Blackjack is unlike many other card games in that all players
compete against the dealer and not against each other.
The objective of
blackjack is simple - try to make a total as close as possible to 21
without exceeding 21.
A few basics...
BLACKJACK POINT VALUE OF CARDS
Card - point value
Ace - counts as 1 or 11
2 -9 - point value is face value of card
10, Jack, Queen and King all count as 10
note: suits have no meaning in blackjack
Blackjack total point examples:
a 10 and a king total of 20 points
a 9 and a 6 total 15 points
an Ace and a 5 total 16 OR 6 points. In his case the 16 would
be referred to as a "soft" 16 because it can also be considered to be a
6. remember, an Ace counts as 11 or 1 in blackjack.
If a players first 2 cards total 21 he has "blackjack". The normal
payout for blackjack is 1.5 times the bet. If he dealer and a player each
have blackjack the hand is a tie. No money changes hands.
Blackjack - the players advantage: Blackjack is unique in that
an expert player actually has a small advantage over the house. In fact,
anyone who adheres to the "basic strategy" has a better chance at
blackjack than any other casino game. Unlike the dealer who has a set of
rules that dictate when he must draw a card, a blackjack player can
choose to draw or not to draw at any time.
Blackjack dealer rules: The dealer must keep drawing until his
hand has a total point value of 17 or greater. If his hand exceeds 21 he
"busts" and the players win. Some casino blackjack rules vary in that
some require the dealer to draw when they have a "soft" 17 (such as
Ace,six or Ace,two,three). In blackjack, it is to the players advantage
if the dealer does not draw to a soft 17.
Blackjack - flow of the game: Each player places a bet and the
cards are dealt clockwise until everyone has two cards. The first player
then decides how he wants to play his hand. He can draw additional cards
(take a "hit") until he wants to stop. If his hand exceeds 21 he "busts"
and automatically loses. This is where the house advantage kicks in -
since the players have to play their hands before the dealer does, they
lose when they bust even if the dealer later busts himself.
After each player has played out his hand it is the dealers turn. If
the dealer breaks those players in the game win. If he does not break his
hand is compared with each player still in the game. If a players hand is
closer to 21 that the dealers the player wins, if the point values are
the same it is a tie, if the dealer is closer to 21 than the dealer wins.
Blackjack practice: Before going to a casino we highly
recommend that you play several hands in the comfort of your own home
where you can gain experience before jumping into the real action. You
can play blackjack for free, or better yet for small stakes so your
decisions actually mean something at several online casinos.
Try you hand at blackjack by visiting one of the online casinos listed