Crypto Gambling: a Deep Dive Into its Past, Present & Future
The goal with crypto gambling is to provide gamblers and enthusiasts with a frictionless way of gaming. Using FIAT money to gamble comes with a lot of pain points and a slower experience.
Long transaction times, larger transaction fees, and seizure of assets by banks can make depositing money to an online casino a gamble in and of itself.
Using cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin to gamble creates a path where deposits and withdraws are much faster (in addition to the added benefit of having provably fair gambling odds).
Not only have cryptocurrencies changed the way online casinos operate, the mutually beneficial relationship strengthens people’s views on Bitcoin and Ethereum being legitimate forms of value.
New Players & Pioneers in the Crypto Gambling Scene
There are plenty of casinos offering a variety of crypto games today but only a few have made it in our top list of new players and pioneers. These are our best picks:
Crypto Gambling Site 1: Wolf.bet
Wolf.bet is a relatively new but strong player to the game, bringing new and highly refined features to the user experience of online crypto gambling.
The company behind Wolf.bet is incorporated in Curacao like most other casino websites. Wolf.bet has live public chat rooms and community promotions.
The website is globally accessible in multiple languages but it doesn’t host its wagers on the public blockchain. Instead, it uses verifiable and provably fair random number generation.
There is a panel where users can self-verify every single bet hash, and an autobet feature is also available with easy and expert modes for streamlined gambling.
Wolf.bet and all of its games are built from the ground up with entirely fresh source code. Most other online casinos are forks of previous ones, owned by one parent company.
The site accepts deposits in BTC, ETH, XRP, TRX, LTC, DOGE, and BCH. E-mail is the only personal information required to sign up and play.
Plus, the casino offers live chat for support and customer service 24/7. Withdraws and deposits are instant with timing depending on the blockchain used to send the currency.
A daily $1000 wagering contest along with a VIP program that offers up to 30% rakeback makes Wolf.bet enticing. Tons of players have joined the website for these unique benefits.
Some other features are:
- Real time views of all losses and wins displayed as a ticker on the homepage, and;
- Flashbet, a useful feature that lets users roll at 2,000 times per second.
Wolf.bet’s Hilo game is unique in that it has 4 additional options to play that are found nowhere else. Free crypto bonuses such as chat rains are offered every 20 minutes.
Best of all, there are no minimum deposits required!
Crypto Gambling Site 2: BitStarz
BitStarz, the largest pioneer of Crypto Gambling, was founded in June 2014. Originally named “Bitstar.net”, it was the first to introduce Bitcoin as a form of deposit and wager.
Users were provided with source code for the win/lose algorithm for the games – something that is never displayed in traditional casinos. Bitstarz parent company “DIrex N. V.” is based in Curacao, a popular choice for incorporating online gambling websites due to legal reasons.
BitStarz has over 2,900 games to play. All with BTC, LTC, ETH, XRP, and many more currencies as valid options for wagering. Unlike other online crypto casinos that haven’t been around as long, Bitstarz displays the maximum jackpot winnings for all of their games.
It’s not uncommon to find a slot machine game that hit a jackpot of over 5 million US dollars. Bitstarz proudly explains its provability mechanisms on a dedicated page.
A random computer model is used to generate a new “fingerprint” for every new user. This digital fingerprint is combined with a random number generator that creates a secret winning number which neither you nor the casino is aware of.
Once the user executes a spin or a roll on any game, the data is displayed and the result of the spin/roll is compared to the original “secret” to determine a win or a loss.
There is even a widget attached to every game to manually comb through the execution of the gamble, allowing users to verify for themselves the integrity of the gamble.
Crypto Gambling Site 3: Cloudbet
Cloudbet a was the first website that introduced the alt-coin Bitcoin Cash as an alternative payment method for users in 2018. Around this time, other alt coins were maturing and becoming much more popular as the price of bitcoin remained stagnant.
Nowadays, most crypto gambling websites accept Bitcoin, Ethereum, XRP, and everything in between. These days Cloudbet incorporates the increasingly popular world of Esports and Sportbook betting. Users can bet in real-time on-going football matches as they occur globally.
There is even an option to bet on the upcoming 2020 US election.
All of the possible real-life games available to bet on are:
- Soccer, tennis, american football, baseball, badminton, basketball, volleyball;
- MMA, boxing, Rugby League, Rugby Union, cricket, ice hockey;
- Cycling, field hockey, floorball, handball, motorsport;
- Golf, snooker, table tennis, and darts.
Esports offerings include:
- Counter Strike, Dota 2, League of Legends, Overwatch, Starcraft;
- FIFA, NBA2K, and other sports-related video games.
Cloudbet recently launched “Virtuals” – an entirely computer-AI generated sports betting platform that uses random teams of basketball and soccer players to play matches against each other. Users are able to bet on the virtual teams for outcomes in the match. A popular solution given the physical restrictions imposed on traditional stadium based games nowadays.
Crypto Gambling Site 4: Bitcasino
Bitcasino was founded in 2014 and remained a prevalent name in the industry with its various offerings of baccarat, roulette and blackjack games.
Bitcasino recently partnered with the company OneTouch, further boosting its appeal amongst a wide range of audiences. Bitcasino is a silver member of the Bitcoin Foundation…
(An impressive feat for a gambling service!)
