About Ladbrokes’ Virtual Sports
Virtual sports are rapidly increasing in popularity among many gamers. Whether you are looking for something to fill in the gap when your favourite football league is on break, or you simply want to have some round the clock sporting action, virtual sports offers the all-important solution. Ladbrokes has now made it easier for you to have this sporting action at any time of the day through their virtual sports portal. Ladbrokes is among the most popular betting brands across Europe. In this review, we will look if indeed the company has lived up to its fame in the delivery of their virtual sports.
The first thing you will notice with Ladbrokes is that the virtual sports are set as a stand-alone gaming category, rather than being offered as part of the main sportsbook as it has been the norm with other bookmakers. From the main navigation bar at the top of the homepage, you can click the ‘Virtual’ tab, and you will land on the home page with the variety of virtual sports available.
Here you will find virtual horse racing, greyhounds, football, motor racing, and virtual speedway. The virtual events are offered at scheduled intervals, with timers counting down to the next kick off or start of the race. The events are streamed live through an embedded video. The video streams are displayed in a sliding format which is unique and intriguing. Ladbrokes allows you to adjust the quality of the video streams as you would with Youtube videos. This is a great option as it gives you the liberty to work with what suits your internet bandwidth, ranging from Auto mode to 380p, 480p or HD. Besides, you can opt to mute or even pause the live stream videos.
In this next section, we will delve deeper into the specific sports offered here. Our review will look at the various aspects of the Ladbrokes virtual sports, ranging from the betting markets available to the length of the games and mobile gaming options. We will also include a few betting tips that can help you get better margins.
Would a virtual sports section be complete without a piece of the world’s most popular sports? Probably not. Ladbrokes allows you to enjoy some thrilling soccer action 24/7 through their virtual football matches. The action takes place at the fictional Striker Stadium, an amazing footballing arena complete with cheering crowds. All the soccer matches have live English commentary, but you can choose to mute this using the video control buttons.
The virtual soccer matches are set to be 3 minutes apart here. Each match lasts approximately 1 minute, inclusive of the half time break. To fit an entire 90-minute football match into a 1-minute video stream, the matches are mainly focused on the key highlights. For instance, all you will be shown are the close goal attempts, free kicks taken, penalty kicks or dangerous fouls that result in yellow or red cards.
It is also important to note that each half is not split equally in the scheduled time. Instead, the half with the most action points gets a longer display. For instance, you might realise the second half seems longer than the first half which lasted only a few seconds.
The teams are modelled around real-life football clubs and national teams, although they do not exactly represent the actual teams. For instance, you will come across clubs with familiar names such as Watford Hornets, Chelsea Pensioners, Newcastle AFC, and Liverpool Stars. These virtual teams’ jerseys also tend to mimic the colours of their real-life mirror teams.
The Ladbrokes football matches do not quite literally have a league format. Instead, the teams are randomly picked to face off against each other. What you will notice is that the clubs are never paired with the national teams. A virtual national team will only face off with another virtual national team, and not a club and the vice versa.
Also, although the teams are designed to mirror the real-life team, their performance does not depend on this. To the contrary, each game’s results are determined by the Ladbrokes RNG, which gives each team an equal winning opportunity. It would be safe to say the virtual football matches play out more like a lottery.
With the Ladbrokes virtual football, you will have most of the betting markets available in real life sportsbook. The betting options available here are; Win/Draw/Win, Correct Score, Total Number of Goals, Double Chance and Under/Over 2.5. These markets will all have some formidable odds, normally averaging some points above the odds you would get with real-life football matches. This is one aspect that makes virtual football betting such a lucrative venture for many bettors.
Although Ladbrokes does seem to offer a good number of betting markets, we expect to see more options being introduced to have the virtual football betting at par with real-life football betting. For instance, the Asian handicap is a favourite market that sadly is left out here. But still, in the absence of such markets, you can come up with a winning betting strategy that entails placing combo bets thus higher odds.
