River Belle vs. The Gaming ClubBecause many online casinos utilize the same software, players often labor under the misconception that all sites are the same.
While online casinos may have certain similarities in the types of games and basic structure—just as traditional casinos do—they each offer very distinct characteristics and are distinguishable by numerous factors including selection, comps, banking options and industry reputation. Let’s examine some of the subtle and not-so-subtle differences between two of the Internet’s most popular casinos, River Belle and The Gaming Club.
River Belle Casino
One of the most popular destinations for online gamblers, River Belle Casino is almost an icon in the web gaming industry. Below are some of its most prominent features.
Selection: When it comes to selection, River Belle Casino has got it all—and then some. They offer over 110 realistic interactive casino games including blackjack, cyberstud poker, video poker, slots, progressive games and more. In addition, they host their own state-of-the-art poker room that features all of the most popular poker variants including Texas Hold ‘Em, Omaha, Seven-Card Stud, and Five-Card Stud.
Player Incentives: Gamblers love comps and River Belle provides more than its fair share. Current offerings include a 100% Match Bonus of up to $250, an additional 20% deposit bonus for using NETeller or FirePay, and various specialty promotions such as their current “9 Car, 9 Week” promotion which awards lucky gamblers a $25,000 car and a share of 1 million casino credits!
Software: Unlike many sites that offer only one version of their casino software, River Belle gives players the option of selecting which version they want—the comprehensive downloadable version or the easy-access Flash version. But while the formats may differ, all of their games feature exceptional 3-D graphics and visual effects that are unbelievably detailed and crisp.
Banking Options: If you’re going to gamble online, you going to need to be able to fund your account. Although this crucial step is often a tedious one, River Belle Casino strives to make the process as simple as possible by offering a large variety of options. These include Visa, MasterCard and Diners Club, Citadel, EcoCard, FirePay, NETeller, PaySparkATM, PaySpark Internet, Delta, and Moneybookers. Each of these options are extremely fast—often immediate—and are completely safe.
Customer Service: River Belle’s customer service center is operated by ForwardSlash, one of the world's most experienced online service operations. All players have access to their dedicated team of professional support staff who offer one-on-one service, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Fair Gaming: River Belle employs advanced card-shuffling and randomization techniques to ensure that all of their games are fair. In addition, all payout percentages are reviewed by PricewaterhouseCoopers, and with an average 97% payout ratio, players can expect better returns than offered from a land-based Casino. Finally, their PlayCheck service allows gamblers to check and review all of their game play activity, while their CashCheck system allows for easy viewing of transaction history.
Special Features: Charm and traditional “southern hospitality” are the hallmarks of River Belle Casino’s overall design. One of the most visually stunning and best-conceived themes on the ‘Net, players step aboard the ‘Belle and travel back in time into a virtual incarnation of the riverboats of old. The site is fun, exciting, easy-to-navigate and just absolutely loaded with atmosphere.
The Gaming Club
From the old-time riverboat stylings of River Belle Casino, we move onto The Gaming Club, one of the first and most reputable casinos on the Internet. Below are just a few of its most noteworthy features.
Selection: With over a hundred games in their repertoire, The Gaming Club offers one of the biggest selections of games on the ‘Net. From the high limit blackjack player and the craps aficionado, to the professional poker player there’s something for everyone. One of their best features, however, is their selection of progressive games. Eleven of the most popular—and potentially lucrative—games are on hand, including Major Millions, Cyberstud Poker, SupaJax, WowPot and CashSplash.
Player Incentives: A great site will match your deposit, dollar for dollar. An amazing site, will double your money. But at The Gaming Club, players get so much more because here $50 will get you $200! Simply deposit $50 as a new player and The Gaming Club will automatically credit your account with $200. In addition, all returning players earn loyalty points based on their play, which are redeemed for casino cash each month.
Software: The Gaming Club uses software created and powered by Microgaming Systems, a world leader in gaming software. Players can choose from multiple platforms including Flash that offers instant play, and downloadable which offers the full assortment of games with enhanced graphics and sounds.
Banking Options: Deposit/withdrawal options at The Gaming Club are tailor-made to suit players of varying preferences. There are over a dozen safe and reliable methods ranging from a variety of credit cards to NETeller, FirePay, UseMyBank, PaySpark, EcoCard, Delta and checks.
Customer Service: Nothing is more frustrating—and potentially frightening—then running into a problem and having no one to turn to. For this reason, The Gaming Club provides its patrons with a dedicated 24/7 customer support team that is friendly and knowledgeable and can be accessed by a variety of methods including numerous region-specific toll-free telephone numbers and e-mail.
Fair Gaming: The Gaming Club takes fair play very seriously. The take every imaginable step to ensure that all of their games are equitable, from the use special randomization programs to player-accessible game histories and transaction records. In addition, they are members of the Internet Gaming Council and are recipients of the eCOGRA (eCommerce and Online Gaming Regulation and Assurance) seal of approval, and organization devoted to ensuring the integrity and security of online gaming.
Special Features: Those players who are new to gambling (or anyone who just wants to brush-up on their skills) can access the site’s “Learn to Play” section which features terrific tutorials on all of the most popular games.
J. Phillip Vogel