Sky Casino/Playtech - RNG Blackjack question

shaunb95

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Jun 22, 2018
Location
Rotherham
Hi guys

I have a question in relation to how the RNG used by Playtech works for their Blackjack games. I asked a representative of Sky Casino and he told me when pressed "the outcomes are random, but the cards are not, they are a display". However I am now just as confused as before.

The reason I ask is because I have compiled some data from thousands of hands played across different websites that utilise Playtech software, and I find myself looking at the same predictable card patterns a lot.

My understanding of the RNG is that the outcome is selected once you press 'deal' - win, lose, or push. Then the way the cards are dealt afterwards is just a display, and whether you hit or stand the cards would be adjusted and drawn accordingly to match the outcome chosen. So while the outcome is random, the cards are not - and this defeats the purpose of the game in the first place, at least that's how it comes across to me.

Can someone explain the process fully please, have I got this wrong? I am not losing at the moment, I'm running within expectation, but I am still noticing strange patterns and delays in drawing cards etc that leaves me wondering how the entire thing works.

Hope someone can help, thanks.
 

ed skull murphy

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I think what he means is that the cards are a virtual representation of the RNG outcome, and that you are not playing with a pre-shuffled deck, as you would in the real world. I could be wrong of course, I know fk all about such things. :)
 

GrandMaster

Dormant account
Joined
Jan 21, 2004
Location
UK
Hi guys

I have a question in relation to how the RNG used by Playtech works for their Blackjack games. I asked a representative of Sky Casino and he told me when pressed "the outcomes are random, but the cards are not, they are a display". However I am now just as confused as before.

The reason I ask is because I have compiled some data from thousands of hands played across different websites that utilise Playtech software, and I find myself looking at the same predictable card patterns a lot.

My understanding of the RNG is that the outcome is selected once you press 'deal' - win, lose, or push. Then the way the cards are dealt afterwards is just a display, and whether you hit or stand the cards would be adjusted and drawn accordingly to match the outcome chosen. So while the outcome is random, the cards are not - and this defeats the purpose of the game in the first place, at least that's how it comes across to me.

Can someone explain the process fully please, have I got this wrong? I am not losing at the moment, I'm running within expectation, but I am still noticing strange patterns and delays in drawing cards etc that leaves me wondering how the entire thing works.

Hope someone can help, thanks.
Don't expect a casino rep (do you mean customer service rep?) to know the inner workings of the software.

For a game with no element of skill, no choice by the player, it would be possible to decide the outcome first and then choose cards which give that outcome, but why make it more complicated than necessary? Blackjack, however, involves decisions by the player and there are more outcomes than simply win, lose, push. What if you decide that the casino is going win 2 units, but the player refuses to double down or split, or if you decide that the player will win, but he keeps hitting and busts?
 

shaunb95

Newbie member
Joined
Jun 22, 2018
Location
Rotherham
Don't expect a casino rep (do you mean customer service rep?) to know the inner workings of the software.

For a game with no element of skill, no choice by the player, it would be possible to decide the outcome first and then choose cards which give that outcome, but why make it more complicated than necessary? Blackjack, however, involves decisions by the player and there are more outcomes than simply win, lose, push. What if you decide that the casino is going win 2 units, but the player refuses to double down or split, or if you decide that the player will win, but he keeps hitting and busts?

Yeah, it was a customer service rep - who froze my account after the query, that was nice of him
It does involve strategy and outcomes vary but I imagine it would be easy to circumvent this, i.e. a player standing instead of hitting, change the dealer's hole card, or a player could just hit and get given 21 hence can't go bust to win.
I've made several deposits now with this casino and have not made a single withdrawal. I'm not expecting to run good everywhere but I just run shocking here. I keep seeing delays in cards being drawn, delays when the dealer is about to draw/reveal hole card, doubles ruined, splits ruined, taking insurance with three 19's and dealer having A-9 (classic) I should not be looking at a screen and consistently calling the next outcome, I've stopped playing there now

I hate jumping on the 'rig' brigade but a company founded by a convicted fraudster does not exactly fill me with confidence.. clearly no one tests the software because even, for example, playing a million hands straight on just one variant of blackjack would take just under 4 months playing 24 hours a day with no breaks (average of 10 seconds start - finish of a hand) it's all well and good having an RNG when the software is bent to change that outcome... Who knows!
 

