Blackjack is one of if not the most popular casino game in the world. Every land-based casino will almost always have a blackjack table. One of the big advantages is that blackjack is one of the easiest games to learn and play when starting out in a casino. The major factor for regular gamblers playing blackjack is the low house advantage. All games in an online or land-based casino provide an edge to the house. Playing blackjack gives the fairest advantage to the player.
The game is often referred to as “21”. The basic idea of blackjack is to beat the dealer. The way to beat the dealer is to get a higher card value than them and as close to 21 as possible without going over that number. If a player gets a 21 value, then the casino will payout on a 3:2 ratio.
Blackjack is a fast-paced game and implementing a solid basic strategy increases your chances of winning. In most land-based and online casinos they will even provide you with this strategy as it is a widely accepted way to play the game. At land casinos dealers can remind you of the strategies and prevent you from making bad decisions. Online casinos don’t have that benefit of direct dealer interactions apart from some basic prompts.
Live Blackjack Rules
Usually when playing live blackjack online there will be a standard set of rules. The general set of rules are not limited to but usually include:
The total amount of the hand is counted by adding the numerical card values together. Card values from 2-10 are counted as their numerical equivalent. The suit of the cards doesn’t matter.
All picture cards are counted as 10. The picture cards are jacks, queens and kings.
Your hand must be higher than the dealers but 21 or under to win.
Aces are either counted as 1 or 11 depending on which has more favour to the hand. Any hand containing an ace is referred to as a soft hand.
Getting an ace and a second card with a value of ten in the starting deal then this hand is called a blackjack. A blackjack is paid instantly at 3:2 unless the dealer has a 10 or ace at the start of the hand. Then in that case the player must wait till the end of the hand.
If an ace is the dealer’s visible card, then you can place an insurance bet before the other card is revealed. If the dealer has blackjack, the insurance bet pays out at 2:1.
The dealer must hit until their hand totals to 17 or more.
The dealer will stand on a ‘soft’ 17. However, these are dependent on online casino rules and are not applied by every online casino.
Basic Blackjack Strategy
Our covering of basic blackjack strategy will involve the best action to take based on your cards and the dealer’s card which is showing. We won’t be providing or going over any card counting techniques people use in land casinos. These also won’t work in online casinos as the cards are usually reshuffled after every hand.
For the most basic players starting off playing blackjack here are the options you can take during a hand.
Stand – Take no more cards
Hit – Take another card
Split – Create two separate hands if you are holding a player
Double – Take an additional card and double your bet
It is important to pay attention to the cards that are on the table when playing blackjack. Although card counting isn’t illegal it will get you banned from a physical casino and is not possible in online casinos. You can download software to hack a system to cheat the game, but this is also illegal. Not to mention that the casino has your personal information on file from registration.
If you take note of all the cards on the table during a hand and most of them are low cards avoid hitting on 14 and up. This is because the chances of a higher card coming out are increased as there are fewer low cards in the deck. You reduce the houses edge if you stand and let it play out hoping the dealer busts instead of you.
Some players also like to use the Oscar system when playing. It is one of the easiest and most simple strategies to learn. If you win your hand add a chip to the bet. If you lost a hand bet the same amount you did before. Once you earn any money on top of your wins restart the process. Never increase the bet by more than one chip per hand. Those are the steps for that type of blackjack system.
You will find our play chart below. It contains what action you should take depending on your cards and the dealers face up card. Although there is no guarantee this strategy chart will win you money if you use it in turn with a strategy you lower the house’s edge and increase your chances of winning. The table covers the basic hands like not hitting on a standard 17 but covers every other combination od cards.
Unless you have studied the table for some time or know it from experience then it is useless for land-based casinos. The strategy table is perfect for online blackjack as you can keep it open or printed off as you play.