Real Money Mobile Baccarat Games
Baccarat is one of a handful of casino games that can be called classics. First played in Italy in the 14th and 15th centuries, the game was absorbed by the French and modernized into the game we know today. Baccarat is the favorite game of James Bond, once reserved for royalty and the very wealthy.
But these days, the game is different. Wander into a casino in Vegas or Atlantic City and you’ll most likely see plenty of mini-baccarat tables but very few standard versions. That’s because the minimum bet at full-size tables tends to be outside the scope of the average casino guest. While baccarat is available at online casinos, it’s overshadowed by the more popular slot machines and video poker games.
Top 3 Mobile Baccarat Casinos
Mobile Baccarat Games
Here are descriptions of the four most popular mobile-accessible baccarat games you can play for real money. Other software designers have released mobile baccarat titles, but these are the most-common versions available at the majority of mobile-capable websites and apps.
NetEntertainment Mobile Baccarat – NetEnt is one of my favorite casino software platforms. Their games look crisp (down to the detailed wood grain on the table) and casinos that license their software tend to have a decent variety of titles. They offer two baccarat games designed for mobile play – a traditional game and a version called “punto banco.” The only difference between the two is the number of decks used: eight decks for standard baccarat, six decks for punto banco. The casino has slightly better overall odds in the six-deck game, so advantage bettors should stick to NetEntertainment’s standard baccarat game.
Realtime Gaming Mobile Baccarat – Though baccarat is not a title that allows for a lot of rule variations, I was still disappointed to see that RTG’s mobile-friendly game library includes just one baccarat game. A couple of details on RTG’s mobile baccarat game – a successful tie bet pays 9 to 1 rather than the standard 8 to 1, and the shoe is composed of six decks rather than the standard eight. Understand that reducing the number of decks actually gives the casino a slightly better advantage, unlike in blackjack where the opposite is true. RTG’s mobile baccarat rules are such that the house’s edge is between 1.06% and 14.94% depending on the bet in question.
Microgaming Mobile Baccarat – I was happy to see Microgaming’s inclusion of two baccarat-related titles in their mobile library. They list standard baccarat and something called Baccarat Gold. Unfortunately, the two games aren’t all that different. Microgaming’s standard baccarat game uses eight decks and has a pay table that mirrors the classic land-based game, meaning 8 to 1 payouts on the tie bet and .95 payouts on the banker bet. So what’s Baccarat Gold? It’s the standard game of baccarat with the option of placing an additional wager – a bet that the player and banker will have a matching pair. This Pairs bet pays out 11 to 1, but has a house edge of just over 10%. That makes a Pairs bet a better one than the Tie bet, but not by much.
Playtech Mobile Baccarat – I was very impressed by Playtech’s mobile baccarat title, but I shouldn’t have been surprised. Their standard online game is one of the best in the business, even if the company only has one variant in their library. The reason I like it so much? The availability of six different side wagers beyond the usual baccarat bets. These side wagers have odds that range from the preposterous (a 17% house edge for the Perfect Pairs bet) to the decent (just over 4% for the Small side bet). The additional wagers don’t offer much to advantage bettors, but they do keep the game play interesting. Playtech’s mobile game mirrors their desktop version, with a total of 9 available wagers, an eight-deck shoe, and a casino-standard pay table.
The Future of Mobile Baccarat
We’ve been here before with this game. Baccarat was once a simple Italian peasant contest, co-opted by French royalty and becoming a classic game in the process. What will the next iteration of baccarat look like?
Most likely, we’ll see the proliferation of mini-baccarat games for mobile sites and apps – or some version of the game that moves a little faster, requires smaller wagers, and involves side bets, progressives, and other features popular among online bettors. It wouldn’t surprise me at all if baccarat underwent another major transformation to adapt to the changing desires of the gambling public, and I think mobile casinos are the perfect venue for that transformation.
Baccarat doesn’t seem to lend itself to mobile gaming the way that video poker or slots do. For one thing, a baccarat table is a pretty ungainly thing to translate into a smartphone or tablet-size display. For another, the game doesn’t attract a lot of attention online, since it’s considered a high-class traditional casino game that’s a bit outside the wheelhouse of a typical mobile gambler.
But that doesn’t mean you can’t find a good baccarat game on your iPhone or Android gadget. Playing at any casino that runs the mobile software platforms described above will put a decent baccarat game at your fingertips in no time. Be sure to read all the rules and pay table information of any game before you start – that information will help you find a game with rules and other features that are right for you.