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Playing Craps PDF Print E-mail
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Saturday, 27 August 2011 07:59

Even though the game of craps may appear to be complex, this is not actually the case. It just looks hard. You need to get acquainted with the craps playing table and a few rules in order to start playing like a pro. What follows is a very simple introduction into the basics for playing craps. To learn how to play, you should start with this page and continue with the getting started pages that follow.

The information that is given here may be applied both when playing craps online as well as at a brick and mortar land based casino. The way things are going, the online play is becoming as popular as the real brick and mortar play. There are a few differences however. For example, how you place your bet is one along with the need to have a thorough knowledge of table etiquette when playing at land based brick and mortar casinos, and knowledge of superstitions that you must pay respect to also at brick and mortar casinos.

If you haven't played before, it is best to just observe. Watch the game for a while. When you are playing at a land-based casino, imitation is not such a bad thing. It may better to use imitation when playing blackjack since craps is a very fast moving game. This however, is not a problem if you are playing craps online. Online you can take as long as you may want. On the other hand, there is no one you can imitate. So it is good for you that this information is available to help you get ready to play.

There are web pages available on the Internet that will give you the specifics for how to start your play at a table in a land-based casino. There are also sites that will prepare you for play at online craps casinos. This site will discuss how the two overlap and are similar. Since this overlap applies to most aspects of the game along with its rules and strategies, this information will be valuable whether you are playing online or at a brick and mortar casino.

Craps is a unique game. While a shooter throws a pair of dice the gambler is allowed to bet on a number of different combinations. You are allowed to bet on such things as the total number that will appear on the combined dice. You can bet on whether that number comes up before another one. You can even bet on such strange things as whether a four comes up as two twos or as a three and a one. Does this seem intimidating? Maybe but it’s not all that difficult. Lets take it easy at the beginning.

There are two states in which you can play craps. The point or point number may already be set or not yet set. In the case in which the point or point number has not already been set, the roll is referred to as the come-out roll. How do we know what the point number is and whether or not it has been set? This is accomplished by an indicator that is could the puck which can always be seen on the table. This looks very similar to a hockey puck and is round, flat, and able to slide around the board. On one side of the puck is printed the word ‘on’. On the other side is the word ‘off’ in large letters.

There are numbers printed all over the table. The large numbers along the back, 4, 5, 6, 8, 9 and 10, may be used for a number of different bets. The puck is placed with the ON side exposed, placed on top of the number that is the set point. In the case when the point number has not yet been set, the puck is placed to the side, not on the table layout, and the off side is exposed.

Information regarding the pass line bet as also available on the Internet.
Craps Offers Free Odds PDF Print E-mail
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Saturday, 27 August 2011 07:53

There are several reasons that make craps a really special game. For sure it is the most exciting of games as well as being elegant. It is also classy and extremely cool when compared with others. The best factor about it is that it offers the best odds of any of the games available in casinos. there is even a bet available where the house has and advantage at all. There is a catch though. You have to place a negative bet first in order to place this amazing bet.

This magic bet is referred to as free odds. Sometimes it is referred to just odds or maybe craps odds. This constitutes yet another reason that learning to play can be confusing since it is not always consistent. It has its own vocabulary. Craps odds bets differ from other bets primarily in that they are paid off at 'true odds'. True odds may be simply defined as what they are, true. In order to assure that the casino makes a profit, most bets have altered paybacks. This means that they win even when they lose. Say I was to offer you the chance to bet on a coin flip. To explain the meaning of true odds, suppose that you were to bet five dollars that a coin toss would come up heads. Since the chance of heads appearing on any one flip is 50% the expected payout would be 2 to 1, your five plus five, since this reflects the actual odds of winning. Since the odds were 2 to 1 the payback should be the same, or $10 for a $5 bet. what if you only got nine dollars instead of ten? Then you would be playing at casino odds. You would be receiving an altered payout, which is what happens when you bet in a casino. You actually bet five dollars in order to win four dollars.

a good example of this is in the case of the roulette table. Here on an American table the odds are 38 to 1 against your number coming up. But the actual payout is only 35 to 1. Although this does not appear to be fair, people are willing to of the along with it.

But when you play the free odds at a craps table, you are actually free from this unfair casino charge. In order to make a free odds bet you have to back up an already existing bet that is on the table. This does not however, apply to all bets. The bet that is most commonly used is the pass line bet.

