Looking for a reputable online gambling platform where you can play free online blackjack games? Well, that’s a cool idea as blackjack is a fantastic game with a long history. And the overriding objective of this insightful post is to find out more about online blackjack, the game rules, strategies, and tips on how to win this legendary table game. So get comfortable and have a look!
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What Is Blackjack?
It’s one of the oldest casino games available on the web. So far, it’s also one of the most popular casino games in both land-based and online casinos. Its other name is Twenty One. The deck with 52 cards is used in this game. The thing is that in this table game, all participants of the session don’t compete against each other. In this case, a player competes with the dealer.
How to Play Blackjack at Online Casinos?
Hit or stand? If you have never played blackjack before, these words mean nothing to you. But the main goal of my post is to teach you to play online blackjack Canada. The thing is that this game comes with rule variations and various deck numbers. A lot depends on the game version you opt for. In this post, I’m eager to review the basic version. The most popular version is played with a 6-deck or 8-deck “shoe”.
The main goal of the game
The main distinctive feature of this game is that its rules are straightforward. Your goal is to have a hand value close to 21, but it shouldn’t go over 21. And remember that your hand competes against the dealer only.
The deal of the cards
When you finally place your bets, the dealer’s goal is to distribute the cards to the players. This person makes two passes around the table (from the left to the right) and gives two cards to each player. One card is flipped over (it’s called the “dealer upcard”). When the game is dealt from a shoe, the cards will be face-up.
The game begins at the first seat and goes to the dealer’s left. This stage is also called “first base”. The player’s goal is to inform the dealer how he wants to play the hand. After all the participants of the game have finished their hands, the dealer’s objective is to complete his hand, and the winner will be announced. Now, the dealer’s goal is to either pay the winning bets or gather losing bets.
How Dealer Plays His Hands
The dealers’ first task is to flip over the “hole card” to show his two-card starting hand. After that, a dealer is required to play his hand specifically (he has no choice). His main goal is to draw cards until he gets a total of 17 cards or even more. In other words, he must take cards until his total is 17.
Wins and losses
When you draw a card that makes your hand total over 21, in this case, your hand is considered a bust. Unfortunately, you are a loser in this case, and your hand is discarded.
If it’s not a bust and the dealer’s total hand goes over 21, all players that remain in the game are the winners.
If both you and the dealer don’t bust, the dealer needs to check your totals. If the dealer’s total is higher than yours, you are a loser and vice versa.
If you and the dealer have the same card value, it’s called a tie. In such a scenario, you don’t win and don’t lose, and your chips remain in the circle.
Basic Blackjack Rules
As I have already mentioned, this game is famous among punters, mostly due to an array of variations. When browsing the web, you’ll find a variety of the best blackjack games. But the general goal of players is to get a total value of 21. Let’s briefly list basic blackjack real money rules that have the power to influence the odds of the game.
Doubling After Splitting (DAS)
This means that a player is allowed to double down on a hand he just split. However, not all blackjack Canada casinos allow this.
Re-splitting Aces (RSA)
Again, not all gambling platforms allow this, but you should be aware of this opportunity. This means that you can re-split your aces after you have already split a pair of aces. It’s one of the coolest rules that allows players to raise their winning chances. The ace is the most valuable card, so when the blackjack casino online allows RSA, it’s really cool.
According to this rule, a player is allowed to surrender before the dealer offers insurance or checks the total value of cards.
This term means Continuous Shuffling Machine. Some gambling platforms use it on their tables. Its main goal is to shuffle the cards when they are played. This, of course, makes card counting impossible.
Before you immerse yourself in the gameplay, you need to learn the card values. Cards from 2 to 10 have the same value as their number. Such face cards as Queen, King, or Jack are worth 10. Aces may be worth either 1 or 11. To determine your hand value, you need to calculate the sum of all cards in your hands.
Besides, when it comes to the game rules, you should know that there are soft and hard hands. A soft hand features an Ace and a Six, and as a result, you’ll get a soft 17. It is not allowed to bust this hand by drawing another card. When a 10 card is drawn, the Ace would be counted as 1 instead of 11, and the hand would have a value of 17. But in this case, it would be a hard 17 only because the Ace counts as 1 and an extra draw leads to a bust.
Basic Blackjack Strategy
If you are a first-time player and have not the slightest idea of how to play, there’s a good solution for you. In this case, you can use the basic strategy charts - informative cards that show the best way to play a given hand. On top of that, these charts show how to hit, stand, split, or double down. Of course, there are no guarantees that you may win the game, but they can undoubtedly enhance your winning chances, especially when you are a newbie in this niche. You can find these charts on the web, and they usually look like this:
Advanced BlackJack Strategies
Eager to make the hall of fame? Well, that’s a commendable ambition, and you can easily reach this goal! Here are the best online blackjack Canada strategies that might help you make the most out of this game.
