Blackjack games to play for free, online
Blackjack – (from the English Blackjack ) one of the most famous card games in the world. It is one of the “classic three” casino games: roulette, poker and blackjack – usually offered in many land-based gambling houses on the planet, as well as in online casinos on the Internet. The main goal of playing blackjack is to score on your cards the number of points as close as possible to 21, but not more, and / or wait for the dealer to have more than 21 points, which will give the player an automatic win.
Classic Blackjack Rules
Almost any casino offers blackjack today, however, in each particular institution, not only the minimums and maximums of the table bets may differ, but also some of the generally accepted rules. In order to attract players in a competitive environment, some casinos are making various changes to the classic rules, giving players a little more advantage and freedom of action. There are also independent varieties of blackjack, which have well-established names and differ from the classics by a different number of cards in the deck, the size of bonus payments or the principle of the seniority of combinations.
In any case, the game against the casino takes place at the table, on the canvas of which the boxes for the players’ bets are indicated by rectangles. There are blackjack tables with the number of boxes from 7 to 12. Accordingly, one or several players can take part in the game, each player has the right to place bets on any number of free boxes and thus play on several hands at once. All cards are dealt face up. Initially, the dealer deals two cards for each box with a bet and one card for himself. Then, in turn, there is a set of cards on the boxes, after which the dealer collects cards for himself. The players do not compete with each other in any way, the goal of the game is for each player to defeat the croupier on their boxes.
The values of the denominations of cards in classic blackjack
Classic blackjack is a game against the casino on a deck of 312 cards (six standard decks of 52 cards). The player strives to score the maximum number of points not exceeding 21, in case of a bust, the player’s hand is immediately considered a loser and the bet goes to the casino bank, regardless of whether the dealer has bust.
Blackjack card suits are not counted. Cards from two to nine, when calculating points, correspond to their numerical values (two – 2 points, three – 3, etc.). Dozens and all cards with pictures (jacks, queens, kings) – give 10 points each. Aces can be counted as 1 or 11 points. When counting points on hands with aces, the maximum possible amount of points is chosen, not exceeding 21. When an ace can be counted simultaneously for 1 and 11 points, and in both cases there is no bust (more than 21 points), the hand is called “soft”. A hand in which an ace can be counted for only 1 point is considered a “hard” hand, otherwise an overkill occurs.
“First two” is the first pair of cards dealt by the dealer to each playing box before the player starts drawing cards. When the first two cards are an ace and any card with a value of 10 points, this combination is called “blackjack” and is the highest in the game. It is not possible to play a hand with blackjack.
A hand with blackjack is higher than any hand, even with a set of cards equal to 21 points. If the dealer’s first card is not an ace or a ten (that is, the dealer’s blackjack is impossible), all boxes with a blackjack combination are immediately paid 3 to 2 (1.5 to 1). In other cases, payment is made based on the results of the dealer’s set of cards. Ace with a ten on the first two cards of the dealer is also considered “blackjack”. In such a situation, on all players’ boxes, where there is also “blackjack” – a draw occurs, the rest of the boxes – lose.
Insurance and equal money.
When the dealer’s first card is an ace, he offers players insurance against possible blackjack. In this situation, before the start of the collection of cards on the boxes, the player can make a bet on a special field in an amount not exceeding half of the amount of his bets on the boxes. Such a separate bet is called “insurance”, and in the case of the dealer’s “blackjack”, it pays 2 to 1, or loses if the dealer’s ace does not come up with any ten.
The player’s blackjack is not insured. When the dealer has an ace as the first card, and the player has “blackjack” before the start of a set of cards, the dealer must offer the player “equal money” – or pay the “blackjack” at once 1 to 1. Having refused “equal money”, the player can stay with his money, in case of “blackjack” at the dealer (tie situation), or get paid 3 to 2, if the dealer did not collect “blackjack”.
The procedure for drawing cards by the dealer
After completing the procedure of drawing cards for all playing boxes by the players, the dealer collects cards for himself. There is a strict rule here, which is often even written in English on the table’s playing surface: “The dealer must draw a card at 16 or less, or stop at 17 (or more) points.” After completing a set of cards for himself, the croupier compares the number of points of his own combination with the result on each of the playing boxes – and either takes the losing bets or pays them 1 to 1. In the case of equal combinations of the player and the dealer, a draw occurs, that is, the bet does not lose. but also not paid. The dealer may also have a bust, in which case, all bets remaining in the game on the boxes win.
Splitting (splitting paired cards in blackjack)
When the first two cards on the player’s box have an equal value, the dealer offers him the opportunity to add a bet equal to the initial one and divide the box into two separate hands, continuing to draw cards for each hand separately.
If, after splitting, the hand again has a pair of equal cards, the player has the right to add the bet again and split the cards again. Some casinos may limit the number of consecutive splits for one box, for example, no more than three or four times.
The possibility of splitting exists for any pair of cards of the same value, however, splitting a pair of aces differs in that in this case the player can split only once and receive only one card for each ace.
