One of the easiest games to understand the rules to is blackjack, the main aim being to get as close to 21 without going over and beating the dealer doing so!
The game which is believed to have its roots in France became popular in the United States after the French Revolution and quickly became very popular. Gambler saw in it the opportunity of manipulating the odds as well as the bets. Once Las Vegas came onto the map the game took on a life of its own. Over time some have even written books on blackjack strategy and counting card strategy.
Knowing the card values is an important part of the game before starting to play.
The cards are worth the following:
- Face cards (Jacks, Queens and Kings): 10 points
- Aces: 1 or 11, whichever is preferable
- Other cards: represent the numbers on the card
The basics that a player should know about the game are that usually there are 6 or 8 decks of cards used. The dealer starts out by dealing out one card to each player face up and deals himself one face down. After that another open faced card is handed out to each player at the table in a clockwise manner. Once each player has their 2 cards one has to make a decision whether one wants to receive another card or rather hold with the ones already dealt. Remember, the aim is to beat the dealer and not to “bust”- go over 21. Once you have made your decision about your cards and the other players have too, the dealer will show his cards. If the dealer has over 21, he loses. If there is a tie then nobody wins or loses.
There are other betting options, such as Double Down, Even Money Insurance, Surrender and Split. Below find a short explanation of each:
Double Down player’s option to double their original bet in exchange for receiving only one more card.
Even Money Insurance A bet that pays you back the same amount that you wagered, as well as your original wager.
Surrender giving up half your bet for the privilege of not playing out a hand.
Split When the two initial cards are a pair, a player can place a second bet – equal to the first. Each of the cards are then seen as the start of a separate hand.