Live Gaming Studios
The live casino studio is where all the gaming action happens. In some cases, the studio will be a live area on a land-based casino floor, where players can connect to the gameplay via a remote connection. In other cases, it will be a dedicated casino studio, with no other players onsite.
A real-life dealer oversees the game, just like they would in a physical casino. A camera and software platform translate the gameplay into a remote online experience, which players from all over the world can connect with and enjoy.
How Are Live Casino Studios Chosen?
Live casinos choose their studios carefully based on a number of criteria.
Regulations and Licensing
The studio must be located in a jurisdiction that permits live online casino gaming or live casino gaming studios. It must also be based in a licensed location — i.e., somewhere the casino provider holds a gaming license.
The studio must have all the necessary facilities to deliver a great live gaming experience. Of course, this means physical gaming equipment — such as roulette wheels or poker card tables — as well as the equipment required to stream the event to players. Streaming equipment includes cameras, audio infrastructure, and gaming software that can provide a reliable connection.
Player Languages and Demographics
Gaming studios are designed to support the player experience. So, if the casino is looking to target players in Europe, they will generally deploy a European studio — likewise, North American studios for North American players. Language also needs to be taken into account — the casino studio must have access to live dealers who are fluent in the common languages of players so that an international experience is delivered for as many customers as possible.
Important Factors When Considering a Live Casino Studio
What should players think about when they choose a live casino studio? Dealer languages and streaming quality are certainly important criteria, but there is more to consider.
Live Dealer Languages
Players should aim to choose a studio with live dealers fluent in their own language.
The studio should be able to guarantee a reliable stream wherever the player is located. Preferably, the studio will offer streams in high-definition or better, as well as crystal-clear audio and an intuitive user interface.
There must be a wide range of live games available for the player to enjoy. This may include the player's favorite games, as well as other games they would like to try in the future.
The studio's games must be licensed and accessible in the player's jurisdiction.
The studio should provide gameplay at reasonable hours — hours that align with the player's own timezone and playing habits or objectives.
Support and General Environment
The player must be able to access excellent levels of customer support. What's more, they must feel welcomed and valued in the playing environment, each and every time they log in.
What Makes a Good Live Casino Studio?
The best live casino studios boast a range of different features that set them apart from their competitors. Take a look at some of the key aspects that make a great live casino studio.
A great live casino studio is a highly technical affair. There will be professional-grade cameras and audio equipment in place, as well as software that supports an excellent experience. GCU — or game control units — will also be required to oversee proceedings and to represent values of cards and roulette results on the player's interface. All gaming software should be developed by top software providers with international renown.
Ongoing Monitoring and Improvement
With so much technology deployed, there is a lot of data to process and analyze. The leading online casino studios will constantly monitor, assess, and fine-tune the games they offer to players. While this is a major task for the casino, it gives them the opportunity to provide an even better experience to their players, moving ahead of rival casino studios in the market.
Industry-Leading Live Casino Dealers
Just like in a physical casino environment, the live casino dealer is critical to the online experience. These dealers need to be charming and welcoming but also professional enough to offer slick and streamlined gameplay. Casino studios should provide ongoing training to these dealers to ensure they stay ahead of the competition.
An Exciting But Relaxed Atmosphere
Casino players love the thrill and excitement of live games, but this needs to be delivered in the right way. This means casino game studios have to work to make the atmosphere as relaxed and as welcoming as possible so that players of all backgrounds and experience levels can enjoy themselves online. Exciting gameplay with a warm and accommodating atmosphere should be the aim for live casino studios.
Legal Requirements for Live Gaming Studios
Casino studios are found in many locations across the world. In theory, casino gaming providers can set up their studios anywhere, as the remote connection to the player's computer eliminates the need for proximity to key markets. However, in practice, this is not the case.
The casino needs to make sure that its studios are set up in a place that permits online casino gambling. This is why many studios are found in locations such as Malta or Romania. Both of these countries regulate online gambling and permit live casino operations. There is no barrier to live casino gaming providers who wish to locate their studios in these places.
Eastern European countries like Romania offer additional benefits. Labor costs in these areas tend to be cheaper than in other areas of Europe and the rest of the world. This means live online casinos can keep their costs low while benefiting from remote casino access.
Lack of Regulation Brings Risk
Not all studios are located in regulated markets. Some countries do not permit online casino gambling or wagering of any form and yet still host live studios. This is because the gambling activity does not take place in the studio itself — local authorities tolerate this because the studio does not offer services to citizens within the jurisdiction.
This is a risky setup, however. Because there is no regulation, the casino studio has no legal protection under local law. This means the local authorities could suddenly decide to prohibit the studio activity, effectively taking the studio offline. Casinos who operate studios in this kind of location will need to make sure they have a backup plan just in case hosting privileges are suddenly withdrawn.
About the author
Thando Dlamini, a vivacious 22-year-old from South Africa, seamlessly blends her love for the vibrant world of online casinos with her meticulous localization skills, making the digital gaming experience truly South African.