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Tue 13 Nov 2018
Blackjack: Basic Strategy for Winning PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Tuesday, 25 November 2008 00:00

What follows here is the Blackjack Players Bible. Read it. Learn it by heart so you never have to think when you are playing!

In every card game, especially when playing for money, the most important thing to learn is the basic strategy. In Blackjack, basic strategy was created by simulating millions of blackjack han ds. One of the first blackjack simulations was done by Julian Braun of IBM.

The computer simulations showed the mathematical probabilities of beating the dealer or improving the blackjack hand by certain playing strategies. In other words, there is a specific action for such as hit, split, double-down, etc. for all possible card combinations.

In the long run, nearly all basic strategy rules are certain and the exact nature of mathematical science dictates that a particular playing decision, based on the player's cards and the dealer's exposed card, will yield an outcome after millions of hands of play that is quite predictable.

Blackjack players must learn these basic strategies, and by using it, the player will eliminate the usual five percent advantage the casino has over the unskilled player. Using basic strategy will reduce the house advantage to only about 0.5 percent. That is less than a 1 percent disadvantage to the player. This is what makes Blackjack one of the most sure-win and profitable games to play in a casino.

Of course the basic strategy will vary in accordance with the playing conditions in a particular game. Things like the number of decks that are in the shoe will affect the outcome. Below are listed the basic strategy rules for single deck games and for multiple deck shoes. A player must play exactly as is listed. A player should never alter his playing strategy based on some hunch that he may have, or by a superstition or imaginary idea that he will always lose when he splits nines for example. He may think that he loses more often than he wins playing certain basic strategies, but this is not the case in the long run. The only time a player should depart from the basic strategy is where he is counting cards. This is explained in detail under the card counting sections. Players must remember that even the most skilled card counters still use basic strategy for the majority of their playing decisions.

Players are urged to study the rules below and practice them until they become automatic responses to the cards you are dealt. One can buy inexpensive blackjack games for your home computer and several shareware programs are freely available from the internet. The best commercial version is one called ‘Play to Win’ by Wizard Works and it is available at all major computer software supply stores. This particular game also has a coaching option where it will give hints, based on basic strategy, on the decisions which have to be made. So much so, that if a wrong decision is made a dialog box pops up and suggests the proper playing decision. One can also play online for free on www.blackjackcenter.info . This will open a new window allowing ALT-TAB back to Blackjack Center in order to look at the basic strategy rules listed below. Whatever is used for practicing, whether it is a computer blackjack game or simply a deck of cards, the basic strategy must be learned and used in order to be a consistent winner at the blackjack tables.

The charts below are self explanatory. The left hand column is the total of the cards in the player’s (your) hand and the right hand column shows the correct playing strategy based on the dealers face-up card.

  SINGLE DECK - BASIC STRATEGY   Your Hand vs Dealer's Upcard   8 Double on 5 to 6. Otherwise hit. 9 Double on 2 to 6. Otherwise hit. 10 Double on 2 to 9. Otherwise hit. 11 Always double. 12 Stand on 4 to 6. Otherwise hit. 13 to 16 Stand on 2 to 6. Otherwise hit. 17 to 21 Always stand. A, 2 to A, 5 Double on 4 to 6. Otherwise hit. A, 6 Double on 2 to 6. Otherwise hit. A, 7 Double on 3 to 6. Stand on 2,7,8 or A. Hit on 9 or 10. A, 8 Double on 6. Otherwise stand. A, 9 Always stand. A, A Always split. 2, 2 Split on 3 to 7. Otherwise hit. 3, 3 Split on 4 to 7. Otherwise hit. 4, 4 Same as 8 above. 5, 5 Same as 10 above. 6, 6 Split on 2 to 6. Otherwise hit. 7, 7 Split on 2 to 7. Stand on 10. Otherwise hit. 8, 8 Always split. 9, 9 Split on 2 to 9 except 7. Stand on 7,10 or A. 10, 10 Always stand.   The above chart assumes the casino doesn't allow doubling down after splitting a pair. If the casino does allow doubling down after splitting a pair then use the following pair splitting rules.   Your Hand vs Dealer's Upcard   2, 2 Split on 2 to 7. Otherwise hit. 3, 3 Split on 2 to 7. Otherwise hit. 4, 4 Split on 4, 5 or 6. Otherwise hit. 6, 6 Split on 2 to 7. Otherwise hit. 7, 7 Split on 2 to 8. Stand on 10. Otherwise hit.  

FOUR, SIX, EIGHT DECK - BASIC STRATEGY

Your Hand vs Dealer's Upcard

5 to 8 Always Hit.

9 Double on 3 to 6. Otherwise hit.

10 Double on 2 to 9. Hit on 10, A.

11 Double on 2 to 10. Hit on A.

12 Stand on 4 to 6. Otherwise hit.

13 Stand on 2 to 6. Otherwise hit.

14 Stand on 2 to 6. Otherwise hit.

15 Stand on 2 to 6. Otherwise hit.

16 Stand on 2 to 6. Otherwise hit.

17 Always stand.

18 Always stand.

A, 2 Double on 5, 6. Otherwise hit.

A, 3 Double on 5, 6. Otherwise hit.

A, 4 Double on 4 to 6. Otherwise hit.

A, 5 Double on 4 to 6. Otherwise hit.

A, 6 Double on 3 to 6. Otherwise hit.

A, 7 Double on 3 to 6. Stand on 2, 7 or 8. Hit on 9, 10 or A.

A, 8 to A, 10 Always stand.

A, A Always split.

2, 2 Split on 2 to 7. Otherwise hit.

3, 3 Split on 2 to 7. Otherwise hit.

4, 4 Split on 5,6. Otherwise hit.

5, 5 Never split. Treat as 10 above.

6, 6 Split on 2 to 6. Otherwise hit.

7, 7 Split on 2 to 7. Otherwise hit.

8, 8 Always split.

9, 9 Split on 2 to 6, 8 or 9. Stand on 7, 10, or A.

10, 10 Always stand.

The above multiple deck basic strategy is valid if the players are allowed to double down after splitting a pair. If doubling down is not allowed after splitting a pair, then use the following pair splitting rules.

Your Hand vs Dealer's Upcard

2, 2 Split on 4 to 7.Otherwise hit.

3, 3 Split on 4 to 7. Otherwise hit.

4, 4 Never split. Always hit.

6, 6 Split on 3 to 6. Otherwise hit.

Last Updated on Saturday, 27 August 2011 07:49
 
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