Online vs Live Dealer Roulette – Will Live Roulette Kill Online Games?

Well over two centuries old, roulette still remains a favorite in casinos across the world. It attracts many players due to its interesting and exciting gameplay.

Roulette has been available in online casinos for years. The internet version provides the ability to enjoy this game on your smartphone or tablet.

You have two options when it comes to playing online roulette:

  1. The traditional virtual version
  2. Live-dealer roulette

The latter has become extremely popular in recent years due to its authentic feeling. With its rapidly increasing popularity, will live roulette ever completely abolish the traditional online version?

This page discusses more on live-dealer roulette along with why it’s so beloved. It also covers the differences between live and virtual roulette and where both games are trending.

How Does Live Dealer Roulette Work?

With traditional internet roulette, everything runs through software. The dealer, table, wheel, and chips are all based on AI.

You still get the convenience of playing on your phone or computer with this version. However, you don’t enjoy the same atmosphere as a brick-and-mortar casino.

Live Dealer Roulette

Here’s where live-dealer roulette gains considerable value. This version takes place in a land-based studio and uses real equipment.

More importantly, live roulette features a human dealer. The croupier handles the action and also chats with you and other players.

The main downside is that you’re separated from the dealer and casino by a screen. However, you’ll still enjoy a combination of human interaction and online convenience.

How Popular Is Live Dealer Roulette?

Live-dealer casino games were sparsely played when they first hit the scene in the late 2000s. Much of this was due to the fact that streaming technology and awareness of live gaming weren’t quite where they are today.

However live-dealer casinos have improved greatly within recent times. They now offer fast streaming, well-designed studios, and many different games.

Speaking of the latter, here are some of the many games that you can enjoy in live casinos:

  • Baccarat
  • Blackjack
  • Caribbean stud
  • Craps
  • Dream Catcher
  • European roulette
  • French roulette
  • Sic bo
  • Three-card poker

Despite the growing game selection at live-dealer casinos, roulette still remains one of the most-popular choices. Some live casinos even offer three variations of this game, including American, European, and French roulette.

If an online casino features live gaming, then you can almost always count on roulette being available. Alongside baccarat and blackjack, it’s by far one of the most-available live casino games.

Why Do People Love Live Roulette?

Live-dealer roulette’s atmosphere is the main reason why gamblers love it so much. Players appreciate that they can enjoy land-based-style roulette without traveling to a casino.

Many live-dealer studios feature posh backgrounds and an authentic feel. They also include well-dressed dealers who are friendly and talkative.

The latter presents yet another reason why people appreciate the live version. Gamblers like conversing with dealers through the provided chat box.

Finally, live-dealer casinos are more likely to offer European and/or French roulette than land-based venues. The European (2.70% house edge) and French (1.35%) versions feature lower house edges than American roulette (5.26%), which is predominant in brick-and-mortar casinos.

Live Dealer Roulette vs. Online Roulette

Both live-dealer and online roulette take place at real money online casinos. However, the similarities end here as both versions feature many differences from each other.

Live Roulette Presents a More Entertaining Atmosphere

Internet casinos do their best to spice up the virtual roulette experience. Their games provide lifelike wheels and boards. They even show the wheel and ball spinning after you choose to play.

Regardless, traditional online roulette will never match the atmosphere provided by the live version. Live-dealer roulette features real wheels and dealers.

If you can’t make it to a land-based casino, then the live version is the next best thing. It brings the brick-and-mortar gambling experience into your living room or wherever else you’re playing.

Online Roulette Lets You Control the Game Tempo

Live-dealer roulette limits how long you have to place bets. You’re given a certain amount of seconds that you must act within.

The dealer will spin the wheel and quickly say, “No more bets.” Assuming you haven’t gotten your wager down, then you’ll need to wait until the next round.

Internet roulette doesn’t feature the same limitations. Instead, it gives you an infinite amount of time to place wagers.

You can even take lengthy breaks and leave the game on standby. When you return, the software-generated dealer will still be waiting for your bet. The online version is perfect if you seek lots of freedom while playing.

