Blackjack is a card game where players are not against each other but rather against the house. There are usually up to six players lined up on a semicircular table, with the croupier facing them on the straight side of the table. Most casinos offer blackjack games with one, two, four, six, and eight decks, and rarely three or five decks, which should, however, be avoided.
Each card in blackjack has an established value, apart from the Ace, which can count as 1 or 11. The aim is to draw a combination of cards whose total value is higher than that of the croupier, but without exceeding 21. If you draw 22 or more, you bust, and the croupier wins the hand. Conversely, if the croupier’s hand exceeds 21, the croupier will go bust, and the player wins the bet.
If the dealer’s hand is equal to the player’s, the situation is called a “tie,” and as a result, both sides will have their bets back. However, if one side has a blackjack (an Ace with any figure or a 10), also called natural, while the other part has 21 but with more than two cards, e.g., Q83, the one with the blackjack wins the hand.
As we said, each card in the deck has an established value, apart from the Ace. Each numbered card (suit card) has a value equal to its numerical value; all the figures have a value of 10. Aces have a value of either 1 or 11, depending on the preference of the player. For example, an Ace and 8 hands maybe 9 or 19.
When an Ace can be considered as an 11 without the hand value exceeding 21, this is called a soft hand, such as, for example, the ace and eight mentioned above (19 sets). When an Ace cannot be considered as 11 because the hand would exceed 21, this is called the hard hand. For example, if a player has an Ace and 8 and draws a 5, his hand becomes a hard 14. Any hand that does not include an Ace considered 11 is a hard hand.
As we said earlier, any combination of Ace with a 10 card is called a blackjack, or a “natural.” A hand with a total value of 21 that does not include an Ace is not considered blackjack, for example, J-5-6. This is important because casinos usually grant an extra payout for blackjack (usually 3: 2), while a hand won with a 21 that is not natural does not receive extra payouts.
In addition, a blackjack beats a total of 21 with more cards, and if the player is the one who has blackjack, he will receive the extra payout.
The game in progress
Before the cards are dealt, each player places his bet in the designated area in front of him, most often a square or circle. Then, the croupier draws the cards from the sabot/deck and deals them out, starting with the player on the left. Each bettor initially receives two cards, either face up or face down. As we pointed out in the previous article, the cards are dealt with usually face down in games with the cards in hand. Regardless of whether the game is with sabot or with cards in hand, the croupier will deal one card face up and the other face down.