Introduction to the virtual sports betting
Over the past several years many of the world’s leading online sportsbooks incorporated a virtual sports betting product into their betting line-up as an alternative activity for punters looking for additional wagering opportunities. In recent times virtual sports simulations as a betting format have become extremely popular mainly due to the massive global popularity of football itself. Similarly, console and PC based video games such as Football Manager, the FIFA series of games, and many other video game titles also made significant contributions towards the popularity of virtual sportsbetting.
For busy punters, virtual sportsbetting holds a number of notable advantages. Firstly, they can start betting at all hours of the day or night and still never have to wait for more than a minute or so before a new match starts. Moreover, it offers football enthusiasts the opportunity to create their very own fantasy teams consisting of players that they are unlikely to see together in one team in real life. Continuing along the same lines, the game creation tool will also allow punters to create fantasy matches that see teams from wildly different leagues facing-off that are equally unlikely to ever meet on a real football pitch.
Over the past five years, significant advances in audio-visual technology delivered ever-increasing levels of realism to virtual sports enough so to begin blurring the lines between virtual and real-world sports. The excitement generated when combining the non-stop nature of virtual sports events with the latest in CG visual magnificence caused this entertainment format to become massively popular in nearly no time at all. As a result, offering a high-quality virtual sports product became almost de rigueur amongst most leading online bookmakers.
What are virtual sports?
Surprisingly, the very first computer-based virtual sports game occurred as far back as 1961, coded by John Burgeson for an IBM1620, it simulated an early type of fantasy baseball. The game matched two teams against each other where player statistics in conjunction with Random Number Generation (RNG) determined the outcome of matches. Players could follow the action via on-screen text that provided a play-by-play description of match events, considering the time period this was the best technology could provide.
Fortunately, technology moved on and saw modern PCs utilising advanced motion capture technology to deliver superior quality video of virtual matches that often include highly complex sports animations. In addition to football, punters can wager on sports like Basketball, Tennis, Horse Racing, Greyhound Racing, Trotting, Speedway, Motor Racing, Cycling, and several others.
Virtual Sports are computer-generated games that closely simulate various types of real sports but occur purely in virtual reality. Also, do not confuse Virtual sports with eSports since both play out on a computer-generated virtual world, but they differ in various ways and especially in one key area. eSports still have humans at the controls to manipulate the outcome of a game in one way or another. However, virtual sports events occur with no human influencing the outcome of a game in any way.
What types of virtual sports games are there?
Virtual sports come in two flavours events that occur according to a schedule at predetermined times and intervals and games that can start at a moment’s notice on player demand. Scheduled events adhere strictly to a timetable containing predetermined starting times that may require punters to wait for a minute or two for the next event before they can make their selections and place their bets.
In contrast, on-demand events require no waiting time and start immediately after the punter has made his selections, placed his bets, and pressed the start button. Similarly, the next event becomes available and starts as soon as the punter repeats the process.
In addition, most sportsbooks feature high-quality video coverage of all their virtual sports events via a built-in media player. Both scheduled and on-demand events feature an unending line-up of events running around the clock each day. Immaterial of the particular sports type the action closely simulates events spectators witness in sports arenas around the world each day.
Differences between real sports and virtual games
In contrast to real sports, virtual sports occur, as the name would suggest, purely in a computer-generated virtual world with no human factor influencing the outcome of games.
Virtual sports represent the latest in online gaming entertainment that features a far greater number of events for punters to bet on, with events occurring non-stop, around the clock, all hours of the day. As a result, bookmakers have kept the available betting markets and options as simple a possible, making it easy for beginners to understand and start betting on.
Compared to betting on real sports, virtual sports betting requires no in-depth knowledge of each sport or the performance statistics of individual teams and/or athletes. This is since a computer program determines event outcomes and bears no resemblance to the performance of their real-life namesakes.
Regarding issues such as match-fixing and performance-enhancing drugs that plague real-life sports from time to time, virtual sports by its very nature cannot suffer any such potentially disruptive factors.
Lastly, where real-life events play out to their natural conclusion in a period of hours, virtual sports events remain subject to an extremely condensed timeline of events that will see a football game occur in only 3 – 4 minutes from first kick-off to the final whistle. These relatively short waiting and gameplay times have also proven the primary reasons why punters flock in droves to the virtual sports stadia.
The most popular virtual sports to bet on
The ever-increasing popularity of virtual sports resulted in developers investing heavily in the development and improvement of technologies to provide players with the ultimate sportsbetting experience. We discuss the most popular types of virtual sports in greater detail below, to hopefully assist new and experienced bettors in gaining a newfound understanding of virtual sports betting.
The top-quality virtual sports products all feature excellent quality video coverage of all events, with many offering the capacity to view several events simultaneously via an integrated media player. Due to the compressed timeline that delivers the action at extreme speeds virtual sports, aside from a few exceptions, does not lend itself to any form of live betting.
