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Blackjack Strategy

Blackjack Strategy
Blackjack is one of the most popular card games in the world. No matter what casino you walk into or play online, there is going to be at least a classic blackjack option. This means that players can vary strategies with them.

Since there is a drastically lower chance of winning when not employing a strategy, it behooves players of all types to at least learn the basic betting strategy. This tells you the best mathematical way in which to play any hand that is dealt. For more info on the odds in Blackjack, check out our Blackjack Odds Explained page.

Ultimately, it takes the guesswork out of standing, hitting, doubling, splitting, or surrendering. A basic strategy can lower the house edge by just 0.5%, depending on the number of decks and the specific rules of the table. While it may not cut the house edge by much, it can stop players from losing more than those not using a strategy.

Basic Blackjack Strategy

Before starting, it is crucial to understand that blackjack is based entirely on player decisions. This is different from just about any other casino game. The decisions that the player makes can have an impact on the outcome of how the hand plays out and can ultimately contribute to the wins or losses of the entire table.

Due to this fact, there are proven strategies out there that give players the best percentages while playing. The goal is to give the player the best odds, helping to not only limit potential losses but also maximize wins.

The basic strategy is based on what the player is dealt in relation to the hand the dealer is showing. Most new blackjack players will operate on gut feeling, which naturally makes them afraid of busting. But a basic strategy can result in the most favorable odds.

In any game, the house has a clear advantage. This is how they turn a profit. Blackjack, though, has one of the lowest house edges among casino games, which is why so many players try to master it. If you're needing a good site for Blackjack, check out our Best Live Dealer Apps page.

The average house edge is roughly 0.5% when a player uses the perfect basic strategy. This means that for every $100 you bet, the casino is expecting to win roughly $0.50 over an infinite number of hands. The basic strategy is a sound one for any new player, though there are more advanced strategies as well.

Advanced Blackjack Strategies

For anyone who has casino experience, there is no doubt that you have heard of card counting. This is a system in which a positive expectation can be gained while also putting the house edge in favor of the player. It is not illegal, per se, but most casinos will show you the door as it can result in serious winnings.

What is Card Counting?

Basically, card counting is a form of tracking system where players with strong memories can keep track of the cards that have already been dealt. In most casinos, the game is dealt from a shoe, meaning there are only a certain number of cards that can be in play each round. Over time, it is possible to get an idea of what cards are remaining and then adjust the betting strategy accordingly.

The majority of counting systems use -1, 0, and +1 to assign a value to each card in the deck. Face cards and aces are -1, cards 7, 8, and 9 are neutral or 0, and 2-6 are given a value of +1. As the cards are dealt, the player tracks the count using this system to try to get an overall picture of what is left in the shoe.

Since there are multiple decks in play at a time, the player divides the running count by the number of decks that they believe may be left; this is what forms the true count. The system takes a lot of practice to get down, but it has proven to be an advantage.

Misconceptions About Card Counting

There is a major misconception when it comes to card counting and that is that only extremely skilled math wizards are smart enough to pull it off. Both poker and blackjack players are often asked a plethora of questions about counting cards, as well as whether it really is workable or even legal.

In reality, card counting is a variation of the basic strategies. There is no necessary photographic memory or math prowess. It is a skill that players can master but the difficult part is not getting kicked out when using them in person.

That said, card counting can be used online because the consequences aren’t the same. This means that players can be at an advantage over the house, experiencing more wins than losses. This means knowing when/ the odds are in the player’s favor, which can lead to bigger bets, which is ultimately how big wins happen.