Basic blackjack, how does it work?

Most often this blackjack strategy is presented in the form of a table. The vertical column on the left shows all the hands you (the player) can receive and the top row shows the various visible cards the dealer receives. The box at the junction of the two will tell you what action to take to have the best chance of winning the hand.

The True Count Strategy in Blackjack

Now that you understand the principles of basic blackjack technique and counting, we can go a step further and try to master the true count strategy. This strategy is not very difficult to implement and once applied, it can make a real difference in your game and allow you to beat the dealer.

Without going into detail here (we will do so in an article dedicated to this strategy), the True Count method consists of making the card count even more precise. Knowing how many packs of cards are left in the shoe is a measure of the value of your count. The more decks left in the shoe, the less relevant the count will be, conversely, the fewer decks left in the shoe, the more secure your count. 

Blackjack Actions: Split, Double or Drop4 AS BLACJACK

As mentioned earlier, the key to blackjack is knowing what action to take on your deal and the dealer’s deal. The actions in blackjack are therefore mainly “split”, “double” and “fold”. How to know which one is the most relevant and when is what ultimately matters. In addition, in blackjack, you have the option of playing what is called “insurance” in case the banker has an ace in his starting hand (and therefore gives him the opportunity to have a blackjack). Insurance allows you to try to avoid this and give yourself a chance to get the upper hand in the game. 

Basic blackjack technique

The basic blackjack technique originated in the 1950s, when an American mathematician named Roger Baldwin published an article in a scientific journal about the famous card game and explained that he had developed a method based on statistics and probabilities to knock out the banker’s advantage. In fact, the dealer always follows a codified rule in blackjack, which allows mathematical calculations to know what action to take depending on the bank’s hand and the player’s hand.

In order to start learning the basic blackjack technique, you must of course have learned the rules of the game of blackjack as well as the different terms used in a game.

The main principles of basic blackjack technique

It is easy to win a game of Blackjack when you play smart. The basic technique is simply to learn when to draw a new card, when to stop, when to double down… all depending on your hand and the banker’s hand. For example, if the dealer’s card is a 4, 5 or 6, don’t draw any additional cards, but make the dealer bust. If the dealer draws one of these 3 cards as his first card, he will have a better chance of going over 21. Unless, of course, you have a “soft” hand, i.e. your two cards allow you to draw a card without busting, i.e. no matter what card you draw, you won’t go over 21.

Similarly, if your hand is a hard 17 (i.e., a 17 that you cannot improve), or higher, don’t draw any additional cards because your chances of going over 21 are too high, no matter what card the dealer has. It is better to stop there.

Splitting two cards in blacjack: the split

There are some very classic cases where you absolutely must split two cards. This is the case if you have two Aces because their sum is equal to two or if your hand is twelve. These are not good hands. By splitting the two Aces you will have two 11’s and it is impossible to buster and you can greatly improve your hand and make a Blackjack. Similarly, you should also split two 8s, which are 16s, also a bad hand. From two 8’s, you will have two good hands, to make 18’s or even 19’s. Or don’t split two cards

On the other hand, you should never split two 10s because your hand is worth 20, which is a very good hand that only a blackjack can beat. Whatever the dealer’s card is, it’s a hand you should hold. The same goes for a double 6. Indeed, the 6 is the worst hand in blackjack, by splitting it you will have two 6’s, so better to keep a twelve, it’s not very good but it’s always better.

Also, never split a double 5 or a double 6. You can refer to the reference chart below which includes all the statistics needed to win at online blackjack. Keep it with you so that you can find the right play and strategy, located at the intersection of your hand and the dealer’s hand.

Regarding splitting cards when you get two of a kind, the tips are as follows:

  • If you get a pair of twos, a pair of threes or a pair of sevens, then split them if the dealer’s score is between 2 and 7, otherwise just draw an extra card.
  • If you get a pair of 4s, split them if the dealer’s score is between five and six, otherwise just draw an extra card.
  • If you get a pair of 5’s or a pair of 10’s, don’t split them.
  • If you get a Pair of 6s, share it if the dealer’s score is between 2 and 6, otherwise just draw an extra card.
  • If you get a Pair of Aces or a Pair of Eights, split them in any case.
  • If you get a pair of nines, split them if the dealer’s score is between 2 and 6 or if it is 8 or 9, otherwise stay without taking any extra cards.