GrandMaster

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Location
UK
Yeah, it was a customer service rep - who froze my account after the query, that was nice of him
It does involve strategy and outcomes vary but I imagine it would be easy to circumvent this, i.e. a player standing instead of hitting, change the dealer's hole card, or a player could just hit and get given 21 hence can't go bust to win.
I've made several deposits now with this casino and have not made a single withdrawal. I'm not expecting to run good everywhere but I just run shocking here. I keep seeing delays in cards being drawn, delays when the dealer is about to draw/reveal hole card, doubles ruined, splits ruined, taking insurance with three 19's and dealer having A-9 (classic) I should not be looking at a screen and consistently calling the next outcome, I've stopped playing there now

I hate jumping on the 'rig' brigade but a company founded by a convicted fraudster does not exactly fill me with confidence.. clearly no one tests the software because even, for example, playing a million hands straight on just one variant of blackjack would take just under 4 months playing 24 hours a day with no breaks (average of 10 seconds start - finish of a hand) it's all well and good having an RNG when the software is bent to change that outcome... Who knows!
How would you force a player to split or double down? There is also the issue of making sure that the distribution of the cards is as expected, which sounds like quite a hard work if the outcome is decided in advance. I don't think you could deal a simulation of a fair game this way. If the casino wants to cheat, there are easier ways to do it.
 

dunover

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Right, software is tested in a few hours or days as testing/auditing processes are automated and can pull thousands of results from the RNG every few seconds, same as with slots. It's tested for billions of outcomes so RTP can be established and game behaviour.

Your problem with online BJ and why it appears 'rigged' is due to the unnatural streakiness of the software. In a land-based casino you'll get a shoe with 4, 8 or 10 decks for example and it'll play 'normally'. Online BJ can use 10,000 decks of card in the shoe if it wanted to. This doesn't change the long-term audited game RTP of 98.9% or whatever BJ is, but it can and will greatly affect the short-medium term volatility of the game. This leads to stupid streaks which can favour either the player or dealer.

I played online BJ once (software not live dealer) and within 30 hands I could tell immediately that it wasn't like playing the 'natural' game. The dealer had luck that would have made the Pope eff and jeff and I just had a hopeless negative feeling that whatever I did I would lose, until a certain point. Therefore I didn't enjoy it a bit, fucked-off and never played it again to this day.

P.S. your 'lag' point in the card being revealed also occurs on many slots, where a winning spin will be slower to appear from the server than a losing one. No reason why this wouldn't happen in other computer-based RNG games too.
 

shaunb95

Newbie member
Joined
Jun 22, 2018
Location
Rotherham
Okay guys, this is beyond a joke now, I need to know what steps I can take next
I have been playing some more hands over the past week or two, thinking, probably just on the negative side of variance, but wow I have never run so bad on a website in my life
I have collected some data on my play:

I've suffered 9 straight hand losses in a row 4 times overall, each time this happens this is a 1 in 76,923 chance. And yet I have recorded this 3 times in the space of 10 days
I am running at a win rate of 38.4%, losing 51.9%, and pushing 9.7% of hands
When my bet is increased from the average of 1 unit, I am winning just 29.8% of hands, losing 66.8% of hands, and pushing 3.4%

I am now in the process of calculating how often the dealer busts/stats for different hole cards.
I've just had yet another session of seeing the same patterns, delays, everything that happens now is too predictable on this game, I have not gone into profit once (serious) here.
For a game that has a theoretical RTP of 99.59% I seem to be running well outside of the range of 'variance'
Any ideas what to do now? I have been reading about the shady history of this company, that doesn't help my suspicions. Do I go to UKGC or will they just laugh in my face?

thanks..
 

shaunb95

Newbie member
Joined
Jun 22, 2018
Location
Rotherham
An update..

