Before going to play at the blackjack tables, there are a few strict rules to follow when it comes to drawing cards. Great player and author of the best-seller ” Beat The Dealer” (which means beat the bank), Edward Thorp sums up the basic strategy in the following paragraph:
If the dealer’s card is between 7 and Ace, play exactly as the dealer would. The exception to this rule is that you must shoot if your score is 12 and if the dealer’s card is a 2 or a 3.
Note that it is strongly advised not to take insurance, it gives an additional advantage to the casino.
Here’s the step you’ve all been waiting for: card counting. This is a strategy that relies on the fact that the player has an advantage when there are a lot of high cards in the shoe. Said then that the hoof is hot and so you have to bet big! The objective of card counting will, therefore, be to count the high cards that come out as opposed to the low cards. For information, there are different hi-low counting techniques, knock out, etc.
Note: to counter card counters, casinos have implemented various techniques, including the automatic shuffling machine. The hoof being mixed with each stroke, the counting loses its interest.
A Little Blackjack Culture
The Blackjack is a real institution, and the image of Hollywood and its Walk of Fame, blackjack players, has their “hall of fame.” We find the greatest players of all time: Ken Uston, Edward Thorp, Andy Bloch, Stu Ungar, Julian Braun, Jeff Ma, etc. More recently, a player has been talked about a lot by winning several million dollars in casinos in Atlantic City. It’s Don Johnson. We learned later that he had benefited from a favorable “deal” with the casino thanks to cash-back and adapted rules (more favorable variant).
Blackjack really appeared in French casinos from the 18th century, at the same time that poker began to be practiced in gaming establishments. The name blackjack comes from the fact that a bonus is granted to the player who has, at the same time, the jack and the Ace of spades in his hands. Whoever has both cards is then awarded a 10 to 1 payment.
Blackjack comes from the black color of the spade (Black of Spade) and the fact that it is a jack (Jack of spade). Later, this name is kept to speak of this same game, if the granting of this bonus was removed in the rules of Blackjack.
Other people attribute the origin of Blackjack to the game of Rail, which has long been practiced by the French. Its arrival in casinos dates from the 1700s. It is very popular in France and landed in casinos in North America in the middle of the 20th century.
At first, the twenty-one was shunned by the Americans, who preferred poker. Since then, blackjack has been able to make a first choice place in the heart of choice to become the first game played in casinos. There is no doubt that the famous MIT team has something to do with its popularization, as well as great players like Ken Uston, Al Francesco, Julian Braun, or Edward Thorp.
As it is played, blackjack experiences many improvements. The rule changes were made in order to curb the new strategies developed by the best players of twenty-one. Blackjack, as it is played these days, therefore, has little to do with the original game that bears this name. There are even automatic card shufflers to make card counters flee: a shame!