The common household name of blackjack is ‘21’, which was also what it was originally called. Today, blackjack is both the name and a ‘hand’ in the game, when any participant’s initial hand is comprised of an ace and a 10 or face card of any suit or colour.
The cards hold different values – 10 for face cards, pip cards at number value, and the ace can be either 1 or 11, depending what the player wishes. More on the value of the ace further on in our blackjack guide.
Playing Blackjack Online – Strategies and Rules
It’s not enough to have a good hand at blackjack – it must also be better than the dealer’s. First, all players place their bets. The dealer then deals a card to each of the players, and lastly to himself. He deals another card to each player, with the second card the dealer dealt to himself being placed face down.
The card facing down is called the hole card. At this time, should the dealer’s face-up card be an ace, he will offer players the opportunity to place an insurance bet. After allowing for this second bet to be placed, the dealer would then peek at his hole card, only turning it over in the case of Blackjack. In this case, the dealer wins unless a player has the same hand. Without a case of Blackjack in the dealer’s hand, play continues.
Blackjack Gameplay Online
Players then have a few options, depending on the cards in their hand:
Split a single hand with a pair of pip or 10 value cards, or a pair of aces. After splitting, the player will be able to treat the two separate hands normally. However, two hands made from a pair of aces that have been split can only receive one card each.
Hit or call for another card to be dealt to the player. The player can continue to hit until he decides to stand or ‘busts’.
Double announces that the player wishes to double the stakes and receive a lone card. Stand expresses that the player has finished playing out the hand after having split, or hit, or doubled. Surrender is an option only on the first two cards and results in giving up half of the bet to the dealer in order to keep the other half.
After all players have finished their play, the dealer will then turn over the ‘hole’ card. If the dealer has a 16 or under, he will draw more cards until he ‘stands’ with a hand of 17-21. Should the dealer not bust, any player who did not already bust and has a number higher than the dealers hand wins. When the dealer busts (goes over 21) all players who did not bust their hands win. As you can see, the aim is really to beat the dealer’s hand.
Winnings can be guaranteed, according to sites offering online guides to gameplay. The strategies proposed will rely upon vocabulary such as ‘hard’ and ‘soft’ hands, and ‘splits’. A hard hand is one without an ace or with an ace that counts as only one point, whereas a soft hand is one with an ace, whose point value has yet to be determined. With this first assessment having been made by the player, the player will respond to the dealer’s face-up card accordingly.
Rules of Blackjack Play Online
Between one and eight decks will be shuffled together and used to play the game of Blackjack. Live games, not played in an online simulation, usually take no more than two decks.
A hand that is scored as ‘Blackjack’ will pay 3 to 2 in most cases. It is not uncommon to find that tables pay 6 to 5 and, as this goes against tradition, traditionalists are not pleased. Online blackjack guides caution against playing such games since this adds to the house advantage. Nevertheless, many players claim that these games are better!
Ties result in a ‘push’, where the player receives back the exact amount of money he or she bet. All normal winnings pay evenly, such that if you bet 100, the dealer will pay you 100 to match your initial bet.
In the case that a player has a ‘soft’ hand, the ace value may change. Under normal circumstances, the value of an ace is 11. Should the player’s hand theoretically ‘bust’, the value of the ace will change to one.
For example, an ace and a six equal 17. If the play ‘hits’ and receives a 9, his hand would total 26, but only if the ace value remained the same. Instead, its value would change to one and result in a total of 16, and gameplay will continue.
Blackjack Double Exposure
Blackjack is probably one of the most famous and popular casino card games. This is most likely because it is a game of both skill and chance. Players must aim to accrue cards with a total face value as close as possible to the magic figure of 21 without going “bust”. To do this, the player must continually make decisions throughout the game. The most basic decision is whether to “Stand” (stick with the score already amassed with their first two cards) or “Hit” (take another card. Depending on the card values that they and the dealer holds, players can also choose to “Split”, “Double” or place an Insurance bet.
It is this need to constantly make decisions that makes the game of Blackjack one of the most engaging and entertaining of card games. However, not content with just the standard version of this game, the ever-popular gaming software company NetEnt has come up with a new variant: Double Exposure Blackjack. The difference here is that the first two cards in the Dealer’s hand are immediately dealt face-up or “exposed” to the players. This, of course, gives players a tremendous advantage when making their first decision of the game! However, to make up for this, there are some new rules that will help return the dealer’s house edge.
Ordinary Blackjack can be played with either a single or multiple standard 52 card decks. Double Exposure Blackjack uses 6 standard decks that are re-shuffled after every game round. Although most of the rules common to ordiary Blackjack apply to the Double Exposure variant, one difference is that any tie between player and dealer automatically favours the dealer, unless both have achieved a blackjack. Furthermore, because the player has the advantage of seeing the dealer’s first 2 cards, player blackjack payout is only even money. Other rule changes include only allowing a player to “split” (i.e. divide their cards into two hands) once during the round.
Many casinos offer the option of trying Double Exposure Blackjack for free. Because this variant comes with some new rules and features, it is highly recommended that even experienced Blackjack players have a go on these demo games. Getting a full understanding of the new rules before playing for real money is a no-brainer. Especially as the estimated return to player (RTP) rate is over 99%. As you would expect from a NetEnt game, the graphics are excellent and really make you feel that you could be sitting in a land casino. It is no wonder that this variation on a classic is so popular.
Atlantic City Blackjack Gold
Blackjack is one of the most beloved of all table games, and its numerous variations take up plenty of space, even in the lobby of online casinos. Microgaming, the giant behind some of the most famous titles in the online casinos, had already made quite a blast back in 2003 with the first edition of Atlantic City Blackjack, followed by Atlantic City Blackjack Gold in 2006. The most recent title of the Gold Series is an upgrade of the previous one, providing 8 decks with 52 cards each in a very intuitive game, with lots of features that brings the feeling of a traditional casino to wherever the player is.
