No, this is not an article about the man, with the hat, who plays guitar for some band called U2. In the gambling world the player is always searching for his edge. The game of Blackjack is the most commonly played casino game in the world – with online Blackjack now just as popular as its equivalent in a real life casino. It is also one of the games that offer’s the greatest edge to the players. Maybe this is why the game is so popular?
The dealer extracts the cards from a cardholder known as the Shoe. Each player gets to see the value of every card extracted from the shoe. This means with a photographic memory (or lots of practice) you can determine what cards have passed and what cards are left in the shoe. Having this knowledge allows a player to make bigger bets when the cards are in their favour.
Despite being a game that offers the player the greatest possibility for success it still has a distinct house advantage. One of the ways that gambling establishments increases it’s edge is to incorporate more than one deck of cards. Not only does the increased number of decks increase the house edge but it also makes life more difficult for the talented card counters. If you are lucky enough to find a brick and mortar card room offering single deck Blackjack then the house advantage is as low as 0.17%. If you add one more deck into the shoe the house advantage increases to 0.46%. Remember also that card counters are not looked on favourably in casinos – if you are suspected of card counting you may see yourself thrown out, sometimes online games offer you the chance to gamble without the constant prying eye of suspicious casino workers.
It is not only the number of decks that determine the house edge. The edge also comes from the fact that the player goes first. This means if the player busts the player loses and the Dealer does not have to draw any further cards.
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|Last Updated 5 December 2013
Blackjack - The Edge