Each casino has games that are offered either only in that area or exclusively at that casino. Some refer to these as “other” games, some call them the “special games”. Generally, they don’t have a huge following and the casinos offer these games as a courtesy. These special games include some that have waned in popularity of the years and others that are new on the scene and are moving up as more gamblers become interested in them.
Oldies but Goodies Losing Popularity
Once upon a time, Keno Lounges were found in every major casino in Las Vegas and Keno runners (the people that run your ticket to the desk to be verified and stamped) were plentiful. As interest in Keno has waned in favor of other games, such as video slots, the number of casinos that offer Keno are becoming fewer each year for a couple of reasons. Keno is a random number game where the player marks as many numbers on a paper card as they choose and sends it to the dealer for verification. Players may play several games in advance of the actual pull. Keno can cost as little as $1 per ticket or as much as $5. There are several different types of Keno to choose from such as Straight ticket where you can choose from 1 to 15 numbers or Way Tickets where there are multiple ways to win if the numbers pop.
Another random number game where each player uses blank cards with numbers under the letters spelling Bingo and the first player to fill the numbers according to the game announced wins. The dealer spins a wheel filled with Ping-Pong like balls each with a number and letter on it. Bingo is usually priced as a one set fee for a session. This can range from $39 for a paper cards to $139 for electronic cards. Winnings can range from $100 per game to $5,000 per game.
Oldies Returning to the Casinos
Faro is one of the oldest card games in the U.S. played for money. It involves one deck of 52-cards with no wild cards or jokers in the mix, a counting device and a raised board displaying the 13 card ranks from Ace at the low end to King at the high end. Players wager on which one of the cards shown on the ranking board will be the winner. The banker (dealer) deals three cards and discards the first one drawn. The player’s card is the winning card regardless of whether it beats the banker or not.
Trente et Quarante
Another oldie that is making its way into U.S. casinos is Trente et Quarante, which is a game that is over 300-years old and played primarily in European casinos until recently. This game is also known as Rouge et Noir or Red and Black. It has earmarks of standard Baccarat and roulette in the way that it is played.
Pai Gow Tiles
The traditional game of Pai Gow which is played with tiles is called Pai Gow Tiles in the U.S. casinos since there is the poker game of the same name played in many casinos. The minimum bet is usually $25 or $50 per game. Even though it is new to the U.S. casino, it is already gaining in popularity and growing fast.
This is a third random number game that is played in some casinos brought to us by Asian gamblers long ago. It involves a small hour-glass figured wire cage, 3 large dice and chips for betting. There are 5-variations of the game that can bring in some nice winnings.
A simple card game that is the fastest card game in a casino is the game of War. The winner is the highest card – period. In casinos, the game is played with a 5 – 8 deck shoe. Aces are always high regardless of the suit. Each player and the dealer get one card each. Any card that is higher than the dealer’s wins and those lower lose. That’s it.
A casino game that originated in Cambodia and is now offered in some casinos, this card game is a cross between Mini Baccarat and War. Each player bets on the Dragon or Tiger hand and then, gets one card from the dealer. High card wins if the player bet on the right hand.
Asia poker as played in U.S. casinos combines rules of regular poker aka Draw Poker and Pai Gow Poker. The winning payout is even money for each hand, but the interest in the game is gaining ground and the casinos may create variations for better payouts if it becomes more popular.
Every year and in many casinos, especially in Native Gaming Casinos, there are new specialty games being developed, tested and played. Some of these become very popular and are adopted into regular casino play across the nation. Some turn out to be duds. The games listed here are not found in many casinos but it’s worth knowing about these games and giving them a try if you happen to be in a casino that offers them.