Live Baccarat

Live baccarat is a popular game of chance that provides a real casino experience and allows you to place real-money bets as you would sitting at a brick-and-mortar casino. Today, online live baccarat is a top casino game on the mass market in Asia and North America as it allows players to test their luck and soak in the experience of a fantastic casino thrill.

How live dealer baccarat works

Baccarat tables are physically located at a studio somewhere around the world and are broadcasted in real time via one or more cameras. Like in a brick and mortar casino, live baccarat is run by a dealer who deals cards, welcomes new players and announces results. Players can interact with the dealer and each other via a chat facility, see the chips placed by other players and even tip the dealer. As a general rule, video reaches the players in high-definition quality by default; however, there may be poor connection on the user’s end that will hinder the user from enjoying a smooth video stream without stutters and jerks. To help gamblers fix the issue and enjoy the hassle-free play, many software developers fit their titles with video quality settings to adjust video definition to a user’s device.

Players at the table can see statistics of the current card shoe indicated on traditional Macau-style scorecards that show winning streaks and trends for the previous rounds, thus helping players improve their predictions for subsequent rounds. These scoreboards are named Big Road, Bead Plate, Big Eye Boy, Small Road and Cockroach Pig, each displaying the results in a slightly different format.

Software providers equip their live solutions with different options that the player can make use of to make the game play more comfortable. These are sound control, a chat box, quick access to casino lobby with the opportunity to play several games at a time, game rules, full-screen mode and more.

Live baccarat rules

Live dealer baccarat follows the same basic rules as classic punto banco played at brick-and-mortar and online casinos. The player does not have to make any decisions at all after the dealer deals out the cards. The objective of the game is to try to predict the outcome of the next round and place the Player, Banker or Tie bet. Payouts for the winning hand are also standard and amount to 1:1 for the winning Player, 0.95:1 for Banker, and 8:1 for Tie (there are some baccarat variations that pay 9:1 if the Tie bet is winner). The house advantage in punto banco is 1.06% (on Banker bet), 1.24% (Player) and 14.36% (Tie).

At the beginning of each round, the dealer deals two face-up cards to the Player and Banker. Depending on the total card score on the Player hand, the dealer then gives an additional, third card to the Player, Banker or both, which is governed by the Third Card rule. So at the end of the round, the total number of cards in both hands can amount to 4, 5 or 6. Card values are then counted to determine the winning hand (an Ace is counted as 1, all face cards and tens worth 0, and numerical cards, except for tens, are worth their face values). Players normally have 15 to 20 seconds to place a bet on a preferred betting spot.

Some developers, e.g. Evolution Gaming, offer an enticing baccarat variation known as Live Baccarat Squeeze which is very popular with the Asian community. This game type is basically the same as a normal punto banco but differs in the way the dealer reveals face-down cards.

Side bets in live baccarat

All live baccarat games presented on feature side bets. These are optional bets that can be placed in addition to or instead of normal bets, thus increasing wagering opportunities for players. The most common side bets that are available in virtually all live baccarat games are Player Pair and Banker Pair that pay out 11:1 each if a respective hand contains a pair of the same denomination, for example, two Kings. Either/Perfect Pair are variations of the Player/Banker Pair that award you 5:1 and 25:1 (or 30:1 in some games), respectively. There is also Dragon Bonus, Big/Small, and other rewarding side bets that add to the fun side of playing live dealer baccarat.