Blackjack is a card game where players place bets on the outcome of each hand they deal. Anyone from novice to professionals can enjoy playing this game, making the rules of blackjack paramount to success in playing it well.
The dealer distributes cards to each player. Each card has a specific value: 10s count as 10, Jacks and Queens count as 11, Aces count as either 1 or 11 depending on whether this would cause an over-21 point total; otherwise they count as 11 instead. Players then examine their hand to determine its worth: if it’s blackjack– they win and get paid one-and-a-half times their wager back from the dealer; otherwise it is considered a push and all chips staked are returned back by them (whoops…).
Some games of blackjack offer players an additional bet called insurance, which involves placing an additional bet that the dealer has an upcard with a ten beneath it. It can be very risky, however; dealers only manage to find one-third of the time. Once all insurance bets have been placed by all interested players, once she checks her hole card she will payout all original bets plus any insurance payments and collect any insurance stakes as per usual.
When making their move to hit, players must extend their palm and “scratch” the table as if scratching an itch, signaling to the dealer they wish to receive another card from their shoe. After doing this, it is up to them whether they stand or hit again.
Live games typically utilize multiple-deck shoes which are regularly shuffled to make it difficult for players to count the cards. A full shuffle usually occurs once approximately 50% of decks have been played through.
A skilled dealer knows how to read their players and maintain an enjoyable game of blackjack, anticipating and handling any errors promptly and fairly, knowing all the rules of blackjack thoroughly, paying out bets correctly and quickly and being able to detect any attempts by players at cheating or defrauding the casino.
As well as offering the main game of blackjack, many casinos also provide side bets such as splitting pairs or doubling down. These extra bets are popular among blackjack players and can lead to big rewards; however, one must remain wary not to become too greedy and bet more than they can afford to lose.