What is the best way to play blackjack? Believe it or not, you can read all the strategy guides in the world, but there isn’t one which will show you how to hit it rich overnight. Does that mean that learning blackjack strategy is useless? Absolutely not. Although there is no quick route to success, there are plenty of strategies you can use to help you along the way to securing modest wins. In this article, we will be looking at some of the simpler blackjack tricks and strategies you can use effectively in your game, to give yourself a better chance of success. Let’s begin, then.
A Note About Blackjack Strategy Guides
Never expect to walk away with million-dollar jackpots with blackjack strategy guides. Would you expect to find a slot strategy guide that shows you how to win a progressive jackpot prize? Of course not. The same is true of blackjack guides, in some degree. However, since your chance of beating the dealer and thus winning are considerably greater in blackjack than they are in online slots, it may seem as though blackjack strategy guides deliver results on a far more frequent basis than those strategy guides for other casino games.
There are many rookie blackjack guides out there, many of which show you how to win at blackjack. Most amateur blackjack players are familiar with these practices. What do you do when you come up against dealers and opposition who know the same basic strategies, though? In short, there is only one thing you can do – learn more complex blackjack strategies. This is what we’re about to look at. You don’t have to be a seasoned blackjack veteran to understand the casino blackjack tips we’re offering you, but if you want to become an advanced blackjack player, you will at least need some idea of basic blackjack rules to grasp the concepts discussed.
Two Leading Strategies You Can Incorporate into Your Gameplay
We’re going to skip right past the basic stuff. You should, by now, have a proper understanding of how blackjack works. Most of us learn this as children or teenagers, and you probably played some form of “21” as a nipper, right? The first advanced blackjack strategy we are going to look at is called the Oscar System.
The Oscar System tries to get you to switch your focus from viewing a blackjack session as one long game between you and the dealer, into multiple mini-games. It is relatively simple to follow, which is why we’re covering it first. Here are the rules:
– When you win, raise your bet by 1 chip
– When you lose, keep the bet the same as the previous hand
– Once you’re ahead of what you started with, bank that cash and start over
– Never re-use your winnings, and stick to the rules above
The basic premise of the Oscar System is that you limit your losses, and you never put your winnings at stake. This strategy doesn’t really alter your blackjack odds of bagging a big win, but it does ensure that you don’t suffer a big defeat.
Now, onto the most common strategy, known simply as Basic Strategy. This is usually the first strategy that all advanced blackjack players learn, and it appears in pretty much every how to win a blackjack guide ever devised. Despite that, most rookie players fail to learn it.
There are countless charts out there which you can study for Basic Strategy, and several rule changes depending on the number of decks you use. However, we’ll be covering the simplest one. Whilst printing off a chart and using it to play blackjack online is fine, it is somewhat difficult to memorize, and you can’t just whip it out when playing at a land-based casino. The best way to play blackjack with Basic Strategy is to memorize a text-based version of the chart. We’ve created one for you, and it goes a little something like this:
Insurance bets: Never take them under any circumstances. This is one of the most important casino blackjack tips you can learn.
Double down: You can double down if you have:
|Your Hand||The Dealer’s Hand|
|Hard 9||3 to 6|
|Hard 10||10 or Ace|
|Hard 11||Ace on show|
|Soft 13 or 14||5 or 6|
|Soft 15 or 16||4 to 6|
|Soft 17||3 to 6|
Hit: If you have the following hands, then always hit:
|Hard 11 or lower|
|Soft 17 or lower|
Stand: These are usually the best times to stand and the best way to play blackjack using Basic Strategy:
|Your Hand||The Dealer’s Hand|
|Hard 12||4 to 6|
|Hard 13 to 16||2 to 6|
|Hard 17 or higher||Anything|
|Soft 18||Unless the dealer has a 9, 10 or Ace on show|
|Soft 19 or higher||Anything|
Split: The rules regarding splitting hands are slightly more complicated, but with practice, it should be easy for you to memorize these blackjack tricks.
|8s and Aces||Always split|
|5s or 10s||Never split|
|2s or 3s||If the dealer has 4 to 7, then split|
|2s or 3s||Only if the dealer has 2 or 3, and you can double after the split|
|4s||Only if the dealer has 5 or 6, and you can double after the split|
|6s||If the dealer has 3 to 6, then split|
|6s||Only if the dealer has 2, and you can double after the split|
|7s||If the dealer has 2 to 7, then split|
|9s||If the dealer has 2 to 6, or an 8 or 9, then split|
Surrender: Most blackjack games do not permit surrendering. However, there are times when you can surrender with Basic Strategy if you can find a blackjack online game which permits it. They are as follows:
|Your Hand||The Dealer’s Hand|
|Hard 16 (not a pair of 8s)||9, 10 or Ace|
Using Strategies for Online Blackjack
There are many other strategy options out there, but not all of them allow you to adjust the blackjack odds in your favor, and not all of them are ideal for online games. Between the two strategies mentioned above, you should have just what you need to start playing blackjack online.
Of the two strategies we have included, both the Oscar System and the Basic Strategy should be user-friendly for virtually all the games you can find at casinos and gambling websites. Certain blackjack variants, such as Spanish 21, Blackjack Switch, and Double Exposure Blackjack are notoriously difficult with most of the blackjack strategy guides you will come across, but there are how to win at blackjack guides for those specific games, too. Given that these are somewhat niched games and overly complex strategies, we won’t get into those here.
The Thing About House Edges and Odds
You can use strategies to alter blackjack odds in your favor, namely by reducing the house edge the dealer/casino has. But finding out which is the best way to play blackjack for you is something which is going to take time. The chances are that learning how to win at blackjack is going to be a trial and error basis for you.
The amount by which you can reduce the house edge depends on the blackjack variant or game you are playing. In terms of what you can win, blackjack odds usually stay at 3:2 for blackjack and 1:1 for any win, unless you are playing a specific blackjack variant. Understandably, our strategies cannot guarantee a larger win than the table rates dictate, though they can give you a chance of winning blackjack games more frequently by marginally reducing the house edge.
Tips and Tricks: Things You Might Do to Improve Your Game
There are more things to learn besides strategies if you wish to excel at playing blackjack. In fact, simple blackjack tricks can be deployed to improve your game, and these require no strategies at all, just simple common sense.
For starters, you may wish to play blackjack for free, namely via demos. You can find these blackjack online demos all over the net, and they are a great way to hone your skills and practice your strategies. Players may also wish to note the number of decks which appear in their games. They may need to adjust their blackjack tricks to make their strategies work effectively, and such amendments to strategies can be found across the net, too.
Avoiding insurance bets is one of many casino blackjack tips we cannot stress enough that you understand. Insurance bets are a complete waste of time in almost all blackjack games. Another thing to remember is to avoid counting cards. That might work out well in casinos for a skilled few, but online blackjack games feature Random Number Generators (RNGs) which often shuffle all the decks after any hand, so you have virtually no chance to count cards. The sooner you get this out of your head, the better.
By using the two main blackjack tricks we have mentioned above, as well as the other casino blackjack tips and strategies we have discussed, you should be able to ramp up your game and your skills, enabling you to stand a better chance of winning when playing one of the casino world’s most loved games.