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Blackjack is the casino version of the game formerly known as Twenty-One and in that capacity is probably the most popular gambling game in the world.
Furthermore, in one form or another, and under various alternative names, it has been so for nigh on 300 years.
In fact, if you count its immediate ancestor Thirty-One as being essentially the same thing, it goes back more than five centuries.
The reasons for its popularity are not hard to find.
On the surface it's a simple game: a child can pick it up in less than a minute.
Deep down, it's one of the few casino banking games that a dedicated player can join in with something of an edge, so - provided you have the time and patience for complicated card-counting - you can play it at a profit, though for most of us it's more like hard work than real play.
Despite the player's theoretical edge, most people lack the patience or ability to do the calculations, so the game remains equally popular with casinos, who do very nicely out of it, thank you.
The advent of on-line gaming can only have expanded its popularity in astronomic proportions.
This doesn't make Blackjack uniquely a casino game.
It has long been equally popular in private, domestic and even family circles, with children playing for matchsticks or paper-clips, and in between these levels it is well-known for its popularity with university students and the armed forces of all the western nations.
We'll start by defining some terms and describing the simplest form of the game.
I will refer to it by its traditional and generic name "Twenty-One", except where I specifically mean the modern casino version.
Twenty-One is a banking game.
That is, one in which the players all play against a single player, called the dealer, who also deals, rather than all against one another, so it's more like a series of simultaneous two-player games.
This distinguishes banking games from vying games, like Poker, where the dealer is just one of the players and the outcome depends more on player interaction notably that elusive concept of "bluff" than on the luck of the draw and playing in accordance with the probabilities.
In Twenty-One, as in most banking games, the dealer has the inbuilt advantage of being accorded a win in the case of tied hands.
In domestic or informal circles the bank rotates among the players, or is awarded to a player dealt a particular winning hand, or can be purchased by a player off the current dealer.
In casino play, the house puts up the bank and a house employee is the permanent dealer.
This gives the house a permanent advantage, which is offset to some extent by the fact that the casino dealer has no choice of play but must follow house rules as to when to stand or draw more cards.
Equally predictable play is performed by the automatic and impersonal "dealer" of Blackjack slot-machines, computer software and online casinos.
Twenty-One is first recorded in the check this out century under the name Vingt-Un or Vingt-et-Un, showing it to be of French provenance.
In Britain and Ameria it was played under its French name throughout the 19th century, though at some time in England it was pronounced in such a way as to be occasionally spelt Van John.
The Oxford English Dictionary describes this as university slang, but it can hardly have survived much into the 20th century, as the name by which it has been best known in Britain since the First World War is "Pontoon".
This also sounds like a corruption of an English pronunciation of Vingt- et -un, via something like "vontoon"; but, as there is no normal process by which a V becomes a P, we may suspect the intrusion of some sort of jocular association with a temporary device for crossing a river.
In other words, the officers played Bridge, while the "poor bloody infantry' had to make do with a pontoon.
Pontoon remains the name of the informal and domestic British game, and, as a two-card count of 21 is called a pontoon, the term has come to be used for a prison term of 21 months or years, if you're not careful.
In America the name Vingt- et -un was replaced by Blackjack early in the 20th century.
The explanation for this is said to lie with a particular casino that paid extra for a natural consisting specifically of the spade Ace and a black Jack - which sounds plausible and is often repeated, though no one has yet offered any documentary evidence for it.
John Scarne claimed that as early as 1919 the inscription "Blackjack pays odds of 3 to 2" was to please click for source found on felt table layouts supplied by a Chicago gambling equipment distributor, but acknowledges only hearsay evidence for his assertion.
Or perhaps this is not so surprising after all, though, as the hallmark of any simple gaming idea is that its very simplicity allows of creative variations of individual detail.
The basic essentials of the game, albeit subject to elaborations and variations, are as follows.
Suits are irrelevant; only face values count.
For this purpose numerals Two to Ten count at face value, face or court cards count 10 each, and an Ace counts either 1 or 11 at the option of its holder.
A hand counting more than 21 is "bust", and loses.
For example, an Ace and a Six make a soft 17.
This hand can be drawn to without busting, since if the next card dealt you is higher than 4 which woul make 21 you can count the Ace 1 instead of 11.
By contrast, a hard hand is one containing no Ace, or an Ace that can count only 1 without busting.
Thus a hand consisting of A-6-10 blackjack 24 rc boat review a hard 17, and is normally not safe to draw to.
Some also call it a blackjack, thogh, strictly speaking, this originally denoted the Ace of spades plus either of the black Jacks.
The players place their initial bets, in accordance with agreed limits, and the dealer deals everyone two cards each.
Whether they are dealt face up or face down is one of many variables.
The dealer then asks each player in turn whether they wish to be dealt additional cards.
A player who is satisfied with their hand will "stand" or "stick'.
Otherwise, they may ask for another card 'hit'and may keep doing so blackjack guide saw they either stand or bust.
If you bust, you throw his hand in and lose your stake.
Unless everyone else has bust, the dealer then reveals his cards and also either stands or draws additional cards until he either stands or busts.
If he busts, he matches and pays the stakes of those who didn't.
If not, he pays those with a higher count, and wins the stakes of those with a lower.
Probably no one actually lays the game in as basic a form as this, but for the purpose of this article there is no point in giving detailed rules of any particular variety: you can find all you want in any current card-game book or relevant online web site.
It will be more useful to outline the range of variations and elaborations that you're likely to come across whether playing online, in a casino, or in a private game.
Cards While the private game is played with a single 52-card pack, casinos use anything from two to eight such packs, typically six, all shuffled together and dealt from a box or "shoe".
One reason for this is to save time otherwise lost on shuffling; another is to make it more difficult for players to keep count of the appearance of key cards.
More often than not, a marker is inserted into the total pack at a point about ten per cent from the end so that not all the cards are dealt before being shuffled again, in order to make card-counting more difficult still.
The reverse is the case with online Blackjack games, as cyber-shuffling is so easy that the pack is usually reshuffled after each deal.
Deal In casino play, all cards are normally dealt face up, except the dealer's second card, but in the private game they are dealt face down.
Doubling In most varieties of the game you may double your stake after receiving your second card, but casinos may impose certain restrictions.
For example, they may only allow you to double a total of 11 or 10, or sometimes 9; or only on hard hands; or they may only allow you to draw one more card.
Similarly, the dealer, having privately looked at his second card, may call for all stakes to be doubled.
Splitting In most varieties of the game a player but not the dealer may, if initially dealt two cards of the same rank, split them into two separate hands, placig an equal stake on the second one and calling for a second card to each.
This, too, may be subject to various restrictions.
Surrendering Some casinos allow you to throw your hand in and retrieve half your stake after receiving two cards.
Standing After facing his cards, a casino dealer has no free choice of play but must follow blackjack guide saw rules, which typically require him to hit a soft 17 or under but stand on a hard 18 or over.
Buying and twisting In the domestic British game of Pontoon, your first two cards are dealt face down, but you may then either "buy" or "twist' additional cards.
To buy is to increase your stake and have the next card dealt face down; to twist is to leave your stake intact and have it dealt face up.
Once you have started twisting you may not revert to buying.
Ties A tie or push is when you have the same total as the dealer.
In casino play there is little uniformity as to whether the result is a stand-off or a win for the dealer, and a trawl through descriptions of the game from the earliest known times suggest that this has always been the case.
Pay-offs A player's natural is typically paid off at 3:2 in casino play, but the traditional proportion is 2:1, and other variations may be encountered.
Special hands Many informal games, but few casino variants, pay extra for special hands, such as a five-card trick five cards totalling 21 or lessor a royal pontoon a twenty-one consisting of 7-7-7, or 6-7-8.
ORIGINS Reduced from Thirty-One Vingt-et-un Twenty-One first appears as an upper class or at least socially respectable game in 18th-century France, perhaps around 1760.
It is not mentioned in earlier editions of the Académie des Jeux, and its first appearance in an English Hoyle is that of 1800 edited by Charles Jones.
But this is not the earliest appearance of all, for a much earlier literary reference places an almost identical predecessor in Spain at least a century before.
In 1613 Miguel Cervantes, the author of Don Quixote, published Novelas ejemplares, a collection of twelve short stories about various contemporary characters and social tensions.
One such story is entitledthese being the names of a couple of rogues and vagabonds.
There are two points of interest to note here.
The first is social, in that the context reveals the character of the game to be distinctly low class.
This would explain why no account of its rules appears before the 18th century, as the earliest books entirely devoted to card games were necessarily written for the literate classes.
The second is technical, in that an Ace counts only 1, not 11.
In the absence of evidence to the contrary, we may speculate that what brought the game into social prominence in the 18th century was the novel idea of ascribing to the Ace its alternative higher value of 11.
This makes for a much more interesting game, as it becomes possible to reach 21 on just two cards instead of the three implied by Cervantes, which speeds the game up and gives the player an additional chance of drawing without busting.
So what about the game of Veintiuna itself?
Do we now credit Spain with its invention and suggest that it dates from, let's say, the late 16th century?
Probably not, because Twenty-One itself is clearly a natural evolutionary development of the much earlier game of Thirty-One that seems to have been popular throughout western Europe from the middle of the 15th century, making it one of the oldest gambling card games of all.
The technical identity of these two perfect system, given only the reduction of the target count from 31 to 21, is proved by a description of it dating from the late 17th century.
Some time in the 1670s a Nottinghamshire gentleman by the name of Francis Willughby kept a large notebook in which he recorded the descriptions of as many games as came his way, and, being of a mathematical turn of mind, he was particularly interested in card games.
Thirty-One, which he calls "the first and most simple games of cards", heads the list.
He explains that each player is dealt three cards from the top of the pack and has the option of either "sticking" or drawing as many more cards as he wishes until he either sticks or busts by exceeding a total face-count of 31 points.
For this purpose face cards count 10 each and others their face value, Ace being 1 only not an optional 11.
A count of exactly 31 is called a "hitter" and wins a double stake unless the dealer also has one.
As Willughby rightly notes: All the art is to know when to stick.
At 27, 28, 29 or 30 one may stick.
But it is better to venture being out than to stick under 27, especially if therebe many players.
Thirty-One is first mentioned by name in a 1464 French translation of a sermon preached in 1440 by an Italian monk now known as St Bernadine of Siena 1330-1444the patron saint of gamblers and, curiously, of public relations personnel.
Bernadine was famed for his preaching against gaming.
He is said to have done so at Bologna in 1423 so persuasively that the populace consigned their cards in thousands to a public bonfire.
Thereafter, Thirty-One appears in almost every ephemeral list of currently popular games, such lists being contained mostly in sermons preached against gaming and in town ordinances or bye-laws specifying which games were and were not allowed to be played in public.
Rabelais cites it as one of the many games played by his literary giant, Gargantua, in 1534 Book I, chapter 22and it appears under its German name einunddreissig in Fischart's Geschichtklitterung 1575which is more of an expanded paraphrase than a literal translation of Gargantua.
Rounding up more of the usual suspects in the historical context, we find it mentioned by Berni in his little book on Primiera 1526and by Cardano in his classic Book on Games of Chance 1564.
Cardano, indeed, confuses the issue by separately mentioning a game featuring significant totals ranging from 20 to 22 in increments of one-half, but the relevant passage is somewhat garbled in its original Latin, and the name of the game, Fluxus, suggests that it refers to ways of valuing a flush.
It may or may not be significant that in the Italian game of Primiera, a forerunner of Poker, an Ace itself is valued at 21.
But that's another story.
Daniel Martin, in Le Parlement Nouveau 1647 writes: Show me the game thirty-one.
It is an easy game for women and children.
Cut the cards; we want to play one or two games.
It is forbidden to see under the cut card pile, this is very important.
Deal three cards to each player.
In its pure form, Thirty-One survived into the 18th century and even into the 19th, albeit perhaps only in books.
In Facts and Speculations on the Origin and History of Playing-Cards 1848William Chatto quotes from a commentary on A Kerry Pastoral of 1724, which maintains that "The favourite game of the Kerry men is said to have been One-and-Thirty", and goes on to observe that as the intercourse between the two countries was frequent, and the favourite game in both was One-and-Thirty, it is not unlikely that the Irish obtained their knowledge of cards from the Spaniards.