In fact, splitting pairs means the difference between a winning and losing run. It’s a significant weapon that provides you with another chance to win the game. Splitting pairs means dealing two (the same) cards. In this case, you’ll have an opportunity to split them, and in doing so, you’ll form two new hands. After that, you’ll be allowed to bet on both hands. When you have your cards split, you’ll be able to place stakes on each hand.
In blackjack, you should always split when you have aces and eights. It is recommended to avoid splitting when you have fives, fours, nines, or tens.
If you played this game at least once in a lifetime, you probably already heard about soft and hard hands. Both are the types of hands you could get from the dealer. When you get an Ace that can be counted as eleven, you have a soft hand (the Ace can be 1 or 11, depending on the cards). A soft hand usually implies more liquidity and a much better choice for the player.
A hard hand in blackjack is the absence of an Ace. It is usually more rigid, and this means that you don’t have a chance to exercise in some cases. Hard hands usually don’t have an Ace, and even when they do, the Ace will be assigned a value of 1 and, of course, it can’t be counted as 11.
According to this strategy, a player is allowed to give up on their hand for the cost of half the ante. As compared to an early surrender, this strategy requires a player to wait for a while and see whether the dealer has played a natural blackjack. Simply put, when the game comes with this option, the player is allowed to fold a hand before they get the new cards. When you choose this option, half of the bet is returned to the stack.
What Is Card Counting?
Card counting is extremely popular in blackjack. It’s a cool and effective strategy used to find out if the player or a dealer has an advantage on the next hand. When they have an advantage, they usually bet more, and when the dealer has the advantage, they bet less. No matter whether you are a professional player or a newbie; you always have a chance to learn to count cards. However, you need to be very attentive.
Hi-lo counting strategy
Here’s a brief explanation of how this strategy works:
You need to assign a point to each rank. Here’s an example of how it looks:
- At the start of the shoe, you need to begin with a “Running Count”. When the cards are finally revealed, you need to continue adding from the Running Count according to the above-mentioned point system. When the first cards to come out are 3, 5, or K, then the running count will be +1, +1, -1 = +2.
- When you subdivide the running count according to the number of decks remaining, you’ll get the “True Count”. For instance, when the running count is +7 and you have 3 decks left, then the math would be 7/3=2,3.
- The more your true count is, the more you must bet. And this is where card counting is more art than math!
Blackjack System of Bets
When browsing the web, you’ll find an array of online blackjack sites. However, you won’t achieve success while playing this game if you don’t know how to place your bets. Let’s take a deeper look at some of the most widely-used bet systems.
The Martingale System pursues one goal - to increase the winning chances. According to the rules of this system, you need to double the amount of bet after each hand that you lose. Simply put, you have to double your bets until you get a winning hand.
It’s a popular progressive betting system that requires a player to increase the bet size by 1 unit every time they lose the game. And when you win, you have to lower the bet.
So far, it’s one of the most popular betting systems, but it’s quite risky. Firstly, you need to make yourself familiar with the Fibonacci sequence, which is preceded by a zero and usually followed by one. After that, absolutely each succeeding number is the sum of the previous two numbers. In blackjack, 0 is ignored. Absolutely each number in the sequence represents a betting unit. It is of utmost importance for each player to remember or write down the chosen unit and the sequence for the amount of money that they are eager to bet.
The main distinctive feature of this system is that when using it, you can make a profit even when you don’t win in all four rounds. Plus, it’s not so risky as compared to other systems. This is where you need to play real money blackjack and opt for an even-table game where the winning chances in each round are 50/50. There are four steps that follow the numbers. According to this plan, the stakes are raised by set increments following a winning blackjack hand. The system is very easy to follow and can also be used in such games as baccarat and roulette.
It’s a high-risk betting plan. A parlay is a progression system according to which the stakes are raised after a winning hand and decreased after a losing hand. In other words, a player keeps on increasing the stakes until they lose, and the size of the stake is contingent on the size of the win. For instance, when you win C$10, you would place C$20 on the next hand.
This plan is also called Hoyle’s Press. It is mostly used on wagers when the outcome is distributed evenly between the results of equal value. It’s a positive progression system, focused on calculating the size of bets.
Main Types of Blackjack Bets
Let’s analyze the main blackjack bet types.
It’s a special side bet that allows the player to stake half the original bet against the dealer. Remember that insurance bets can be made only when the dealer shows an ace. When this finally happens, you’ll see that your table is flashing, and you’ll get the option to place your wager. An insurance bet is a good option to use in a blackjack game with many decks because when there are many decks engaged, you’ll get more cards with a value of 10.
It’s an additional rule in this game that enables players to give up half their bet after they have already seen their first two cards and the dealer’s cards. When you see that you have less than 50% of winning, then it’s high time to surrender.