In order to back up a pass line bet with odds it is necessary to wait until the point has been set. You can then place more chips on the table behind the original pass line bet. If you are playing online you can usually click behind your chips and accomplish the same thing. it is this part of the bet that is paid back at true odds. It will win or lose along with the pass line bet (or whichever bet you have backed up).

As you increase the odds you lay you lower the house edge regarding the overall bet. Actually there still is some edge because of the 1.42% that is against you on the original pass line part of the bet. It is for this reason that the house will only allow a limited multiple of the original pass line bet to be bet with free odds. This is usually restricted to a multiple of 2, 3, or 4 times the original bet. This is shown as 2x, 3x, or 4x on the table. Since this is by far the best bet that the casino offers, go for as much as you can handle.

Blackjack: How to Play PDF Print E-mail
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Saturday, 27 August 2011 07:52

If you have never played Blackjack and never sat down in front of a Blackjack table in a casino, the following article is designed to help you understand how to play the game and teach you the basic rules and the do’s and don’ts of the Blackjack table.

A casino blackjack table is semicircular in shape. The dealer stands behind the table and there are seven player positions facing him. Some tables may have only five player positions. The dealer acts for the casino and he distributes the cards to the players.

On or near the table will be sign announcing the minimum and maximum bets allowed at this particular table. Players should study this so they know exactly what they are getting into if they choose to play at this table. Now the player has to buy his chips. He does this by putting his money on the side of the table and then waiting for the dealer to change the money into playing chips.

The Shuffle

The player receives his chips and now he is ready to play. In order to bet he has to place a chip in the betting in the circle in front of his seat. The game starts when the dealer shuffles the cards. If he is dealing more than two decks, he will place the shuffled deck of cards in a box which is known as the ‘shoe’. After he shuffles a deck, he will ask a player to ‘cut’ the deck and he will mark the position of the cut with a colored card, known as the ‘cut card’. The player who is asked to cut, simply slides the colored card into the deck at any position he fancies. The dealer splits the deck at the cut point and taking the cut card out, places it about two-thirds the way into the deck. This deck ‘penetration’ will probably vary from casino to casino, and may even

differ from table to table.

The First Deal

If the dealer is playing with two decks or less, he will organize the cards in his hand. For more than two decks, he will place the cards in the shoe. He will start by ‘burning’ or discarding, the first card. Then he will look around the table to check that all the players have placed their bets in the correct location on the table and that all the bets conform to the table limits. Now he begins distributing, or dealing, cards to the players, either from the top of the deck, if it is his hand, or from the front of the shoe.

He begins with the furthest player to his left, who is known as ‘first base’ and continue dealing out one card to each player. When this is done he will deal himself one card face up. He repeats the process until every player has two cards in front of him. His own second card is slid under his face-up card. This is called his ‘hole card’ and it is face down.

Do Not Touch the Cards

In some casinos, the cards are dealt face up but the players are not allowed to touch them. Only the dealer may handle cards and chips.

In other casinos, the players may handle their cards. Where this happens, the cards are dealt face down. The player then has to pick up his cards and turn them over. In this situation do not use both hands to pick the cards up. Lift them with one hand only and hold them over the table. A player should never remove cards from the table or hide them from the sight of the dealer. The dealer alone is responsible for the security of the cards, and his job is to make sure that cards are not exchanged or tampered with by the players.


The Object of the Game

The object of blackjack is to beat the dealer by having cards with a total as close as possible to 21. The score is obtained by adding up the values of the cards. The card values are as follows: Tens and picture or face cards are all worth ten points, Aces are worth one or 11, whichever the player chooses in keeping with his hand. All the other cards count at their numerical face values. The suits are of no significance in this game.

For example, a five of spades and a nine of hearts is 14 points. A King of spades and a Queen of diamonds counts as 20 points. An Ace of spades and a seven of hearts can count as 8 or 18 points.

The player who has an Ace determines its the value, and can actually decide to change it in mid-hand. In the last example, for instance, say a player drew a Seven to the Ace and six. If the Ace is counted as 11, he will have 18. If it is counted as 1 he will have 8.

A "soft hand" is defined as one that contains an Ace which is counted as 11. A "hard hand" is defined as a hand where the Ace can only be counted as one point or a hand that does not contain an Ace.