Here, however, he seems to be confusing Thirty-One with the Veintiuna, or Twenty-One, mentioned by Cervantes.
Thirty-One seems to have lasted well into the 19th century, at least in France.
It and Twenty-One are both covered in the same chapter of Le Salon des Jeux of about 1830.
Here, Thirty-One is said to be played with Ace counting 1 or 11, a practice possibly borrowed from its more illustrious descendant.
More remarkably, the editor comments that "Trente-et-un casino palace blackjack caesars more generally played than Vingt-et-un" p.
The practice of drawing or playing cards up to 31 is not unique to Thirty-One, but from the earliest times found itself grafted on to other games.
Drawing to 31 also forms the third part of several three-part gambling games dating from the 17th century, including the French Belle, Flux et Trente-et-un, and the English Bone-Ace described in both Cotton's Compleat Gamester of 1674 and Willughby's Book of Games c 1665.
It is also a feature of the 19th-century game of Commerce.
Playing additively up to 31 is, of course, a principal component of Cribbage and its 16th-century ancestor Noddy.
Cotton also describes a rather puerile game called Wit and Reason, in which one player takes all the red cards and one all the black; each in turn plays a card after the manner of Cribbage; and whoever brings the total above 31 loses.
RELATED FACE-COUNT GAMES What's in a number?
Farmer la Ferme The American game of Farmer and the German Pächter may be traced back to a French game called Ia Ferme, first described in Oudin's Recherches italiennes et francoises of 1640.
It is not a rustic game, as sometimes claimed: "farm" is metaphorical for "bank", and the proprietors of Parisian gaming-houses were known as "farmers", a jocular term first applied to professional tax-collectors.
Farm was played with a 45-card pack made by removing the Eights and all the Sixes except that of hearts, known as "le brillant".
This choice of absentees will be understood from the point of the game, which was to make sixteen.
The best result was a sixteen consisting of le brillant and a court or Ten.
Next best was any other two-card sixteen, followed by one of three cards.
A sixteen won the pool and relieved the current farmer dealer of his farm bank.
If no sixteen appeared, the highest point below it won the pool but not the farm.
A player who bust paid the farmer 1 chip per point over 16.
The players will have previously bet on which row will come closer to 31, or that the first card dealt will or will not match the colour of the winning row, or both.
It first appeared in France around 1650, was popular in English card clubs in the early 19th century, and is still played in some French casinos.
It never became popular elsewhere, though, and is diminishing in France, probably because of its low house percentage, in that the bank's only certain win is a 31-point tie.
Macao With face-cards counting zero, Macao is best thought of as a one-card version of Baccara and may be possibly ancestral to it.
The dealer deals one card each.
Anyone dealt a Nine, Eight or Seven reveals their card, and if the dealer cannot beat it he pays them respectively three, two or one times their stake.
The others can then stick or draw a second card, and all cards are revealed.
A player with a count above nine is bust and loses.
If the dealer busts he pays those who do not, otherwise he pays those with a high non-bust count than himself.
Taking its name from that Portuguese corner of the Chinese world once known as the Monte Carlo of the east, Macao dates from the late 18th century and is the game that ruined Beau Brummell, famed London dandy and face down of the Prince Regent, in the early 19th.
It is probably not to be identified with a card game called Mack recorded from 1548.
Baccara t Spelt Baccarat in British and Nevadan casinos, Baccara has given rise to more historical misinformation than almost any other card game.
One online site would have you believe that "The word baccarat is derived from the Italian word baccara, meaning zero" and that "It has long held the attention of gamblers and an early version was played with cards from a Tarot deck back in the Middle Ages".
In fact, the Italian for zero is "zero", and Baccara first appeared in France no earlier than the middle of the 19th century, and in Italy shortly after.
That writer may have been confusing "baccara" with "bagatelle".
Like Macao, it looks as if it was derived from Vingt-et-Un or Twenty-One by the same sort of reductionist process that derived Twenty-One from Thirty-One, though it is quite possible that it independently derives https://pink-stuf.com/blackjack/youtube-austin-powers-blackjack.html a game already played in the Orient, like the Japanese Kabu.
The origin of its name is unknown, though one ingenious etymologist relates it to a Provençal expression bacarra meaning "hopeless" or "nothing doing".
A baccara is indeed a worthless hand, or more specifically one worth zero, but which word came first remains to be explored.
Ace counts 1 only and face cards zero.
Each player is dealt one card and may call for another.
The winning hand is that most closely approaching a total of 9, for which purpose any total above 9 counts only as its last digit.
For example, 6 and 10 counts 6, not 16.
There are three main varieties of play.
This makes them feel important and is quite safe from the casino's point of view, as the dealer is obliged to follow choice-defeating rules of play.
Quinze Quinze is a two-player equivalent of Twenty-One played to a point of fifteen.
Ace counts 1 only, not 11.
The choice of 15 is logical, in that the mean value of a single card is almost exactly seven-and-a-half.
Its first English-language mention is dated 1716 and it maintained a certain popularity throughout the 18th century.
Seven-and-a-half This is in fact the title of an Italian game Sette e mezzo played with the Italian 40-card pack lacking Eights, Nines, and Tens.
Ace counts 1, numerals face value, and face cards one-half each.
The winning total, obviously, is seven and a half, and a player who gets this on two cards - a Seven and a face - takes over the bank.
It is more of a club or domestic game than a casino game, despite the bank's very high advantage.
An equivalent game played with the full 52-card pack is called Onze-et-demie, from its target score of eleven and a half.
Similar face-count games are played with various local packs throughout the world.
Here are a few.
Kvitlakh or Quitlok A Jewish game of Central European origin apparently derived from Twenty-One but using cards of a unique design.
Piatnik, the cardmakers of Vienna, still produce a pack called Quitli.
It contains twenty-four cards in two series of numbers from 1 to 12.
The object is to reach but not exceed a point of 21, for which purpose a Twelve may count anything from have 5 card blackjack final to 12 at its holder's discretion.
Deuces and Elevens are special cards and appropriately decorated, as a pair of either rank wins outright.
The design of some of these cards suggests an origin in 18th century Germany.
Kabu A Japanese game using a distinctive pack deriving ultimately from the Portuguese, though now heavily modified.
It resembles Baccara in setting as its target a point ending in 9.
Naqsh An Indian game played mainly by women, Naqsh employs cards hinges on a point of 17.
WOMEN AND TWENTY-ONE A feminine favourite As we have already noted, Vingt-et-un became a major game in 18th-century France, perhaps owing its attractiveness to the novelty of counting an Ace as 1 or 11 ad lib and correspondingly reducing the number of cards dealt from three as in Thirty-One to two, with the further possibility of being dealt a winning hand immediately.
It is recorded as being Napoleon's favourite card game, especially when in exile on Elba and, subsequently, St Helena.
Contrary to popular blackjack online, he is not known to have played any form of solitaire, and it would certainly not have been in character for him to do so.
His example notwithstanding, however, the new game achieved especial popularity among the ladies, and it is to them that we owe many of the earliest references.
Vingt-un was reputedly the favourite game of Mme du Barry, the unfortunate mistress of Louis XV.
Born Jeanne Becu in 1743, the daughter of a butcher, her beauty led her to enjoy a chequered career before she met Louis at age 25.
She was unmarried at the time, and, in order to comply with the peculiar conventions of the French court, was required to marry someone else before she could become the royal mistress.
For this purpose she chose her unofficial lover's brother, Guillaume du Barry.
Thus qualified, she took up her new post of acknowledged royal mistress, and, transcending her humble origins, subsequently proved a patron of artists and intellectuals besides becoming a friend of Voltaire.
The death of Louis in 1774 led to a dramatic decline in her fortunes, and, by a somewhat roundabout route, she was eventually accused of working against the revolutionary government and guillotined in 1793.
One of the earliest English references to Vingt-et-un occurs in the diary of the Duchess of Northumberland in 1772 7 June, to be precisewhere she reports herself as playing "Vingt et un till supper-time".
In 1790 a certain A.
Bower noted in his diary or correspondence - the Oxford English Dictionary is unclear which "I was sat down with every Check this out in Winchester to play Vingt une".
But for one of the best commentaries on its status at this period we turn to one of the best novelists of this or any other period of English literature.
Jane Austen refers to card games so often and so percipiently in her works as to show that must herself have been a keen player.
Here's what she has to say about the game in her unfinished novel The Watsons, written about 1804-5: "What's your game?
I know you do, Tom.
I am glad it is a favourite with you.
You would be astonished to hear the noise we make there.
Lady Osborne sometimes declares she cannot hear herself speak.
I cannot say I am very fond of Speculation.
Vingt-et-un is the game particularly associated with the first, or first well-known, women gamblers of the Old West.
One of the earliest was a certain Madame Simone Jules, an attractive, dark-haired woman in her twenties who was employed from around 1850 as a roulette croupier at San Francisco's Bella Union casino.
She was of some refinement, a novelty which led to sufficient success for other casinos to start employing women in order to compete.
Refinement apart, she was also known as or suspected of being a cardsharp, with a particular interest and ability in Twenty-One.
She seems to have disappeared mysteriously in 1854, and her story might well have been forgotten had it not been for the coincidental appearance later that year of a strikingly similar woman calling herself Madame Eleanore Dumont, who descended from a stagecoach at Nevada City to take up a chastely solitudinous residence in a top hotel.
Within a week she had rented a room on Broad Street and set up a Vingt-et-Un table, which she ran herself, for the entertainment of local gold miners.
She was immediately perceived to be an attractive, dark-haired woman in her twenties, and the more observant and better-travelled denizens of that city might have commented that the traces of a fine, downy hair on her upper lip, which in later life were to grow so prominent as to earn her the undesirably distinctive nickname "Madame Moustache", had also been a feature of the erstwhile Simone Jules.
Nor was the distinctive element of refinement lacking.
Madame Dumont insisted that her clients remove their hats but not their jackets and should neither brawl nor swear in her presence, and firmly but charmingly discouraged any form of intimacy with the bank herself.
So charming was she that her establishment prospered, enabling her to expand into larger and plusher premises.
In a couple of years, however, the pannings grew thin, with a corresponding effect on her takings, and she found herself obliged to seek new horizons.
She subsequently became a more or less itinerant gambler, began to fill out and to lose her looks, and within 20 years or so was running a two-storey establishment with a casino on one floor and a brothel on the other.
She never regained her former glory - for that matter, her former chastity -and is said to have descended into unprofitable liaisons with various untrustworthy paramours.
In 1879 her body was fished from the river about a mile out of Bodie.
The cause was poisoning and the verdict suicide.
It is said that she had heard herself referred to as "Madame Moustache" once too often.
HOME AND AWAY Fun for all the family On the European side of the Atlantic throughout the 19th century Vingt- et -un remained popular primarily as a somewhat genteel family or parlour or "round" game -that is, one for no specific number of players.
You can get the flavour of the game as it was then perceived from Cassell's Book of Indoor Amusements, Card Games and Fireside Fun 1881which introduces it as follows: "Of all round card games, there is not one more deservedly popular than the one so well known as Vingt-Un i.
Although much of the success attending it depends much upon chance, the exercise of no small amount of care and judgment is required of the players, in consequence of which the real interest of the game is greatly intensified".
Such domestic popularity was particularly the case in Britain, which, until fairly recently, has never sanctioned the existence of public casinos.
In the 19th century and well into the 20th, the big money players have been confined to private clubs, making such play possible only to bona fide members.
This is not to say that the game was played only by the gentility.
On the contrary, since the urge to gamble is no respecter of classes, and Vingt- et -Un is a quick and easy and jolly way of doing it with cards, it was widely played wherever large quantities of men found themselves living in one another's company, such as schools, universities, pubs, working men's clubs, and especially the armed forces.
It is very difficult to follow the evolution of games during periods of upheaval, as the second decade of the 20th century uniquely was, but it seems to counting cards double deck around the time of the First World War that the distinctively British game of Pontoon evolved its most characteristic features, such as five-card tricks and royal flushes, and, above all, its most distinctive name.