I emailed Sky Casino’s complaints team requesting my account be closed and my hands be looked into. The other week I lost 16 straight hands, a one in 12.5 million event. By rights I should not be here to write this message as I literally am more likely to have been struck by lightning.

I have received a response from their Executive Complaints handler.

I asked for a certificate proving that the game had been tested, alongside a certificate showing the RNG had been tested. I am confident the RNG is fine but the game is not and is burning or changing cards and trying to draw cards to achieve a certain RTP rather than being truly random.

She agreed that my personal RTP was 92.3% over my entire account history and the game should be returning at 99.49%, the theoretical RTP. However, she said this is nothing out of the ordinary, and refused to uphold my complaint.

I am quite confident after thousands of hands this RTP, along with losing 16 straight hands and all the rest, and seeing the same patterns constantly, coupled with my win/lose rates, this software is bent, and from a company operating a sly tax evasion scam under a different name and closes winning players down, why should I believe any different?

I feel as though I have been playing a game that is set to pay at a certain RTP, like a slot with cards. I now am going to IBAS and the UKGC/Alderney Commissions to see what happens, but I’m not optimistic.

I notice they’re not listed on CM, but I hope I can pull some concrete evidence as I feel they should be a rogue casino, although there’s already enough shady stuff about them out there without this.
 

Reelsoffun

When it comes to gambling, timing is everything.
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Feb 24, 2018
Location
UK
Online BJ can use 10,000 decks of card in the shoe if it wanted to. This doesn't change the long-term audited game RTP of 98.9% or whatever BJ is, but it can and will greatly affect the short-medium term volatility of the game. This leads to stupid streaks which can favour either the player or dealer.

not to nit pick or anything dunover, but the amount of decks does change the odds, so would be nice to know how many its using......

I do agree pretty much with everything else you say tho :)
 

shaunb95

Newbie member
Joined
Jun 22, 2018
Location
Rotherham
So I responded to the complaints team email asking for evidence that the game had been tested, this was my response received today:

Dear Shaun,

Thank you for your response.

Whilst I fully appreciate your concerns, we are unable to provide you with the information you have requested.

I apologise for any inconvenience this has caused.

Kind Regards,
Laura
Complaints Executive

No explanations, no reasoning, they just don’t have it. I recommend nobody use this casino, it is a joke. So now I have to wait and see if the UKGC will say anything.. fingers crossed.
 

dealer wins

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London the sh$thole
That blackjack is indeed 100% rigged IMHO. Ive played it in the past and can relate to your findings completely!! It plays unlike any other software BJ, and your win/Lose/Push stats are bang on what I experienced lol
 

neilw

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If you think the software is rigged just stop playing it.

I really struggle to understand why someone who thinks a game is rigged spends more and more time and money trying to prove it to themselves and others that it's rigged. I guess the more money you lose the better you feel because it confirms in your mind the game is rigged. Just leave it alone.

I don't play RNG blackjack, there is no need when you've got live dealer BJ all over the place. At least there you can see the cards, see the shuffle and see the deal.

RNG as far as i know, deals from a freshly shuffled shoe for every hand, so you're not going to get the same experience as a shoe that's being "worked through" as in Live Dealer or Land Based. (with the exception of those bloody awful Shufflemaster dealing shoes - like the ones you see at the Hippodrome and Empire in London for example).

BTW I play a lot of Live Dealer BJ and I've had streaky losses, it happens all the time, both in land based and online. I've also had streaky wins, my best is 12 hands on the bounce!, now that was some shoe!
 

shaunb95

Newbie member
Joined
Jun 22, 2018
Location
Rotherham
I have gathered enough evidence and stopped playing it,
I really struggle to understand why I should ‘just leave it alone’ - the whole point of this forum is to advocate fair play - when you’re experiencing 12.5 million to one results and getting results that are consistently out of expectation of ‘variance’ - I am right to kick up a fuss, not even for the sake of myself but for other players?

