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Blackjack is a very popular card game that is played in the casino tables worldwide. It has also found its way through the online casino games selection as an online blackjack game found in numerous casino websites today. This game is also known as Twenty-One (21), Vingt-et-un (French word for 21), and Pontoon. It is a very popular casino game almost everywhere in the world today since it can be beaten by applying some mathematical methods, known as "Card Counting".
Short History of Blackjack
The origins of the game Blackjack is still unknown, and the only known game reference is found in the book written by Miguel de Cervantes, "Don Quixote". This game was first played in France, going by the name Vingt-et-un, in the 1700\'s. The name "Blackjack" was first introduced when a player was dealt with a Jack of Spades and an Ace of Spades. When it was brought to the United States, blackjack was not very popular. The gambling houses at the old days offered some various bonus payouts just to attract more players to the table. Now, blackjack is one of the best and most popular casino games that you can find both on land-based and online casino websites.
How To Play Blackjack
Blackjack can be played by one or more players, with the dealer as the opponent. The objective of the game
is simple: to acquire a hand in which the total value is greater than the dealer\'s hand, but should not exceed twenty-one
(hence, the game is named Twenty-One).
The values of the cards added together in a player\'s hand. The values of the cards numbered 2 to 10 are equivalent to their face value. Kings, Queens, and Jacks have the value of 10. Aces can acquire the value of either 1 or 11, depending on the player\'s needs. The highest initial hand in the blackjack game is a hand with an Ace and any 10-point cards (10, J, Q, or K). This hand is termed as "BLACKJACK" or a "NATURAL".
The dealer will first deal 2 faced-down cards each to the players and then one faced-up card (the UP CARD) and one faced-down card (the HOLE CARD) to himself. After dealing the cards, the dealer will then check whether his hand is a blackjack or not. If it is a blackjack, the players will lose their bets if they do not have a blackjack.
If a player also has a blackjack, then his bet is returned (a PUSH or TIE). If there is no blackjack in the dealer\'s hand, the players will first play their hand. And depending on their initial hand, they can make some decisions one by one. After the players have played their hands, the dealer will now play his hand. And depending on the initial hand value, he can either stand or hit for additional cards.
HIT - If the hand is still inadequate, additional cards can be drawn until the hand value is enough for a possible win. If the next card that is hit will make the hand value go beyond 21, then the hand automatically loses. This condition is called a "BREAK" or a "BUST". If the player busts, he loses. If only the dealer busts, the player wins. But if both the dealer and the player busts, the player still lose.
STAND - If the player is already satisfied with his hand value, he can stand or stay. It means that he does not need additional cards for his hand.
DOUBLE DOWN - Players can double their original bet and hit only one card, if they feel that only one card is enough to win a round.
SPLIT - If the player is dealt with a pair, he can split it into two hands, making an additional bet which is equivalent to the original bet. Two additional cards will be dealt to complete the new hands. There are some casinos that allow a player to RESPLIT a split pair if a third card of the same value is dealt. And if two Aces are split and dealt with a 10-point card, it is NOT considered as a blackjack and will be beaten by a natural blackjack.
SURRENDER - There are some casinos that allow the players to surrender on their initial hands where they will give up half of their original bets. This can be an EARLY SURRENDER or a LATE SURRENDER. In the Early Surrender, the player can give up his hand before the dealer checks for a blackjack, while in the Late Surrender, the player can give up after the dealer has checked for a blackjack.
If the up card of the dealer shows an Ace or any value with a high probability for a blackjack to occur, the players can wager for an Insurance bet, where they will bet that the dealer will have a blackjack hand. This bet pays out 2:1 if won.