In 1981 a poll was commissioned by now defunct to discover what were currently the most popular card games in Britain.
When asked what card game respondents had last played, Pontoon came third with a response of 26 per cent, following Whist with 28 and Rummy with 32 per cent.
Meanwhile, on the American side, Vingt- et -Un had become Blackjack by the start of the 20th century, and under that name remained a staple of casino play, though not occupying the prominent position that it holds today.
Perhaps because of the stabilising influence of casinos, the private game did not develop as distinctively as the equivalent British Pontoon.
John Scarne, though of dubious authority in many aspects of the subject, was on trustworthy home ground when he observed in Scarne on Cards, p.
My own observation was the World War II armed forces' most popular card game".
Surprisingly, Blackjack did not figure in a survey conducted by the United States Playing-Card Company in 1946, which discovered the most popular games to be, first, Bridge, then Pinochle, Rummy, Five Hundred, Poker, Whist, Solitaire, and Hearts.
The Canasta craze had yet to break.
However, it's interesting to note the order of events in John Crawford's 1953 book entitled "How to be a consistent winner in the most popular card games", namely: Bridge, Poker, Gin Rummy, Canasta, Pinochle, Blackjack, Hearts, Crib, and Pitch.
By this time, however, Las Vegas had become transformed from a desert outpost to a gambler's paradise, and Blackjack was about to be subjected to a technical assault that was to see the casino game dominate the attention of all who also played the private game, and this to such an us 888 casino blackjack rules as nowadays even to threaten the lovably eccentric British game of Pontoon.
This assault coincided with the introduction of card-counting.
BEAT THE DEALER It's the Thorp that counts A major attraction of Blackjack as a gambling game is the possibility, well known even before being so genteelly pointed out in Cassell's Book of things and whatnots see aboveof being able to supply sufficient intelligence to one's play as to reduce the dealer's advantage to a minimum -especially in the home game, where the dealer has more freedom of play, so that a clever player can, in the long run, always overcome a relatively naïve dealer.
The simplest way of applying mathematical intelligence to the game is to know what the odds are in any given situation.
The essentials of what is known as "Basic Strategy" can be formulated and tabulated in such terms as: If dealt A-7: Stand if dealer has 2, 7 or 8; double 3, 4, 5 or 6; otherwise hit.
If dealt 9-9: Stand if dealer situation mgm national harbor blackjack tournament think 7, 10 or Ace, otherwise split.
Rules of this type are particularly valuable in casino play, where the dealer has no option but to comply with house rules.
They can be printed on a card, and most casinos don't object to anyone referring to their Basic Strategy Card before deciding on a course of action.
Such a card is one of several that came free with every copy of the first edition of Edward O Thorp's epoch-making book "Beat the Dealer" in 1962.
Thorp, a young mathematics professor at MIT with a particular interest in probability theory, had started exploring detailed implications of a fact that had certainly struck players before but had to wait for the advent of computer analysis -now available to modern young mathematics professors -before it could be developed into an accurate workable system.
This critical fact is the nature of Blackjack as a non-replacement game.
That is, so long as cards are dealt from the top of the pack, and it is not shuffled before the last card has been dealt, the composition of the pack changes with each fresh deal, since the proportion of high to low cards that it contains is constantly changing.
Given that high cards tend to favour the player because they increase his chances of getting a naturaland low cards the dealer because they decrease his chances of bustingThorp had long known that by counting the appearance of key cards you would know when the composition of the pack favoured the player so bet hard and when the dealer so draw back.
Players before Thorp had recognised the fact that the composition of the pack becomes more intelligible the closer to the end of the pack the cards are being dealt from.
So-called end-play strategy is thought to have underpinned the success of a legendary figure known only as "the little dark-haired guy from Southern California" who had made a killing in Reno some time in the 40s or 50s, and probably that of the grotesque character known only as Greasy John, from his ac cheapest in blackjack tables of eschewing all company at the tables other than a huge bag of very greasy fried chicken.
He had no trouble playing alone.
Even though the decks were changed frequently, the grease was sufficient to drive away the men players".
More advanced than mere end-play was a system based on card-counting, in which Thorp had been preceded by some analysis reported by Roger Baldwin et al in the Journal of the American Statistical Association in 1956 and subsequently published as a spiral-bound offprint.
Thorp also acknowledged an eccentric practical predecessor called Benjamin F Smith, once a well-known figure at the Vegas tables under the title "System Smitty".
According to a mutual acquaintance who saw Smitty's notebooks, Smitty had spent several years playing out 100,000 hands, in an effort to determine the proper standing numbers when a Ten-count was employed.
Other predecessors in the counting stakes are listed in Arnold Snyder's admirable "Big Book of Blackjack" New York, 2006, ISBN 158042155-5.
For all his success, Smitty's system - and Baldwin's too, if truth be admitted - exhibited flaws resulting partly from the nature of the system and partly from lack of the sort of computer analysis that Thorp was to enjoy at MIT in 1960.
This showed, in particular, that a shortage of aces, nines and ten-counts gave the house an edge, while those of other ranks favoured the player.
With all the fives gone from a single pack, the player's edge with best strategy was 3.
It did indeed, and it interested a lot more than mere mathematicians.
The title of the abstract alone was enough to put Thorp's name on the front pages before the paper had been delivered; afterwards, it made him the centre of a virtual media storm.
The next logical step was to test the system, and the publicity so far engendered was enough to ensure no shortage of potential backers.
Bankrolled by a couple of millionaires for whom the novelty of profit-making had somehow never quite worn off, Thorp and his investors betook themselves for a nine days' wonder of play at Reno, accompanied by a former gambling control agent to keep an eye on the accuracy continue reading or honesty - of the dealers.
Easing himself gradually into the tens-counting technique at a variety of venues and tables, he soon found any residual doubts vanishing away, as witnessed by the rapidity of his profit-making and the increasing puzzlement of the dealers and pit bosses.
Of course, they had seen system-players before; but this one evidently exhibited the uncanny knack of knowing exactly what he was doing, and doing it right.
No account of Thorp's discoveries would be complete without some mention of the bizarre response of self-professed gambling expert John Scarne.
In a footnote to his 1962 book, Thorp took to task the author of Scarne's Complete Guide to Gambling 1961 for plagiarising some Blackjack probabilities from previously published mathematical papers and for apparently assuming an unlikely situation in which the player follows the same strategy as the dealer always stand on 17 or more, always draw to 16 or less, never split or double down.
Scarne, not unnaturally piqued, responded "Believe it or not, Professor Edward O.
The best thing this strategy can possibly do for the player is to cut down the house's favourable 5.
In the counting 6 to 5 blackjack payout chart, neither this match, nor any other challenge issued by Scarne to the mathematical players, ever came off, which from so many points of view is something of a pity.
But we can understand Thorp's reluctance to enter into a contest in which Scarne, well known for his prowess as a card mechanic, insisted on not so much beating the dealer as being the dealer.
IN ON THE ACT Not the easiest of skills Thorp's success led to an explosion of interest in the possibilities of card-counting.
Suddenly everybody wanted to be in on the act of developing and refining systems.
In fact, Thorp's system, based as it is on not just counting significant cards but continually recalculating the current proportion of tens to non-tens, and then applying a strategy that varies with equally varied conditions, not to mention counting Aces on the side, is not the easiest of skills to pick up for anyone of lesser mathematical skill than its founder.
In 1963 Harvey Dubner, another computer wiz, revealed a simpler counting system which would go on to form the basis of the popular and successful Hi-Lo count.
At its simplest, Hi-Lo involves counting plus 1 as each of the numeral cards 2 to 6 appears, minus 1 for aces and ten-cards, and zero for 7-8-9.
When the count is positive the composition of the undealt portion of the pack favours the player, when negative the dealer.
In more advanced developments, certain cards are valued at plus or minus 2 instead of 1, and more advanced still are the unbalanced or asymmetrical counts which do not sum to zero.
Further advances on a theme of beating the dealer were made in the 1970s by experimenters in the concept of team play, which Thorp had already touched on but not tried in a section of his book entitled The Enormous Advantages of Teaming Up with Other Players.
Among these are that pooling their money gives the players a bigger bankroll to work with; they get a good deal more time and a greater variety of tables to play at; they can share useful information among themselves, especially as to which tables to gravitate towards or away from; and it's less easy for dealers to spot the card-counters.
One of the first to put this into practice was Al Francesco, who trained other players to act as "spotters" at different casino tables and to report when the cards were most favourable to the player.
Francesco's successful practice kick-started the remarkable career of mathematical whiz- kidwho with his partners won hundreds of thousands of dollars in Las Vegas in blackjack player online early 1970s and wrote Million Dollar Blackjack in 1982.
A series of blacklistings by individual casinos forced Uston to turn his attentions elsewhere, and with the legalisation of casinos in Atlantic City in 1976 this became his new venue.
Once again he was met with a similar series of blacklistings.
This time, however, he went on the attack and countered by filing suit against Resorts International, claiming that casinos do not have the right to bar skilled players.
Resorts International Hotel Inc.
To date, Atlantic City casinos are not allowed to bar card counters.
Some players subsequently argued that Uston's legal victory actually worsened blackjack in Atlantic City because casinos responded to the court ruling by taking countermeasures to reduce the effectiveness of card-counting - which might be thought a somewhat naïve judgment, as it was obvious that casinos were not going to take any potential loss of livelihood lying down.
One of the longest-running Blackjack teams was founded by Thomas Hyland in 1979.
In an interview with Steve Bourie in the 2004 edition of theHyland says "The main advantage of having a team is that it really smoothes out the fluctuations.
I mean, if you play by yourself, it's hard to get enough hours to assure a win.
You could play for a year or so, play perfectly, and still be behind.
If you have a six or seven man team that's virtually impossible.
The other thing is that you can bet a lot higher by pooling your money.
There's also a sense of camaraderie and team spirit.
I've been go here to play with some reallycreative people.
You sit around and bounce different ideas around and you come up with some really good ideas that you wouldn't have come up with on your own.
Will science and technology put the boot in?
Will the rapid development of modern science and technology continue to produce winning systems for various gambling games?
As somebody once said, he probably made more from Beat The Dealer than from actually playing the game, and, now president of Edward O.
Given the phenomenal growth in computer power, the number and complexity of card-counting systems that have been developed since the dealer was first supposedly beaten has increased, is increasing, and probably ought to be diminished.
More elaborate than card-counting is the shuffle-tracking system developed in the 1990s by Arnold Snyder and expounded in The Blackjack Shuffle Tracker's Cookbook 2003.
Shuffle tracking involves remembering where excess large or small cards are placed in the discard pile, using that information to predict where they will end up after the next shuffle, and cutting in such as way as to profit from the information.
The good news is that shuffle tracking is much harder than card-counting for dealers and pit bosses to spot; the bad news is that it's much harder to become sufficiently expert at it to take advantage of its effectiveness.
As Snyder points out, blackjack guide saw you think the tray has about 118 cards and there actually are 127, you need more practice before you're ready to let yourself loose with it.
The effect on casino managements has been inevitable.
For every aspect of the game that counters and system-developers can get a handle on, casino operators can usually find some way of greasing it without resorting to such downright dishonest methods as rigging the pack.
End-play strategy and a good deal of card-counting was countered by increasing the number of packs in play and shuffling them well before the end - even, in some cases, in response to any suspicious move on the part of a known or potential card-counter.
Changing the rules is another effective way of countering all but the most sophisticated mathematicians.
This is not so much a case of each casino changing its rules, conditions and pay-off from one night to another, so much as not all playing exactly the same way, thus resulting in the variety of details outlined earlier in this article.
Experiments have been made with the continuous shuffling machine, which randomly inserts discards back in the deck to produce the effect of playing against blackjack guide saw freshly shuffled shoe with every hand, but these have not proved as effective as had been hoped.
If all else fails, the pit bosses can invite players to try a different game, or take their business elsewhere - which is only the polite end of the wedge culminating in outright barring from entry.
According to one Las Vegas casino executive, 'No matter what you bet, if you play expertly you're perceived as a threat.
We've got plenty of customers who don't play well.
We don't need to have our tables filled with counters.
I was just playing and everybody was coming up to me.
Hey Santa Claus, how're you doing?