Presenting an excellent virtual product remains a top priority for all leading online bookmakers. Despite the various obvious differences in audio, graphics, and animations individual products, they adhere to a similar set of industry-standard rules and regulations relating to game duration, statistics, available tournaments or championships, betting markets and options. We detail each of these below.
Football matches commonly last 3 minutes from start to finish with a half-time break varying from 5 to 15 seconds separating two halves lasting approximately 1 minute 30 seconds each. A break of 2 minutes separates each match to allow punters to make their selections and place new bets.
Products allow for two gaming formats. In one, the matches follow a league format where teams and players closely mimic the teams and athletes seen and followed in actual international clubs, tournaments, and leagues. Whereas the virtual format allows punters to create their own fantasy teams but only offers international as well as domestic competition types.
Betting options comprise of Correct Score, Winning Margin, Win-Draw match-results, Half-Time/Full-Time, Double Chance, Handicaps, and Total Goals Scored. Virtual game rules generally limit the possible number of goals to 4, creating far more favourable winning conditions for players.
Virtual Basketball tournaments comprise of 30 matchdays lasting 3.5 minutes each. For the duration of the tournament during each matchday, eight basketball matches will play resulting in only winners, and losers and without draws. Each match occurs in four quarters, with halftime arriving at the end of the second quarter. Players and teams most frequently simulate real-life teams and athletes quite closely.
Betting options remain similar to those offered in real-life, primarily comprising of Total Points, Winner, Winning Margin, Team Totals, Race to X, and Handicap.
Motorsports loosely mimic the action of IndyCar racing wherein the virtual world races sees up to 12 racers competing around 2 x 30-second laps of a closed course with the winner crossing under the chequered flag after 1 minute. A break of 2 minutes separates individual races, allowing punters to select and place new bets on betting markets like Race Winner, Top 2, and Each Way.
Matches see competitors emulating tennis stars seen in international competitions around the world. However, each match lasts just 90 seconds with no opportunity for breaks between sets. New matches serve-off every 3 minutes, providing bettors ample time to select and -place new bets. Betting markets comprise of only Match Winner, Total Points, and Correct Score to bet on. Tournaments generally mimic one of the premier international events as per the developer’s preference.
The virtual sport of kings provides an especially realistic rendition of the action seen at real-life tracks, with both scheduled and on-demand events seeing 12 to 16 runners competing over one lap of the course. Betting markets generally represent a pared-down selection comprising of Top 2, Top 3, and Race Winner. Races last close to two minutes apiece, with individual races separated by a break of one minute for punters to make new selections and place their bets accordingly.
Dog races require less time than the horses, commonly taking under a minute for 5-8 speedy mutts to complete a single race lap before crossing the finish line and punters have 2 minutes to get their new bets placed before the start of the next race. Betting markets follow a similarly reduced form factors with the only available options being Top 2 Finish, Race Winner, and Each Way.
Virtual cycling races take place on the simulated surface of a professional velodrome seen in any actual top-tier international race. Between six and nine pro-cyclists create all the action across 3 x 15-second laps of the track to complete each race in 45 seconds or close to that, followed by a break period of 1.5 minutes between races for punters to get their next series of bets placed. Following a similar simplified range of betting markets as seen most other racing sports, virtual cycling offers Top 3, Top 2, Each Way, as well as Race Winner.
Harness racing or Trotting is another exciting and popular horse racing format. It features eight virtual drivers sitting in two-wheeled horse-drawn carts called a sulky while racing virtual horses at an unbelievable trotting speed. Each rave is one lap of a flat dirt track that generally lasts just one minute each. After the conclusion of one of these stylised pace races, punters have 1.5 minutes to place their next round of wagers prior to the commencement of the next race. Available virtual trotting feature betting markets include Race Winner, Each Way, as well as the Top 2 and 3 finishers.
To summarise all the betting markets featured in each of the disciplines discussed above, as a group, the virtual sports types detailed above include:
Correct Score, Winning Margin, Win-Draw match-results, Half-Time/Full-Time, Double Chance, Handicaps, Total Goals Scored
Total Points, Winner, Winning Margin, Team Totals, Race to X, Handicap
- Racing Sports – Horse, Motor, Dogs, Cycling
Race Winner, Each Way, Top 2 & 3 – reduced number of competitors like dogs only offer top 2
Match Winner, Total Points, Correct Score
Virtual Sports Betting Tips
It is advisable when first starting to bet on virtual sports to not begin by taking a running jump at the deep end, even if you have some experience at the art of sportsbetting. We recommend this simply because your in-depth knowledge of real sports will not be of much use in virtual sports. It requires a slightly different approach since highly a specialised software algorithm called a Random Number Generator (RNG) determine the results of virtual sports events. This simply means each game determines the outcome in a similar, but not the same manner as slot machines. However, if chosen correctly, it delivers a much greater chance of winning due to the reduced number of competitors and a simpler set of rules. To use it to your advantage, you must first learn some of our virtual sports betting secrets.