To offer round the clock football betting, the virtual matches here are compressed into 1-minute streams. This will contain blitz highlights from the match showcasing the main talking points, ranging from the close shaves to corner kicks, free kick, and penalty kicks. Before the match kicks off, there will be a brief introductory period as the two teams are introduced and walk into the stadium amid the cheering crowds.
After the first half, there is a brief break period which lasts for about 5 seconds before the action resumes. As hinted out earlier, the two halves are not necessarily equal in length as this will depend on where the bulk of the action was.
The virtual football matches are scheduled to take place every three minutes. After the end of a match, the results are displayed on the embedded screen for about 30 seconds.
This window period allows you to check your settled bets and if you registered any wins. The screen will then automatically transition to the next upcoming match, and the team’s jerseys will be on display for another 30 seconds.
Thus the transition period from one match to another is about 1 minute. During this transition period, the markets will be open for the next match, and you can place your bets. Just as with real life football matches, the bets could be either single or multi. These betting markets will remain open up until the last few seconds to kick off when the teams walk in.
You can place a bet on up to four upcoming matches beforehand by using the scrolling bar with the timers right below the video streams screen. Using this timer, you can tell which match is coming up next.
Virtual Horse Racing
Horse races have for centuries been a major sport offering not only thrilling racing action but also amazing betting opportunities. It is, therefore, a no brainer that Ladbrokes have added these graceful animals to the virtual sports stable. Ladbrokes have two types of virtual horse races on offer. These are flat races and hurdling. The two racing categories are placed in two separate tabs, with each having its unique racing schedule and participants.
We will start by reviewing the flat racing section. In this virtual race, the horses take on each other on a racecourse which features no obstacles. Ladbrokes has two of such arenas namely the Chase Park and the Derby Downs. These races normally feature between 8 and 16 horses. The number is randomly decided, and you will have a display of the participating horses with their previous performance records before the races start.
The second category of virtual horse racing offered by Ladbrokes is hurdling. In this racing format, the horses will race around a course that is fitted with brush fences at certain intervals. These races will also involve the same number of horses and jockeys, normally ranging between 8 and 16.
You can access each of these virtual races separately as they are offered under two different tabs. This essentially means you have two different virtual racebooks at your disposal at any time of day.
Although the virtual horse races here are of two different formats, they offer the same type of betting markets. As it is with real-life horse races, you can bet on with the outright winners or places in the Ladbrokes virtual racebooks. The betting markets available here are;
- Win or Each Way – This is one of the most lucrative betting markets in horse racing. With this option, you will be betting on both a win and a place finish for a particular racer. The rules remain the same as those of the real-life races, whereby you can reap in wins if your racer goes either for a win or finishes in the top positions. Hitting both gives you better payouts. With Ladbrokes, the Each Way odds are offered at 1/5 for 1-2-3 place finishes. This market is the same for both the hurdling racing and flat racing.
- Forecast – In this second betting option, you will be predicting on place finishes only. A forecast bet comprises of predicting on two horses finishing in either the 1st or 2nd position. Here Ladbrokes allows you to bet on the horses finishing in a specific 1-2 order or any order. As any seasoned gamer will tell you, one important betting tip here is that any order format tends to give you more cushion albeit the lower returns.
- Tricast – This betting market is quite similar to the forecast bet, the only difference being it will involve 3 racers instead of two. As such, you will be predicting on three horses taking up the 1st, 2nd and 3rd positions. Similar to the forecast market, you can bet on the horses appearing in a specific order or in any order provided they are in the top three positions.
Both the flat races and the hurdling races at the Ladbrokes virtual racebook are designed to last a minute, give or take a few seconds. Before the races begin, you will have a display of the upcoming racers, with a brief history of their performances. This line up lasts about a minute, which is adequate time for you to weigh your options and select the horses you would like to back in the upcoming race.
Similar to the virtual football matches, the horse races as well are scheduled 3 minutes apart. Within this period, there is a 1-minute break in between the races. After the race is over, you will have a brief display of the results, which lasts for 30 seconds. Here you can settle any bets you had placed before preparing to take on the next batch of racers.