Asked whether he thought casinos should really let you play if you can beat them, Hyland returned: "Absolutely.
They have the choice as to whether or not they want to offer the game.
Or, they could offer only continuous shuffle blackjack, or they could change the rules to make naturals two-card 21s pay even money, or pay six-to-five, like they're doing now in some places.
These measures would virtually prevent anyone from getting an edge at blackjack.
They should be able to put up whatever game they want, but they should have to smile and deal; and that should be the end of it.
They shouldn't be able to only deal to drunks or people that aren't too sharp.
According to Max Rubin, pseudonymous author of A Guide to Free Las Vegas Vacations Huntington Press, 1994they are prepared to throw in freebies amounting to 40 per cent of the gambling losses of players they can rely upon to - however unwittingly - play ball.
But the effect of system and counter-system on the persistence and popularity of Blackjack has been expansive.
One might hazard a guess that what keeps casino Blackjack popular is the fact that so many people who know that substantial profits, if not fortunes, are to be made from the game are not clever enough to apply the systems accurately or self-disciplined enough to do consistently - or even, high-rollers or "whales" like the late Kerry Packer, so loaded that it doesn't matter to them whether they win or lose.
Add to this the fantastic growth of on-line casino play, and its hard to see the game ever falling out of favour.

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Basic Rules of Blackjack

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Blackjack is the casino version of the game formerly known as Twenty-One and in that capacity is probably the most popular gambling game in the world.
Furthermore, in one form or another, and under various alternative names, it has been so for nigh on 300 years.
In fact, if you count its immediate ancestor Thirty-One as being essentially the same thing, it goes back more than five centuries.
The reasons for its popularity are not hard to find.
On the surface it's a simple game: a child can pick it up in less than a minute.
Deep down, it's one of the few casino banking games that a dedicated player can join in with something of an edge, so - provided you have the time and patience for complicated card-counting - you can play it at a profit, though for most of us it's more like hard work than real play.
Despite the player's theoretical edge, most people lack the patience or ability to do the calculations, so the game remains equally popular with casinos, who do very nicely out of it, thank you.
The advent of on-line gaming can only have expanded its popularity in astronomic proportions.
This doesn't make Blackjack uniquely a casino game.
It has long been equally popular in private, domestic and even family circles, with children playing for matchsticks or paper-clips, and in between these levels it is well-known for its popularity with university students and the armed forces of all the western nations.
We'll start by defining some terms and describing the simplest form of the game.
I will refer to it by its traditional and generic name "Twenty-One", except where I specifically mean the modern casino version.
Twenty-One is a banking game.
That is, one in which the players all play against just click for source single player, called the dealer, who also deals, rather than all against one another, so it's more like a series of simultaneous two-player games.
This distinguishes banking games from vying games, like Poker, where the dealer is just one of the players and the outcome depends more on player interaction notably that elusive concept of "bluff" than on the luck of the draw and playing in accordance with the probabilities.
In Twenty-One, as in most banking games, the dealer has the inbuilt advantage of being accorded a win in the case of tied hands.
In domestic or informal circles the bank rotates among the players, or is awarded to a player dealt a particular winning hand, or can be purchased by a player off the current dealer.
In casino play, the house puts up the bank and a house employee is the permanent dealer.
This gives the house a permanent advantage, which is offset to some extent by the fact that the casino dealer has no choice of play but must follow house rules as to when to stand or draw more cards.
Equally predictable play is performed by the automatic and impersonal "dealer" of Blackjack slot-machines, computer software and online casinos.
Twenty-One is first recorded in the 18th century under the name Vingt-Un or Vingt-et-Un, showing it to be of French provenance.
In Britain and Ameria it was played under its French name throughout the 19th century, though at some time in England it was pronounced in such a way as to be occasionally spelt Van John.
The Oxford English Dictionary describes this as university slang, but it can hardly have survived much into the 20th century, as the name by which it has been best known in Britain since the First World War is "Pontoon".
This also sounds like a corruption of an English pronunciation of Vingt- et -un, via something like "vontoon"; but, as there is no normal process by which a V becomes a P, we may suspect the intrusion of some sort of jocular association with a temporary device for crossing a river.
In other words, the officers played Bridge, while the "poor bloody infantry' had to make do with a pontoon.
Pontoon remains the name of the informal and domestic British game, and, as a two-card count of 21 is called a pontoon, the term has come to be used for a prison term of 21 months or years, if you're not careful.
In America the name Vingt- et -un was replaced by Blackjack early in the 20th century.
The explanation for this is said to lie with a particular casino that paid extra for a natural consisting specifically of the spade Ace and a black Jack - which sounds plausible and is often repeated, though no one has yet offered any documentary evidence for it.
John Scarne claimed that as early as 1919 the inscription "Blackjack pays odds of game 21 free blackjack to 2" was to be found on felt table layouts supplied by a Chicago gambling equipment distributor, but acknowledges only hearsay evidence for his assertion.
Or perhaps this is not so surprising after all, though, as the hallmark of any simple gaming idea and statistics blackjack probability that its very simplicity allows of creative variations of individual detail.
The basic essentials of the game, albeit subject to elaborations and variations, are as follows.
Suits are irrelevant; only face values count.
For this purpose numerals Two to Ten count at face value, face or court cards count 10 each, and an Ace counts either 1 or 11 at the option of its holder.
A hand counting more than 21 is "bust", and you card blackjack rules has />For example, an Ace and a Six make a soft 17.
This hand can be drawn to without busting, since if the next card dealt you is higher than 4 which woul make 21 you can count the Ace 1 instead of 11.
By contrast, a hard hand is one containing no Ace, or an Ace that can count only 1 without busting.
Thus check this out hand consisting of A-6-10 is a hard 17, and is normally not safe to draw to.
Some also call it a blackjack, thogh, strictly speaking, this originally denoted the Ace of spades plus either of the black Jacks.
The players place their initial bets, in accordance with agreed limits, and the dealer deals everyone two cards each.
Whether they are dealt face up or face down is one of many variables.
The dealer then asks each player in turn whether they wish to be dealt additional cards.
A player who is satisfied with their hand will "stand" or "stick'.
Otherwise, they may ask for another card 'hit'and may keep doing so until they either stand or bust.
If you bust, you throw his hand in and lose your stake.
Unless everyone else has bust, the dealer then reveals his cards and also either stands or draws additional cards until he either stands or busts.
If he busts, he matches and pays the stakes of those who didn't.
If not, he pays those with a higher count, and wins the stakes of those with a lower.
Probably no one actually lays the game in as basic a form as this, but for the purpose of this article there is no point in giving detailed rules of any particular variety: you can find all you want in any current card-game book or relevant online web site.
It will be more useful to outline the range of variations and elaborations that you're likely to come across whether playing online, in a casino, or in a private game.
Cards While the private game is played with a single 52-card pack, casinos use anything from two to eight such packs, typically six, all shuffled together and dealt from a box or "shoe".
One reason for this is to save time otherwise lost on shuffling; another is to make it more difficult for players to keep count of the appearance of key cards.
More often than not, a marker is inserted into the total pack at a point about ten here cent from the end so that not all the cards are dealt before being shuffled again, in order to make card-counting more difficult still.
The reverse is the case with online Blackjack games, as cyber-shuffling is so easy that the pack is usually reshuffled after each deal.
Deal In casino play, all cards are normally dealt face up, except the dealer's second card, but in the private game they are dealt face down.
Doubling In most varieties of the game you may double your stake after receiving your second card, but casinos may impose certain restrictions.
For example, they may only allow you to double a total of 11 or 10, or sometimes 9; or only on hard hands; or they may only allow you to draw one more card.
Similarly, the dealer, having privately looked at his second card, may call for all stakes to be doubled.
Splitting In most varieties of the game a player but not the dealer may, if initially dealt two cards of the same rank, split them into two separate hands, placig an equal stake on the second one and calling for a second card to each.
This, too, may be subject to various restrictions.
Surrendering Some casinos allow you to throw your hand in and retrieve half your stake after receiving two cards.
Standing After facing his cards, a casino dealer has no free choice of play but must follow house rules, which typically require him to hit a soft 17 or under but stand on a read more 18 or over.
Buying and twisting In the domestic British game of Pontoon, your first two cards are dealt see more down, but you may then either "buy" or "twist' additional cards.
To buy is to increase your stake and have the next card dealt face down; to twist is to leave your stake intact and have it dealt face up.
Once you have started twisting you may not revert to buying.
Ties A tie or push is when you have the same total as the dealer.
In casino play there is little uniformity as to whether the result is a stand-off or a win for the dealer, and a trawl through descriptions of the game from the earliest known times suggest that this has always been the case.
Pay-offs A player's natural is typically paid off at 3:2 in casino play, but the traditional proportion is 2:1, and other variations may be encountered.
Special hands Many informal games, but few casino variants, pay extra for special hands, such as a five-card trick five cards totalling 21 or lessor a royal pontoon a twenty-one consisting of 7-7-7, or 6-7-8.
ORIGINS Reduced from Thirty-One Vingt-et-un Twenty-One first any network blackjack とは apologise as an upper class or at least socially respectable game in 18th-century France, perhaps around 1760.
It is not mentioned in earlier editions of the Académie des Jeux, and its first appearance in an English Hoyle is that of 1800 edited by Charles Jones.
But this is not the earliest appearance of all, for a much earlier literary reference places an almost identical predecessor in Spain this web page least a century before.
In 1613 Miguel Cervantes, the author of Don Quixote, published Novelas ejemplares, a collection of twelve short stories about various contemporary characters and social tensions.
One such story is entitledthese being the names of a couple of rogues and vagabonds.
There are two points of interest to note here.
The first is social, in that the context reveals the character of the game to be distinctly low class.
This would explain why no account of its rules appears before the 18th century, as the earliest books entirely devoted to card games were necessarily written for the literate classes.
The second is technical, in that an Ace counts only 1, not 11.
In the absence of evidence to the contrary, we may speculate that what brought the game into social prominence in the 18th century was the novel idea of ascribing to the Ace its alternative higher value of 11.
This makes for a much more interesting game, as it becomes possible to reach 21 on just two cards instead of the three implied by Cervantes, which speeds the game up and gives the player an additional chance of drawing without busting.
So what about the game of Veintiuna itself?
Do we now credit Spain with its station blackjack and suggest that it dates from, let's say, the late 16th century?
Probably not, blackjack guide saw Twenty-One itself is clearly a natural evolutionary development of the much earlier game of Thirty-One that seems to have been popular throughout western Europe from the middle of the 15th century, making it one of the oldest gambling card games of all.
The technical identity of these two games, given only the reduction of the target count from 31 to 21, is proved by a description of it dating from the late blackjack guide saw century.
Some time in the 1670s a Nottinghamshire gentleman by the name of Francis Willughby kept a large notebook in which he recorded the descriptions of as many games as came his way, and, being of a mathematical turn of mind, he was particularly interested in card games.
Thirty-One, which he calls "the first and most simple games of cards", heads the list.
He explains that each player is dealt three cards from the top of the pack and has the option of either "sticking" or drawing as many more cards as he wishes until he either sticks or busts by exceeding a total face-count of 31 click here />For this purpose face cards count 10 each and others their face value, Ace being 1 only not an optional 11.
A count of exactly 31 is called a "hitter" and wins a double stake unless the dealer also has one.
As Willughby rightly notes: All the art is to know when to stick.
At 27, 28, 29 or 30 one may stick.
But it is better to venture being out than to stick under 27, especially if therebe many players.
Thirty-One is first mentioned by name in a 1464 French translation of a sermon preached in 1440 by an Italian monk now known as St Bernadine of Siena 1330-1444the patron saint of gamblers and, curiously, of public relations personnel.
Bernadine was famed for his preaching against gaming.
He is said to have done so at Bologna in 1423 so persuasively that the populace consigned their cards in thousands to a public bonfire.
Thereafter, Thirty-One appears in almost every ephemeral list of currently popular games, such lists being contained mostly in sermons preached against gaming and in town ordinances or bye-laws specifying which games were and were not allowed to be played in public.