Joined by several fortune 500 companies, Bitcasino has avoided the spotlight and never suffered any hacks or exploits. It has also never been shut down or required to provide user data on the grounds of money laundering, like many other crypto casinos in the scene.
Bitcasino has the most comprehensive loyalty program among competitors, rewarding it’s oldest members and highest rollers. Like most other online crypto casinos, the users proceed at their own legal risk. The casinos are only responsible for operating under the legal restrictions imposed on them by the country in which they incorporate in.
Why is Crypto Gambling so Popular?
Perhaps the most alluring aspect of crypto gambling is overcoming the tremendous pain point of transactions and transaction speeds imposed by FIAT dollars. By now, many people are already taking for granted the 10-15 minute transaction times of Bitcoin and Ethereum.
It wasn’t long ago that waiting 4-7 business days for wire transfers to clear was the norm. The best-case scenario would’ve been waiting a few days for the funds to go through but, in many cases, banks would freeze assets and involve tax authorities for significant values.
Using crypto as a means of decentralized finance for the purpose of gambling often means you can wager your value, play the odds, and withdraw your earnings all within one hour or less.
The Benefits of Gambling with Crypto
There are many benefits to playing at a casino with crypto rather than FIAT currencies. If you’re interested in starting, here is the type of experience you can expect:
- Your gambling deposits will be received with no possibility of freezing;
- Available 24/7, 365 days of the year, no holiday breaks;
- Send directly from your wallet, no third party required;
- End-to-end confidentiality of transactions.
On top of this, crypto gambling allows for game features never before seen in any casino website or physical venue. This is due to its tech-first approach to gambling!
How Crypto Changed the Gambling Industry
Cryptocurrencies are inherently anonymous and, in the case of Wolf.bet, users have the option to completely anonymize their identities, deposits, withdrawals, wins, losses, and wagers.
Traditional casinos, online or otherwise, there is a very strict legal framework surrounding the monitoring of all the aforementioned actions.
If you’re satisfied knowing that your actions are anonymous, your next question would likely be “How fair is the gamble?” When you roll the dice, raise the stakes, take another card, or spin the slot machine, you want to make sure that there is a fair mathematical chance of winning.
In traditional casinos, it is known that there is always a slight advantage given to the “House” so that there is profit to be made for the facilitators.
The exact margin or algorithm for this profit is top secret and never disclosed.
The legitimate crypto gambling sites offer insights into their algorithms that users can audit, and in some cases verify themselves on the public blockchain.
The Most Popular Crypto Gambling Games
Users can find all kinds of games to gamble with. The most popular crypto gambling sites offer all of the traditional games, as well as a variety of unique games.
Because the operational overhead for cryptocurrency-based casinos is lower, a benefit gained from not having to deal with bank transfer fees, there are usually community prize pools that users share as an incentive to keep playing.
Wolf.bet offers Limbo, a popular variant of classic dice rolling games. The user experience is very similar to standard casinos, the only difference is payout comes in the form of crypto.
The Most Common Cryptocurrency Used for Gambling
Bitcoin has a multi-year head start and was the original favorite of online gambling. It was incorporated into many traditional sites before crypto-only sites were even developed.
Companies such as PokerStars accepted Bitcoin for deposits, withdraws, and wagers many years ago. It was removed likely due to the volatility of the price.
These days you’ll find Ethereum to be a popular option and many other crypto currencies, tokens, and coins being used in crypto gambling sites.
The Role of Public Blockchains in Crypto Gambling
Crypto gambling websites that use the public blockchain for calling random numbers and organizing win/lose algorithms based on hashing computations are an option for people who are looking to gamble totally anonymously and without any sign up required.
The oldest example would be Etheroll. A very simple “guess the number” type of game that is operated entirely on the Ethereum blockchain.
Users of blockchain-integrated casino websites are happy to see their gambles verified but must pay the price of slow block times for the execution of a wager.
It can take up to 5 minutes to see if you have won or lost.
For those old enough to recall the online poker mania circa 2004-2011 that spawned multiple billions in transaction volume along with online poker gambling sites going public, it’s easy to see just how similar the situation was to the ICO boom of 2016-2017.
Online Poker peaked after the famous “Black Friday” event.
Without going into detail, this event is the worst nightmare of cryptocurrency enthusiasts, as it involves a full-scale government and global authority seizure of assets and domains.
If you understand the fundamentals of decentralized currencies, then you know this type of event cannot possibly happen in the crypto space.
It’s, therefore, possible to speculate that the majority demographic of online gamblers have migrated to crypto gambling sites and will continue to do so.
The (Bright) Future of Crypto Gambling
The freedom to have fun in any way people see fit as long as there is no harm done to others is an important right to exercise. With cryptocurrencies, companies have capitalized on the ease of use to fulfill this demand in the market without involving financial institutions.
There is still a learning curve required to use crypto gambling sites, but in 2020 (and beyond!), there likely isn’t anyone who isn’t at least aware of what cryptocurrency is… So, in the near future, it’s likely that we’ll see all online gambling utilizing cryptocurrencies.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is crypto gambling?
Crypto gambling is a form of online gambling that uses only cryptocurrencies as the main betting system. Some crypto casinos specialize in one coin whereas others offer most of those available on the market.
Is crypto gambling illegal?
Depending on your country, you may want to check with authorities or legal entities prior to gambling with crypto. In most cases, it is NOT illegal to gamble with crypto. However, there are countries where it is banned and they are generally the ones that ban traditional gambling too.
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