So Many Games! Where do I Start?
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So Many Games! Where do I Start?

Dear Stanton,

I’ve been following your work quite closely, and I feel I have a connection with you. Just like you, my own father also died from lung cancer. In retrospect, though, it was probably a combination of things that led to his death, certainly not helped by the rampant boozing each weekend at the local gambling house. I think that’s where our stories really collide: I see in you someone who’s taken every oddball moment that life has thrown at him and become smarter and savvier in the process. I decided to try online gambling for myself, and I wanted to pick your brain about where to start. Playing slots over and over again gets a little boring. Can you give me any advice?

Yours in admiration,

Novice

Dear Novice,

Those cancer sticks will get you every time, I’m waiting for the day they’ll come knocking for me. You’d think a guy whose dad pegged from the black lung would be smarter.  Sometimes, I wonder. And don’t get me started on what too much boozing means. But enough about me.

Thanks for sharing your story. I’m a straight talking kind of guy, so let’s cut to the chase: casinos are only ever out for themselves. They’re a business, an outfit, an organisation, a racket of businessmen. Don’t ever expect them to be nicer to you than they have to. With that in mind, you really have to keep your wits about you when you step onto that casino floor. You’re probably better off not pandering to the slots all the time: some of those machines have quite a high edge to them, which can really bite your bankroll.

I was tempted to tell you to try craps, specifically the Pass line bet. It has a relatively low house edge compared to some of the other bets. If you’re a first timer at the tables, though, I’d steer clear of the game. There’s so much happening all at once. Read up on the rules of craps first. Make sure you get a good feeling for the game, for how the different squares work, and then play by all means. Until then, I’d go back and forth between a basic probability strategy at Blackjack and a few rounds on the Roulette table.

Blackjack will remind you that understanding the heart of the game does pay off.

Roulette will remind you that chance is chancy, and very liable to ups and downs.

Good luck, Novice.