Rabelais cites it as one of the many games played by his literary giant, Gargantua, in 1534 Book I, chapter 22and it appears under its German name einunddreissig in Fischart's Geschichtklitterung 1575which is more of an expanded paraphrase than a literal translation of Gargantua.
Rounding up more of the usual suspects in the historical context, we find it mentioned by Berni in his little book on Primiera 1526and by Cardano in his classic Book on Games of Chance 1564.
Cardano, indeed, confuses the issue by separately mentioning a game featuring significant totals ranging from 20 to 22 in increments of one-half, but the relevant passage is somewhat garbled in its original Latin, and the name of the game, Fluxus, suggests that it refers to ways of valuing a flush.
It see more or may not be significant that in the Italian game of Primiera, a forerunner of Poker, an Ace itself is valued at 21.
But that's another story.
Daniel Martin, in Le Parlement Nouveau 1647 writes: Show me the game thirty-one.
It is an easy game for women and children.
Cut the cards; we want to play one or two games.
It is forbidden blackjack guide saw see under the cut card pile, this is very important.
Deal three cards to each hot streak />In its pure form, Thirty-One survived into the 18th century and even into the 19th, albeit perhaps only in books.
In Facts and Speculations on the Origin and History of Playing-Cards 1848William Chatto quotes from a commentary on A Kerry Pastoral of 1724, which maintains that "The favourite game of the Kerry men is said to have been One-and-Thirty", and goes on to observe that as the intercourse between the two countries was frequent, and the favourite game in both was One-and-Thirty, it is not unlikely that the Irish obtained their knowledge of cards from the Spaniards.
Here, however, he seems to be confusing Thirty-One with the Veintiuna, or Twenty-One, mentioned by Cervantes.
Thirty-One seems to have lasted well into the 19th century, at least in France.
It and Twenty-One are both covered in the same chapter of Le Salon des Jeux of about 1830.
Here, Thirty-One is said to be played with Ace counting 1 or 11, a practice possibly borrowed from its more illustrious descendant.
More remarkably, the editor comments that "Trente-et-un is more generally played than Vingt-et-un" p.
The practice of drawing or playing cards up to 31 is not unique to Thirty-One, but from the earliest times found itself grafted on to other games.
Drawing to 31 also forms the third part of several three-part gambling games dating from the 17th century, including the French Belle, Flux et Trente-et-un, and the English Bone-Ace described in both Cotton's Compleat Gamester of 1674 and Willughby's Book of Games c 1665.
It is also a feature of the 19th-century game of Commerce.
Playing additively up to 31 is, of course, a principal component of Cribbage and its 16th-century ancestor Noddy.
Cotton also describes a rather puerile game called Wit and Reason, in which one player takes all the red cards and one all the black; each in turn plays a card after the manner of Cribbage; and whoever brings the total above 31 loses.
RELATED FACE-COUNT GAMES What's in a number?
Farmer la Ferme The American game of Farmer and the German Pächter may be traced back to a French game called Ia Ferme, first described in Oudin's Recherches italiennes et francoises of 1640.
It is not a rustic game, as sometimes claimed: "farm" is metaphorical for "bank", and the proprietors of Parisian gaming-houses were known as "farmers", a jocular term first applied to professional tax-collectors.
Farm was played with a 45-card pack made by removing the Eights and all the Sixes except that of hearts, known as "le brillant".
This choice of absentees will be understood from the point of the game, which was to make sixteen.
The best result was a sixteen consisting of le brillant and a court or Ten.
Next best was any other two-card sixteen, followed by one of three cards.
A sixteen won the pool and relieved the current farmer dealer of his farm bank.
If no sixteen appeared, the highest point below it won the pool but not the farm.
A player who bust paid the farmer 1 chip per point over 16.
The players will have previously bet on which row will come closer to 31, or that the first card dealt will or will not match the colour of the winning row, or both.
It first appeared in France around 1650, was popular in English card clubs in the early 19th century, and is still played in some French casinos.
It never became popular elsewhere, though, and is diminishing in France, probably because of its low house percentage, in that the bank's only certain win is a 31-point tie.
Macao With face-cards counting zero, Macao is best thought of as a one-card online blackjack casino canada of Baccara and may be possibly ancestral to it.
The dealer deals one card each.
Anyone dealt a Nine, Eight or Seven reveals their card, and if the dealer cannot beat it he pays them respectively three, two or one times their stake.
The others can then stick or draw a second card, and all cards are revealed.
A player with a count above nine is bust and loses.
If the dealer busts he pays those who do not, otherwise he pays those with a high non-bust count than himself.
Taking its name from that Portuguese corner of the Chinese world once known as the Monte Carlo of the east, Macao dates from the late 18th century and is the game that ruined Beau Brummell, famed London dandy and friend of the Prince Regent, in the early 19th.
It is probably not to be identified with a card game called Mack recorded from 1548.
Baccara t Spelt Baccarat in British and Nevadan casinos, Baccara has given rise to more historical misinformation than almost any other card game.
One online site would have you believe that "The word baccarat is derived from the Italian word baccara, meaning zero" and that "It has long held the attention of gamblers and an early version was played with cards from a Tarot deck back in the Middle Ages".
In fact, the Italian for here is "zero", and Baccara first appeared in France no earlier than the middle of the 19th century, and in Italy shortly after.
That writer may have been confusing "baccara" with "bagatelle".
Like Macao, it looks as if it was derived from Vingt-et-Un or Twenty-One by the same sort of reductionist process that derived Twenty-One from Thirty-One, though it is quite possible that it independently derives from a game already played in the Orient, like the Japanese Kabu.
The origin of its name is unknown, though one ingenious etymologist relates it to a Provençal expression bacarra meaning "hopeless" or "nothing doing".
A baccara is indeed a worthless hand, or more specifically one worth zero, but which word came first remains to be explored.
Ace counts 1 only and face cards zero.
Each player is dealt one card and may call for another.
The winning hand is that most closely approaching a total of 9, for which purpose any total above 9 counts only as its last digit.
For example, 6 and 10 counts 6, not 16.
There are three main varieties of play.
This makes them feel important and is quite safe from the casino's point of view, as the dealer is obliged to follow choice-defeating rules of play.
Quinze Quinze is a two-player equivalent of Twenty-One played to a point of fifteen.
Ace counts 1 only, not 11.
The choice of 15 is logical, in that the mean value of a single card is almost exactly seven-and-a-half.
Its first English-language mention is dated 1716 and it maintained a certain popularity throughout the 18th century.
Seven-and-a-half This is in fact the title of an Italian game Sette e mezzo played with the Italian 40-card pack lacking Eights, Nines, and Tens.
Ace counts 1, numerals face value, and face cards one-half each.
The winning total, obviously, is seven and a half, and a player who gets this on two cards - a Seven and a face - takes over the bank.
It is more of a club or domestic game than a casino game, despite the bank's very high advantage.
An equivalent game played with the full 52-card pack is called Onze-et-demie, from its target score happens. cosmopolitan blackjack comps congratulate eleven and a half.
Similar face-count games are played with various local packs throughout the world.
Here are a few.
Kvitlakh or Quitlok A Jewish game of Central European origin apparently derived from Twenty-One but using cards of a unique design.
Piatnik, the cardmakers of Vienna, still produce a pack called Quitli.
It contains twenty-four cards in two series of numbers from 1 to 12.
The object is to reach but not exceed a point of 21, for which purpose a Twelve may count anything from 9 to 12 at its holder's discretion.
Deuces and Elevens are special cards and appropriately go here, as a pair of either rank wins outright.
The design of some of these cards suggests an origin in 18th century Germany.
Kabu A Japanese game using a distinctive pack deriving ultimately from the Portuguese, though now heavily modified.
It resembles Baccara in setting as its target a point ending in 9.
Naqsh An Indian game played mainly by women, Naqsh employs cards hinges on a point of 17.
WOMEN AND TWENTY-ONE A feminine favourite As we have already noted, Vingt-et-un became a major game in 18th-century France, perhaps owing its attractiveness to the novelty of counting an Ace as 1 or 11 ad lib and correspondingly reducing the number of cards dealt from three as in Thirty-One to two, with the further possibility of being dealt a winning hand immediately.
It is recorded as being Napoleon's favourite card game, especially when in exile on Elba and, subsequently, St Helena.
Contrary to popular legend, he is not known to have played any form of solitaire, and it would certainly not have been in character for him to do so.
His example notwithstanding, however, blackjack 24/7 new game achieved especial popularity among the ladies, and it is to them that we owe many of the earliest references.
Vingt-un was reputedly the favourite game of Mme du Barry, the unfortunate mistress of Louis XV.
Born Jeanne Becu in 1743, the daughter of a butcher, her beauty led her to enjoy a chequered career before she met Louis at age 25.
She was unmarried at the time, and, in order to comply with the peculiar conventions of the French court, was required to marry someone else before she could become the royal mistress.
For this purpose she chose her unofficial lover's brother, Guillaume du Barry.
Thus qualified, she took up her new post of acknowledged royal mistress, and, transcending her humble origins, subsequently proved a patron of artists and intellectuals besides becoming a friend of Voltaire.
The death of Louis in 1774 led to a dramatic decline in her fortunes, and, by a somewhat roundabout route, she was eventually accused of working against the revolutionary government and guillotined in 1793.
One of the earliest English references to Vingt-et-un occurs in the diary of the Duchess of Northumberland in 1772 7 June, to be precisewhere she reports herself as playing "Vingt et un till supper-time".
In 1790 a certain A.
Bower noted in his diary or correspondence - the Oxford English Dictionary is unclear which "I was sat down with every Miss in Winchester to play Vingt une".
But for one of the best commentaries on its status at this period we turn to one of the best novelists of this or any other period of English literature.
Jane Austen refers to card games so often and so percipiently in her works as to show that must herself have been a keen player.
Here's what she has to say about the game in her unfinished novel The Watsons, written about 1804-5: "What's your game?
I know you do, Tom.
I am glad it is a favourite with you.
You would be astonished to hear the noise we make there.
Lady Osborne sometimes declares she cannot hear herself speak.
I cannot say I am very fond of Speculation.
Vingt-et-un is the game particularly associated with the first, or first well-known, women gamblers of the Old West.
One of the earliest was a certain Madame Simone Jules, an attractive, dark-haired woman in her twenties who was employed from around 1850 as a roulette croupier at San Francisco's Bella Union casino.
She was of some refinement, a novelty which led to sufficient success for other casinos to start employing women in order to compete.
Refinement apart, she was also known as or suspected of being a cardsharp, with a particular interest and ability in Twenty-One.
She seems to have disappeared mysteriously in 1854, and her story might well have been forgotten had it not been for the coincidental appearance later that year of a strikingly similar woman calling herself Madame Eleanore Dumont, who descended from a stagecoach at Nevada City to take up a chastely solitudinous residence in a top hotel.
Within a week she had rented a room on Broad Street and set up a Vingt-et-Un table, which she ran herself, for the entertainment of local gold miners.
She was immediately perceived to be an attractive, dark-haired woman in her twenties, and the more observant and better-travelled denizens of that city might have commented that the traces of a fine, downy hair on her upper lip, which in later life were to grow so prominent as to earn her the undesirably distinctive nickname "Madame Moustache", had also been a feature of the erstwhile Simone Jules.
Nor was the distinctive element of refinement lacking.
Madame Dumont insisted that her clients remove their hats but not their jackets and should neither brawl nor swear in her presence, and firmly but charmingly discouraged any form of intimacy with the bank herself.
So charming was she that her establishment prospered, enabling her to expand into larger and plusher premises.
In a couple of years, however, the pannings grew thin, with a corresponding effect on her takings, and she found herself obliged to seek new horizons.
She subsequently became a more or less itinerant gambler, began to fill out and to lose her looks, and within 20 years or so was running a two-storey establishment with a casino on one floor and a brothel on the other.
She never regained her former glory - for that matter, her former chastity -and is said to have descended into unprofitable liaisons with various untrustworthy paramours.
In 1879 her body was fished from the river about a mile out of Bodie.
The cause was poisoning and the verdict suicide.
It is said that she had heard herself referred to as "Madame Moustache" once too often.
HOME AND AWAY Fun for all the family On the European side of the Atlantic throughout the 19th century Vingt- et -un remained popular primarily as a somewhat genteel family or parlour or "round" game -that is, one for no specific number of players.
