Blackjack is one of the most popular online casino game in which there is a significant element of skill. In games like roulette, craps and slots the only decisions the player takes is how much to wager and on which bet. In blackjack however the player has to continuously take decisions. Either to hit, stand, split double and surrender. With the right playing of online casino blackjack can have a payout percentage of 99%. However, online casinos report lower actual payout percentages. This is because most blackjack players are not aware of perfect strategy and this enables the casinos to make more money than they should. Hence if you want to play blackjack regularly it is essential that you know perfect blackjack strategy.
The first aspect of blackjack to be aware about is that there are many variants played with different rules. The player will need to adopt different strategies for different variants. There is no one shoe fits all type of strategy. As a new player it can be difficult to deal with many variants so you should pick on one game and focus on that. Two factors have discernible impact on basic strategy. One is the rule for the dealer when he has a soft 17. Some variants force the dealer to stand other variants force the dealer to hit. For the player it is better if the dealer is forced to stand, other things being equal. However other things are never equal in practice. Games that force the dealer to stand on a soft 17 toggle the other rules to take back the advantage. The other factor is the number of decks used. The less the number of decks used the better it is for the player. Again in the games that play with one deck the other rules are adjusted to neutralize the advantage. Hence for a beginner it is not so important which variant you choose as it is to be aware of the rules of the variant chosen.
Blackjack strategy is stated in the form of strategy cards. These cards are classified as follows. There are separate cards for one-deck games, for two-deck games and for games with four or more decks. Also there are separate cards for games where the dealer stands on a soft 17 and where a dealer hits on a soft 17. The first step is to choose the appropriate strategy card. These cards would be available in all blackjack strategy books and also on the Internet. The second step is to learn to read the card.
The strategy card is in the form of a table or matrix. The column headings give the value of the dealer’s face up card. These range from 2 to 10 and A for the ace. Note that all picture cards have a value of 10. The row headings give the present value of the player’s hand. The headings have totals from 8 to 17 and certain combinations of soft totals and pairs. The player has to locate the cell that corresponds to the dealer’s face up card and his hand and follow the instructions in that cell. The cells are both color coded and letter coded for convenience. For example if that cell has an ‘H’ the player should hit and if it has an ‘S’ the player should stand.
Players can play online blackjack with the card in front of them so there should be no need to memorize it. In due course the card will be automatically memorized and the play speed will increase.