Many gamers are keen to roll-up and play the lush, slick blackjack interfaces, available at the web’s premier online casinos – but learning the rules is enough to frighten many gamers away to easier options such as online slots and roulette. However – that’s a big mistake because even a novice gamer can get going in minutes.
The fundamental rule of online blackjack is simple – form a hand with a value as close to 21 as possible. Do not exceed 21, or you’ll go bust and lose the round (and your wager!).
Once you’ve selected a basic bet value, simply click to instruct the dealer to start the round. Both the dealer and the player are instantly dealt two playing cards from a standard 52 card deck. You’re permitted to view the dealer’s first card, to analyse their hand.
Then it’s decision time! Blackjack permits you to either hold your hand and Stand against the dealer (i.e. if you have a great hand, Stand) or Hit to draw one more card. You’re free to continue Hitting until you’re happy you have a hand with a good chance of beating the dealer. Of course, the tension’s bound to escalate the closer you get to 21 – it’s a nerve racking fine line between blackjack and bust!
However, if Of course, the tension’s bound to escalate the closer you get to 21 – it’s a nerve racking fine line between blackjack and bust!
However, if you manage to Hit blackjack (Ace and a 10 value card) you have an un-beatable hand that pays out at odds of 3:2. If the dealer also has blackjack – the round is voided (and you’ll be cursing your luck!).
Many blackjack games have a Soft 17 rule, meaning the dealer must Hit when they are holding a hand value below 16, but Stand with 17 or more. This means the dealer must essentially go for broke when they have a mid-level hand, but is unable to hit a very high value hand once they exceed 17.
Advanced Blackjack Rules for Enhanced Game-play
Now that you know the basics – it’s time to discover the blackjack rules that make the game a dynamic wonder in the casino world. What’s more, these cool features can deliver maximum payout punch!
Double-down rule for double payouts
The double down rule is the most famous and popular blackjack bet. Once you’ve analysed your two cards at the beginning of each round – you have the option of doubling your basic wager with the double down blackjack rule. If you click double down – you’ll instantly receive one more card and then enter a stand off with the dealer. The volatile nature of the double down rule makes it potentially profitable and risky – the ultimate blackjack adrenalin rush!
Split bets for double fun
Split bets are the other blackjack rule than can double your win potential – by creating two separate wagers. This slick blackjack rule allows you to split a pair of cards (excluding aces) and game with two hands.
- Original bet = 10.00
- Click Split
- Split bet = 2 x 10.00 = 20.00 stake
The beauty of the split betting rule is the fact that you have the opportunity to smash the dealer with two wins, or at least break even with one win. Of course, there is the risk that both hands may lose, but it’s often a risk worth taking!
Play it safe with Insurance
Casino gaming is usually all about risk and excitement – but savvy blackjack gamers know that sometimes applying the less fashionable rules can pay serious dividends. We’re talking about the blackjack insurance rule, the wager that offers the power of protection against the dealer hitting blackjack when their first hand is an ace or a 10. Insurance bets pay out at 2:1 when the dealer hits blackjack. If the dealer is crushing you and you fear the worst – take insurance!
If you’ve heard about the new hit movie, 21 – you’ll know all about the true power of blackjack strategy – most notably, card counting techniques. Down the years, these methods have literally taken tens of millions from the hands of the casinos, using legal skill-play!
The key to blackjack strategy is to understand that high value cards can be an absolute nightmare for the house – thanks to the Soft 17 ruling. Imagine if the dealer is on 15 and you know the pack is rich in high value cards……can you shout ‘you’re going down’ any louder?
Card counting systems work by assigning card values and creating a running score – allowing you to create pivot points when the winning edge is in your favour. Most blackjack strategies (when used correctly) can yield an edge of 1-4% – enough for long-term casino success.
The Casual Card Counting System
Many casual blackjack players are keen to boost their skill levels, but don’t have the time or inclination to become professional card counters. However, the good news is you can start using simple pack analysis techniques – the very next time you play! It’s called, casual card counting…
- Make a casual mental note of the card flow (is it rich in low value or high value cards)
- Select your wagers based on your pack analysis
If you find your blackjack gaming is more enjoyable and profitable using casual card counting – you can start learning some real blackjack strategies, such as the popular Hi-Opt I card counting system.
Hi Opt I Card Counting System
The Hi-Opt I system is a relatively basic but powerful weapon against the casino – ideal for use when playing single deck blackjack. Check out the simple instructions:
Keep a running score by assigning the following card values:
- 3, 4, 5, 6: +1
- 10, Jack, King, Queen: -1
- 2, 7, 8, 9, Aces: 0
To boost the effectiveness of the blackjack system, you can keep a side-count of aces to determine whether pack is ace rich or weak.
- 1/4 pack has been dealt with no Aces = +1
- 2 Aces have been dealt = -1
It’s recommended to begin the Hi-Opt I count by multiplying the deck number by -2. Statistically, when the running count hits zero, you have an edge of 1%, and it may be time to raise your stakes and take the dealer to the cleaners.
The rules of Blackjack gaming can be picked up very quickly, by taking advantage of free-play casino credits and bonus offers. In addition, risk-free gaming is the ideal gaming environment to test-out the basics of blackjack strategy. So – get gaming and make the dealer wish you’d played somewhere else!