When it comes to live casino games, Pragmatic Play has been a bit behind the curve recently. Live dealer games are rapidly growing in popularity, leading many software providers to expand their operations. However, Pragmatic Play remained focused on their RNG-based titles such as video slots and the like.
Don’t get us wrong – there is a good deal of Pragmatic Play live casinos out there. However, considering this company’s size and renown, one would expect a bit more. The games they released in the past cover the basic needs, but that’s hardly enough in today’s competitive market.
All that’s about to change. In September 2020, they announced a new range of live games to bolster their offering. These will not only increase the number of available tables but also provide new features across Pragmatic Play live casinos.
What Are Pragmatic Play’s Azure Games?
One of the major complaints players had about Pragmatic Play live dealer tables was the limited number of seats. Despite the fact these were never the studio’s flagship project, they boasted a high degree of quality and polish. This was a problem because these tables were spread too thin across dozens of top online casinos.
This will be the first issue Azure games will address. For Blackjack alone, a total of 10 new tables are being opened throughout September. For starters, 6 were opened on September 9, with another 2 added on the 23rd. Additionally, Pragmatic Play has hinted at plans to open ups special high-stakes tables for high rollers. That said, they haven’t provided any details about the exact limits or specific release date.
For now, the Azure series will include 10 live Blackjack tables and a Live Roulette game. They’ll bring some additional features and mechanics, but the focal point of Azure games seems to be the improved design. As the name might have implied, the studios and tables aim for a deep blue colour palette. Though such things can be chalked up to personal tastes, we feel like the new studios look incredible. They manage to avoid the sometimes tacky and over-the-top approach some live casinos have in favour of more tasteful décor. Still, it’s obvious that the main idea was to simulate the look and feel of a classic land-based casino.
To that end, they’ve succeeded. As another interesting point, the unified colour range makes the sets stand out from the competition. You can take a quick look at one of the Azure games and immediately know which series they belong to. That’s always useful for creating a strong brand identity, and it seems that’s what Azure is all about.
Lana Bleichyk, Live Casino Operations Manager at Pragmatic Play, had this to say about the new additions to their offer:
“We’re thrilled to increase the number of Blackjack tables from current 5 to 15 in total further, by adding the Blackjack Azure tables and Roulette Azure to our offering, as we’re always looking to provide the best possible in-game experience to players. The brand-new look of the studio together with our engaging dealers will create a great atmosphere for players.”
First of all, the new Pragmatic Play Azure Blackjack live game will boast all the features of their previous releases. The most beloved of these include early decision-making options such as “deal now” and “auto stand”. These will allow you to set up your next move before your turn, dramatically increasing the pace of play. As far as we can tell, the tables will be streamed from their usual studio in Bucharest, Romania. This implies that the dealers will stay as professional and welcoming as always, which makes an enjoyable player experience.
The fact that the number of tables was essentially tripled will provide a much wider array of table limits. However, none of these were issues with earlier Pragmatic Play blackjack games. Players mostly complained about the lack of options such as side-bets or anything else to spice up the usual formula.
The developer addressed this with several features like Bet Behind, interactive statistics, and multi-seat options. Azure Blackjack features two classic side bets – Perfect Pairs and 21+3. Though these are fairly standard in the industry, they are also the most player-friendly. As a result, this release boasts a very strong 99.59% RTP rate.
The other novelty to Pragmatic Play’s product line is the premium Azure Roulette. Though it features only a single table for now, it hosts a more marked improvement on their previous titles. Firstly, the set and stream quality is incredible, with 4K resolution shots of the stunning new studio.
The new table alone is quite interesting with a 4-sector Racetrack setup with neighbour bets. This feature leans heavily on the social aspect of live roulette games, especially when combined with the live chat.
Moreover, the betting offer was expanded to include bets such as Finale en Plain, Finales a Cheval, and Full Complete.
- Final en Plain allows players to bet on a series of straight-up bets. Essentially, this French wager covers every number that ends with the same digit. For instance, you’re betting that the ball will land on 3. 13. 23. Or 33.
- Finales a Cheval is basically a combination of two Final en Plain roulette bets, including split bets. For example, a 3/6 Finales a Cheval covers splits of 3/6, 13/16, 23/26, and 33/36. In some cases, these may end up including more straight-up bets, depending on the numbers you pick.
- Full Complete bets take all inside bets and put them on a specific number. For example, a Full Complete on 17 covers 1 straight-up, 4 splits on 17/14, 17/16, 17/18, and 17/20; a 16/17/18 street bet, 4 corner bets, and two six-line bets. It covers more than 40 wagers in total.
All ii all, we’re glad to see Pragmatic Play expand their live gaming offer. We hope to see more such additions from them in the future.