After the each player has been dealt two cards, the dealer returns to first-base and starts the play with each hand individually. He will point to each player’s cards when he is ready to play.

Casino Security

Casinos are fitted with security cameras so that any arguments and claims can be reviewed by all parties. Because of this, verbal instructions may not be given to the dealer. The cameras cannot hear these.

Should a player want another card – a situation called ‘a hit’ – he should signal this by scratching the table with his finger. If he wants to ‘stand – or not take any more cards - he signals this by waving his hand with the palm down. He uses the same motion when he has decided to stop taking additional cards.

In the hand-held game, where the dealer is holding the deck of cards in his hand, he would signal that he wants a hit by scraping the table with the edge of his cards. If he is satisfied with his hand and does not want any more cards, he must slide his cards under his chips in the betting circle to show this.

The Points

If he takes a hit and that card puts his total over 21, he is ‘bust’ and he loses his bet automatically. The dealer will immediately remove his cards and his chips. In the hand-held game, he must turn his cards over immediately if he is bust, so the dealer can finish his hand.

At the end of the hand, if the total of his cards is closer to 21 than the dealer, he wins! If the dealer's hand is closer to 21, he loses. And if he ties with the dealer - called a "push" - no one wins or loses.

If the dealer does not go ‘bust’, he will pay the winners and take the loser's chips. If a player has pushed or tied, the dealer will rap the table with his knuckles and leave the chips where they stand. He can then increase, decrease or remove his bet for the next hand.

The House Rules

The casinos have rules for Blackjack. They may differ from one casino to another and it is important for a player to know these rules. These rules are pretty basic. If the dealer's hand total 16 or less, he must take a card. If the dealer's hand is 17 or more, he must stand. There are casinos that will allow the dealer to hit on soft 17 which gives the house a very small additional advantage. So the dealer's playing strategy is fixed and he cannot depart from it. The cards that the players hold are immaterial to him as far as hitting and standing is concerned. He cannot change the rules.

Then only way to win automatically is to be dealt a Blackjack hand, that is, to receive a total of 21 in the first two cards. This means a ten-value card and an Ace. This is called a "natural" or a "blackjack."

When a player is dealt a Blackjack, he receives a bonus. As a rule in blackjack, all bets are paid out at even money. But when a player is dealt a Blackjack, he receives a payoff of three-to-two. So for example, if the bet was $10, the payout would be $15.

In a hand-held game, the player must turn his cards over immediately in order to be paid.

When the Dealer has Blackjack

If the dealer has a Blackjack hand and a player is also dealt one, the player will not be paid immediately. This is a tie, or a ‘push’ and no one is paid. A player can protect himself by taking out ‘insurance’. When the dealer has an Ace showing, he asks all the players if they would like insurance. This insurance bet is actually a side bet in which a player can bet half of his original bet. To take up the offer of insurance the player places chips to the amount of half his original bet on the table in front of his original bet. If the dealer does get a Blackjack the insurance bet will be paid out at 2-1 and the player will lose his original bet. If the dealer doesn't get a Blackjack, the player loses his insurance bet but continues play with his original bet. In general, the insurance bet is NOT a good bet unless the player is counting cards and is sure that there is a good chance of the dealer having Blackjack. If the player is not counting cards, he should not take the insurance bet.

Increasing the Bets

The game of Blackjack allows a player to increase his bets in the middle of a hand if he feels that he has a good hand and is likely to win. When such an opportunity arises, a player should exploit it.

A player can increase his bet by ‘doubling down’. What this means is that the casino will allow the player to make a second bet equal in size to his first bet. In return for this, the player agrees to take only one more card for his hand. A player can double down only after looking at his first two cards. He cannot do this once he starts playing against the dealer, by taking a hit and then doubling down.

Some casinos will allow a player to double down for less than the amount of his original bet. Players should avoid doing this because if the situation is worth doubling down for, one should bet as much as is allowable, which is the amount of the original bet.

Doubling Down

If a player wants to inform the dealer that he wants to double down, he simply places a second wager next to his original wager in the betting circle. He should make sure the dealer sees him and also be sure not to place the additional bet on top of the original wager, giving the impression that he is illegally trying to increase his original bet.