So far, there are two types of surrender rules: early surrender and late surrender. Early surrender means surrendering half the player’s bet before the dealer checks the hole card.
When you choose the option “late surrender”, you’ll forfeit your hand and lose half your bet only after the dealer checks his cards for blackjack. It’s a useful tool that helps reduce house edge when it’s possible.
All blackjack players always use the “soft 17 rule”. The main concept behind it is to require the dealer to hit on soft 17. A soft 17 features an Ace which is counted as 11. Ace 6 is a soft 17 as well as Ace -2-4, Ace-3-3, Ace-Ace-5, and others. When the dealer has a soft 17, the house edge against a basic strategy might be higher as compared to standing.
Taking even money
Well, what does this option mean? In this game, when the dealer holds an Ace face up if you have a blackjack, he will suggest you to “even money”. For example, when you bet C$10, you’ll win C$10 even in case a dealer also boasts blackjack. In other words, it’s a form of insurance that allows you to get a payout in any case.
The Most Effective Tips on How to Play Blackjack
When browsing the web, you'll find an array of the best online blackjack casinos that offer an awful lot of game types. However, if you are a first-time player, it may be challenging for you to play this game. And this is where the below-listed tips might come in handy. They will surely help enhance your winning opportunities. But remember that dealing with the best casinos for online blackjack will surely protect you from scammers.
Always control your bankroll
You need to be doubly sure that you spread your wagers carefully. If you are a beginner, you should better begin with a free blackjack game and low bets. In doing so, you’ll feel the game and learn the basic rules. Plus, you should always set the sum that you can spend while playing blackjack and stop at the right moment.
Avoid playing games that pay 6:5
You should better play online blackjack games that pay 3:2 because in this case, you have more winning chances. They say that an 8-deck game paying the full 3:2 is much better as compared to a single deck blackjack that pays 6:5.
Avoid using the Martingale betting system
Of course, if you are new to blackjack online and don’t know how it all works, begin with simple bets. If you aren’t sure of your strategy, you should avoid it. Surely, it may help you survive for a while, but in this case, there are more chances to lose everything.
Never place emotional bets
If you feel that you can’t stand the temptation to place your bets and you have already lost a lot, you should better stop and return to the game later. You should know in advance how you will play your hands.
Eager to play blackjack online for free? Now you can easily do this! You know the rules, understand what casinos are legit and reputable, so choose your blackjack casino, register your account, deposit funds, and jump into the world of blackjack right away!
86’d - getting a notification from a casino that a player has trespassed from their property.
Ace - A card, counted as a value of 1 or 11.
Action - the total amount of money that you bet. This term usually refers to the total amount of bets made over a certain amount of time or to the amount in play.
Advantage - the edge one side has over the other one. Normally, this advantage is expressed as a percentage of a bet.
Advantage player - a player that follows certain strategies to gain the advantage over an online gambling platform.
Al Francesco - a legendary American blackjack player.
Back Counting - means counting cards as a spectator, frequently called “wonging”.
Back Off - a notification from an online gambling platform, asking a player not to play this game again. More often than not, it has the form of a statement that you are too professional for us.
Balanced Count - a well-known card counting system. In this case, the sum of negative cards is the same as the sum of positive cards.
Bankroll - the total sum available for betting.
Barred - this happens when a gambling platform asks a player to stop playing.
Basic Strategy - a traditional blackjack playing strategy (to stand when your hand varies from 12 to 16 and when the dealer has 2-6).
Bet Spread - the total amount of minimum and maximum bets a player is placing during a session.
Big Player - this term mostly refers to card counting. It’s a member of a counting team, one of the most important players.
Black Book - an online database of banned players.
Black Chip - C$100 chip.
Blackjack (game) - one of the oldest and most popular table games, which is also called 21.
Brown/Chocolate Chip - C$5,000 chip.
Burn Card - a playing card usually dealt from the top of a deck. Players usually don’t see burn cards as they are placed face down.
Bust - it’s the action when the hand of a player or dealer exceeds 21.
Bust Card - when your or the dealer’s hand goes over 21.
Camouflage - any activities professional players do to conceal some actions while playing blackjack.
Card Counting - a well-known blackjack strategy used to establish an edge in a game. This is where players monitor the ratio of cards that have already been played.
Carnival Games - well-known table games such as Mississippi Stud, 3 Card Poker, Texas Holdem.
Cash Transaction Report (CTR) - a report which is required to complete when a player has a cash transaction over C$10,000 in one business day.
Cut Card - a simple plastic card that cuts the deck after shuffling.
CVCX - Casino Verite Chapter X.
D9 - a term used to demonstrate that you need to double 9, 10, or 11.
DA2 - this is where you have to double any two cards.
