The short answer is, “Yes”. Online casino games hosted by Ontario’s authorized internet gambling operators are fair, by traditional standards.
When we say fair, we mean that they’re not rigged to pay out less than advertised or legally permissible. If a game is advertised to pay back 95% of its intake, it will do so. Not in the short-term, of course, but over the long-term, it will achieve that payback percentage.
The province of Ontario has laws in place that determine the minimum payout percentage for gambling amusements. Slot machines, for example, must award no less than 85% of their intake back to players in winnings. That is, for every $100 wagered on a slot, it must award a minimum of 85% back overall. Most games pay better than this, but it’s a good point of reference in determining what the province considers “fair”.
The games found at Ontario’s AGCO-registered, iGO-authorized internet gambling sites are digital mimics of the games you would find in a land-based casino. If you find traditional games to be fair – table games like blackjack, roulette, baccarat, and craps, and machine-based games like slots and video poker – then yes, these games are absolutely, positively, certifiably fair.
What Does Fair Mean to You?
If your perception of ‘fair’ means a player should have a 50/50 chance of winning, well then, no. The games are not that fair. No casino game offers that kind of odds. They never have. Every gambling amusement is designed to win more for the casino than it pays out to players. It’s what the industry calls house edge. Some games have a lower house edge than others, but none come with a natural player advantage.
It’s not just casino games either. Every sports bet is designed to benefit the bookie more so than the bettor. When you see odds of 105 or -105, that extra 5 represents the sportsbook’s expected 5% profit. It’s no different than a slot machine with a 95% return to player (RTP), promising the casino collects 5% take from all wagers.
Yes, players do win. Some win a little, and some win a lot. But overall, more players will experience losses than those who experience wins. It is the nature of gambling; just another form of entertainment that you should expect to pay for. If you get lucky and win, fantastic! If not, the entertainment value should be worth the money spent.