Blackjack is one of the most popular card games that you can find in a casino, and thanks to the game being so simple and easy to learn, it’s built a HUGE following, full of players who enjoy to wager their cash (and hopefully win more!).
Thanks – largely to the Internet – to the continual growth of the game, casinos are regularly adding new versions of the traditional classic to their collections, and in this post you’re going to discover about European Blackjack.
How To Play
Before looking at How To Play, it’s important you realise what the aim of the game is.
European Blackjack is usually played with 6 decks of cards (although some casinos may use less), and each card has a corresponding number value. Aces can be considered as a one or an eleven, numbered cards use their same number value, and all face cards are counted as a value of ten.
Each player is initially dealt two cards. If the two cards initially dealt to the player are an ace and any other card with a value of 10 (such as 10, jack, queen, or king), then they have a total of 21, which is a Blackjack – the unbeatable hand.
The dealer will also be dealt a card, which is visible for you to see. Your goal, with your two cards, is to make your hand as near to 21, without going over. If your hand manages to beat the dealers at the end of the game, you win. If it doesn’t – you lose.
Once you have your two cards, and the dealer has his one, you then have two core options;
Hit or stand
"Stand" means you are content with the value of your cards and you don't want to be dealt extra cards for the hand. For instance, if you were dealt a 9 and a 10, you would have 19 – an excellent hand, and one you’d ‘stand’ on.
However, if you have a low hand (perhaps a 2, and a 6), you would want to try and improve your hand – this is where you would “hit”.
You are then dealt an extra card, with the hope of taking your hand closer in value to 21 than before. You can take as many cards as you want, but if you go over 21 you “bust”, which means you lose, and the hand ends there and then.
After you’ve finished making your move, and have a hand you’re happy with, the dealer will then act, and will draw cards to try and beat your hand.
European Blackjack features a few rules that dealers must stick to, that can vary from traditional Blackjack.
The first, is that they must stand on a soft 17. That means, if they have, for example, and ace, and a 6 in their hand, their total would be 17 – they cannot try to improve, and this is the end of the hand.
If your hand is higher than the dealers… you win – it’s that simple!
Splitting & Doubling
One thing that wasn’t covered in the previous section, is your option to split or double.
A split is where you are dealt two of the same cards, and wish to split them.
For example, if you were given two sevens by the dealer, you’d have a very mediocre hand of 14. But; split them apart, and you would have two sevens, effectively starting two new hands over for you. If you want to split, the cards must be the same number (suit and colour is irrelevant), and you must match the wager of your main bet. You are then dealt an additional card to your main hand, which you then play out, before moving onto your second.
Doubling, usually known as ‘doubling down’, is when you have two low cards dealt, which have potential to be a big hand. I.e, if your first two cards totalled 9, 10, or 11, you would be in with a great chance of pulling a picture card and making a total of 19, 20, and 21 respectively.
If you want to gamble on the fact you think your hand will improve, you can double, which means you double the wager, in return for one card.
You can only double on 9, 10, and 11 in European Blackjack (other variations you can double on whatever you want), and you only get one card.
Once the game has finished, whoever has the highest hand wins!
If you win, your bet will be paid out at 1/1, and Blackjack at 3/2.
In case of a tie, your wager will be returned to you, and a new hand will begin.
It’s really simple to get started, and if you’re an avid gambler, you’ll love playing, so go and check it out today, and see how much YOU can win at the tables!