We sat down with Josh and Mike from Wizard of Odds to learn more about how their site has grown to be a top destination for gamblers and their plans for the future. Founded in 1997, Wizard of Odds offers users everything from fun games to high-quality articles that break down mathematically correct strategies for nearly every casino game under the sun. They shared their thoughts on recent changes and expanding their offerings below:
1. How long have you been the webmaster/owner at Wizard of Odds?
Josh: We purchased the site in September 2014, so almost a year. Michael Shackleford, the “Wizard” and previous owner, was contracted to continue to be the main contributor to the site for at least the next 3 years from the date of the sale, but both Mike and the team are working well together so we both foresaw that relationship lasting much longer than that.
Mike: I’m also very happy working for Josh and look forward to staying on his team for many years. I think Josh and his team have done a great job with the appearance and functionality of the site while never compromising the integrity.
2. What section of the website plays the biggest part in its success?
Josh: The site is most well-known for its mathematical analysis of gambling games, with the blackjack and craps pages being the most popular on the site. The free games are also very popular as they unlike other free games and actually lets the players know when they are not making the most mathematically sound decisions while playing to ensure they have best chance of winning each game.
Mike: I have to give the enigma “JB” credit for most of the games and calculators. He has done a great job. As Josh mentioned, his games are a major draw for the site. JB continues to work for the site under Josh.
3. What are the main changes that have been made since the recent new ownership?
Josh: Since the purchase, we have organized the main games into sub-home pages. This helps the visitor find examples all the relevant information like for blackjack that the site has to offer in a well-organized fashion. This is an ongoing process and, so far we have completed blackjack, baccarat, roulette, craps and video poker.
We are also in the process of expanding the online gambling section into 3 areas, online casino, online poker and online sports betting. We have come the furthest with the online casinos section and now have hundreds of online casinos reviewed.
We have also totally redesigned and launched a new look for Wizard of Odds which is now mobile friendly, faster and easier to navigate.
Mike: I must say I didn’t envy Josh for having to organize the site. It started as just a one-page site and I kept tacking on parts for 18 years. I had no idea about web site organization and navigation when I started. Josh and his crew are working hard to make it easier to find what you’re looking for and they’re still at it.
4. In terms of upkeep, how much time do you put into maintaining the site?
Josh: In terms of content we have Mike working full-time maintaining and adding content and have added 2 more paid writers, Dustin Jermalowicz who also writes for Casino Listings and the 2nd is a longtime member of WoV who prefers to go by his profile name of Mission146.
We have a team of developers that Mike used previously maintaining and working on a new design for WoO (should be launched this year). We also have Jeremy, one of our developers working full time on the new sections of the site. Because he built much of Latest Casino Bonuses, he is able to feed a lot of that data into the new online casinos sections of WoO. This enables us to have one source of data that we can use for both sites eliminating duplicate data entry and management.
Mike: We’re soon going to offer live odds feeds in sports betting. Yet another way players can improve their odds. We’ve offered live jackpot feeds in bingo for years, but I don’t think too many people care. It would be an understatement to say that not every idea I’ve had for the site has been a huge success.
5. Could you name a few of the key factors that made Wizard of Odds the top destination for gambling and gaming information?
Josh: I think Mike’s mathematical no nonsense approach to reviewing gambling games was something that everyone could put faith in when wanting to know more about a game of chance.
Mike: Thanks Josh!
6. What are your favorite games to play?
Josh: I have always loved blackjack and poker but on my recent visit to Vegas, fell in love with the relatively new game of Ultimate Texa Hold’em. It has a much higher variance than blackjack but it is very exciting to play.
Mike: I enjoy Ultimate Texas Hold ‘Em too. I’m proud of the calculator. That and pai gow tiles are my two favorite games to play, just looking at the fun factor!
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