Hand signals are not necessary. The dealer will see the double-down bet and give the player the one card that is part of the double down. He will place the extra card across the first two cards. In the hand-held game, the dealer will place the card under the player’s chips in the betting circle. The player may then pick up the card to see what he has been given, but he will gain more respect if he waits to expose his hand until the dealer has settled all bets.

If the player wins his bet, he will be paid even money for the two bets, and receive double his original wager. If he loses, both bets are taken away. In the event of a push, he will keep both bets, but there is no payout.

Splitting the Hand

Another way of increasing a bet in mid-hand is splitting. This requires being dealt a pair, such as a six of clubs and a six of hearts. The player can then split his hand if he wishes, giving him 2 separate hands to play. The extra wager must equal the original bet and must be placed next to the initial wager.

If a player has a pair that he wants to split and his cards are dealt face down, he must turn them over and place them a few inches apart. If his cards are dealt face up, he must point to his cards and say "split" when the dealer prompts him. The original bet will go with one card and he must place an equal amount of chips in the betting box near the other card. He is now playing two hands, each as though they were a regular hand, except if he has split two aces. In that case, he will only get one card which hopefully will be a 10. If it is a 10, that hand's total is now 21 but the hand isn't considered a Blackjack. He will be paid 1:1 and not 1:1.5 as for a natural Blackjack.

After splitting his cards, the dealer will deal cards to his first hand until the players decide to stand or go bust. He will then deal cards to the second hand. The player should remember that the stand, hit, split, and double-down rules apply equally to each new hand being dealt. The rules on how many times as a player may split vary from casino to casino. Let’s say a player is dealt a pair of eights, he splits them, and is dealt another eight. Most casinos will allow him to split again and start a third hand. Players should ask the dealer about the split rules.
Baccarat History PDF Print E-mail
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Thursday, 04 December 2008 12:50

Originating in Europe, Baccarat is also considered one of the most popular European casino games. The name, baccarat originates from the Italian word for zero – Baccara. The connection with its name and the game is that all face cards, as well as the ten, have a value of zero.

In the Middle Ages, when Baccarat first developed, it was generally played with a deck of tarot cards. Even in these early stages, Baccarat was considered a favorite amongst card players.

The earliest known dates of players participating in Baccarat is around 1490. Nonetheless, it did not take long since then for the game to gain much momentum and popularity. Indeed, by the 1500s the French nobility were known to choose this game over many others. As time and the game progressed, two versions of Baccarat evolved. The first being the French version, Chemin de Fer, and the second, the European Baccarat.

Modern American Baccarat in turn originated and developed in England before traveling with the colonists to North and South America. Today, the most common version played was a variety of the game that developed in the Capri Casino in Havana, Cuba.

Around the 1950s, Baccarat was introduced to the Gambling capital of America – Nevada. Already enjoying a glamorous reputation in European casinos, the American casinos attempted to maintain its popularity and image. Obviously successful in this regard, today, in most casinos where Baccarat is played in the US, the area is generally roped-off area with video monitoring and surveillance as well as armed guards. This is due the exorbitant prices that are often waged by players.

Even though Baccarat attracts much hoopla and attention from players and onlookers, as well as some of gambling's highest rollers, nonetheless it demands little skill and is really a game of chance.

A Baccarat table has fourteen spots numbered from one to fifteen, excluding thirteen to avoid problems with superstition. Three dealers are placed at each individual table. The Croupier or Caller is the label given to the dealer located in the middle. His/ her role is to make the calls as each hand is dealt. Additionally, the Croupier also is responsible for directing the game and all the procedures that it involves.

The other two dealers, on the other hand, while they are not responsible for the running of the game, their position is to ensure all the payoffs are carried out, and that this is done correctly.

Last Updated on Saturday, 27 August 2011 07:30
Baccarat Rules PDF Print E-mail
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Friday, 28 November 2008 00:00

Baccarat is basically a simple game to play. The game does not allow for any decision-making or dealing with options. In this case there is no particular degree of skill needed by either the player or dealer. The position of seating has no bearing on the play and players are free to sit at any seat that is open at the table. There are 15 seats numbered 1 through 15, which constitute the layout of the table. There are three dealers servicing each table. Standing between positions 1 and 15 is the dealer who is labeled the ‘caller’. It is he who is in charge of running the games as the cards are dealt from out of the shoe.

