Online Blackjack Odds

Blackjack Rules

When you’re talking about casinos, you simply can’t avoid mentioning blackjack, since it’s one of (if not THE) most popular casino games around the world. Being a relatively simple game at heart, blackjack has been around for centuries, although in the form of the “vingt-et-un” (or twenty-one game), which was played ever since the 18th century in French casinos.

What makes blackjack so popular is the fact that, unlike many other casino games, it is not reliant simply on luck. Ok, luck does have a huge importance in the success of any blackjack player, but it’s equally important to have the necessary skills and a well rounded strategy when playing. But we’ll get into this a bit later, since I want to explain where the name of blackjack comes from, as this is one of the first questions you’re probably going to ask if you’re new to the game.

Back when blackjack was introduced in the United States, gambling houses noticed it wasn’t very successful, so they had to offer players some extremely good bonuses in order to attract them to the tables. One of these bonuses was an impressive 10-to-1 payout ratio if the player got the ace of spades and a black Jack in his hand. It’s this combination of cards that eventually led to the name of blackjack used today.

Blackjack Rules

Let’s move on to some basic blackjack rules. If you’ve never seen or played a game of blackjack, here is how it goes: Each player receives two cards and may take additional ones if needed. The scope of each player is to get a sum from the cards that is equal or as close as possible to 21, without exceeding it. But there’s a twist, since not all cards are worth their value. Face cards (the jack, queen and king) are worth 10 points and the ace can be either 1 or 11 points. So for example if you are given a hand containing a 5 and a 10, you could pick up another card and hope for a 6 or under, in order to get as close as possible to 21. If you get a 7 or above, you’ve exceeded 21 and produced a “bust”, taking you out of the game.

The game is not played between the different players on the table. It is played between the dealer and each individual player. So if the dealer ends up with a sum of 20, one player could beat him with a 21, but another could lose with an 18. The rules are slightly in favor of the dealer, since if both a dealer and a player “bust” (exceed 21), the player still loses. In addition if both a player and the dealer are stuck at the same point value, neither of them will win, with a “push” being called, ending the hand as a draw.

Blackjack Terms

Last but not least, if you ever intend to play blackjack at a casino you need to familiarize yourself with the “game talk” and the terms surrounding it. Here are some of the most important and commonly used ones:

Hit – When a player says “hit” the dealer gives them an additional card.
Stand – If you choose to stand, you will receive no more cards and end your turn.
Double down – This is when you double your wager and take a single card and then automatically stand. (Basic strategy says you should double down whenever you have a 10 or 11)
Split – if you have both initial cards with the same value (for example two 5s) you can choose to split them in two new hands, and double the wager. Each of the two cards will be considered the first one in the new hands.
Surrender – If you feel like you have no chance of winning, you can choose to surrender your hand and forfeit half the bet. However, this option is not offered by many casinos nowadays.

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