Virtual Sports Betting
“Virtual Sports Betting?” You ask, hesitantly clicking on this page. Look, we know why you’re here. Coronavirus AKA Covid-19 knocked out a ton of major sports, from the NBA to the NCAA to the MLS and the MLB. You’re here looking for something to fill that void, something to bet on, and something to take your mind off of the pandemic, or your workday, or whatever it is that you’re doing that you’d rather be gambling. So what is virtual sports betting? Well, basically, a lot of the online offshore sportsbooks evolved out of horseracing, and horseracing is a thing that doesn’t happen constantly.
To compensate for this, they invented virtual horse racing, which is simulated horseraces with odds posted before they start, and the real odds to win for each horse are similar to their posted odds you can bet on. Then, the horses would race, in animated form, and you could watch your preferred horse win. With the COVID-19 pandemic canceling many sports, sportsbooks have leaned heavily into virtual betting to fill that time. For example, there are full virtual basketball games happening on Bovada and other online betting sites right now. The future is wild.
Is It Legal To Bet On Virtual Sports?
Of course! They’re wholly virtual and tend to take place via online sportsbooks anyway, so it’s not like they’re specifically regulated by the US, as state-sanctioned sportsbooks do not offer virtual sports. While many are unsure of how to bet on virtual sports, the legality of doing so is not in question. One big thing to understand though is that their virtual status renders them more similar to slot machines in function than sports betting. The events that occur are generated by computers who are fed odds that you can then bet on. You can be sure the odds are slanted towards the house. It’s important to understand what this game boils down to - and some say it’s more similar to a slot machine than sports betting, despite the fact that it feels like sports betting.
Virtual Sports Betting Spikes In Popularity
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, virtual sports betting has become a popular option for gamblers who were formerly located strictly in the traditional sports world. Not only were there multiple virtual sports betting options prior to the outbreak, but there are also now even more options that are becoming available as real sports competitions have stopped because of the pandemic.
The newer virtual games tend to be very similar in mimicking the real matchups that have been canceled. For example, NASCAR is one of the sports that will be trying out the competition by way of the virtual route because of their games being suspended. A lot of the major sports have video games that go with them, and people have found great success betting on those video game based matchups, where each team is controlled by an AI. These games range from the FIFA series to the Madden Series to the NBA 2K series. All of these have been used to simulate the sports they were based on during the pandemic.
Virtual sports betting is a great alternative to wagering on sports, and with sportsbooks looking to make this option more analogous to the events that have been canceled, the virtual sports betting market could be on the rise. It remains unclear how many virtual sports bettors will stick around after the pandemic is over - this could just be something that is scratching that sports betting itch for a lot of people - but we hope that the number of virtual sports bettors increases at least a bit over the long term. It’s a fun way to spend some time and money.
How Does Virtual Sports Betting Work?
Virtual sports betting is a simulated game between several parties. Let’s use the example of a basketball game because it’s easier to understand. Let’s say you have two teams, Team A and Team B. Team A has +200 odds to win, while Team B is -240. These odds that are given to you will approximately reflect the actual likelihood of each of the teams winning. You can then place bets on either Team A or Team B at those given odds.
This is the same way it works on down the line. The odds each horse in a virtual horserace has, for example, correlated with their actual odds of winning the virtual race. The field gets bigger, but the rules stay the same. In effect, this removes some amount of the guesswork involved. The results are still randomized, but you know that, generally speaking, the favorites in these races actually are faster and better.
One other thing worth noting is that the type of bets you can make match up with the sport you’re betting on. If you’re betting on virtual horseracing from your phone, you still get to bet on which horse will win, place, or show, for example. Similarly, if you’re betting on a virtual NFL game, you’ll be able to bet on the point spread or the moneyline, as well as Over/Under totals bets.
What Virtual Sports Can You Bet On?
There’s a ton of them. Right now, on many of the online sportsbooks you can find virtual sports betting on the following sports, although it is not limited to these sports only:
- Greyhound Racing
- Car Racing
- Camel Racing
- Basketball Leagues
- Soccer Leagues
You’ll notice the “league” descriptors there. Some of these have full simulated seasons that run over short periods of time. These leagues will have multiple games on a given “day”, where a “day” takes about three minutes, and you can bet on each of the matches.
Are Virtual Betting And Sports Betting The Same?
Yes and no. In the sense that virtual sports betting is betting on virtual events, not real ones, it is not the same as sports betting. In the sense that wager types remain unchanged from each type of real sports betting to virtual sports betting, they are actually very similar. The wagering is the same, but the critical difference is that the event you are watching is simulated. This means that there is always going to be healthy distrust of a sportsbook offering virtual sports betting - that’s how bettors work - but generally they are reputable and honest enough.
Virtual sports betting has even been used to substitute for other games of chance. For example, in some states, you can wager on randomized previous horse races, which is functionally similar to both virtual sports betting and playing the slots. If you’re used to betting on horseracing, you’ll be great at betting on virtual horse racing. If you’re used to understanding where the value is in NBA lines and spreads, you’ll be able to do the same in virtual basketball betting. Basically, it’s not real sports, but it is real money.
Betting On Madden Simulations
Football is king in America, and it should come as no surprise that a boom in virtual sports betting has brought a boom in virtual football betting as well. There are so many ways to bet on sports in the year 2020, but very few that have made it through the COVID-19 outbreak unscathed. This drastic shift in the sports landscape has brought to prominence many types of sports adjacent betting and sports style betting that would not otherwise have reached the mainstream. Madden simulations are one of these things.
Basically, for those who are unaware, every year, a new Madden NFL video game comes out. Now, with people turning to virtual sports betting during the pandemic, sportsbooks are simulating games between teams using this software. Even though the NFL is not actually one of the leagues that has been suspended, due to the pandemic hitting in the offseason, it is still one of the more popular virtual sports betting variants. If you’re looking for something quick and entertaining, this is a good way to fill that space. Similarly, we all know it’s not football, but it is something sort of similar, and it might help scratch that itch. Many sportsbooks run their own proprietary simulations, often streamed on various streaming websites like Twitch.tv, or on the sportsbook itself.
Betting On NBA 2K Simulations
The NBA is one of the most popular leagues in the world. When the coronavirus pandemic struck and left sports bettors and NBA fans empty-handed, online sportsbooks began to offer betting odds on 2K simulations between two teams in the game. Like the Madden series, a new game is offered every year prior to the seasons start. These simulated games have given basketball fans and bettors something to entertain their betting needs until the NBA returns.
Like betting on the NBA, there are different things to consider when betting on an NBA 2K simulation game. Yes, you can take into account what players are on each team, but the ratings of the players play a huge role. A player's defensive and offensive ratings could make or break the outcome of the game. That is the fun in NBA sim betting. The fact that you can also consider ratings before placing your bets could make the case for your bet even stronger.
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