You are dealing with a website that uses software created by a convicted fraudster, combine that with a regulator that has seemingly fell asleep at the wheel and has been proven on here before to not test its games or carry out its requirements properly, and their tax avoidance strategies as well as their shocking customer service attitude, it’s easy to get away with it, isn’t it?

Worst case scenario I am wrong, best case I shove a much needed rocket up the regulators arse and prove indeed something is wrong?

I too have streaky wins and losses in land based casinos, and the casinos I play at here in Sheffield all use shuffle machines, guess what, I come within expectation and suffer crazy situations but not on the scale as of this website. At least I know what I’m getting. I asked Sky for a certificate to prove the game has been tested, and got told this didn’t exist. That is the difference - you’re dealing with cowboy casinos who can just dismiss any regulatory requirements. We are in the wrong for kicking up a fuss, we can provide evidence, but they can never back anything up, it’s just we’re right, you’re wrong.

Still waiting for a response from UKGC, it takes 20 working days so should receive something by the end of the month, I will keep people updated

If you think the software is rigged just stop playing it.

I really struggle to understand why someone who thinks a game is rigged spends more and more time and money trying to prove it to themselves and others that it's rigged. I guess the more money you lose the better you feel because it confirms in your mind the game is rigged. Just leave it alone.

I don't play RNG blackjack, there is no need when you've got live dealer BJ all over the place. At least there you can see the cards, see the shuffle and see the deal.

RNG as far as i know, deals from a freshly shuffled shoe for every hand, so you're not going to get the same experience as a shoe that's being "worked through" as in Live Dealer or Land Based. (with the exception of those bloody awful Shufflemaster dealing shoes - like the ones you see at the Hippodrome and Empire in London for example).

BTW I play a lot of Live Dealer BJ and I've had streaky losses, it happens all the time, both in land based and online. I've also had streaky wins, my best is 12 hands on the bounce!, now that was some shoe!
 

shaunb95

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Jun 22, 2018
Location
Rotherham
I’ve had a response from the UKGC and have settled my complaint with Sky, however I am not allowed to discuss the details of the resolution
Thanks for your thoughts guys... :)
 

ChopleyIOM

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That sounds...... interesting.

Why would the resolution be hush hush?
 

wesleyhoulihan

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Interested in this also. I've had numerous sessions of over 3000 hands where Ive finished more than 3 standard deviations below expectation. I think the odds of that happening are in the millions to one. I am tempted to order a complete hand history from them and do the maths on it.
 

shaunb95

Newbie member
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Jun 22, 2018
Location
Rotherham
Hello all.
On further thought and taking legal advice I will be terminating the NDA and making a claim through the courts.
It’s been a couple of months since the matter was ‘resolved’ however reading about some other dirty tricks Playtech have been up to and knowing what I know now it would be unreasonable for me to not pursue this further
Hopefully I will be setting a precedent for some people to do the same.
The ball is in their court now and obviously as the case progresses I will keep people updated
 

shaunb95

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Jun 22, 2018
Location
Rotherham
What was the final outcome out?

sorry, been a while since I’ve been on here!
I was paid my money back and had my complaint settled, I got wound up afterwards and was going to flout the NDA but truth be told just couldn’t be arsed - wasn’t worth the hassle.
Just stick to land based or live casino is my advice, I’m not implying RNG is ‘rigged’ but there are reasons that the experience/play is different. I just use that principle in general now, if a site/game/whatever feels dodgy, just get out and play elsewhere!
hope that is useful for a few people.
 

ESCJAMIE

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sorry, been a while since I’ve been on here!
I was paid my money back and had my complaint settled, I got wound up afterwards and was going to flout the NDA but truth be told just couldn’t be arsed - wasn’t worth the hassle.
Just stick to land based or live casino is my advice, I’m not implying RNG is ‘rigged’ but there are reasons that the experience/play is different. I just use that principle in general now, if a site/game/whatever feels dodgy, just get out and play elsewhere!
hope that is useful for a few people.
So they was rigging it then ?, If what you are saying is true and they gave you your money back that means they are hiding something what about the 1000s of players who played the game the time you did are they not Entitled to there money back why just you ?
 
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