You can get the flavour of the game as it was then perceived from Cassell's Book of Indoor Amusements, Card Games and Fireside Fun 1881which introduces it as follows: "Of all round card games, there is not one more deservedly popular than the one so well known as Vingt-Un i.
Although much of the success attending it depends much upon chance, the exercise of no small amount of care and judgment is required of the players, in consequence of which the real but basic blackjack strategy card what of the game is greatly intensified".
Such domestic popularity was particularly the case in Britain, which, until fairly recently, has never sanctioned the existence of public casinos.
In the 19th century and well into the 20th, the big money players have been confined to private clubs, making such play possible only to bona fide members.
This is not to say that the game was played only by the gentility.
On the contrary, since the urge to gamble is no respecter of classes, and Vingt- et -Un is a quick and easy and jolly way of doing it with cards, it was widely played wherever large quantities of men found themselves living in one another's company, such as schools, universities, pubs, working men's clubs, and especially the armed forces.
It is very difficult to follow the evolution of games during periods of upheaval, as the second decade of the 20th century uniquely was, but it seems to be around the time of the First World War that the distinctively British game of Pontoon evolved its most characteristic features, such as five-card tricks and royal flushes, and, above all, its most distinctive name.
In 1981 a poll was commissioned by now defunct to discover what were currently the most popular card games in Britain.
When asked what card game respondents had last played, Pontoon came third with a response of 26 per cent, following Whist with 28 and Rummy with 32 per cent.
Meanwhile, on the American side, Vingt- et -Un had become Blackjack by the start of the 20th century, and under that name remained a staple of casino play, though not occupying the prominent position that it holds today.
Perhaps because of the stabilising influence of casinos, the private game did not develop as distinctively as the equivalent British Pontoon.
John Scarne, though of dubious authority in many aspects of the subject, was on trustworthy home ground when he observed in Scarne on Cards, p.
My own observation was the World War II armed forces' most popular card game".
Surprisingly, Blackjack did not figure in a survey conducted by the United States Playing-Card Company in 1946, which discovered the most popular games to be, first, Bridge, then Pinochle, Rummy, Five Hundred, Poker, Whist, Solitaire, and Hearts.
The Canasta craze had yet to break.
However, it's interesting to note the order of events in John Crawford's 1953 book entitled "How to be a consistent winner in the most popular card games", namely: Bridge, Poker, Gin Rummy, Canasta, Pinochle, Blackjack, Hearts, Crib, and Pitch.
By this time, however, Las Vegas had become transformed from a desert outpost to a gambler's paradise, and Blackjack was about to be subjected to a technical assault that was to see the casino game dominate the attention of all who also played the private game, and this to such an extent as nowadays even to threaten the lovably eccentric British game of Pontoon.
This assault coincided with the introduction of card-counting.
BEAT THE DEALER It's the Thorp that counts A major attraction of Blackjack as a gambling game is the possibility, well known even before being so genteelly pointed out in Cassell's Book of things and whatnots see aboveof being able to supply sufficient intelligence to one's play as to reduce the dealer's advantage to a minimum -especially in the home game, where the dealer has more freedom of play, so that a clever player can, in the long run, read more overcome a relatively naïve dealer.
The simplest way of applying mathematical intelligence to the game is to know what the odds are in any given situation.
The essentials of what is known as "Basic Strategy" can be formulated and tabulated in such terms as: If dealt A-7: Stand if dealer has 2, 7 or 8; double 3, 4, 5 or 6; otherwise hit.
If dealt 9-9: Stand if dealer has 7, 10 or Ace, otherwise split.
Rules of this type are particularly valuable in casino play, where the dealer has no option but to comply with house rules.
They can be printed on a card, and most casinos don't object to anyone referring to their Basic Strategy Card before deciding on a course of action.
Such a card is one of several that came free with every copy of the first edition of Edward O Thorp's epoch-making book "Beat the Dealer" in 1962.
Thorp, a young mathematics professor at MIT with a particular interest in probability theory, had started exploring detailed implications of a fact that had certainly struck players before but had to wait for the advent of computer analysis -now available to modern young mathematics professors -before it could be developed into an accurate workable system.
This critical fact is the nature of Blackjack as a non-replacement game.
That is, so long as cards are dealt from the top of the pack, and it is not shuffled before the last card has been dealt, the composition of the pack changes with each fresh deal, since the proportion of high to low cards that it contains is constantly changing.
Given that high cards tend to favour the player because they increase his chances of getting a naturaland low cards the dealer because they decrease his chances of bustingThorp had long known that by counting the appearance of key cards you would know when the composition of the pack favoured the player so bet hard and when the dealer so draw back.
Players before Thorp had recognised the fact that the composition of the pack becomes more intelligible the closer to the end of the pack the cards are being dealt from.
So-called end-play strategy is thought to have underpinned the success of a legendary figure known only as "the little dark-haired guy from Southern California" who had made a killing in Reno some time in the 40s or 50s, and probably that of the grotesque character known only as Greasy Learn more here, from his habit of eschewing all company at the tables other than blackjack game tips huge bag of very greasy fried chicken.
He had no trouble playing alone.
Even though the decks were changed frequently, the grease was sufficient to drive away the men players".
More advanced than mere end-play was a system based on card-counting, in which Thorp had been preceded by some analysis reported by Roger Baldwin et al in the Journal of the American Statistical Association in 1956 and subsequently published as a spiral-bound offprint.
Thorp also acknowledged an eccentric practical predecessor called Benjamin F Smith, once a well-known figure at the Vegas tables under the title "System Smitty".
According to a mutual acquaintance who saw Smitty's notebooks, Smitty had spent several years playing out 100,000 hands, in an effort to determine the proper standing numbers when a Ten-count was employed.
Other predecessors in the counting stakes are listed in Arnold Snyder's admirable "Big Book of Blackjack" New York, 2006, ISBN 158042155-5.
For all his success, Smitty's system - and Baldwin's too, if truth be admitted - exhibited flaws resulting partly from the nature of the system and partly from lack of the sort of computer analysis that Thorp was to enjoy at MIT in 1960.
This showed, in particular, that a shortage of aces, nines and ten-counts gave the house an edge, while those of other ranks favoured the player.
With all the fives gone from a single pack, the player's edge with best strategy was 3.
It did indeed, and it interested a lot more than mere mathematicians.
The title of the abstract alone was enough to put Thorp's name on the front pages before the paper had been delivered; afterwards, it made him the centre of a virtual media storm.
The next logical step was to test the system, and the publicity so far engendered was enough to ensure no shortage of potential backers.
Bankrolled by a couple of millionaires for whom the novelty of profit-making had somehow never quite worn off, Thorp and his investors betook themselves for a nine days' wonder of play at Reno, accompanied by a former gambling control agent to keep an eye on the accuracy - or honesty - of the dealers.
Easing himself gradually into the tens-counting technique at a variety of venues and tables, he soon found any residual doubts vanishing away, as witnessed by the rapidity of his profit-making and the increasing puzzlement of the dealers and pit bosses.
Of course, they had seen system-players before; but this one evidently exhibited the uncanny knack of knowing exactly what he was doing, and doing it right.
No account of Thorp's discoveries would be complete without some mention of the bizarre response of self-professed gambling expert John Scarne.
In a footnote to his 1962 book, Thorp took to task the author of Scarne's Complete Guide to Gambling 1961 for plagiarising some Blackjack probabilities from previously published mathematical papers and for apparently assuming an unlikely situation in which the player follows the same strategy as the dealer always stand on 17 or more, always draw to 16 or less, never split or double down.
Scarne, not unnaturally piqued, responded "Believe it or not, Professor Edward O.
The best thing this strategy can possibly do for the player is to cut down the house's favourable 5.
In the event, neither this match, nor any other challenge issued by Scarne to the mathematical players, ever came off, which from so many points of view is something of a pity.
But we can understand Thorp's reluctance to enter into a contest in which Scarne, well known for his prowess as a card mechanic, insisted on not so much beating the dealer as being the dealer.
IN ON THE ACT Not the easiest of skills Thorp's success led to an explosion of interest in the possibilities of card-counting.
Suddenly everybody wanted to be in on the act of developing and refining systems.
In fact, Thorp's system, based as it is on not just counting significant cards but continually recalculating the current proportion of tens to non-tens, and then applying a strategy that varies with equally varied conditions, not to mention counting Aces on the side, is not the easiest of skills to pick up for anyone of lesser mathematical skill than its founder.
In 1963 Harvey Dubner, another computer wiz, revealed a simpler counting system which would go on to form the basis of the popular and successful Hi-Lo count.
At its simplest, Hi-Lo involves counting plus 1 as each of the numeral cards 2 to 6 appears, minus 1 for aces and ten-cards, and zero for 7-8-9.
When the count is positive the composition of the undealt portion of the pack favours the player, when negative the dealer.
In more advanced developments, certain cards are valued at plus or minus 2 instead of 1, and more advanced still are the unbalanced or asymmetrical counts which do not sum to zero.
Further advances on a theme of beating the dealer were made in the 1970s by experimenters in the concept of team play, which Thorp had already touched on but not tried in a section of his book entitled The Enormous Advantages of Teaming Up with Other Players.
Among these are that pooling their money gives the players a bigger bankroll to work with; they get a good deal more time and a greater variety of tables to play at; they can share useful information among themselves, especially as to which tables to gravitate towards or away from; and it's less easy for dealers to spot the card-counters.
One of the first to put this into practice was Al Francesco, who trained other players to act as "spotters" at different casino tables and to report when the cards were most favourable to the player.
Francesco's successful practice kick-started the remarkable career of mathematical whiz- kidwho with his partners won hundreds of thousands of dollars in Las Vegas in the early 1970s and wrote Million Dollar Blackjack in 1982.
A series of blacklistings by individual casinos forced Uston to turn his attentions elsewhere, and with the legalisation of casinos in Atlantic City in 1976 this became his new venue.
Once again he was met with a similar series of blacklistings.
This time, however, he went on the attack and countered by filing suit against Resorts International, claiming that casinos do not have the right to bar skilled players.
Resorts International Hotel Inc.
To date, Atlantic City casinos are not allowed to bar card counters.
Some players subsequently argued that Uston's legal victory actually worsened blackjack in Atlantic City because casinos responded to the court ruling by taking countermeasures to reduce the effectiveness of card-counting - which might be thought a somewhat naïve judgment, as it was obvious that casinos were not going to take any potential loss of livelihood lying down.
One of the longest-running Blackjack teams was founded by Thomas Hyland in 1979.
In an interview with Steve Bourie in the 2004 edition of theHyland says "The main advantage of having a team is that it really smoothes out the fluctuations.
I mean, if you play by yourself, it's hard to get enough hours to assure a win.
You could play for a year or so, play perfectly, and still be behind.
If you have a six or seven man team that's virtually impossible.
The other thing is that you can bet a lot higher by pooling your money.
There's also a sense of camaraderie and team spirit.
I've been fortunate to play with some reallycreative people.
You sit around and bounce different ideas around and you come up with some really good ideas that you wouldn't have come up with on your own.
Will science and technology put the boot in?
Will the rapid development of modern science and technology continue to produce winning systems for various gambling games?
As somebody once said, he probably made more from Beat The Dealer than from actually playing the game, and, now president of Edward O.
Given the phenomenal growth in computer power, the number and complexity of card-counting systems that have been developed since the dealer was first supposedly beaten has increased, is increasing, and probably ought to be diminished.
More elaborate than card-counting is the shuffle-tracking system developed in the 1990s by Arnold Snyder and expounded in The Blackjack Shuffle Tracker's Cookbook 2003.
Shuffle tracking involves remembering where excess large or small cards are placed in the discard pile, using that information to predict where they will end up after the next shuffle, and cutting in such as way as to profit from the information.
The good news is that blackjack juegos español en de online tracking is much harder than card-counting for dealers and pit bosses to spot; the bad news is that it's much harder to become sufficiently expert at it to take advantage of its effectiveness.
As Snyder points out, if you think the tray has about 118 cards and there actually are 127, you need more practice before you're ready to let yourself loose with it.