With the virtual horse races, you can also opt to bet on races beforehand by scrolling through the timers placed right below the video screens. You will notice that the timers are set to be three minutes apart each, and you can bet up to 4 races beforehand.
Still, with the racing action, Ladbrokes offers dogs races every three minutes. If you are a fun of greyhounds racing, then you will be impressed at the quality and attention to detail with which this virtual sport is designed. The cameras capture the action from all angles, giving it a realistic feel. The greyhound races will feature six dogs running around the 480-meter-long track. This is an action-packed and fast-paced race that gives you good odds promising high returns.
As it is the case with all other virtual sports offered here, the results of the virtual greyhound race are determined by the RNG. This is a system that gives each player an equal chance of winning as these results are randomly determined without any external influence.
The betting options you will have with the greyhounds are quite similar to those at the horse race tracks. Here you can bet on three main markets as described below;
- Win or Each Way – The betting rules here remain the same as those of the horse racebooks. You will be betting on a certain dog winning the race or finishing in the top two positions. With Ladbrokes, they offer the Each Way bet at 1/4 for the 1st and 2nd places. This means that if your dog either wins, finishes in the second position or a combination of both, then you win.
- Forecast – The forecast betting market is where you will be predicting that two dogs will be featured in the first two positions. With Ladbrokes, you can select whether you want the dogs to finish in a specific order or any order, provided they are the top two finishers.
- Tricast – This market is similar to the forecast, but here you will be betting on three dogs instead. A quick betting tip to note here is that you can increase your overall wins by placing a combined bet of 1 or 2 markets. However, this is a riskier bet, but the potential higher wins justify the risks.
Each virtual greyhounds race consists of 6 participants. The dogs are required to do one lap around the track which features two hurdles. One entire lap will be between 40 and 45 seconds. After the race is over, you will be shown some highlights from the race, especially at the crossing line. This is then followed by a display of the results where you can determine if you have had any winning bets.
The races are set to be 3 minutes apart. Every three minutes you will have a new race kicking off. After one race is over, the transition period goes for about 1 minute, give or take 10 seconds, depending on how fast the previous race was. This transition period is enough for you to put some thought to your next bet.
Due to the fast-paced nature of these races, it is prudent if you can scroll through the list of upcoming races beforehand as this way you will have more time to evaluate the markets.
If you are interested in sports bike racing, then you can throw some dirt in the air at the Ladbrokes virtual speedway. This is a virtual event situated at the oblique Revington Circuit. While doing this review, we found the simulation at the virtual speedway to be impressive, especially the audio effects. If you have some strong and fast internet connection, you can adjust your video quality to HD to get a better feel of the racing action.
Each race is comprised of four bikers doing a lap around the circuit. The race is captured in different camera angles, allowing you to keep track of your racer. Besides, the live commentary calls out the racers’ numbers as they switch positions.
The betting markets availed by Ladbrokes for the virtual speedway are a major letdown. You will be limited to betting only on the outright winner of the race. Although the odds offered in this market are high, the single betting option market locks out endless betting opportunities here. In contrast to many other bookmakers, we hope that Ladbrokes get to increase the betting option available for this category of racing soon.
Each race entails of 2 laps around the dirt track. From start to finish, the race will last about a minute, give or take 10 seconds. Before the race starts, there is a sneak preview of the participants. The Ladbrokes virtual speedway features only four bikers at a time. From the introductory part, you can review the racer’s performances from previews meets and the odds they have been assigned.
After the race is over, there is an interlude period before the next race starts. This period will feature a display of the results from the previous race then followed by the introduction to the next racers. This interlude period is to allow you to place your bets for the next race.
Virtual Motor Racing
Ladbrokes also offers virtual motor races. From the design of the cars to the race tracks, the virtual motor sports are modeled on the Formula 1 or Indie Car races. If you crank up the volume on your PC or mobile device, you will hear the sound effects are quite similar to the sounds of a real race track.
