Most of the people living now wouldn’t have been around to witness this, but Patience or Solitaire used to be a real casino table game in the 60s. People would go to casinos or arcades and play Patience for real money. They would buy a deck of cards usually the price would be USD 52, and for each card put in the ace stack they would earn USD 5.
Most of the time a croupier would be monitoring / guiding 3 Patience tables at the same time. This was necessary as a Patience game can easily take 2,3 minutes depending on the speed of the player. In order to make Patience economically viable for a casino, it was absolutely necessary that croupiers could handle more then 1 player.
After Patience slowly disappeared from the Las Vegas scene, it was absent on most people’s minds for quite some time. Until in 1990 Microsoft introduced Solitaire as part of it Windows product line. Their idea wasn’t to entertain people with the game, or let them play for money, but to make users familiar with graphical user interfaces, and to familiarize them with the use of a mouse. The game quickly became very popular among users of Windows, and more varieties of the game were quickly added. There was also a version called Vegas Solitaire, which resembled the casino version of Solitaire that was on offer in Las Vegas 30 years earlier. You could play this for money although it was never for real, it worked exactly as Patience did in Las Vegas, and you would buy a deck of cards for USD 52. The nice thing about this new setup was that players could actually achieve scores and see how much money they could win hypothetically.
One of the big questions still remains: Why has Microsoft never tried to monetize their super popular game? I guess with online gambling being strictly forbidden in the US and Microsoft having a very lucrative business with its operating system in place there was no need, and certainly little appetite to take any unnecessary risk.
Recently we have seen Patience becoming reintroduced as casino table game by Oryx Gaming. In 2018 the company launched their version of the game ‘Casino Patience’, and over the past few months we have seen more and more online casino’s starting to offer this table game again. Especially in Germany the game seems to be very popular. On a lot of websites in Germany it’s possible to play: Ein Patience Spiele spielen.
It seems that 2018 & 2019 are the years that Patience and Solitaire will make their comeback as a casino table game. Solitaire and Patience have been popular for a long time; almost in every country Solitaire is one of the most downloaded games in the appstore. The idea of launching the game in an online casino isn’t strange at all!