate chips whenever they are stolen to avoid incurring massive losses.

Even playing cards in casinos are today marked with barcodes which has been printed on them using invisible ink. This ensures that the cards are scannable to prevent players from introducing hidden cards into the game.

Casinos are also riddled with the ‘Big Brother’, a network of security and surveillance cameras with operators behind them that watch over all that is taking place in the casino and help spot any suspicious behavior or playing patterns. Once this is spotted, the casino manager is alerted to evaluate the situation and intervene on behalf of the house.

Online casino: the setup

Online casinos make this experience virtual. You won’t experience all the glitz, glamour, noise and the social atmosphere, at least physically. Still, many online casinos, according to go the extra mile to try and replicate the real casino atmosphere and experience online and ensure that you have as much fun as possible. They use various kinds of casino software to accomplish this.

The online casino has evolved rapidly over the years. Today’s online casino even use real live dealers and create an authentic online casino experience that players can go against in real-time. Whether the player is into baccarat, blackjack or roulette, there will be real cards being dealt or an actual wheel being spun.

A cutting-edge piece of technology known as Game Control Unit will transform the live play in the casino into a virtual or digital experience to enable the online gambling. This makes for an exciting game. You can immerse yourself into the actual live casino experience with real dealers from the comfort of your bedroom.

New technologies such as virtual reality are undoubtedly going to take this to unimaginable simulations of reality. In the future, online casinos will actually beat their land-based rivals by tapping into emerging technology that radically improve the player experience and enjoyment of the live casino experience.

Escaping from Reality: Online

With casinos, there is also the experiential angle. It goes without saying that the land-based casinos pull out all the stops to give players an unforgettable and often addictive experience. There won’t be drinks, pretty women, shows, chauffer-driven limos or luxury accommodation in an online casino.

Apart from the live online casinos where you can interact with other players, online gambling is mostly a solitary undertaking. If you like playing without the thrill and carnival atmosphere of the live land-based casino, then you will enjoy playing online. Still, many online casinos are trying to add as much fun as technology can allow into the online gambling experience.

With the current two-dimensional online casino experience, many casinos still don’t have much leeway in incorporating exciting experiences that bring out the real feel and vibe of the land-based casinos. But many are getting creative in delivering exciting online experiences. It starts with the website design. Everything from the feel to the colors, graphics and much more is designed to ooze out the glamour, excitement, vibe and unique atmosphere of your typical luxury brick-and-mortar casino.

Online casino designs generally experiment with various themes ranging from the modern to retro feel or minimalist designs.


When it comes to the selection of casino games, the online casinos out-do even their real-life counterparts. You can select from a vast array of games including slots, Roulette and Black Jack. There is even the option to login to a live casino and play in real-time while hosted by Live Dealers from the comfort of your home.

The best thing about online casinos is the sensational and vast array of games that it gives you access to. Whether you are looking for a Live Casino, new games, top game releases, premium games, slots, latest releases, card games, classic slots, table games, instant win games, jackpots or Roulettes, you cam find it all under one roof. Your typical online casino will have more than 1000 games to pick from!

Promotions, Bonuses and Offers

Both real-life casinos and online casinos have plenty of promotions for players. But here the online platforms have a massive advantage. Due to the stiff competition in the online casino market, the online casinos tend to have more lucrative bonuses and promotions. The bonuses typically include generous welcome bonuses, instant Freeplays and much more.

Game Features

Online casinos come with lots of game features to make your play as enjoyable as possible. These include the autoplay modes, the bonus rounds, wilds and expanding wilds, free spins and respins, progressive jackpots and much more. Some of these are also available in the land-based casinos but the online casinos go the extra mile. Every online casino website will have a ‘Features’ website with a breakdown of the features on offer to help you decide what is right for you.


Apart from the convenience and affordability factor, another reason why many opt for online casinos is the level of privacy that they offer. Unlike land-based casinos that provide a public space and where you cannot hide from everyone, online casinos are more discrete. It is largely between you and your computer.


Finally, there is the convenience factor. Dressing up and driving to a casino is a lot more involving than simply logging into your computer or mobile screen in your pajamas. This convenience factor also comes with a cost dividend. With online gambling, you don’t have to spend time and money commuting to the casino and spending your money on food, hotel, shows and other hedonistic pleasures.

The Future

As the technology continues to evolve, the future looks interesting for both land-based and online casinos. Both models will survive into perpetuity as they each serve a market need. But most of the transformation is going to occur in the online casino world as technologies such as virtual reality, augmented reality and artificial intelligence grow to a point where they are able to completely blur the differences between the real and the virtual.


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