Blackjack is one of the most popular casino games known around the world, and is one of the only casino games where there is a certain element of skill involved; rather than just pure luck. There is a long history behind blackjack, but we will simply go over it briefly. Over the years, ever since this card game was invented, many other variants have popped up, especially since the internet made it that much simpler to play blackjack.
Blackjack is a card game that was derived from Twenty-One, a game that has no known origin. However, Miguel de Cervantes, the Spanish author of old, was the first to write about the existence of 21 in his book Don Quixote (1601). It was during one of his chapters, where a couple of hooligans cheated in a card game, ventiuna, which is Spanish for twenty-one. However, it was played without several cards in the Spanish deck, which include the 8’s, 9’s, and 10’s. It did involve playing against another player, with the goal of trying to get 21 or as close to it as possible. From there, it has popped up in other countries like France, in the 17th century.
When twenty-one made its way to the United States, a certain card combination was given as a bonus bet to make players happy. It paid 10-1, and the player would need to get an Ace, along with a Jack of black suit, like a Jack of Spades or Clubs. From there, the name Blackjack stuck and after years of going over and revising the rules, the game that we now know and play came into existence; where a blackjack is now the combination of an Ace and any ten valued card, instead of just a black suited Jack. From there, along with the help of the internet, online blackjack was born and is now easily accessible for any player around the globe.
General Blackjack Rules
There are various different rules that most players will encounter when playing blackjack at any of their favorite online casinos. The general rules include:
- # of Decks: the number of decks can vary, where players can find tables between 1, 2, 4, 6, or up to 8 decks. The house advantage will be different between deck sizes, so make sure to do your research before playing.
Number of Decks
1 0.17% 2 0.46% 4 0.60% 6 0.64% 8 0.65%
- Soft 17: at any given table, players will likely encounter dealers that Stand or Hit on a Soft 17 hand. This will greatly affect what decisions a player makes during a blackjack hand.
- Blackjack Payout: there will be tables, and casinos, that will pay a blackjack with either odds of 3-2 or 6-5. Players should try and play at tables that pay 3-2, as this will give them much higher profit, but be sure that the other table rules are favorable as well.
- Insurance: some tables won’t offer insurance when the dealer is showing an Ace. In our opinion, insurance is a suckers bet, where players will either come out even, or lose half their bet. It doesn’t really matter that much if a table offers insurance or not when you play online.
- Late Surrender: players can use this option when they are certain they will lose, where they lose half of their bet to surrender and stop playing; as many believe losing half a bet is better than losing all of it. This option is usually always offered when you play online blackjack, but many players choose to ignore it.
- Re-Splitting: the number of times a player is allowed to re-split his cards when they are the same value, i.e. 8/8 can be split. This amount will alter the way a player will deal with pairs.
- Splitting Aces: a very important rule to look for. Casinos usually only allow players to split Aces once, so take advantage of that rule. However, there may be a casino that allows players to split Aces more than once, these are great tables to play at.
- Doubling: some black-jack games restrict players on what cards they can and cannot double on, as well as whether players can double down after splitting cards.
- Side Bets: these are side bets other than insurance, which allow them to possibly gain additional money if certain conditions are met. Players will encounter these when they play different 21 games, like War Blackjack.
All of these general rules will influence the way a player makes decisions, bets, and even on what the casino advantage is. Pay attention to each rule and game, and be sure to read up on which kind of game will benefit you the most.
During any given round of online blackjack, players will be given several different options they can choose from. We would include insurance and surrendering in those options, but we do not believe them to be as important on how to play. These options, combined with a good knowledge of the basic strategy, will make sure players make the correct choices.
These options will allow players to make the most out of their blackjack game, which include Hit, Stand, Double, and/or Split, or any combination of them.
To take a hit simply means asking the dealer for an additional card. This is done in hopes of getting the players hand to or as close as possible to 21.
You place your index/pointer finger on the table, some players like to tap the table once or twice to let the dealer know they are are sure about their decision.
When a player has a good enough hand, or does not want to risk busting (going over 21 is an automatic loss), they will choose to Stand; the correct way of saying stop in blackjack.
With an open palm, face down hand, you move your hand over your cards from side to side. This will tell the dealer you do not want any more cards.
The double down option is where players request only one additional card from the dealer, in exchange the player is allowed to place a bet, equal to their initial bet. By doing this, the player has the chance of doubling their profit based off of a hand that could be great or bad depending on the card dealt. This is a risk for players, as they can either get a favorable or unfavorable card, which will make or break hand.
With two fingers, tap on top or right below the two cards that were dealt to you; most players accompany the hand movement with saying “double”. The dealer will usually confirm that you want to double down.
The Split option is when a player is dealt two cards that are of equal value. For example, if a player is dealt two 8´s or two 3´s. When a player has these two cards, they have the option of splitting the cards into two separate hands. The player will have to place an additional bet equal to their initial bet. In most cases, casinos will allow players to split up to four times per round, allow them to hit, stand, or double down on the newly created hands. The one exception is for Aces, as most online casinos will only allow a player to split Aces once. This is another good chance for a player to double their earnings, as well as split apart a bad hand into possibly two good hands.
With two fingers spread apart, point at your two cards; you may leave you fingers on the table, below your cards until the dealer splits the cards. Dealers will also confirm whether you want to split your cards or not, as it is not always a good option to split.
Blackjack Interesting Facts Infographic
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