Blackjack is one of my favorite casino games. It does involve skill and strategy, but it’s not that complicated either. I don’t have to worry about too many terminologies or too many betting actions and so on. But I do have to use some skill, that’s just enough to get me through the game and not fry my brain cells! Anyone can learn and play blackjack. And the best place to do it is online. Online casinos offer players the super convenience of playing online blackjack for free. So if you’re new to the game you can always play for free first, improve your skills and get familiar with the game before you venture into playing with real money.
Now here is how you play the game. In blackjack the cards have points and your objective is to make a hand that is as close to 21 points before the dealer does. You must not go over 21 points or else you lose and this is called busting or going bust. The game is played like so. You place your bets on the table and hit the button ‘deal’. When you do so, you are dealt two cards, both face up. Based on how many points you have made with those two cards you can either ‘hit’ to get another card to build points, or ‘stand’ that is not accept any more cards because you think your hand is strong enough.
Now let’s look at how the points are assigned to the cards.
- All face cards have a value of 10.
- The numbered cards have their corresponding face value.
- The Ace is a special card because it can be sued as 1 point or 11 points based on the hand you have.
So when you are dealt say an 8 of hearts and a 10 of clubs, you have a total of 18 points. Or if you are dealt a 7 spades and king of hearts you have seventeen points. The suite of the card does not matter in the game. If you have made just say 6 or seven points in the first hand you can hit and get more cards to add to your points. However you must know when to stand so that you do not go bust.
As you read that you are dealt two cards face up, the dealer is dealt 2 cards. The first face down and the next face up. You should observe his face up card and make your decisions to hit or stand accordingly.
Here are some other terms and strategies of the game
Besides hitting and standing there are some other terms and actions you should know of:
Doubling Down: You can double your wager after which you are allowed to accept just one more card. It’s always best to double down when you have 11 points or more and the dealer has 5 or less.
Split: If you are dealt pairs you can split them into two separate hands with two separate bets. This increases your winning chances. It’s best to split aces or eights, and if you split a pair of aces you are allowed only one more card for each hand.
Blackjack: You make a blackjack when you get 21 points and if you make 21 on the first hand itself, it’s called a natural blackjack.
Insurance: When the dealer’s face up card is an ace the casino will offer you insurance. Usually this is a sucker deal so I would suggest you don’t go for it.
Push: If you and the dealer make the same number of points, it’s a tie and it’s called a pu.
There are some rules for dealer’s at most online casinos and that is that the dealer cannot hit if he has a total of 17.
The great thing about blackjack is that it has minimal house edge. If you stick to the simple strategies and have a little luck you can win a lot of money at this game.
Now that you know the basics, you should head out to some great online casinos like Rushmore, Cherry Red or even Slots Oasis and start playing. You could try out their free versions for some practice first. These casinos offer great bonuses on BJ so be sure to go to these exclusive casinos for some great fun.