If you have spent some time perusing the website or app of your favourite bookmakers, you may have come across a section called ‘virtual sports’ in amongst the normal sporting activities that you bet on.
If you click on these you might be slightly taken aback: am I betting on a game of FIFA or Madden on the PS4?
Of course not, and as we work through this guide to virtual sports betting you will learn that the games are both dynamic and provably fair.
In essence, virtual sports betting let’s you get your bets on when there isn’t any ‘real world’ sport to wager on, and these games are also great for those punters that don’t have the patience or discipline to wait 90 minutes or more for their bets to be settled.
So let’s take a deep dive into virtual sports betting, analysing what you can expect from the games and disproving the myth – one and for all – that virtual sports are somehow rigged or biased.
How Does Virtual Sports Betting Work?
Virtual sports betting uses computer game style graphics to depict the action in a variety of fixed odds events, with bookies offering football, horse racing, tennis, cricket, motor racing and much more besides.
As normal, you bet on the odds of the selections you prefer, although it should be noted that these are fictitious teams, players and horses – the Chelsea Pensioners may take on the Islington Reds the next time you are betting, for example.
Virtual sports betting uses a random number generator to ensure that all events are completely random and unpredictable. That gives punters the peace of mind of knowing that their bets have a fair chance of winning.
Virtual Football Betting
Every day there are stacks of different virtual football betting matches being played. These typically last a couple of minutes each, and you can enjoy a fully immersive experience that includes crowd noise and commentary delivered in a highlights style package.
Before a ball has been kicked, you can bet on a wide range of different betting markets – many of which you will probably already be familiar with.
- Match Winner
- Total Goals
- Correct Score
- Double Chance
- Both Teams to Score
And so on.
Now, you might be wondering if this is a game of pure chance, why should I bet on it and what is the point of there being a betting favourite and an underdog?
Well, virtual football betting uses a complex algorithm – think Football Manager and the like – which skews the action in favour of the market favourite, however they won’t always win….far from it. In that sense, it’s like betting on football for real!
The bookmaker cannot influence the action in any way as the algorithm is hard programmed into the software, and the results for the previous three months of virtual football fixtures can be requested.
Other Virtual Sports
As already mentioned, there is an eclectic array of sports that falls under the virtual betting category.
Virtual horse racing betting is one such option, and you can place single bets per race or even more advanced wagers like Forecasts and Tricasts.
There’s virtual cricket betting, where you are wagering on the outcome of a super over, virtual darts betting, which is a one-leg shootout featuring the actual names and images of famous players past and present, and virtual tennis, where you are betting on the outcome of a single service game.
Add into the mix virtual greyhounds, virtual American football, virtual speedway and virtual cycling and there truly is something for everyone.
Is Virtual Betting Rigged?
Have you ever played a hand of online blackjack, or spun the reels of a virtual slot machine, and thought ‘this must be rigged?’
Well, the basic retort is that it simply cannot be, because of the random number generator built into the game.
These RNGs, which are independently audited and monitored by a government-appointed agency, ensure that everything that happens in your casino game is completely random.
And, in the same spirit, so too are virtual sports, which use the same software to ensure complete fairness.
This software is supplied by an external agency, and given that these firms need to be licensed by the UK Gambling Commission it would not be a good idea for them to manipulate the action in any way!
The UKG is one of the strictest and most robust authorities in gambling, and if there was any funny business as far as virtual sports betting is concerned they would stamp it out very quickly indeed.