It is no secret that online casino revenues in New Jersey have fallen short of expectations. There have been many causes for this, including early payment processing and geolocation issues. Player awareness has also been a problem.
One issue that seems to get overlooked is that most New Jersey online casinos spread virtually the same games and bonuses. There is little that sets one apart from the others.
Some New Jersey casino sites offer unique slot content, although there is overlap on many games with competing sites. The table game selection at most sites is small and is sometimes exactly the same as other sites. Video poker variety is poor. There are more games on a IGT Game King in a casino than can be found at most New Jersey casino sites.
Table Games Available at New Jersey Sites
All New Jersey sites spread blackjack and roulette. Harrah’s and 888 do not go beyond those two games. The ones that do often have overlap with competitors.
- Three Card Poker – Caesars, Betfair and Golden Nugget
- Four Card Poker – Caesars, Betfair and Golden Nugget
- Six Card Poker – Caesars, Betfair and Golden Nugget
- Casino War – Caesars, Betfair and Golden Nugget
- Mississippi Stud – Betfair and Golden Nugget
- Raise it Up – Betfair and Golden Nugget
- Let it Ride – Betfair and Golden Nugget
- Crazy4Poker – Betfair, and Golden Nugget
- Ultimate Texas Hold’em – Betfair and Golden Nugget
- Baccarat – Party/Borgata, Tropicana/Virgin, Caesars, Betfair and Golden Nugget
- Pai Gow Poker – Tropicana/Virgin, Caesars, Betfair and Golden Nugget
- Craps – Borgata/Party
- Texas Hold’em Bonus Poker – Borgata/Party
- High/Low – Tropicana/Virgin
- Triple Action Hold’em – Caesars
- Hi-Lo Solitaire – Betfair
- Poker Bet – Betfair
Lack of Unique Table Games
Every game at Caesars Casino is also spread by Betfair and Golden Nugget. Every Golden Nugget game is also available at Betfair. Harrah’s and 888 offer just two table games, but these are spread at every other competing site.
Borgata/Party and Betfair have two unique games each. Craps can only be found at Borgata/Party, giving that partnership exclusivity on a popular game. Tropicana/Virgin and Caesars each spread one table game that cannot be found at any other New Jersey gaming site.
There are several casino table games that are absent at New Jersey online casinos. Caribbean Stud is a dead game at live casinos, partly due to the bankroll needed to play it for a typical $5 minimum bet. The minimum bet online can be just $1, which solves that problem. The game is still popular at offshore sites that tease players with a massive progressive jackpot on a royal flush.
Speaking of table game progressives, I was unable to find a single one at New Jersey sites. These are often big draws at live casinos.
Most offshore online casinos spread a half dozen exotic blackjack games. There are none at regulated New Jersey sites, unless you include side bets and European hole card rules. Blackjack Switch, Spanish 21, Pontoon, and Super Fun 21 are all noticeably absent. These can be found at virtually every offshore site.
Video Poker Available at New Jersey Sites
Some video poker games have the exact rules but use different names. The list below uses the titles players are familiar with spread by IGT Game Kings. All sites spread Jacks or Better or an equivalent. It is the only video game available at Harrah’s/888. The only partnership that advertises multi-hand video poker is Harrah’s/888, but it only offers one game.
- Bonus Poker – Borgata/Party, Tropicana/Virgin, Caesars, Betfair, and Golden Nugget
- Double Bonus Poker – Borgata/Party, Tropicana/Virgin, Caesars, Betfair, and Golden Nugget
- Double Double Bonus Poker – Borgata/Party, Tropicana/Virgin, Caesars, and Golden Nugget
- Deuces Wild – Caesars, and Golden Nugget
- All American – Caesars, and Golden Nugget
- Aces and Faces – Caesars, and Golden Nugget
- Tens or Better – Caesars, and Golden Nugget
- Bonus Poker Deluxe – Caesars
- Jokers Wild – Caesars
All sites except Harrah’s/888 spread Bonus Poker, Double Bonus Poker and Double Double Bonus Poker. These are popular high variance variations of Jacks or Better. Video poker options drop substantially when venturing away from Caesars and Golden Nugget. Caesars is the only New Jersey regulated online casino that spreads video poker that cannot be found at a competing site.
No Live Table Games
Live dealer games do extremely well at offshore and international gaming sites. New Jersey does not have any of these. Blackjack and Baccarat could be spread with $5 or $10 minimum bets during peak hours. This may be create instant growth in the market.
New Jersey Online Casino Bonuses
New Jersey bonuses take on several forms. Most sites give free chips to sign up. Some are advertised as free slot pulls, while others allow the free play to be used at any game. Players can withdraw any free funds after wagering it one time. This is similar to free play that is given by live casinos.
Some New Jersey sites only allow bonuses to clear at slots. The ones that allow other games have an extremely high wager requirement that may catch players by surprise. The wager requirement means that a player must bet a deposit x number of times before being allowed to withdraw any winnings.
The Tropicana/Virgin partnership wins the award for the most unique new player package. It offers new players a $100 loss rebate. There is also a daily free spin promotion. It does not advertise a first deposit bonus but spreads bonuses to players on a regular basis.
The Borgata/Party partnership offers $20 in free play that has 1x wager requirement on slots. There is also a 100% up to $100 deposit bonus. Slots must be played to clear the first deposit bonus.
888 gives new players $10 in free play that requires a 1x wager. The first deposit bonus is 100% up to $300. It clears at 30x for slots, 300x at blackjack and video poker, and 150x for all other games.
Harrah’s gives new players 20 free spins at certain slots. There is also a 100% up to $300 first deposit bonus. The wager requirement is 30x for slots, 300x for blackjack and video poker, and 150x for other games. These bonus terms mirror 888.
Caesars gives new players $10 in free chips. It also has a 100% up to $300 first deposit bonus. Players must wager 30x at slots and 300x at blackjack. The terms for these games are identical to 888 and Harrah’s. Caesars does not count any other games towards the wager requirement.
Golden Nugget has the best first deposit bonus clearing requirements. The bonus is 100% up to $300. Slots have a 20x wager requirement, while all other games have a 100x requirement.