Just like with the other virtual races, the virtual motor races occur at a high frequency, with a race scheduled to kick off at three-minute intervals. Each race features up to 12 drivers racing around the Goldstone racetrack, which is a virtual 3.2 KM racetrack.
Betting at the virtual motor races is outright and simple. Here you will have three betting options by predicting either the winner or the position a racer will finish it. These betting markets are described in detail below;
- Forecast – In this first betting market, you will be betting on 2 of the racers finishing in either position 1 or 2. Ladbrokes allows you to bet whether these racers will finish in a particular order in 1st and 2nd, or in any order provided they feature in the top two spots.
- Tricast – This second betting option is quite similar to the forecast. Here instead of betting on two drivers, you will select three of them that you back to finish in the top three spots. Similarly, you can choose to either bet on the drivers finishing in a particular order or any order.
- Win or Each Way – The third betting market, which is probably the most common, involves predicting the outright winner as well as a position bet. You can consider this as a combo bet. Here you will be predicting that your driver wins the race or finishes in either of the first three spots at odds of 1/4. Whichever, the outcome, you are guaranteed a win.
Each motor race here consists of the drivers sprinting across the racetrack and completing two laps. This takes approximately 1 minute from start to finish. Though the drivers are given actual names, during the race, they are identified using their tag numbers. All the cars have different bright colours which make it easier for you to track them during the race.
At the end of each race, there are highlights of how the race ends, before the results are tabulated on the screen. The results will remain displayed for about 30 seconds, followed by an introduction of the next batch of racers. This break period from the end of one race to the start of another takes about 1 and a half minutes.
Welcome Offer for Virtual Sports
When it comes to bonuses and promotions, Ladbrokes beats many other bookies by a margin. This is especially so considering they offer a welcome offer dedicated solely for the virtual sports section. This is something you will seldom find with other betting sites offering virtual sports.
At Ladbrokes, when you make your first ever bet at the virtual sports, they will match your bet amount 100% up to a maximum of £10. The free bet is automatically credited to your account, and you do not have to make any follow-ups to get it.
However, as it is with any betting promotion and offer, certain rules bind the use of this virtual sports welcome offer package. For instance, the first bet you make has to be at least £1. The bet you are placing has to be at EVS 2.0 or above for you to qualify for the free bet bonus. The bet is also not applicable for forecast and tricast bets.
Once the free bet money has been credited to your account, you will need to claim it by using it within three days. Failure to this, the bonus is forfeited and removed from your account.
In-play betting on Virtual Sports
Based on the format of play available for the Ladbrokes virtual sports, in-play live betting is not supported. For all the events available here, you can only place pre-match bets. The duration of time the markets will remain open before kickoff depends on the specific virtual event you are betting at. For instance, with the virtual soccer matches, the markets close when the match kicks off but with the horse races, the markets will close 10 seconds to kickoff.
To keep track of time and avoid being locked out of the market, you should use the countdown timer placed in the event video stream. The countdown timer will show you how much time is left for you to place your bet. When the markets close, you will hear the commentator announce as well as a banner flashing on the screen indicating no more bets allowed.
Mobile betting on Virtual Sports
In addition to having your favourite sporting action round the clock, Ladbrokes ensures you can play on the go, thanks to their mobile gaming platform. The Ladbrokes mobile gaming options accommodate all mobile devices, provided you have an internet connection.
If you are using modern Android or iOS mobile devices, then you can get the downloadable Ladbrokes apps from the respective app stores. However, if you have an older model smartphone that is not compatible with the downloadable apps, then you can simply play through your mobile browser by using this Virtuals.Bwin.com.
Whichever mobile platform you opt to use, you will have access to the Ladbrokes virtual sports section. Based on our experience the apps tend to give better graphics and video streams compared to the mobile browser.
Virtual Sports Provider
The Ladbrokes virtual betting section is made possible through the software services offered by Inspired Inc. Inspired Entertainment Inc. is one of the leading companies in 3D gaming animations. The UK based company has been the brains behind some of the leading virtual gaming portals in the industry. The company has a long history that stretches way back to 2002 and currently boasts of a clientele of more than a hundred top online casinos and gaming sites.