The shoe is handled by each player in turn. When the player receives the shoe he/she must bet for the bank but if a player does not want the shoe they may decline and it then passes along to the next player. There is no advantage or disadvantage to the one who is dealing the cards. In fact it is simply an element of the ambience of the game and adds to the player’s enjoyment.

The player with the shoe passes cards to the caller who places the cards received in their appropriate boxes, then calling for another card or declaring who the winner is in accordance with the game rules.
In order to bet the players place their chips in numbered boxes opposite their seats. A bet can be placed either on the player or the bank. They both are paid off in even money. There is a $20 minimum and a $2,000 maximum. The bets range between these two limits. The winner is announced. It is the job of the other two dealers at the table to pay off winning bets and to collect the losing bets. If the bank wins, those players who bet with the bank must pay a 5% commission for their winnings. For example, a player who bet $100 on the bank and won, would owe a commission to the house of $5. This vigorish is not collected after each game but a record is kept of what the player owes the house, which is kept in a numbered box. The box is situated opposite the seats of the two payoff dealers. After the completionof a shoe, the player pays the accumulated commissions. There are eight decks in the shoe. When the shoe is depleted, all eight decks are shuffled thoroughly and replaced in the shoe. The values of cards are valid according to their face count with tens and face cards counted as zero. For example, if the first two cards dealt are a king and a five, the count is five. If the cards are a 7 and 6, the total would be 13. This would count as 3 since the ten is subtracted. When the two cards’ total exceeds 10, 10 is subtracted. What is left is the card count.

Playing Rules

When the first two cards drawn by the player are a 1,2,3,4,5, or 10, the player must draw a card. If the player receives a 6 or 7, the player must stand, an 8 or 9, he stands and it’s called a ‘natural’. The banker acts in accordance with his/her hand and the player’s third card, so that if his/her hand is 3 and the player’s third card is a 1 (ace), 2,3,4,5,6,7,9, or 10, he draws a card. If the player’s third card is an 8, he or she stands. If the banker’s hand is 4, he/she must draw of the player’s third card is a 2,3,4,5,6, or 7, and stands if it is a 1,8,9, or ten. If the banker’s hand equals 5 and the player’s third card is a 4,5,6, 0r 7, he draws a card. If it is a 1,2,3,8,9, or 10, he or she must stand. If the banker’s hand equals 6, and the player’s third card is a 6 or a 7, the banker must draw. If not, he/she stands. If it the banker’s hand equals 7 he must stand. If it equals 8 or 9, he/she stands with a ‘natural’.

These are the rules that are used in all American casinos, and you can attain printed copies of them wherever the game of baccarat is being played. These rules function automatically and the dealers must act in accordance with them regardless of players’ opinions or desired actions. Both players and bankers must follow these rules of play.

The maximum total that a baccarat hand can equal is nine. If the first two cards equal nine it is called a ‘natural’ and must win. if you receive an eight it is also called a natural and is considered as being the second best possible hand. In the event that both the player and bank receive identical hands, it is called a stand-off or tie. In such a case neither the bank nor the player wins. If there is a two card draw equaling either six or seven, no additional cards may be drawn. In the case of another two-card total, the player and the bank must draw another card according to the directions given by the caller. The game proceeds according to the above rules. All in all, it is simply a matter of allowing the dealer to make the calls, and to declare the results.

The concerns of the players are only in relationship to the size of their wager for each hand and whether they are betting with the player or the banker. The edge allowed to the house for the game of baccarat is actually the lowest of all casino games. Since there is only a 5% commission paid bank bets that win and no commission whatsoever given for player bets that win, the disadvantage to the player is a meager 1.37%. there are some casinos that allow bets on ties. There is a payoff of 8 to 1. Nevertheless such a bet is not advantages to the player since the house holds an edge of 14.1%.

There are several smaller baccarat tables that have been installed in some casinos. These are usually placed among the blackjack tables. In these games the procedure is similar but passing the shoe is emitted and there is only one dealer. The table layout is however, the same as in regular Baccarat with each seating position (1 through 6) corresponding to a number and betting box. The limits are usually set from between a $2 to $5 minimum with a maximum of up to $500. The game of mini-baccarat is fast paced but the same exact rules apply as in the larger regular game.

Last Updated on Saturday, 27 August 2011 07:49
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