Live Dealer Gaming Offers Free Bets

Live-dealer casinos are technically part of regular online casinos. However, they offer a unique bonus that’s separate from the rest of an internet casino.

Specifically, you can earn free bets through live gaming. You just need to deposit and enter the correct code to receive a free wager for roulette or another game.

A free bet provides the opportunity to collect losses stemming from a losing wager. Here’s an example on how it works:

  • You receive a $25 free roulette bet.
  • You lose the $25 wager.
  • Playthrough is 10x.
  • 25 x 10 = $250 must be wagered.
  • You’ll receive the $25 back after completing playthrough.

Online Roulette Features Deposit Bonuses

Internet roulette may not offer free wagers. However, it features more-lucrative deals in the form of deposit bonuses.

Wild Casino Bonus

With a deposit bonus, you receive a match percentage on your deposit up to a certain amount. You’ll then collect the funds after meeting playthrough.

Here’s an example:

  • A gaming site offers a 100% match deposit bonus worth up to $250.
  • You deposit $150.
  • Playthrough is 40x (roulette playthrough is often high).
  • 150 x 40 = $6,000 must be wagered
  • You’ll receive $150 after betting $6,000.

You Can Socialize with the Dealer at Live Casinos

Virtual roulette is completely void of human interaction. In fact, most games don’t even bother including a software-generated dealer. They just have a blank spot where the croupier would be.

The live version differs greatly in this regard. It puts a human dealer across the table from you. Therefore, you can socialize with the croupier through the chat box.

You can type out various questions/comments to the dealer while playing. They’ll respond as long as your comments are within reason.

Assuming you like the dealer’s service, you can tip them just like in a brick-and-mortar casino. Most software developers now include a tip box somewhere onscreen.

Online Roulette Features Cheaper Stakes

You don’t need to risk much to enjoy internet roulette. Online casinos only require you to place a $1 minimum bet to play the game.

These cheap minimum stakes allow you to last for quite a while. Here’s an example on how long you can last when playing low-stakes roulette.

  • You’re playing European roulette (2.70% house advantage)
  • You bet $1 per round.
  • You play for one hour (approx. 300 bets) each day.
  • 300 x 1 x 0.027 = $8.10 in theoretical losses per hour
  • You have a $50 bankroll.
  • 50 / 8.1 = 6.17 days

Of course, live-dealer roulette isn’t overly expensive in the grand scheme of things either. You can play it for anywhere between $1 and $5, depending upon the casino.

These stakes are cheaper than what the average land-based casino requires. Nevertheless, the $5 minimum bet is still higher than what you find with any traditional internet game.

Will Live Roulette Ever Be the Only Internet Version?

Live-dealer roulette definitely has its advantages over the online version. First off, it provides a unique social aspect that just isn’t available with the regular internet variation.

You actually get to see and hear a real dealer while playing. Most online roulette games, on the other hand, don’t even show an AI croupier.

You’ll likely also enjoy the live casino atmosphere. Live-dealer gaming takes place in a studio with other tables around. It’s not just a software-generated setup like with online roulette.

However, the internet version has its merits too. It offers cheap stakes, which help you play for hours with a small bankroll.

The online game also allows you to control the game tempo. With internet roulette, you can get up at any time and take a break. The game halts every time you leave because it’s entirely based on AI.

Both live-dealer and online roulette feature unique benefits. And while the live version may continue growing in popularity, it won’t totally eclipse the virtual game.


Online roulette isn’t going anywhere. It still boasts certain advantages that make it desirable to many players.

After all, some gamblers aren’t overly concerned with the brick-and-mortar experience. Instead, they just want to enjoy cheap roulette action on their own schedule.

Live-dealer roulette should continue to gain market share thanks to its authentic atmosphere. But it won’t be pushing internet roulette out of existence any time soon.

Online vs Live Dealer Roulette - Will Live Roulette Kill Online Games?

Michael Stevens

Michael Stevens has been researching and writing topics involving the gambling industry for well over a decade now and is considered an expert on all things casino and sports betting. Michael has been writing for since early 2016. …

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