From the first moment that gambling appeared in our collective history, it was a social activity. Its very nature dependent upon a few people getting together to wager on the outcome of something they were witnessing. You couldn’t really get any action with just one guy standing around betting himself that the raindrop on the left side of the window was going to reach the bottom before the one on the right. For hundreds, if not thousands of years, gambling was something that required socialization. Casinos were built, and people travelled from all over the world to play in them and rub elbows with other players.
Things changed when the first online casinos ‘opened their doors’ in the mid-1990’s and people started to like the idea of having the casino come to them. What could be better than playing a few hands of poker and then moving to the roulette table for a while before settling in at blackjack and all without leaving your living room? Since then, the online casino industry has become a juggernaut with an estimated £40 Billion in revenues yearly.
Interestingly enough, some people still aren’t satisfied and feel that they are missing something. Players have realised that they miss the competitive side of the experience. Of course, they are still trying to win against the casino, and there is something to be said for that. What seems to be lacking from the experience is the social aspect of gambling. We appear to have come full circle.
In the past several years, social casinos have been making an appearance at a staggering rate. A social casino is an online gaming experience that offers similar options to online casinos with the added benefit of social networking. The games can be connected to or played through your favourite social media platforms. You can invite friends to play with you or just let everyone in your contacts list know when you hit the big jackpot. The social casino brings the competitive edge back to online gaming with one major difference; they are typically built upon free games that use imaginary funds without any possibility for converting said funds to real cash. Yes, that is correct; there are no cash prizes in your average social casino.
The good news is, the games are very often free, and you can play as much as you please without risking any of your hard-earned money. Many social casino games will have in-app purchases such as special power-ups, bonus games, or value multipliers but none of these are required, and you can still enjoy the games without paying anything at all. Some social casinos will offer special games from time to time that cost a few pounds to access, and many have seasonal games that they release around the holidays.
The reason that social casinos are free is that they can then be considered regular video games and therefore do not fall under the jurisdiction of various local or international gambling regulatory bodies. The main idea being that if you can’t actually win or lose any money, then you are not gambling, you are just playing casino style games for fun.
Best online casinos
Pros & Cons
So, why would someone join a social casino? Are there any advantages? What is the point if there is no money to win?
The fact that social gambling has become so huge tells us there must be something drawing people in. Some of the pros to consider are:
- It really is free! You can play to your heart’s content, and it doesn’t have to cost you a penny. Even if you run out of your virtual funds, most social casinos will credit you every so often just for logging in.
- They are readily available and do not require any complicated setup or pages of personal information. You can either play anonymously or connect them to your favourite social media account, and they will build your profile from there.
- They bring the ‘social’ back to online gaming. Online casinos sold themselves on the idea that you could play right from your living room without having to get dressed. It was just you and their software. Today, most people check into their social media accounts several times throughout the day. This means they are looking for that connection to other people. If you are playing in a social casino, you can still sit in your living room, but now you can connect to all of your friends and family through the games. Most importantly, you can brag about your latest win or major jackpot just by clicking a button and posting it to Facebook, Twitter, and many others.
It’s not all roses, though. There can be some drawbacks to consider:
- No real money – It is safe to say that most people try their hand at casinos because they think they can hit the big jackpot and win an obscene amount of money, retire at a young age, and live in the lap of luxury. That is not possible when the money is virtual and cannot be converted to anything of value.
- Fewer high-quality games – at the moment, many of the gambling apps for social media are created by independent developers. Some companies really put their hearts into it, and some just want to copy the latest release with a slight variation so that they can pick up some of the market.
Want To Join A Social Casino?
So, how do you start and where do you find the apps? Because Facebook is so frequently used, it is a major hub for social gambling. It has all the components to make it a natural fit for the social casino market. You can search for the games right from your home page and connect them to your profile with just a few clicks. Once that is done, you can invite your friends or showcase your accomplishments right from the game, and they will show up as a post from you.
Top 5 Social Casinos
If you’re looking to get started, try checking out one of these for great games and cool graphics:
Huuuge – Established in 2015, they are a recent addition to the field and are already making a mark for themselves with their Huuuge Casino app.
Playtika – Quite possibly the largest social casino game developer in the world, they are recognized for their captivating games and beautiful graphics. Check out Caesar’s Slots, House of Fun, and Vegas Downtown Slots.
Zynga – One of the best known on Facebook with loads of great games like Willy Wonka Slots, Wink Slots, and Wizard of Oz.
Scientific Games – A part of SG Corporation and famous for their white labelling options. Look for Hot Shots Casino Slots and Jackpot Party Casino Slots.
Wizits – A smaller company but no less formidable for it, they pride themselves on innovation, fantastic graphics, and social features galore. Try Slot Park, Slotagram, and Win Vegas to get a taste of this company.
With as popular as social gambling has become, you have probably already received invitations from your friends to join in and enjoy some friendly competition. If by some chance you haven’t, then you should invite your friends today and be the leader of the pack…or maybe get some new friends!