There are lots of different card games that can be played at casinos. Whether you are off to visit your local casino on a Friday night, or are simply popping onto a kasyno online while on the train home for work, there are a number of games that will give you a much better chance of winning than others, and blackjack is one of them
Not only is it a relatively easy game to learn, but it is also one where the house edge, which is the advantage that the casino has over the player, is relatively low, sometimes at just 1.5%.
The lower the house edge, the more chance there is of being a winner, and with blackjack, the chances of holding a winning hand are much higher than other card games such as baccarat or Texas Hold’em poker, which is why it is one of the most popular casino games for players from all over the world.
Learning the Basics
Blackjack can be played with a single deck or multiple decks, so it’s important to know which you will be playing with. The aim of the game is simple – you have to beat the dealer’s hand with the value of cards in your hand without going over the value of 21. In blackjack, face or pictures cards such as the King, Queen and Jack are all worth 10. So if you hold two face cards in your hand, you have a value of 20.
In most versions of Blackjack, the Ace card is worth either 11 or 1, so if you hold an ace and a queen, then you’ve got your target score of 21. If you hit, which is to ask for another card from the dealer, as you might only be holding a value of 14, and you go over the value of 21, then you go bust.
When is best to stand
You stand when you’ve decided that you want to play your hand against the dealer. However, you need to know when is the best time to stand or take another hit. This would depend on both the hand you are holding, as well as what the dealer has for their blackjack hand, where one of their two cards will be shown.
If the dealer has a low card, such as something between 2 to 5, it is usually safe to assume that their other card is most likely a face card, so they would have around 12-15 as their total. The dealer would need to take a hit as you can only hold if you have 16 or higher, so the chances are the dealer will take another face card and bust. So if you are holding a value or 16 or more, it would be a safe bet to stay.
However, if you see that the dealer has a face card showing, then the chances are that they also have a face card hidden. So their total could be around the 20 point mark. So if you are holding a lower value, then you will need to take a hit, and hope that you don’t go bust when being dealt the new card.
It might take a little time to get used to knowing when to stand or take a hit, but after playing a few rounds, you’ll pick up the concept pretty quickly. A lot of players will often make the mistake of sticking or taking a hit when they didn’t really need to, thus usually ending up as a loser in that round.
One additional option available to players is the chance to split cards. This happens when a player is initially dealt two of the same card, for example, two sevens. They can then choose to split which means they basically have two hands to play with, and can take a hit or stick on both hands, doubling the chances of having a winning hand.
However, there are some situations where it is best not to split the cards. If you are holding two 10s, then it is better not to split, and stick with the 20 in your hand. Splitting on two tens has a great chance of you going bust. If you are dealt a pair of aces or 8s, then these are the best hand to split, and offer the great chance of being a winner of that round.
Playing blackjack at a casinó is lots of fun and very easy to get into. But when you are playing for money, you need to be aware of the best times to stick, take a hit or split. As long as you follow the basic strategies for these options, then you should have a fairly decent chance of winning. After all, it is a casino game that has one of the lowest house edges, so the chances of you winning will always look positive.
Interesting related article: “What is Gambling?“