Blackjack is one of the most popular card games today. You can play this game in almost any land casino or in live casinos online. Below you will find a list of live casinos that we put together for you on our website. But before you play this game we recommend that you find your way around blackjack rules.
To play blackjack, you will need 6 large (or poker) 52-card decks without jokers. There are 8 betting boxes, so the maximum number of players is also 8. The betting boxes are rectangular areas drawn on the table. This is where the players place their bets and a dealer, or a croupier, deals the cards. If there are more betting boxes than players, one player can play two or even three hands. All players compete against the casino, represented by the dealer.
Before the game starts, the players place their bets. The casino has an exclusive right to set the lowest and the highest possible bet size. The highest bet size limit is usually 5 to 10 times bigger than the lowest limit. For instance, a player can place 100 to 500 dollars, or even up to 1000 dollars, in one box. The players place their bets by putting chips in the betting boxes before the game starts.
Card value in blackjack
|Ace||11 or 1||7||7|
As you can see, ace can value 1 or 11, according to the player’s choice. At any given moment of the game, the player can chose which ace value to choose.
Beginning of the game
The game starts with the dealer shuffling all six decks together. The dealer then puts all 312 cards into a gaming device known as the dealer’s shoe. During the game, the dealer pulls the cards out through a hole in the shoe face down, so that the players can see the back of the upper card through the hole.
Objective of the game is to get 21 points as soon as possible. However, a lower card total – let’s say 20, or even 19 – can also be a winning score. The key point is that you need to have more points than the dealer. If your hand value exceeds 21, you lose, or “bust”, as they call it in casino banking games. To calculate your card total, you will need to add up the value of cards in your hand. The suit does not count.
The dealer puts one card, face down, in each betting box, including their own. In the next round, the dealer does the same – that is, deals one card per player and his/herself. Now each player has a hand of two cards. The hand with 21 points on the first two cards (for example, an ace and a 10) is considered a “blackjack” and wins.
Сroupier signals in a real casino
If a player wants to take another card, or “hit”, he/she signals the dealer by slightly scratching the table with fingers or cards, tapping the table or waving towards the body. Upon seeing these signals, the dealer gives the player one card face up. The dealer must give the player as many cards as requested. When the player decides that he/she doesn’t need any more cards, he/she “stands” and signals the dealer by waving the hand horizontally. The player can also let the dealer know that he/she busts. In this case, the dealer takes the wager away from the player immediately.
When the dealer is done with one player, he/she moves on to the next one and offers this player one or more cards. The dealer then proceeds with the next player. Having dealt cards to everyone, the croupier deals cards to him/herself. Thus, the dealer plays against all other players at once. The dealer is also subject to the rules and certain limitations. For instance, if the dealer has less than 17 points, he/she has to draw an additional card, even if he/she sees that he/she has more points than any of the players at the table. But if the dealer’s hand achieves the value of 17 or higher, the dealer has to ‘stand’ (end the turn), even when the dealer has less points than any of the players.
When the dealer busts, all players get paid out. Their win equals to the size of their bet. But if the dealer does not bust, only players with more points than the dealer get paid out, and all the rest lose their bets. If the dealer and the player have the same card total, the standoff is considered a tie.
As we mentioned earlier, a combination of two cards with a total value of 21 points is known as blackjack. Blackjack is paid 3:2, meaning that the player’s win is 1.5 times his/her wager, unless the dealer also has a blackjack. In this case, all other hands lose, even if they have 21 points (except for blackjack). If both the player and the dealer have a blackjack, it’s a tie.
Blackjack has another interesting feature. When the dealer’s first card is an ace, he/she offers the players a side bet called insurance. The player can bet half his/her wager by putting chips on an insurance line. If the dealer has a blackjack, the player gets paid out twice the wager (the player gets the insurance back together with an insurance payoff), while the dealer takes the wager. If the dealer has no blackjack, the dealer takes the insurance, and the bet is played as usual.
Another term that you should be aware of is blackjack split.
If your first two cards are of the same value, you can split the pair into two hands by making a second bet equal to your first. For instance, if your first two cards are sevens, you can ask the dealer to split them. If any of the split cards gets joined by a second card of the same value (for example, jack-jack, or jack-queen), you can split them again. Further splitting can take place up to three or four times, depending on the casino. It is the dealer’s duty to timely remind the player about the right to split.
In blackjack, you can also double down. For instance, if your first two cards add up to 9, 10 or 11 points, you have a right to double your bet. However, in each of these cases, the casino decides whether to grant the right to double down. The hand value that allows doubling the bet may vary in different casinos, but it is never 18, 19, or 20. One of the dealer’s duties is to remind the players about their right to double down.
When the player’s hand has two cards and the dealer’s hand has one card, the player also has a right to surrender, or quit the game. In this case, the casino will take half of the player’s bet as compensation. The option to surrender is not available if the dealer has a blackjack. Remember that not every casino offers the option to surrender. Make sure to check out the game rules of each particular casino before you start playing.
And one last thing: if you acquire a taste for blackjack, it will be really hard to quit. It is very easy to become addicted to blackjack, so please be careful and play responsibly.