Are you a fan of the TV show Deal or No Deal and want to play it yourself from the comfort of your home and win the money in the briefcase?
Evolution and Playtech have their live dealer versions of this nail-biting game, where you decide whether to keep your briefcase until the end or accept a cash prize from the presenter.
I will review and compare the game’s two available live casino versions on this page and provide some general strategy tips.
Deal or No Deal is/was a TV show that originated in the 2000s in The Netherlands, where it’s still airing. It spread to almost 100 countries, only a few of which are still airing the show as its popularity waned in the late 2010s.
In the United Kingdom, the show’s original run on Channel 4 ended in 2016. But it returns in 2023 to ITV and ITVX with Stephen Mulhern as the presenter.
If you read this before the 12th of May, 2023, you can apply for the show! There will be 22 boxes in the TV show, while these two live dealer casino versions each use 16.
The action in the live dealer games is much faster, so you won’t wait an hour to see what’s in the briefcase. There’s less buildup of suspense, but that means you can play almost a dozen games within one hour!
In this article, I will review both live versions of Deal or No Deal, highlighting the differences and the range of prizes to be won.
On the right – or below if you’re on a mobile device, you’ll see the best UK online casinos where you’ll find one or both games.
In the Evolution game, you have 2 minutes to align the three spinners correctly to qualify for the main game.
Each spin costs you money, so it’s essentially a mini-slot game. It can be quite a while before you qualify, but you can make it easier by switching from Normal to Easy (3x bet, one spinner aligned) or Very Easy (9x bet, two spinners aligned). Every time you spin, the prize in the largest briefcase will change from 75x to 500x. The other 15 values are set according to your bet size and never change.
In the Playtech game, you buy a ticket and are in. I’ve found this to be a much better way to play the game, unlike the money pit qualification process in the Evolution game. However, with the Playtech game, you’ll be paying more to continue and to get to the Deal or No Deal part. So I guess it evens out.
Playtech tickets cost from £0.10 to £20.
Once you qualify for the Evolution game, you can boost any prizes you want.
You’ll select the briefcase you want to boost and then spin a 15-segment wheel to determine the boost amount. You can increase the spin bet amount, which boosts the briefcases more. It probably makes sense to upgrade a few of them at this point. The boosts applied for a £1 boost bet will be from £10 to £50.
In the Playtech game, you can also boost any prize you want. You’ll click on a prize you want to increase and be given five briefcases. You can get a smaller or bigger boost based on your luck. The variance of boosts is much greater in the Playtech game, as there’s a 20x difference between the smallest and the biggest you can get.
For a £1 bet, you’ll get a boost of £5, £10, £30, £50 or £100 applied to your chosen briefcase.
The Evolution game is very straightforward, so you’d be advised to play this one first to get introduced to the whole system. You’ll get 16 briefcases. The presenter initially removes three prizes/briefcases first. This is followed by a Banker’s offer based on the value of the 13 remaining prizes. One of which is yours, but you don’t know which one.
After that, four briefcases are removed, and you’ll get another offer. Finally, three more briefcases are removed, leaving two remaining. At this point, you’re given three choices: Deal, No Deal, or Switch Briefcase.
In the Evolution game, you will ALWAYS be offered a Deal with the exact average value of the remaining briefcases. So you don’t even have to count. It’s always a fair offer.
In the Playtech version of the game, you go through a process to reach a Deal offered by the Banker. Balls are drawn from a lottery-type machine containing 60 Balls. Twenty balls are drawn first, and you must match 7 numbers with your boxes to be eligible for the Deal by the Banker. It’s not very common to get the seven matches right away, so you’ll often have to buy more balls, and you do so by paying for five balls at a time. The price will depend on the prizes available.
You could say that this adds an entire bingo layer to the game that sits between the top-up round and the Deal or No Deal part.
I found the Playtech version more complex than Evolution. You’ll pay more to progress through the game round, but you will collect win multipliers between 2x and 25x when you reveal eight or more boxes, which incentivises you to go further.
The Playtech game will also ALWAYS offer a Deal with the exact average prize of the remaining briefcases.
Deal or No Deal Live is a game where I use a cunning strategy to try to come out on top, or at least I try to!
If you’ve watched the TV show, you may have some ideas on the best choices to make in certain situations to make a profit. If you have, playing one of the Deal or No Deal Live Games will allow you to try them out.
I’ve learned from playing hundreds of rounds of both the Evolution and the Playtech versions that you can profit if you avoid the pitfalls.
A conservative approach pays off.
If you pay attention to how much money you have invested in a game round, and get an offer above that, take it.
Waiting for the largest box is a losing strategy; get in, see the profit and get out is my mantra.
Many players report being able to play Deal or No Deal Live and make a profit.
You can’t possibly expect continuous profit since this is a gambling game, but Deal or No Deal is one of a few games where your strategy can beat the house!
If you’re pushing your luck and going for the best briefcase, it makes more sense in the Playtech game because a 25x win multiplier is awarded to the last briefcase, no matter its value.