DAS - an abbreviation which means Double After Split a hand.
Deck Penetration - the number of cards played out of a shoe before they are reshuffled.
Deviations - the time when you need to alter your game.
Double - a decision that requires a player to raise the bet to double the original value.
Don Johnson - a legendary player who earned $6 million playing blackjack.
Early Surrender - means to give up when a player receives two cards before the dealer checks for blackjack.
Edward Thorp - this man is considered the Father of card counting.
Even Money - a betting proposition that features even odds, when the bettor can win or lose the same amount of money.
Expected Value (EV) - the amount a hand is usually worth.
First Base - a person that takes the leadership position at the table.
First-basing - a person that receives a chance to spot the hole card of a dealer from first base.
Flat Bet - when a person bets the same sum on absolutely each successive hand.
The Four Horsemen of Aberdeen - these are the first players that were working on building the first blackjack strategy (Wilbert Cantey, James McDermott, Roger Baldwin, Herbert Maisel).
Green Chip - C$25 chip.
Griffin Book - a list of proven card counters created by Griffin Investigations.
Half-Shoe - an action when a gambling platform asks a dealer to cut the shoe in half in order to ruin the edge.
Hard Hand - a hand that doesn’t have an Ace (or when there’s an Ace with a value of 1).
Hard Total - the total number of cards in hand.
Hit - directions, given to a dealer from players to request an extra card.
HIT 17 (H17) - a standard blackjack rule according to which a dealer must take a hit when he has a soft 17.
Ian Andersen - a legendary, professional blackjack player who wrote books on how to play blackjack.
Hole-Carding - when a player can see what cards might be hidden from view.
Index - this term mostly refers to card counting. The main goal of indexes is to demonstrate when a player must deviate from the basic playing strategy.
Insurance - a simple side bet that pays out independently of the original wager.
James Grosjean - an experienced writer and gambling expert.
John Chang - the main manager of the MIT blackjack team.
Julian Braun - a blackjack enthusiast, a developer of Hi-Opt and Revere’s systems.
Kelly Betting - a legendary game strategy, based on the Kelly Criterion formula.
Ken Uston - a professional blackjack player from the USA who popularized the concept of team play.
Lawrence Revere - a blackjack player, mostly known for writing the book ”Playing Blackjack as a Business”.
LS (or SR) - late surrender.
Max Rubin - an experienced gambler and gambling analyst, wrote the book “Comp City: A Guide to Free Gambling Vacations”.
N0 - a figure that determines the quantity of numbers necessary to overcome ⅔’s of the variance.
Natural (blackjack hand) - an ordinary blackjack player that gets an Ace and a 10-point card and has a “natural 21”.
NDAS - means No Double After Split.
NRSA - means No Resplit Aces.
Pink Chip - C$2,50 chip.
Preferential Shuffle - when an online gambling platform makes a decision to shuffle up when they want.
Ploppy - an inexperienced blackjack player, a person who plops down at a Blackjack table, doesn’t know how to play, and doesn’t have a winning strategy.
Purple/Barney Chip - C$500 chip.
Richard Munchkin - another blackjack hero and professional player.
Red Chip - C$5 chip.
Risk of Ruin (ROR) - the chance of losing a bankroll.
Round - a beginning of the game session. It starts with no cards on the table and all the players place their bets.
RSA - resplit aces.
Running Count - the total that pursues one goal - to calculate the true count.
Shoe - a simple gambling device casinos use to keep a few decks of playing cards.
Shoe Game - a simple blackjack game dealt from a shoe.
Shuffle-tracking - a game strategy where a player monitors some cards through a series of shuffles.
Soft Hand - a hand that has an Ace, doubling as 1 or 11.
Soft Total - the total number of cards a player has that includes an Ace.
Split - an action when a player has two cards in his hands of the same number (two sixes or two eights) and can split them apart. After that, one can play each card like two separate cards.
Spooking - a game strategy of finding the hole card of a dealer so that a player could find more information to act on. This method usually involves two people where one person sits and plays and the other one tries to see the dealer’s card value.
Stand - means to hold your total and complete your turn.
Stand 17 (s17) - a game rule that asks a dealer to stand when sitting on a Soft 17.
Stanford Wong - also known as “wonging”, when casinos reveal a table-hopping style.
Surrender - a decision, a player makes to give up half of the bet in order to avoid playing the hand and lose the bet.
Surveillance Information Network (SIN) - an ordinary surveillance tool that includes a database of all possible casino threats.
Tommy Hyland - a legendary American blackjack player who runs one of the best blackjack teams in history.
True Count - the running count that controls how many decks are left to be dealt from the shoe.
Two-round - when the gambling platform asks the dealer to run two rounds and after that, to shuffle.
Wonging - back counting.
Yellow/Orange/Pumpkin Chip - C$1,000 chip.