They may not be quite as widespread in the United States as they are in other parts of the world at the moment, notably Europe, but Virtual Sports games are certainly starting to gain some traction in the country.
In this article, we are going to take a look at what Virtual Sports are, how they work, the different types of Virtual Sports games you can find at some of our popular casino and sports betting sites as well as gaining an understanding of how the mechanics of these games work.
We will also explain why these games are much more like a casino game, than a sports bet, despite the fact that it may well feel as if you are betting on a sport when accessing the game!
So let’s begin with a look at the obvious first question.
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What Are Virtual Sports?
A sensible place to start this post is by defining what a Virtual Sport actually is, and how it differs from a traditional sport on which you can enjoy a bet.
A Virtual Sport is a type of gambling game that uses the framework of a real-life sports betting event, but which uses a computer-generated sports event to work out the results and as such, the outcome of any bets made on that event.
In a standard sports bet, you place a bet on a sporting event, such as an NBA game, and then the game is played and at the end of the action, your bet is declared a winner or loser.
In a Virtual Sports game, you place your bet and the game is played using specially designed computer software, which replicates the game using a number of factors, and random chance, to decide the outcome. Your bet is then declared a winner or loser based on this outcome.
Given the fact that software is used to decide the outcome, Virtual Sports events only take a fraction of the time to run, so you can bet on several Virtual Sports events and see the outcome in just a few minutes.
At the end of the Virtual Sports event, a summary is displayed of the different bets and betting outcomes before a new Virtual Sports event starts a short time later.
How Do Virtual Sports Work?
The key to Virtual Sports is the aforementioned computer programme which decides the outcome of the game and also as a result of that, the outcome of any bets made on it.
The software essentially replicates a sports event to come up with a realistic result (sometimes within certain parameters). Based on this, it will also generate outcomes for the markets available on that sport, so you can see whether any bets made on these markets were winners or losers.
For example, on an American Football Virtual Sport, it may have betting available on the Over/Under points market, or the moneyline bet on whether a team will win the game. The software will ensure that it produces results for all markets for each Virtual game it runs.
Punters can then bet on these markets and see their Virtual game played in just a very short space of time (usually an entire Virtual Sports event takes between just 3 and 6 minutes to run from start to finish, including time before the event to place your bet).
The quick-fire nature of Virtual Sports, where you can bet on several events and get results to them within just a few minutes is part of the appeal of this form of gambling. It is one of the key benefits Virtual Sports has over traditional sports betting, where games can take an hour or even days to decide the outcome in some cases.
In addition to placing bets, Virtual Sports will also show highlights of its chosen sport. These can be computer generated graphics representations, although next-generation Virtual Sports games are now fusing actual video footage into the game to make it appear even more realistic.
Even though this is still a fledgling industry, it is still one that has experienced a rapid growth and development in a relatively short space of time and the next generation of Virtual Sports games promises to be more exciting and more realistic than the first version of games.
What Virtual Sports Are Available (And Where)?
Even though Virtual Sports are styled on replicating sports betting, the fact that they use computer software and random number generators to decide the outcome means that these types of games are more like traditional casino games (such as slot games or Virtual Sports).
As such, you are more likely to find them available in online casinos in the United States, rather than in a sports book site. In Europe though, you can often find these games listed on sports betting sites too.
For example, if you want to play Virtual Sports at DraftKings Sportsbook, then you need to use your account log in to access the casino part of the site and here you can find two Virtual Sports options.
The first is NBA Last 60, which is a more modern virtual sports game that allows you to bet on a number of markets based on how the last 60 seconds of an NBA game will play out between two teams that the player can select, or which can be selected at random.
The site also offers a number of Virtual Sports games from Inspired. This company has a wide range of Virtual Sports titles as diverse as Motor Racing, Soccer, Horse Racing, Greyhound Racing, Darts, Cycling and many more.
Is Virtual Sports Betting A Type Of Sports Bet Or More Like Casino Gaming?
Although based on sports events, the way a Virtual Sport result is worked out is based on computer programming and as such, they are much more like a form of casino gaming, such as a slot game of Video Poker, than they are a bet on a sporting event.
As such, while. Virtual Sports may feel like sports betting, it is much more like a slot game bet or a video poker bet.
Virtual Sports is starting to take off across the United States now and it is a very interesting alternative that sits neatly between casino gaming and sports betting. If you are a fan of either, then you can enjoy what Virtual Sports has to offer.