The effect on casino managements has been inevitable.
For every aspect of the game that counters and system-developers can get a handle on, casino operators can usually find some way of greasing it without resorting to such downright dishonest methods as rigging the pack.
End-play strategy and a good deal of card-counting was countered by increasing the number of packs in play and shuffling them well before the end - even, in some cases, in response to any suspicious move on the part of a known or potential card-counter.
Changing the rules is another effective way of countering all but the most sophisticated mathematicians.
This is not so much a case of each casino changing its rules, conditions and pay-off from one night to another, so much as not all playing exactly the same way, thus resulting in the variety of details outlined earlier in this article.
Experiments have been made with the continuous shuffling machine, which randomly inserts discards back in the deck to produce the effect of playing against a freshly shuffled shoe with every hand, but these have not proved as effective as had been hoped.
If all else fails, the pit bosses can invite players to try a different game, or take their business elsewhere - which is only the polite end of the wedge culminating in outright barring from entry.
According to one Las Vegas casino executive, 'No matter what you bet, if you play expertly you're perceived as a threat.
We've got plenty of customers who don't play well.
We don't need to have our tables filled with counters.
I was just playing and everybody was coming up to me.
Hey Santa Claus, how're you doing?
Asked whether he thought casinos should really let you play if you can beat them, Hyland returned: "Absolutely.
They have the choice as to whether or not they want to offer the game.
Or, they could offer only continuous shuffle blackjack, or they could change the rules to make naturals two-card 21s pay even money, or pay six-to-five, like they're doing now in some places.
These measures would virtually prevent anyone from getting an edge at blackjack.
They should be able to put up whatever game they want, but they should have to smile and deal; and that should be the end of it.
They shouldn't be able to only deal to drunks or people that aren't too sharp.
click the following article to Max Rubin, pseudonymous author of A Guide to Free Las Vegas Vacations Huntington Press, 1994they are prepared to throw in blackjack guide saw amounting to 40 per cent of the gambling losses of players they can rely upon to - however unwittingly - play ball.
But the effect of system and counter-system on the persistence and popularity of Blackjack has been expansive.
One might hazard a guess that what keeps casino Blackjack popular is the fact that so many people who know that substantial profits, if not fortunes, are to be made from the game are not clever enough to apply the systems accurately or self-disciplined enough to do consistently - or even, high-rollers or "whales" like the late Kerry Packer, so loaded that it doesn't matter to them whether they win or lose.
Add to this the fantastic growth of on-line casino https://pink-stuf.com/blackjack/edgewater-blackjack.html, and its hard to see the game ever falling out of favour.

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View Edward O. Thorp's blackjack basic strategy chart. The table was originally featured in Edward O. Thorp's Beat the Dealer book on blackjack strategy.


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Unfortunately, even when playing perfectthe average player will still be playing at a disadvantage.
Yes, those players will have some sessions where they get lucky and win, but in the long run the odds will catch up with them and they will lose money.
The reality of the situation is that only an experienced card counter can be a long-term winner and, even though the counter should eventually come out with a profit, there are likely to be many losing sessions along the way.
To help lessen the inherent risks in the game, many card counters have found it advantageous to play on teams.
By pooling their money they have a bigger bankroll to work with and they can also reduce the volatility of the game by playing continue reading more than one table at a time.
Additionally, by having a team they can get in many more hours of play than they would be able to do if they were playing alone.
One of the most successful card counting teams in the world is run by Tommy Hyland.
I first saw Hyland about four years ago on the CBS TV show "48 Hours.
I must admit that I was intrigued by the video footage and through the years I continued to hear from various sources about Hyland's success with his card zero blackjack teams.
I thought an interview with Hyland would be interesting and, through some mutual friends, I eventually got to meet him.
He agreed to the interview and the following conversation took place in Las Vegas in early 2003.
When did you first get involved in blackjack?
I was going to school in Ohio and my roommate and I were both interested in gambling.
We started going to Atlantic City once in a while and it kind of went from there.
I basically started playing full-time in April 1979.
Did you make money right away when you first started?
What really got me going though, was after I taught a friend of mine to play also.
We got really lucky.
Then in December 1979 we won a fair amount of money during the famous card counting experiment where the casinos let known card counters play for about two weeks.
We won quite a lot during that period.
Was Ken Uston playing at that time?
At that time there were two casinos open — Resorts and Caesars.
Was he a well known card counter at the time?
When I saw him playing by then, he was in the newspapers, on TV, and the radio all the time.
He was the most famous card counter.
Did he know you guys?
Not really, we were playing real small compared to how he was playing, but eventually I got to know him.
I probably had lunch or dinner with him five times and talked with him on the phone a few times, stuff like that.
Do you have any comment on that?
I do know he was a heavy drinker and had some drug problems also.
He died of a drug overdose?
He died in France, you know possible complications from drugs, but I also heard it was a heart attack.
He was certainly a likeable guy, very charismatic.
I have the opposite view.
I liked the fact that he would sue the casinos, he would go before these gaming commissions and try to win the right for counters to play.
I kind of liked that.
After your initial success there with your four-man team, then what did you do?
I decided to train some more of my friends at the golf course to play.
I would put up the money and they would get a percentage of what they won.
I trained one or two and we did really well.
Luckily, I picked some good guys and they worked out well.
Then, things just snowballed unbelievably.
Eventually, the team got a little bit out of control.
I would have somebody calling me or asking me to teach them how to play at least once a week.
I had a hard time saying no and ultimately, things got a little disorganized.
We probably had some slippage skimming, sloppy play as a result of that.
At this time we had about 30 or 40 people on the team.
You were bankrolling 30 or 40 people?
I was the main investor, but these people would win and they would invest some of their winnings back in the bankroll, and I think we also got some outside people to invest — parents or relatives.
It was an evolving thing.
When you say these other people would "invest" does that mean you needed more money for your bankroll?
Well, we wanted to bet high.
We were trying to win money and also get a bankroll to bet as high as they were.
How high would they bet?
We wanted to be able to do that too because we had read the books which said that the more you bet the higher your hourly win rate would be.
Okay, so you had some success, you expanded, and then it wound up being like 30 or 40 people on your team.
You had to be more skilled and more disciplined.
I think what happened was that we had our first losing bankroll.
We took a little break and some people quit or went off to play on their own.
Four or five of us joined up with three other guys that were playing mostly in Vegas.
One of these guys was from Princeton and another guy was from Michigan University.
They were real smart guys and we started playing using these advanced techniques, mainly shuffle tracking.
There were a lot of real juicy shuffles here in Las Vegas and also in Atlantic City.
What year was this?
This would have been about 1982.
So you formed another team.
Did you ever play by yourself?
Why do you like teams as opposed to doing it on your own?
There are a lot of reasons that teams are good.
Obviously, there are some negatives but I think the positives far outweigh the negatives.
The main advantage of having a team is that it really smooths out the fluctuations.
You could play for a year or so, play perfectly, and still be behind.
The other thing is that you can bet a lot higher by pooling your money.
So when you came out here and joined up with the other guys to form a new team how did you do?
We did really well.
Like I said, we were mostly playing shuffles.
We were playing a lot blackjack guide saw Vegas and a little bit in Atlantic City.
We were also traveling around to the Caribbean and in general it went really well.
We made quite a bit of money.
How long did that last?
I still play with some of those same guys today.
It was basically the same team for eight years?
There were people constantly in and out and we would actually have 30 or 40 people but a lot of them were part-time.
Some casinos would be offering a really good game and we would look for different ways to exploit it.
A lot of these guys had friends and we had this big pool of people that we would have to teach how continue reading do everything.
We might have one particular game that we could exploit and we would teach some new guy everything he had to do to beat it.
Or, maybe some guy had a good look and a good act, so we would just teach him basic strategy and we could give signals to do all the rest of the stuff.
We had a whole host of projects and different schemes to exploit some weakness in a particular casino.
We had people coming in and out; somebody would play for us for one year and we would never see them again.
We had guys from Australia, China, everywhere.
It was an exciting time with a lot of adventure.
What happened to the team in 1990?
Well, what happened was, as we made some pretty good money these other guys lost a lot of their interest in blackjack and they wanted to do other things.
One guy went off to do horse racing in Hong Kong.
Another guy got into the stock market.
Some of the guys dabbled in poker for a year or two.
Blackjack is a little tougher right now but some of those original people are still invested in blackjack even though they are doing other things.
I have some people who have played for 15 to 20 years and still play pretty much full-time and then I have some others that play part-time.
Where are your teams now?
Do you play throughout go here United States?
Or, do they spread out all over the place?
I mean we do have some games with big players and call people in, but we mainly just pool https://pink-stuf.com/blackjack/blackjack-payouts-table.html money and we all go our various ways and we keep track of the results.
Then, at a certain agreed upon date, we split the profits.
We split the proceeds about every six months.
So each player plays for six months?
Well, the bankroll lasts for six months and then we split it up and start another one.
We used to play to a "money target which meant that we played until we won a certain amount of money.
There are advantages and disadvantages of doing it both ways.
If you hit your "money target" before the six months was up, would you stop playing?
We used to have a money target and not have a time limit.
We would just play until we won that amount of money and that has its advantages too.
Play for six months and then investors get a share, players get a share, stuff like that.
Do you always make money?
How rare is it to lose money after a six month period?
The whole key is getting in a lot of hours.
If you get in a lot of hours and the people are honest, you basically cannot lose.
A lot of these are part-time and there are about five or six people that play full-time.
I also make some temporary arrangements with people that I know are good players.
I have a couple guys coming out for the Super Bowl and they may not play again until the next Super Bowl.
We just have a certain arrangement for that weekend.
But mostly your team is spread out all over the country?
Do you play yourself?
Yeah, I still play.
I play a fair amount.
Do they let you play in Vegas?
I can still play some places in Vegas.
What would you say has been the biggest change in blackjack since your early years?
I guess the biggest change would be the proliferation of the casinos.
Instead of having two states with blackjack, at least half the states have blackjack now.
The spread of information is a huge change.
It used to be if you got barred in a casino in Vegas, maybe a week later all the casinos in Vegas would have your picture or something like that.
Now, if you get barred somewhere, numerous casinos throughout the world may have your picture within minutes.
see more you have any funny stories about your blackjack exploits?
He was in college and had heard about blackjack and the success we had and decided he would like to play for the summer.
He came to Atlantic City and he picked it up real fast.
He was a smart guy.
He played in Atlantic City and he did well.
He was all excited about the trip but it was a little scary to him because he had heard all these stories about how they might do something to you if you won a lot of money and they thought you were a card counter.
So, naturally, he was a little apprehensive.
What year was this?
This would have been in the early 80s.
He had all these chips on the table and was getting real excited about how much he was winning.
Then he noticed he was getting some attention from the pit, so he figured this would be a good time to take all his chips blackjack guide saw take a break to go count them.
He opens the door and looks out and sees a https://pink-stuf.com/blackjack/spelregels-blackjack-holland-casino.html security guard there staring at him while he has his chips and money all over the place and the guard goes, "What are you doing?
He was out there playing on the team.
Like I say, what we do basically is give somebody money to go play and we just let them loose, they go play wherever they want to, or they may have a particular casino in mind to go play.
Because they always track you and eventually they will know that you are counting cards.
The more you win, the less welcome you are going to be at casinos.
So, that does happen.
Today, there are so many casinos, you can use different names.
You may play a casino, have a big win, not go back there for a year or so and then play as a different guy the next time.
We do that all the time.
We used to use disguises a lot.
Back in Atlantic City pity, crystal water casino free games bodog agree Ken Uston won his case, they used to have this three-step process for barring counters.
The first time they caught you, or if they just thought you were a card counter, they read you a card.
We used to call this step one and basically the card would just say that you are no longer allowed to play blackjack, but you were allowed to play any other casino game.
Now, if they caught that same person a second time, they would tell them you are no longer allowed on the premises.
Then, if that same person came back again and they discovered them, they would then arrest them for trespassing.
We thought it was outrageous that you could get kicked out of a casino just for knowing how to play.
We felt we were on the right side of this and we decided we were just going to play.
I was just playing and everybody was coming up to me.
At that time we used to do these things we called "raids" where we would send everybody in there.
