What is Basic Strategy in Blackjack?
It is simply the best possible way for you (the player) to play your blackjack hand, according to the dealer’s upcard and by following a particular set of Basic Strategy Rules.
Blackjack is a mathematical game. Given a dealers upcard and a player’s hand, there is ALWAYS a right move you can make. Blackjack Basic Strategy advises you of the best move you can make to reduce you chance of losing the hand. Basic Strategy also allows you to minimize the Casino’s edge to less than 2%.
Blackjack Basic Strategy is a complete set of rules for any and all situations that can occur in a blackjack game. You can learn Blackjack Basic Strategy and practice it by using detailed Strategy Charts (listed at the top of this page).
Minor adjustments are made to basic strategy depending on certain rule variations that the casinos can choose to use. For example some casinos will allow you to Double Down after Splitting and some don’t. There are also some changes made to basic strategy for single and double deck blackjack games.
Being successful at Blackjack
If you want to be a successful blackjack player and increase your odds of winning by reducing the house edge, you will need to learn Blackjack Basic Strategy.
The best way to learn is to refer to a Basic Strategy Chart (listed above) until you know it so well you can make basic strategy decisions without it. The Blackjack Basic Strategy chart shows you how to play your first two cards based on the dealers up card.
Jacks Hot Tip
In Blackjack, the house gains its edge based on the fact that the player must act first. Since the Basic Strategy chart only deals with the first two cards, you will also need to understand what decisions to make after taking a hit and more importantly, why you are making the choices or decisions that the Blackjack Basic Strategy chart is advising you to…but more on that later.
For now, make yourself familiar with the charts listed above by clicking on the link which best suites your style of blackjack.
The descriptions listed below cover the various rules pertaining to the different styles of Blackjack in both online and land-based casinos*. Although all attempts are made to convey accurate information, the game of blackjack can vary quite distinctly depending on which country or state the game is played in and whether the game is played online or in a land-based casino. Blackjack Action always recommends researching and learning the rules of your Blackjack game provider. This will eliminate confusion and ensure a more enjoyable Blackjack experience.
Blackjack Single Deck
‘Single Deck Blackjack’ as the name implies is played with a single deck of cards rather than the multiple decks used in all the other forms of Blackjack. This single deck form of Blackjack was originally dealt on the ‘Las Vegas Strip’ and employs rules of the same name. The game of ‘Single Deck Blackjack’ has fallen out of favour over time due to the advent of card counting but has made a return to popularity recently using ‘Atlantic City Blackjack’ rules. This new single deck variation pays ‘6 to 5’ for natural Blackjacks and allows the dealer to hit on Soft 17.
Blackjack Multi Deck
‘Multi Deck Blackjack’ covers a broad spectrum of Blackjack variations as most games these days employ more than one deck of cards. For this reason only three of the more popular variations are listed below. When playing ‘Multi Deck Blackjack’ be sure to check which variation applies to you. The changes in gameplay may be subtle but could spell the difference between a winning and losing hand.
‘European Blackjack’ is, quite simply, the European version of its American counterpart. As a result certain differences in its rule structure exist.
‘Cryptologic’ is a Toronto-based company providing downloadable online casino software. The Blackjack rules for Cryptologic are the same as standard in ‘Atlantic City Blackjack’ rules except that re-splitting after splitting is not permitted.
‘Playtech’, like ‘Cryptologic’, also develop casino software. The rules employed in ‘Playtech Blackjack’ are similar to the ones used in standard ‘Las Vegas Strip’ Blackjack but with a few variations. Recently ‘Playtech’ has incorporated a new version of Blackjack called ‘Blackjack Surrender’. This new version of their classic game allows the dealer a ‘hole card’ and gives the player an option for ‘surrender’. The details for both versions are listed below.
‘Microgaming Blackjack’ represents the series of Blackjack games designed by the Microgaming Company – one of the world’s leading developers of Internet gaming systems.
The term RTG stands for ‘Realtime Gaming’ and employs the Blackjack software created by the company of the same name.
In ‘Switch Blackjack’ a player is dealt 2 separate hands with 2 identical bets – the player is allowed to switch the top two cards around. For example, if a player is dealt A, 8 in the first hand and a 9, 10 in the second hand, the player can switch the 10 in the second hand with the 8 in the first hand to make 21 (blackjack) and 17. The other major differences between ‘Blackjack Switch’ and regular Blackjack are listed below.