Social media has changed the way many people interact. Whether you are a lover of the many different forms of social media, or someone that actively avoids it, what you cannot deny is that it has provided limitless opportunities for people to interact.
One of those ways has been through playing social media games and while some of these games are solitary pursuits, there are a number of games that people can play with or against each other. Many of these take the form of popular casino games such as Poker, Slot Machines, Blackjack, Baccarat and such like.
With more and more people attracted to social media gaming, and a good percentage of these players going on to sign up at an online casino having played these games, the question we are asking is whether these games are really the ideal way to prepare yourself for playing with real money at a genuine online casino.
Or are social media versions of casino games somewhat different to how these games tend to play in a real casino?
“It’s A Fix!”
The truth of this matter was brought home to me when I spoke to a friend who had been
playing a version of poker on his preferred social media site.
In this free-to-play version of the game, my friend had achieved what he felt was an excellent level of success. His ‘balance’ of free credits measured in millions of dollars and he explained how he was pretty good at winning against other players when he played them at the poker table.
His ‘success’ here had led him to believe that perhaps he was an undiscovered poker genius and that he could turn what was simply an enjoyable past-time on social media, into a profitable sideline for him in the evenings and that pretty soon, he would have earned his millions of real dollars to sit alongside those virtual coins he had earned.
Yet barely a few days after he began playing at a popular poker site, he complained that he felt the games were fixed against him.
“It’s a fix!” he moaned to me. “The players don’t do what they do in the other game of poker. The game is different.”
Sure enough, the tactics he had been using playing the social media version of the game, to some degree of success, were not achieving anywhere near the results he wanted in the real version of poker and pretty soon, his account had hit zero.
So, did he have a point? Was the game very different? Was it a ‘fix’?
Well yes, the games are very different, but no it isn’t a fix and here’s the reasons why.
Free Social Media Play V Real Money Gaming
To understand why playing what appears to be the same game on social media is very
different to playing for real money in a casino, you need to first appreciate what the aims are for the people providing those games.
On social media free-to-play games, the aim is to attract as many people to play the game as possible. This makes the game attractive to advertisers, who then spend their money advertising in that game and that is how these companies make their profit. As such, they want players to play and it is advantageous to them for players to enjoy regular wins.
That is why it is relatively easy to build up a large amount of free to play cash within these games as not only can you win it freely in games, but there are often bonuses you can pick up simply by logging in or completing a simple task, all of which boosts your bankroll.
In a real-world casino, the aim of the casino is slightly different. Yes, the casino wants as many people to play as possible too, but their aim is not to bring in revenue from advertising. Their aim is to bring in revenue from the players playing the game.
While you can pick up bonuses, in the form of Welcome Bonuses for example, these tend to be smaller scale and not as frequent or as easy to pick up as bonuses on free to play social media games.
This is all to do with the fact that people are wagering real money at casinos, not pretend cash and it is this which is the key difference between the two.
Playing For Real Cash V Playing For Pretend Cash
Although it may seem the same, when you have real cash on the line compared to pretend cash, the difference is huge, even if it is a small sum of money that you are playing for.
The difference is best described as thus; if you play with $10m of pretend cash and lose $10m of that cash, the cost to your bank balance is $0. And you can start to rebuild your balance with all the different free bonus offers that don’t cost you a penny to access.
However, if you play with $10 and lose $10 of that money, then you are $10 down. Keep adding zeroes to that amount and you soon start to reach amounts of money that are keenly felt by even the most seasoned casino gamer.
It is this fundamental difference that makes the games so different. On Social Media games, players don’t mind playing more loosely and making crazier bets because they are not losing anything materially other than free tokens.
In casinos, players are betting with real money and that means they tend to be more circumspect with their bets, they play more tightly and generally are of a much better standard than players you find on social media.
That means social media play is far more volatile but also means any half decent player can make significant amounts of pretend cash when playing. It is much more difficult to do that at a casino where playing for real cash makes players tighten up considerably.
This is the key difference between social gaming and casino gaming and the difference is huge.
So How Much Use Are Social Media Games As Prep For Playing In A Casino?
In my opinion, they are of limited value. They are useful for players to get to know the generic rules of a game, how a game progresses and what the bets available to you are on a specific game.
However, the fact that the games are played for free cash makes it entirely unrepresentative of the types of games you will play in a casino. Furthermore, players playing social media casino games don’t play those games in the same way as players do in casinos for real cash.
Now on slots or games played against the casino like roulette or blackjack, that is not an issue, but in games like Texas Hold’em Poker, it can be a massive wake up call for players when they can’t transfer their ‘success’ on social media games into the online casino.