Online Blackjack Odds

Winner at “21”

Here’s a bit of helpful information in improving your odds with the game of blackjack or also known as “21.” This is not a system but a way to improve your game.

The game can be described in two sentences yet many players play it all their lives and never learn to play it correctly. In fact, I’ve seen some of the same people consistently play high stakes gambling at a blackjack table for years and only recently, one of these individuals asked me what “splitting” was and how and why you do it. I can only tell you that without knowing how to split cards through the years this person placed themselves at a terrible disadvantage which edged them into the loss column.

Basically, the object of “21” is to draw cards which when added together make 21 or as close to 21 as you can without going over. If your hand is closer to 21 than the dealer’s, you win, if there is a tie, you break even or “push”.

Yet with this simple concept, a smart player could have his steady share of winnings. But on the other hand, thousands of players lose millions every year because they don’t know what they’re doing.

But the most amazing thing about people at any blackjack game is that so many can’t count. They actually can’t add. I constantly see people hit 20 and 21. It’s enough to send the cold shakes down your back to see a sure winner convert to a loser because they can’t add 5, 7 and 9. People shaky about their simple addition should practice at home or even play blackjack online where the sum of your cards is displayed.

A mark of a good player is someone who knows how and when to ‘split’. It means that when their first two cards are alike they are permitted, if they wish, to split them up. Now the player has two hands to bet with. The player must bet the same amount on the second hand as he had on the first and draw to each as if they were separate hands.

Never split fours, fives, nines or tens (10, J, Q, K). The reason is obvious. Two 4s add to eight, which is a good start for a hand, two 5s add to ten, even better, etc. You usually split 2s, 3s, 6s and 7s. You split 5s when the dealer’s show card is a seven to a deuce. For example, if you are dealt a pair of 8s and the dealer has a 7 showing, split. It is to your advantage.

The ace, because it can be used as either one or eleven, can be seen as the most complicated card of “21” especially for beginners. Players with an ace, A4 (5/15) and A6 (7/17), have what are called a ‘soft’ draw, they can either stick or draw another card hoping to catch 21.

The trouble with most blackjack players is that they guess their way from hand to hand never quite being certain of what to do. Let’s see if we can eliminate some of the guess work.

Some blackjack players play using some very strange methods or reasoning. Players have tossed coins to make decisions or relied on incorrect information from family or friends to make decisions like never hit a soft 16. Wrong. Every situation needs to be calculated and acted upon. The most important rule for any casino game is learning the rules and how to play properly.

The psychology of most players is also discouraging. Most will have the mentality of, “I brought $50 along to lose. Then I’ll stop.” They seldom say, “I have $50 and with it I’m going to win.” They’re beaten before they start.

Try to know what you’re doing at any table game and try not to guess too much. If a player stumbles and guesses, they can be referred to as “a live one” and other players at the table are prone to leave or get upset because a player’s actions can sometimes have direct effect on other players hands.

Above all else, practice makes perfect. Play with friends, family or even at a casino online to hone the skills necessary to make money. And when you’ve learned how to play well with the right techniques, don’t be influenced by the actions of big money players. They often play more reckless than the average player because they have more money to burn.

A player once said, “I found a perfect way to play blackjack! You never hit a breaking hand (never draw to a 12 or over) no matter what the dealer has up. If you don’t hit, you can never go over.” This man won $40,000 at a hotel playing this way.

Later, I found out that this man, in reality consistently loses – he has lost over $1,000,000. And like most players he likes to talk about his great winnings but he never mentions his losses. It’s a popular ‘story’ of a gambler who lost $1,000 Monday night, again Tuesday and again Wednesday but on Thursday wins $500. Late that night they celebrate by spending $500 for the party and truly you’ve never seen a happier fellow…until the next day

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