If you get to the end of the game, you get the 25x multiplier. The largest possible prize in the Playtech version is 200 x 25 = 5000x, while the Evolution version is capped at 500x.
You’ll know in advance the value of the best briefcase in the Evolution game; it varies between 75x and 500x.
Occasionally, you’ll want to take a chance and chase that top prize. In most cases, it makes sense to take the Deal when offered, but if you’re lucky, there’s no harm in chasing the big payout if it’s still available. You’ve got to be in it to win it!
Boosting a few prizes to increase the value of a larger number of briefcases could increase your profit.
Without any mathematical evidence, I’ve found it worth boosting one of the smaller prizes to reduce the number of “bad” briefcases and increase the number of “good” ones. It’s a small strategy that moves the odds more in your favour.
I have a hunch this may be one aspect of the game where the operator anticipates players to be frugal and not boost any prizes.
It could be advantageous to do so. This is particularly true since any boost to any prizes will be reflected in the Deal value offered to you throughout the game round.
Remember, you are always offered the exact average value of the prizes in briefcases that remain. It’s up to you to increase the prize range and, therefore, the overall average by boosting the prize values. The variance stays the same; the amount you potentially win increases.
One “strategy” I’ve seen people use on the Evolution game is to boost two briefcases to great amounts, such as several thousand pounds.
Then it’s all about hoping to get one of them.
You have a 2 in 16, 1 in 8 chance, 12.5%, to land that top prize. As long as both briefcases remain in play, the Deal offered will be good.
The Deal gets progressively better as the two briefcases boost the average more and more as the other briefcases are removed.
Please note: This strategy is suitable for coming up with a good YouTube, Twitch video or TikTok moment, but it will cost money to get to the point where the video shows an actual win and not… well, one terrible loss after another.
This is more the case in the Evolution game, which is much more drastic with removing briefcases. In the Playtech game, the briefcases are removed slowly, one by one.
My advice is to use this strategy on the Playtech version.
Since it can take a lot of effort to qualify in the Evolution game, it makes sense to do this for the lowest possible bet. Then boost the boxes once you’re in.
Otherwise, you’re wasting money on something that won’t contribute to the Deals you’re offered later in the game.
Since the Playtech game offers win multipliers when at least eight briefcases have been removed, it makes sense to stay in the game and chase the 25x in the final box.
Of course, this depends on how much you’ve invested and how many cases you’ve accumulated before paying for extra boxes.
Often, the correct decision will be to pay to reach the eight boxes, the trigger point for the first banker offer.
The two Deal or No Deal games don’t have very good RTPs. They are just above 95%.
Still, I believe you can reduce that house edge significantly by following the correct strategy, which includes beating the urge to chase the top prize and cashing in on the Deal instead.
Start by playing the Evolution game to learn the ropes and get familiar with the concept. Once you have mastered the basics, you can progress to the much more elaborate Playtech version, which requires a different decision-making level.
Of the two, I prefer the Playtech game because it offers more options and choices and removes the briefcases one by one as the balls are drawn.
The Evolution game removes four at a time, which feels a bit drastic.
These are fun games for everyone who enjoys decision-making, game theory, and quick thinking.
You have to make your decisions quickly, and there’s always one choice that offers a better-expected value. The trick is identifying it during the time allowed and acting on it.
You can win this nail-biting game if you make the correct playing decisions. Most commonly, this involves accepting the Deal and not chasing the prizes. I also mention some additional tips and strategies on this page that may be useful to you.
The best strategy is to accept the Deal if the value offered exceeds the amount you’ve invested into the game at that point. Since the offer will usually be lower than the average of the remaining prizes, only Deal when the prize is more than you’ve wagered.
There are two live dealer casino versions. You get 16 briefcases with prizes up to 200x – 500x your initial bet. You can further boost the prizes by making more bets. After briefcases are removed, you’ll be offered a Deal. You can take it or keep playing, hoping you already have the briefcase with the highest prize!
Deal or No Deal is one of the most successful TV game shows ever. It ran in almost 100 countries, but over a decade, the ratings slowly declined. Eventually, the show got cancelled in the UK in 2016. However, it’s set for a revival in 2023.
Channel 4 scrapped the show in 2016 after 13 successful series over 11 years. In 2023, ITV brought it back with a new season. Regardless of the status of the TV show, the game lives on in Evolution and Playtech live dealer casino games you can play online 24/7. Also, the TV show is seemingly running forever in The Netherlands and Italy.
In the original Channel 4 show, the prizes ranged from 1p to £250,000.
Nine people have won the top prize in Channel 4’s Deal or No Deal: Laura Pearce, Alice Mundy, Suzanne Mulholland, Tegen Roberts, Nong Skett, Paddy Roberts, Roop Singh, Ann Crawford and Vikki Heenan. There were also 13 more winners of £100,000 or above. Fifty-two people won 1p, and eight players appeared on the show and walked away with nothing.