Most poker enthusiasts believe you can only belong to one of two groups - those who play poker for money and those who play in social casinos. Still, the question lingers, can the skills you build in social casinos help you win your real-world games? Read on to find out!

What is a Social Casino?

As a concept, social casinos are fairly easy to understand. For the most part, they operate in the same way as real-money casinos but there are a few core differences. As a player, you can sit at table games like poker, play against real people and win chips. Unlike real-money casinos, most are built on a free-to-play model and all of them are void of a cash-out method. This means that you don’t have to pay to play these games but you also aren’t going to make any money from them. No matter how skilled a player is or how many games they win, there’s zero chance of cashing out and making a profit. Still, these social casinos carry a wealth of benefits to enhance the skills of their players and as such can help your live, real-money poker games in several ways.

Tutorials & Experience

If you’re a poker novice, then one of the most attractive elements of social casino apps are the tutorials. Many apps, including our very own Pokerist, host in-depth tutorials that walk players through the game at a slower pace. In our Texas Hold’em tutorial, Pokerist players even have access to a board outlining the hand ranking from strongest to weakest. This feature is available to players as they progress to faster-paced live tables in the casino lobby. Once they’ve gotten to grips with the basics of Texas Hold’em poker, players within Pokerist can move on to more challenging games with tournaments or higher stake games with more skilled players. 

This quick pacing is just one of the ways that digital online poker mirrors analogue poker and it can be difficult to get used to. When playing a social, online poker game players only have a few seconds to make a decision. This is a key feature in making the game as authentic as possible. With other real-life players waiting their turn, it makes sense to speed things up in this way, adding a sense of momentum and excitement! To be successful in poker, it’s essential to become comfortable making important decisions in this type of environment. 

Risk-Free Environment

Social casinos allow players to engage in the game they love, without the financial risks of real money gambling. As we mentioned, most are built on a free-to-play model and as such, offer players daily chips to just open the app. Thus, buying chips isn’t essential to playing the game. This means that when a player loses chips they haven’t lost anything of monetary value. With this safety net securely in place, players can spend their time enjoying the tables, building their skills and meeting new friends - all while immersing themselves in a risk-free environment.

Connect With Players of All Levels

Players are also gaining access to an authentic active user base when they log on to an app like Pokerist or similar. Unlike other games, social casinos are made up of real players from around the world, not bots. This player-to-player interaction provides a more authentic poker experience, preparing players for playing the real world more effectively.

As millions of players are drawn to social casino sites daily, this pool of authentic players can’t dry up. These players aren’t limited to beginners or casual players either. Many of them are lifelong enthusiasts and dedicated experts. With a social casino, no matter your skill level you’ll find yourself a worthy opponent, leading to an improvement in your live game. 

Find Your Game

While there’s no doubt that Texas Hold’em is the star of the show, social casinos are packed with a variety of thrilling games. Thankfully, all of these games are just as easily accessed as poker, meaning players can sample them at will - without risk. As a player, this can help you discover which game you enjoy the most and which you’re best at. Take Pokerist for example. Players of this app can of course enjoy Texas Hold’em but they also have the chance to taste Omaha poker, Split Bet poker or Set poker. While Texas Hold’em is the most popular poker game worldwide, that doesn’t mean it’s not good for your game to test out other poker variations. 

What’s more, because of the lack of monetary incentive to play, social casinos work hard to maintain a steady level of player enthusiasm within their games. To achieve this, they regularly release new games and features aimed at entertaining their regular players. These new releases often include an intriguing twist on the classic game of poker and with that, a new way to challenge a player's poker abilities. As such, engaging with these unique titles can force a player to challenge themselves and build skills that they can carry through to their real-world games.