It probably comes as no surprise that there are differences between real sport and virtual sport. One of the biggest differences from an entertainment perspective is their constant availability, and that relates to the virtual side. Virtual sports are creations or recreations of sporting events in a real-life atmosphere, and as a new kind of entertainment they have grown in popularity.
It is important to point out that real sports events are regulated by the leagues they are part of, as well as by officials or referees who have to ensure that the rules of the game are followed, both by players and coaches. In virtual sports, regulation is carried out by licensing authorities who control how the games are played, the validity of the software and, most importantly, the data-generating software that produces the random results.
Another important difference between real and virtual sports is that real sports offer more markets, betting and the possibility to place bets based on real statistics. Players can also better use their own knowledge as well as other reliable tips to best assess what to bet on. However, in virtual sports this is not useful as statistics are generated that do not relate to the real world. Therefore, virtual sports can be well compared to other gambling games and this aspect leads to another difference, which is the social part of the sport.
Virtual sport does not provide players with social interaction with other players, nor is it able to recreate the real atmosphere of participating in a live sporting event. Most people who engage with virtual sport understand and accept that they are playing in an environment that is not real. However, new users of virtual sports should understand that with these differences comes a cost: as in the real world, where you buy a ticket to an event, you also pay a price to participate in virtual sports.
AVAILABLE BETS AND SELECTION
The betting options available in virtual sports are increasing as popularity continues to grow. Traditionally, most bookmakers offer a limited number of markets, including football, basketball, horses and dogs. However, the addition of tennis and the future inclusion of cricket and baseball has provided more markets to bet on. Below we look at each of these and highlight the different bets that each offers:
Football is one of the most popular sports in virtual sports, and the reason for this is obviously the large fan base of football lovers, but also the ease of placing bets that are understandable. These include full-time, half-time, handicap and number of goals. Bets on full-time are based on the final result of the match, where bets on half-time are based on the current score at half-time. Handicap bets are bets on the participating teams and players, with predicted differences in number of goals etc.
In this sport there is a slightly wider range of betting markets. This includes bets such as : winner, number of points, winning margin, handicap, first get X and team total.
There are also alternative betting selections such as: Winner of game,, 1st half winner, highest scorer at first quarter, as well as over/under.
Horse racing is another sport that ranks high on the poularity scale and has a more global appeal compared to other sports that focus more on the local market. In virtual horse racing, the betting options are often similar to those seen in real horse racing, such as winner, place, prediction and tricast.
Virtual dog racing is almost identical to horse racing, as it is gambling without the major complications seen in virtual basketball, for example. Of the betting selections offered : winner, placing, forecast and tricast.
In tennis, the betting selections are limited to : game, set, match and favourites. These are again easy to understand, with bets on favourites placed on individual players, bets on the individual games in a set, bets on who will win the match, or on the player who will win a given set in the match.