The popularity of Blackjack began during the First World War, but its origins date back to the 1700s in France, where the game was called “vingt-et-un”, or 21. Slick and elegant looking, Microgaming’s Atlantic City Blackjack Gold brings some improvements over the last version, with an easy to use and smooth game that even has a “Free Play” option for those who’d like to give it a trial spin before starting to cash out real money. Like it usually happens in Blackjack, the goal here is one: the player has to beat the dealer by attaining 21 or the closest value possible.
To outplay the house, it is always necessary to either obtain a value higher than the dealer’s or to make it blast by exceeding 21. This American style hole card game has 8 regular decks and chips with a value range between 1 and 25, with the maximum bet being 200. Players can place wagers in one single hand, and the dealer must stand on all 17, being able to peek at its cards only on 10s and Aces. Late Surrender is available in this variation of Atlantic City Blackjack, giving players the chance to surrender after the dealer checks their cards.
Microgaming has made quite a name in the online gambling world, being an industry leader both in design and development of highly engaging and dynamic games, boasting an ever so rich collection of titles in all types of online casino games. Card and table games are no exception to the rule when it comes to quality, with Atlantic City Blackjack Gold giving a pleasent feeling of gambling on a typical land based casino, with all the perks its upgrades brought to the game experience. It has an impressive RTP of 99.62% and Auto-ReBet and Auto-Play options that really help to boost the gameplay.
How to Play American Blackjack
Different regions around the world play blackjack in their unique way. Some areas use the name Twenty-One to refer to this game. This card game is between the player and the dealer. Individual players take turns to play against the dealer. At no time do the gamers play against each other. In America, the game of blackjack begins by picking two cards. You hide the face of one and expose the face of the second one. Face Cards are worth Ten. Ace Cards have a value of one or eleven. The sum of the values of the cards for each player is then the value of the final hand.
When the value of Ace is eleven, it is a soft hand. The hand can be used as one to prevent the player from exceeding 21. When the value of the Ace is one, it is a hard hand. The hidden card, which must make the cards total to 17 or more is revealed by the dealer. The main aim is to win against the dealer by: *Without a dealer Blackjack, get 21 points on the player’s first two cards. *Without exceeding 21, your high score must be higher than that of the dealer. *If the dealer gets more than 21 cards therefore going bust.
American Blackjack is played by being conversant with the basic strategy. The Basic Strategy is to know the dealer’s up-card and play against his hand. The Composition-dependent strategy is where the player makes the right judgement by focusing on what is in his hand and in the dealer’s visible card. It makes hitting safer. However, these strategies give a small range of expected rewards. Advantage Play is using your intellectual skills like memory, observation and calculation against the dealer. This is one of the hardest but most promising baits to use on your dealer. If detected, however, it may lead to blacklisting.
There are several tricks you can use to enjoy advantage playing. Card counting enables you to picture the cards left to be handled. Shuffle tracking also gives you an added advantage. You have to be fast, accurate and of a high visual prowess. You can identify concealed cards of your opponents by their distinctive marks on their backs however, casinos both on and offline will consider this cheating. With this in mind, we do not recommend this type of strategy but rather that you should stick to the rules in order to win. With that in mind, go out, play responsible and enjoy your blackjack!
Double Zero or American Roulette
Blaise Pascal was a 17th century mathematician, physicist, inventor and Catholic theologian who may have inadvertently invented the roulette wheel in his search for a perpetual motion machine. However the first standard form of roulette was devised in France in the following century and has been in its present form since 1796. In this design there are two slots reserved for the bank – that is zero and double zero – so that the bank has increased odds of winning. In the 19th century the game spread throughout Europe and to the United States. In Europe a form of single zero roulette wheel took over while America played the double zero original.
When playing the double zero game the house is more likely to win because they own two zero’s instead of one. This means technically that you will win only 95% of your money back over time instead of 97% when using the European system. The secret to playing is to know when to take your profits or cut your losses. There are however a few rules which give the punter a well-deserved break. One is known as the “Atlantic City rule”. The beauty of this is that you only lose half of your stake when the ball ends up on zero.
Let’s take a step back and look at the brass tacks. The American style of roulette table with the wheel at one end is used in most casinos. In front of the wheel is a cloth covered betting area known as the layout. The inside layout consists of numbers from one to thirty six in columns of three. They are alternatively red or black. When you bet on these numbers it is called an inside bet. Outside bets consist of betting on a column of numbers, the numbers divided up into 1-12, 13-24 and 25-36. You can bet on odds or evens, 1-18 or 19-36 or on red or black.
Even though the house has the percentages of wins in its favour, there have been many people who have attempted to break the bank over the years and some have succeeded. The prediction method attempted to predict the mechanical performance of the wheel. However with developments of the wheel this is no longer a viable method. In the Martingale system the player doubles the bet after each loss, the Labouchere formula uses a series of numbers in a line and the D’Alembert a pyramid structure. In the end each system has its good points and downfalls. Play to enjoy the game.
The Appeal of Blackjack – First to 21 Wins!
Many of us started off playing blackjack with match sticks round the table at home. These days, blackjack is found throughout casinos worldwide; it is reportedly found in every land-based casino in the US. Even better, online forms of blackjack are readily available.
The best online casino sites even offer live games of blackjack, with a real dealer. The game is easy to understand after playing a couple of rounds. Log on to your favourite online casino and give it a try, and with a little bit of practice you might just be seeing some blackjack winnings.