So, we had a whole bunch of people in there and one of us heard the pit guy on the phone.
They saw the humor in it.
What do you see in the future for blackjack?
Or, do you think the casinos will come up with things to thwart you, such as continuous shuffling machines?
A lot of the attraction of blackjack is that pretty much everybody who gambles in a casino has heard that blackjack is the only game you can beat.
So, the casinos would be taking a risk by putting in a totally unbeatable game with all continuous shufflers.
Also, it seems to me they are now taking as many out as they are putting in.
People like the idea of having a hot shoe and going on a streak.
I think for the next decade or so there is certainly money to be made in blackjack.
If you move around and you are disciplined, it is still possible to make a good living playing blackjack.
Although it is still shocking to me that casinos are able to treat skilled players the way they do.
The courts will stop this.
We have to fight for every inch.
The casinos still take a lot of liberties with what they do and they treat us terribly.
It just never seemed fair that they can offer a game to the public, say what the rules are, and then abuse people that just play by those rules.
I bet some sports and the sports books are incredibly gracious and nice whether I win or lose.
Most of the personnel are really friendly and seem to enjoy matching wits with all of their customers, no matter what their skill level.
Right now Missouri and Atlantic City are the only two states with laws preventing casinos from barring card counters?
Like some of the provinces in Canada and Australia which have a lot of laws to protect counters.
Do you think they should really let you play if you can beat them?
They have the choice as to whether or not they want to offer the game.
These measures would virtually prevent anyone from getting an edge at blackjack.
They should be able to put up whatever game they want, but they should have to smile and deal; and that should be the end of it.
Most places are pretty nice but click here still happens.
There are lawsuits all the time for people getting roughed up.
It just kind of depends on the place and the particular person in the casino that takes a dislike to you, or how much you win.
That happened to me this year.
It happens all the time.
You go down to the front desk and the clerk will say, "oh, just a minute sir, there seems to be a problem" and all of a sudden security will be there to escort you up to your room to kick you out.
The casinos are very powerful in Nevada.
Most of the horror stories are heard from Nevada, but there are some from other places.
You never hear any of those stories in Atlantic City.
Some players believe that Uston ruined blackjack in Atlantic City with his lawsuits.
When it happened to you, were you in the room?
Yes, it was in Mississippi and I was in the room.
Actually, when I made my last play at the blackjack table I saw some guy kind looking at me funny, but I thought I was just getting a little paranoid, so I left the casino and went to a movie.
When I came back to my room, I was sitting there reading, it was around 11 at night, and the phone rang.
I picked it up and the person on the other end hung up.
I wondered what that was about and then about 15 minutes later there were five security guards at my door telling me that I was being asked to leave immediately.
They marched me through the casino with my suitcase and they were surrounding me.
I had to go cash out all my chips.
It was embarrassing Were you there as a guest of the casino?
I would have been happy to pay but I never tried that.
They will come to your room, march you down to the front desk and make you pay some exorbitant rate before they will let you leave.
That happens fairly read article />Do you have any advice for the average blackjack player?
The most common misconception is that you have to be some sort of math whiz or memory expert in order to do it.
You mean to count cards?
Well, the only way to play blackjack successfully is to count cards.
With the stakes I play, I see other people playing high stakes and it boggles my mind that they can be so successful in business and work so hard to make all this money and they are willing to just gamble it away so easily.
It takes a reasonably intelligent person maybe 10 hours to memorize it totally.
Learning to keep track of the cards only takes 15 to 20 hours.
You just get a deck of cards, you flip them and you practice.
If you just keep the running count and play basic strategy you can get an advantage.
Gambling is restricted in USA.
A few states such as New Blackjack guide saw and Pennsylvania permit online gambling to persons over 21 years.
Land based casinos are popular and legal in most states.

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If ads for casinos were true, each one would be a glittering palace where the drinks flowed freely, the blackjacks never ended, and chips rained down from the sky.
But it's not so simple.
There's enough lingo what's blackjack guide saw nickel?
After spending an embarrassing amount of my twenties both years and super 5 8 in casinos, I've made some bad decisions, and witnessed countless others.
Don't be like me.
Don't do any of these things in a casino.
Thinking you'll win check this out Disabuse yourself of this notion immediately.
Nobody's opening up Blockbuster franchises anymore for a reason -- there's no money in it.
Casinos, on the other hand, pop up on a regular basis.
There are roughly 1,500 in the US alone, and it's because they're proven moneymakers.
Not to be confused with Chris Moneymaker, an unproven player who changed the poker world in 2003.
But as for casinos, well, they make money because of that thing called a house advantage.
Sure, you can win money, but if you play long enough, you won't.
Going to make rent Arguably an extension of the previous idea, but a more drastically stupid example.
You're not Lola from Run Lola Run.
But if you actually are Lola from Run Lola Run, I enjoyed your work in The Bourne Identity.
Though I'm still not sold on how you came out with such a great haircut when Matt Damon chopped your locks off into a bathtub.
Going back to the ATM Know https://pink-stuf.com/blackjack/south-point-blackjack.html how much money you're willing to drop in a given period of time.
Bring that to the table with you, and if you lose it, take a break and go to the bar.
You're not gonna win your money back.
Borrowing money from a friend It's like going back to the ATM, except you're not sharing a room with the ATM, and the ATM won't email you next week, asking where its money is.
Paying for your drinks And if you are, then there are only one of two possible reasons why: you're either in a casino that doesn't comp drinks, which means you're not in Las Vegas, or you simply have no idea what you're doing.
If it's the former, well, don't get your hopes too high about what kind of a place you're throwing your money around in.
A lot of states have laws prohibiting free drinks.
If it's the latter, well, you're just not making the most of your time and money.
Spilling your drink on the table This bad decision is not casino-specific.
You look like a dumbass when you spill a drink in a bar.
But spilling your drink in a casino multiplies your dumbassery by 10 -- with just the flick of the wrist, you've single-handedly forced your table to close and everyone sitting at it to relocate to a new lucky table.
And if you've ever been in a casino, you'd know that crusty and friendly types alike do not enjoy giving up the warm chair they've occupied for hours.
Not tipping your waitress She doesn't put on that skimpy outfit and haul around drinks because she likes being called "Honey," and having insurance salesmen in town for a conference ogling her.
If you're casino palace blackjack caesars to lose your money at a table game, you can afford to give her a buck per drink.
Not tipping your dealer He doesn't put on that vest and haul around cards because he likes being called.
OK, you get the joke.
But whether you win money, or lose money, you should always be tipping your dealer.
They usually pool blackjack guide saw money and split it among the crew, so get them in the game with a small bet.
If you both win.
And if you both lose, they still keep the tip.
Sitting down at a silent table Find the table that's making the most noise.
Generally, that means people are: a winning, b drinking, c winning and drinking, and d having a good time.
You're there to have a good time, after all, which will be exponentially increased by a table full of people drinking, yelling, and high-fiving each other.
Because this correlates strongly with the table winning money.
And you like winning money.
Once, I got cleaned out at a blackjack table and moved to another with three dudes drinking for a bachelor party -- we played together for nine hours.
Hitting on 16 in Blackjack vs.
That's 21 in the US, anyway.
But a fair number of people will tell you, "Never hit on 16," when you're against a dealer's face card.
Not hitting on 16 in Blackjack vs.
Well, if the dealer has a 7 or better, you're giving yourself a fighting chance.
Splitting 10s in Blackjack If you want to sit at a Blackjack table by yourself and lose money, do this.
Otherwise, do not do this.
Making field bets in Craps Every bet is a sucker bet, if you play the numbers.
But making Horn Bets, or placing chips on "hard" anything is basically just throwing your money into the wind.
There's a time and a blackjack guide saw for that -- it's called the early evening at the Read article Rhino.
Although it IS still funny to yell out "HARD DICK!
And when a shooter's running hot, there's no more fun place in the house.
But all those bets add up quick.
Being "that guy" at the poker table As the adage goes, if you can't spot the sucker at the table, you are the sucker.
Low-limit poker games have plenty of fish bad playersbut also plenty of sharks.
As do the wraparound sunglasses.
Winning a huge pot at poker, then cashing blackjack guide saw Everyone at the table will be thinking about how they want to beat the living tar out of you, and if they see you blackjack guide saw a club later, or out on blackjack guide saw street, well, they just might.
Also, why are you filled with living tar?
Touching anyone else's chips Have you ever examined a sidewalk up close?
This is an excellent way to do that.
Trying to take your chips before everyone else is paid out This is just an amateur-hour move.
The dealer is trained to pay everyone in a specific order.
Wait your turn -- nobody's trying to pull any tricks on you.
You will get yours in due time.
Showing up to a club with all your boys Quite a number of casinos double as the home to some of the world's most ridiculous clubs.
But showing up with a gaggle of high school buddies while trying to get into a place like Moon after midnight is a fantastic way to not get into Moon until 2am.
Taking pictures of anything It's a Las Vegas cliche but it's true.
Casino hosts and pit bosses do not take kindly to photography under any circumstances.
Thinking you know how to count cards No matter how many times you've seen the movie 21, just remember: you're not Kevin Spacey.
Or even the doofus who'd never have a shot with Kate Bosworth in real life.
Stick to basic strategy, ask the dealer what you should do if read more uncertain, and keep sucking down your free drinks.
Walking away from a slot machine Because those things are programmed to pay out to the next retired person who strolls by and randomly tosses in a coin.
Berating anyone, ever Yelling at another poker player for a bad beat?
They call that "tapping the fish bowl," and it's bad form.
Acting like the dealer "screwed you" by dealing two 15s when you split in Blackjack?
Imagine if someone showed up at your cubicle and berated you for successfully sending an email, just because they didn't like your word choice.
That's basically what you're doing here.
Filling up on carbs at the buffet Maybe you just wanna pig out on sushi.
But all that rice is going to fill you up.
Go for the all-you-can-eat moneymakers.
Might as well be painted in gold leaf.
You're not making that at home.
It's spiced up water.
While you may not turn to dust like the dude at the end ofit still behooves you to choose your buffet holy grail i.
Going to the dinner buffet instead of the lunch buffet Much like at high-end restaurants, buffets offer essentially the same food for a lesser price at lunch.
At some places, the price difference is negligible.
But at, say, the Wynn, the on a weekday.
Sure, you might miss out on nights at the Bellagio -- but are you really going to a buffet on a weekend night to eat caviar?
Not using a player rewards card Most casinos are owned by some larger conglomerate, like Harrah's or MGM Resorts International.
For you, that means playing at a casino that's part of a larger group of casinos can pay off in comps.
Well, depending on how much money you bet, and how long you play a given game, you accrue free stuff.
Sometimes, that's just a sandwich after a few hours.
But sometimes, it can be a free room in a nicer hotel.
I've played enough time in one casino in Windsor, Ontario, to get free rooms for several weekends in Vegas.
And I don't even bet that much.
Not asking for comps If you have a player rewards card, guest services and managers are out to give you a pleasant experience, and that often translates to additional free stuff.
By simply asking, "Can I get my room comped?
You have nothing to lose -- they might say no.
They might also say yes.
And free prime rib and key lime pie are the best prime rib and key lime pie.
Playing with scared money If you can't afford or refuse to split your cards or double down when the time calls for it in Blackjack, just take your chips and head over to the bar.
At least there, you'll know exactly how much your drinks cost.
Being "up" for the night, then just betting it all on black Or, if you're not Wesley Snipes, on red.
Ryan Craggs is Thrillist's.
He cut his teeth in underground card games and gambled his way through college.
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Rum drinks are plentiful and cold.
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Bootcamp Weekend is August blackjack Vegas.
The goal with remembering phrases black to be able to look at black hand total and immediately recite the rule in your jack, without having to see what blackjack dealer has.
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Next Steps: Deviations vary based table the rules of the game offered, and the rules of the region.
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The rocket booster never makes blackjack to space.
Vegas was built on guys who looked at the wallet-size basic strategy jack couple times black they bought it in the gift shop on their last vacation.
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Soft 20 A,9 always stands Soft 19 A,8 doubles against dealer 6, otherwise stand.
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Adresse : 41, rue Basfroi F.
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Super Simple Track Saw