At first prepare yourself by starting with an effective virtual sports betting strategy, such as placing smaller bets on events featuring a smaller number of competitors (4 -6) and fewer betting options, like Greyhound and Speedway racing, just to keep things simple at the beginning while increasing your chances of winning.
One of the first virtual sports betting tricks is to learn the rules governing each virtual sports type to gain a workable knowledge of the risk each one and its accompanying bet entails.
The starts going for Win bets on Greyhound racing, Speedway, Cycling, and Horse races with 7 or less runners, if you’re successful and feel confident in your understanding of the rules and betting options continue by placing Match Results bet on Tennis, finally broaden your horizons with Each Way bets on events featuring larger numbers of competitors.
Never try to recuperate your losses on smaller bets, it’s a sure-fire way to lose the shirt off your back. In other words, don’t try chasing down losses incurred while making small bets by increasing the size of your follow-up bets.
Make sure you choose the right betting partner, meaning ensure you select a brand that offers an extensive number of sports types. You may initially consider them all the same, but the rules governing each can differ substantially.
Bonuses for virtual sports
Aside from a few online bookmakers who genuinely want to promote their virtual sports product via non-descript bonuses, it seems the trend still persists throughout the industry where not too many bookmakers make a concerted effort to promote their virtual betting product.
However, a few of the leading brands offer sign-up welcome bonuses that leave punters free to utilise and spend any way they see fit.
Virtual Sports Betting Apps
Many leading online bookmakers offer fully-featured dedicated sportsbook apps and mobile portals/virtual versions. This includes dedicated apps for Android and Apple virtual sports betting solutions available in download format either directly from the bookmaker themselves or from a trusted apk aggregator.
Dedicated virtual betting software reportedly offers faster access times, better graphics, and better response times. In addition, cross-compatible portals provide a similar experience without having to go to the trouble of installing an app. However, the performance difference margin between dedicated apps and mobile portals reduce constantly as the HTML language develops and improves.
It is an absolute must for any mobile app irrespective of the format or software environment should remain fluid, offer quick, easy navigation, and offer a user experience fully comparable to its full website. It may absolutely not lack any of the sports types, betting markets, betting products and tools available on its full website.
Advantages and Disadvantages of the Virtual Sports Betting
As with any sportsbetting form factor betting on virtual sports offer a number of advantages and depending on your view some distractors as well. However, once you build up some experience in this relatively new field and completely familiarise yourself with it, there is huge fun and profits to be had.
One of the key advantages of virtual sportsbetting is the non-stop betting action it provides via thousands of events which continually runs at all hours of the night or day without having first to wait for an event to start or complete before you can start placing bets.
Its second greatest feature is the incredibly compressed span of time in which each event starts and concludes. Typically virtual football matches only require 2- 3 minutes for a game to start and come to its virtual conclusion.
By its very inhuman nature, it also manages to avoid all the potential associated issues relating to swindles and match-fixing.
Reputable Providers of Virtual Sports
Punters new to the virtual sportsbetting scene may want to know which brands have proven the most trustworthy with high product quality and elevated standards of service. Who offers the largest virtual sports range and the best odds or prices? The answer is not quite that simple since a great many branded products meet just about all these prerequisites. The eventual winner of your support would need to meet your personal needs and requirements best.
To start your search for further expert advice, you may wish to refer to the services of one of the premier online affiliate sites such as Nostrabet, or Efirbet since they offer a massive list of personally vetted and rated quality sportsbooks.
You would start your shortlist by adding the following top-rated international online bookmakers, Bet365, 22Bet, 1XBet, William Hill, Ladbrokes, and BetVictor.
How safe is it to wager on virtual sports?
Completely safe if you read and adhere to certain verifiable criteria before joining an online sportsbook. Keep in mind you must always stick to internationally licensed and recognised brands to minimise any potential risk.
Is it legal for me to place wagers at one of the international sportsbetting shops online?
Yes, completely if you adhere to all your local guidelines and check if it is, in fact, a legal activity in your country and that your chosen brand operates under the auspices of a valid local license.
How do they determine the results of each virtual sports match or event?
A specialised piece of dedicated software called a random number generator (RNG) ensures the outcome of every game remains completely fair and unbiased at all times.
In which European countries is online sportsbetting legal?
Do virtual sports teams perform at the same level as their real-life counterparts?
No, virtual sports have no relation to the performance of any real teams or athletes as they simply mimic or replicate their appearance for the sake of familiarity. Virtual teams/athletes perform according to a predetermined set of rules where it determines the outcomes of events via a random number generator.
Years after its initial introduction to an expectant sportsbetting market, virtual sportsbetting remains the next big thing. Its popularity increases on a daily basis, and continual improvements in technology offer bettors a constantly evolving product. Currently, cutting-edge virtual sports has, in many instances, become hard to discern from real-life televised event media coverage. We hope you find betting on virtual sports challenging and exciting since virtual betting games definitely offer one of the most immersive and relaxing experiences available in the online gaming industry.