The beauty of using a top gaming software provider is that you are assured your games will be receiving regular upgrades and even new games to offer a better gaming experience.
While playing at the virtuals section, you can use the regular deposit and withdrawal methods available for the other sections of the site. Since Ladbrokes serves a diverse global clientele, they have a multi-currency cashier section to accommodate all gamers.
For deposits and withdrawals, you can find a good number of payment methods to select from comprised of e-wallets, card, and even direct deposits. These include Visa, MasterCard, Skrill, Neteller, PayPal, Apple Pay, and Paysafecard. If you live in an area where Ladbrokes operates a physical shop, you can make a direct deposit or withdrawal from your online account.
The minimum deposit and withdrawal limits will vary between £5 and £10, depending online payment method you are using. The deposits are processed instantly, but withdrawals can take between 1 to 3 business days to reflect in your account.
|Payment Method||Deposit Minimum||Deposit Maximum||Time for Deposit|
|Paysafe Card||£5||Not specified||Instant|
|Payment Method||Withdrawal Minimum||Withdrawal Maximum||Time for Withdrawal|
|PayPal||£10||£10,000||Up to 2 Days|
|Neteller||£10||Not specified||Up to 2 Days|
|Skrill||£10||Not specified||Up to 24 Hours|
|ApplePay||£0.01||£30 000||1-3 Days|
The FAQs below can be useful in resolving any issues you might have before reaching out to the support team.
What shall I do if the Virtual streams are not loading?
You should check if you are using a supported mobile browser. While most mobile browsers will work well with the Ladbrokes site, some might show some abnormal behavior. The most recommended browsers are Chrome, Mozilla, Safari, and Opera. Alternatively, you can use the downloadable native apps which tend to give a better browsing experience.
How do I claim the Virtual Sports Welcome Bonus?
The virtual sports welcome bonus is automatically credited to your account provided you have met the minimum first deposit requirements. If you have met these requirements, but still the free bet does not show in your account, you can reach to the support team, and they gladly assist.
Is there a cash-out option on virtual sports?
No, there is no cash-out option with virtual sports.
I’m unable to access the Ladbrokes site. What is the issue?
Ladbrokes currently does not accept gamers from all zones. You need to check and ensure that Ladbrokes is open for gamers in your zone or region. Gamers in most of the European countries can easily access and play at Ladbrokes. For a comprehensive list of restricted regions, check out the ‘Help’ page.
How do I use the free bet when placing a bet?
Once the free bet is a credit to your account, it will reflect in a small bar placed right below your account balance tab. When placing the next bet, at the section where you indicate the stake amount in your betslip, you will get a prompt on whether to use the free bet. Click on the ‘Use free bet’ tab, and this will be used as you stake money.
Is there in-play betting with virtual sports?
No, Ladbrokes does not offer an in-play live betting option for virtual sports. All bets have to be placed before the start of the race or match.
Can I cancel a virtual sports bet?
No, once a bet is placed and confirmed, you cannot backtrack and cancel the bet.
Do mobile apps support virtual sports video streams?
Yes, the mobile apps offer access to all the virtual sports, complete with the HD video streams.
Conclusion and Rating
Just as with the other online betting services offered by Ladbrokes, the virtual sportsbook turns out to be equally of a good standard. The type of sporting events offered, the quality of the graphics as well as betting markets offered are satisfactory. The sliding design of the video streams is also unique and offers a better browsing experience.
Nonetheless, the welcome offer sets Ladbrokes apart from many other competitors who fail to provide something extra to virtual gaming fans. To cap it all up, we found Ladbrokes to have a very responsive customer support team that can walk you through any gaming challenges you might have. Provided you live in a zone that is supported by the Ladbrokes site, there is a sportsbook worth checking out. The only let down would be in the betting options available for the speedway, where some additional options would be more than welcome. Also, we look forward to seeing more virtual sports such as tennis and trotting being added here.