Blackjack is one of the most popular casino games in the world. This is the case with both online and land based casinos. One of the reasons for its popularity is that blackjack is not only a game of chance, but it also involves a lot of skill to be able to be successful. Despite requiring some skill, the rules of the game are very simple, which makes it possible for even beginners to understand.
Objective of the Game
There is only one single objective of Blackjack, which is to have a better hand than the dealer. This can be accomplished by holding a hand that has a value of 21 or under, with the player’s total being higher than the dealer’s total.
What this means is that the player must hold a hand that is worth more than that of the dealer, while at the same time being under 21. If either the player or the dealer’s hand total is over 21, that hand is called a “Bust”. In Blackjack, if the player’s hand is bust, then the player automatically loses, however if the dealer goes bust, then the player is not assured of a win. This is because the player’s hand is always played before the dealer’s.
Value of Cards in Blackjack
The one important thing to remember in Blackjack is the value that various cards hold. These values determine the total and understanding them better will make playing the game much easier. There are also certain rules that apply to cards when assigning a value to the hand. In Blackjack, the suit does not play a role.
All cards that are numbered are worth their face value, these are cards from 2 to 10. All picture cards like the Jack, Queen and King are worth 10 points. The only peculiarity is with the Ace card. This card can be worth either 1 or 11, depending on which is more beneficial to the player.
Totaling the Hand
The biggest challenge in the game is the totaling of the hands, since this determines the winner. It is also the way the player determines if he/she should play a further card or not. In reality, the totals are very simple to calculate, however there are two different types of hands that may arise during the game.
If the hand that the player or the dealer holds contains an Ace, the hand is called a Soft Hand. This means that the hand can be totaled in two different ways, with the value of Ace being 1 or the value of Ace being 11. For example, if the player holds an Ace and a Five, then the player’s total can either be 6 or 16, which can be decided based on the next card that is dealt to the player.
When the hand that the player holds does not contain an Ace, it is called a Hard Hand. It is given this name since the value of the hand does not change and can be totaled only in one way.
The Blackjack or Natural is the most important hand. In this hand, the player or the dealer holds an Ace with a single card worth 10, like an Ace and a 10 or an Ace and a Jack.