Blackjack, also known as 21, was introduced back in the sixties and has become significantly popular among gamblers because of its big wins thanks to workable blackjack counting strategies. This game, available at Gaming Club and other popular casinos, is very different from other games as it involves players competing against the house and not each other.
The main objective is to get a number as close to 21 as possible but without exceeding it. In case the number exceeds 21, the player loses the game which in blackjack terms is called “busted”. If the number gained by the player is greater than the number gained by the dealer, the player wins provided they didn’t get busted.
A table has 2 to 8 standard card decks which allow multiple players to play at a table.
The players and dealer initially deal with two cards after which the player can request an additional card by calling a “hit”. The strategy behind calling a “hit” is to reach the points closer to 21 or bust the dealer. In a case where both the dealer and the player have the same points, the match is a draw.
The “Ace” can be counted as one or ten, whereas the “Queen, Jack, King and 10” are all counted as 10. The other numbered card have their respective values. The most favorable combination is called “Blackjack” which consists of an ace and a 10 point card.
This combination is an automatic win unless the dealer has a similar combination as well.
Blackjack entirely relies on probability, however, incorporating a few strategies may significantly increase your chances of winning. Let’s know about some of the best blackjack counting strategies.
This strategy is particularly important for leisure players. Practicing this strategy can minimize the probability of loss.
This strategy depends on analyzing the cards the player has and the cards shown by the dealer. For example, if a dealer’s up card has a value of 2 to 6 you may call a hit.
This strategy helps analyze how to deal with an outcome. However, it can differ depending on rules, so make sure to get enough practice beforehand.
Professional players don’t rely on basic strategy because their intentions are solely to win and financial rewards.
These players use strategies that can give them an advantage over the dealer. These skills are known as Advantage Play and are allowed as long as they aren’t used to gain a significant amount of advantage over the house. These skills have to be carefully used because they risk a person being blacklisted from the casino.
This allows the player to place a larger bet in case they have a higher chance of winning.
Keeping track of the remaining cards in the deck after each round allows the player to determine the probability of winning. Counting, however, gets difficult as the number of players increases.
Casinos usually use 8 decks to make it difficult to count cards as keeping track of a single deck can be easier.
Card counting is extremely important in analyzing the probability of gaining a high-value card. Ace is an example of a high-value card as it can be counted as 1 or 10.
Even though card counting is not illegal, casinos don’t particularly like players using blackjack counting strategies.
There are a lot of card counting systems available for players of different levels. The following systems are arranged in their respective level of intricacy.
This was the first blackjack counting strategy developed back in the sixties by a mathematician from MIT. This system was solely developed for single deck blackjack and is hence one of the easiest blackjack counting strategies.
Since most casinos use more than one deck this method is ineffective, however, it can still be used by beginners to improve their skills.
Ace with the value 1 and the cards from 1 to 9 are counted as +4 whereas 10 value cards are counted as -9.
As the cards are dealt the total sum is added and if the total sum has a positive number then the player has a higher chance of winning.
Add 1 for each dealt 5-value card and subtract 1 whenever dealt with an Ace. If the final result is equal to or greater than 2 you should double your amount of bet, if not avoid placing a bet.
Since it considers only two card values it is among the most simple blackjack counting strategies, however with rule variation this counting method can get affected.
Based on Thorp’s ten-count system this is the most famous blackjack counting system used by both intermediate and beginner players.
The numbers from 2-6 are assigned the number +1 and 7-9 are assigned the number 0, whereas the rest of the cards are assigned -1.
As the cards are dealt the numbers are added. A higher positive count indicates more high-value cards are available.
This is the easiest blackjack counting system introduced by Fuchs and Vancura for both intermediate and beginner players.
The 10s, Aces and face cards are assigned the value -1. All 8s and 9s are assigned the value 0 while cards from 2-7 are assigned the value +1. Similar to other systems, the total count is calculated as the cards are dealt. It is advisable to raise the bet only if the total count is 2+.
This blackjack counting strategy can easily be mastered by beginners. The 10s, Aces and face cards are assigned the value -1. Cards from 2-6 are assigned the value +1. The 8s and 9s are assigned the value 0.
In this system if 7 is of red color it is marked as +1, however, if it’s black it is marked as 0.
Just like other systems, higher the count the better chances of winning. It is advisable to place high bets only if the count is above 15.
Introduced in 2001, this blackjack counting system has an intermediate level of complexity as some cards are counted as two and other as one. However, this system is more efficient than the options discussed before.
Cards 2, 3 and 7 have a value of +1, while cards 4, 5 and 6 are worth +2. 9s are assigned the value -1 while 10s and face cards are marked as -2. The Aces and the 8s are counted as 0.
This system is all about balance. If the player keeps a correct eye on the numbers, his final score will be a zero.
Developed by Stanford Wong in 1975, this is the most complex blackjack counting strategy and is only for professionals. In this system, fractional values are assigned to cards.
The 10s, Aces, and the face cards are assigned a value of -1 whereas 8s are marked as -1/2; 9s are marked as 0; 5s are marked as 1.5 whereas 3s, 4s, and 6s are marked as 1.
Lastly, 2s and 7s are assigned the value ½.
Just like other systems, higher count means a favorable outcome for the player.
These are only a few of various blackjack counting strategies. Note that card counting is effective, however without a significant amount of practice and patience it won’t do you any good. Therefore, make sure to get enough practice beforehand.