Blackjack or Pontoon is the most common table and card game to play at online casinos. According to Wikipedia its American variant of banking game called Twenty one, a close cousin of Pontoon and Vingt-et-Un. When playing Blackjack you will find that over the years since its origin the game rules have been twisted many times and many different variants of the game thus have been originated.
Whatsoever, the simplest rules of the game make Blackjack the most popular casino game ever! Also, the overall fact is that they don’t really change the way the game is played. So let’s understand the seven popular variants of Blackjack you can find at casinos to play around the world.
Every variant comes with its own basic strategy table and slightly changing norm of rules for example –number of decks (1 to 8), clockwise motion of game etc and of course the count must always be up to 21.The Spanish invented a version of Blackjack where the score must go up to 31.
1. Atlantic City Blackjack
As the name suggests its a variant played in casinos at gambling destination on the East Coast i.e Atlantic City. Here are some details that you should be familiar with:
- 8 standard decks of cards are necessary for playing where the player aims to defeat the dealer as well as get a better hand without “busting”.
- Dealer stands on soft 17 are allowed.
- Doubling down on any two cards and splitting is allowed for the players up to 3 times, except for aces. Players can be split once and the provided only one card for splitting Aces.
- Splitting of two 10-valued cards is allowed and players can double after splitting. As for the payout, depending on the casino you choose, blackjack variations pay 3:2 to 6:5.House edge increases by approximately 0.15% when players can’t.
- If you deal with a pair of Aces during a game, the most sensible thing is to split them. However, if you hold a pair of tens, you’d better stand because if the card you will be dealt is 10 and you have split aces, the value of your hand is 21 which cannot be considered blackjack.
- After the dealer has checked for blackjack, you can opt for late surrender. However, you lose half the amount of your bet and excluded from the current game round. Opt for late surrender only if you hold a hand totaling 15 or 16 and the dealer holds 9, 10 or 11 as its an impeccable betting strategy for lowering the house edge.
- Dealer peek is allowed i.e. the dealer checks for blackjack if their exposed card is an ace or a ten.
2. European Blackjack
It’s believed Blackjack originated from Europe and many punters believe that the European rules are the most relevant. One can say European Blackjack is more modern than the single-deck Blackjack game. Like any other Blackjack, European Blackjack also follows rules like:
- Six decks are played, however, this can vary
- Its expected dealer must always stand on a soft 17.
- Players can double 9 ,10 and 11 only hands
- Double are allowed only after the player splits
- Re-splitting, Surrendering and Dealer peak is not allowed
3. Vegas Strip Blackjack
Lot of decisions is to be made over the game play of Vegas Strip and is played under the original blackjack rules plus a few more specific ones. Hence, is appropriate for more experienced players. This Blackjack variation is provided by both land- and online casinos accessible to players from many parts of world. Here are few rules:
- Four decks consisting of 52 cards are shuffled after each hand is played and different bet levels are allowed.
- If the dealer’s hand is equal to 17 or more, they stand else, they take extra cards. Also, if the dealer’s card placed face up is an Ace, the player is first given a chance of choosing insurance.
- Players can split any 2 cards however, Ace and a 10 is not considered as a blackjack when obtained after splitting.
- Re-splitting is allowed only twice.
- Players can double their hand after dealer provides first two cards. All player get a chance of doubling the hands that have been split, except in the case of split Aces.
- Surrendering is not allowed.
- Dealer peek is allowed on tens and aces.
4. Blackjack Double Exposure
At Blackjack Double Exposure both the dealer’s cards are exposed before the players make a decision; however, the dealer wins all ties. When the player and the dealer both have a blackjack, player will be returned their stake. Winning blackjacks are only paid out at even money.
5. Blackjack Switch
It is multi-hand variant of blackjack where player must place two equal stakes at the start of each round and may choose to switch one card from each hand with a card from the other. If the dealer busts with exactly 22, all bets remaining in play are pushed.
6. Progressive Blackjack
Similar to conventional blackjack ,but only difference is players can choose to place an additional side bet which then pays out if a player is dealt an ace as their first card. Even a bigger payout is given if a player’s first two cards are both aces, and if those two aces are suited the payout will be even bigger still. To win a progressive jackpot players are required to receive four suited aces.
7. Perfect Pairs
Perfect Pairs is the Blackjack side-bet that’s easy to play, offering players up to 30 to 1 on payouts, without effecting the flow or speed of the game. Easy to play, Perfect Pairs is played by making an extra wager in addition to the regular Blackjack bet on the Perfect Pairs table spot. Cards are then drawn in the traditional Blackjack fashion for the initial two cards, if the two cards are either a Mixed Pair, Coloured Pair or a Perfect Pair, the player wins according to the paytable- it’s simple! A Perfect Pair would be an identical pair (Two Queens of Hearts), a Coloured Pair would be both cards are either red or black suited cards of any suit (An 8 of Hearts and an 8 of Diamonds), where as a Mixed Pair would be a pair made up of one red and one black suited pair (A 3 of Diamonds and a 3 of Clubs). The exact payouts are based on the rank of the pair and differ from casino to casino. Another variant that suited pairs typically earn higher payouts.
Now visit online casino of your choice to play these variants and have fun.