If a player splits a pair of tens, or a pair of aces, and at the same time, hands are formed with a combination of an ace with a ten – all such combinations are considered 21 points, and not “blackjack” – which is possible only on the first two cards from the deal, before the start of a set of cards on boxes.
Double and doubling the bet on the first two cards
The player has the right to double the bet on the first two cards, while receiving only one card for this box. In most casinos, a double is only possible with the combination of the first two cards equal to 9, 10, or 11 points, including soft hands with aces, except for an ace and ten, giving immediately blackjack, or 21 points in case of splitting.
Surenda, or refusal to play
Before the start of the procedure for drawing cards, a player can refuse to play on any box by announcing a surrender (in English, “surrender”) and losing half of the bet. Usually the croupier himself has to offer the players a contract when he has a ten. If the dealer’s first card is an ace – shurenda is impossible, the player can only insure his bets against a possible blackjack at the dealer.
Different options and bonuses for classic blackjack
Often, casinos can slightly change some of the rules of the game to attract additional players. This usually gives the players more leeway, or even increases their mathematical advantage against the casino.
The following variations of the classic rules are widely known:
Double on any two cards – the ability to double the bet on the first two cards is not limited to the sum of their denominations of 9, 10 and 11 points.
Triple is an opportunity for a player after a double to deliver a bet equal to the initial one again. And at the same time get one more card for the box
The dealer continues to draw cards on “soft” 17. In situations where the dealer’s set of cards contains an ace, he stops exclusively on the “hard” hand at 17 points.
Increased opportunities and limits for insurance. When the dealer has an ace, the maximum insurance bet is set separately and is not limited to half of the player’s bets. Some casinos with an ace at the dealer allow any visitor who is in the game room to bet on insurance against blackjack, even if he did not make bets at the blackjack table in this hand.
Gold point. This is the name of a pair of aces on the first two cards, when it is considered to be the maximum combination that beats even “blackjack”
Three sevens. Having collected a combination of 21 points from three sevens on any of the hands, in many casinos the player is usually awarded an additional bonus, for example, a bottle of champagne, or another prize.
Suited Blackjack. If an ace and a card with a ten face value turn out to be of the same suit specified in advance by the rules, the payout can be 2 to 1.
Seven-card Charlie (7-card Charlie) – in the case of a player on one of the hands of seven cards without busting, such a hand wins any combination, even the dealer’s “blackjack”. Also, sometimes “five” and “six card Charlie” can sometimes be separately rewarded – that is, five and six cards without busting, respectively.
Blackjack side bets
Also, in order to attract players, some casinos may introduce the possibility for players to make various side bets, usually playing independently of the main bets made on the boxes:
Perfect Pair – this is the name of the bet on the fact that the player from the distribution will collect a pair of identical two cards on the box. There is also an independent version of the blackjack game with the same name.
Aces jackpot – a bet that the player and the dealer will receive two or more aces on four dealt cards. The maximum win (jackpot) here is usually paid for 4 aces of the same color or suit.
Hi / Low 13 – the player places bets on whether the sum of his first two cards will be less than, more than or equal to 13 points.
Suited Bonus – A bet that the player will receive the first two cards of the same suit.
Standalone variants of blackjack, different from the classic
The game of bledjack turned out to be so popular that over time, many separate varieties of it arose, with rather different rules, but a common name and the same principle of a set of cards up to 21 points. The most popular of these varieties are listed below.
European blackjack. The rules of this game are similar to the classic ones. The game differs only in that a deck of 104 cards is used in European blackjack (two standard decks of 52 sheets). The rules for counting cards and drawing them by the dealer remained the same, the player is also offered splitting, double, syurend and insurance with an ace at the dealer.
Vegas Blackjack – As the name suggests, the game has American roots and is practiced in land-based casinos in Nevada. Play Vegas Blackjack on a 104-card deck. In American variations of the game, the dealer usually deals himself two cards at once, one of which is kept face down until the end of the playing round. The rest of the rules are identical to classic blackjack, but there is one important difference in situations where the dealer’s up card is 10 or an ace. In such cases, the dealer looks at his second face down card, and if he has “blackjack” – the players do not draw cards, all the hands of the players that do not have “blackjack” – lose.
Atlantic City Blackjack is also the North American version of the game popular in Atlantic City land-based casinos. Similar to Vegas blackjack, in the case of an open 10 or an ace at the dealer, a blackjack check is immediately made. The game involves 416 cards, or 8 standard 52-sheet decks.
Blackjack Switch. This type is offered mainly in online casinos. In this version, the game is played on six standard decks and simultaneously on two boxes. The player is allowed to exchange the top two cards with each other on a pair of hands after the first deal. Since the combination “blackjack” under such conditions occurs much more often, in Blackjack switch, it is paid always 1 to 1. The dealer stops his collection of cards with a soft hand of 17 points. There is also an additional “Super Match” bet in the game, which is accepted before the start of a set of cards, and depends on the coincidence of the denominations of the first four cards on the player’s two hands. A matched pair is paid 1 to 1, three cards of the same value are paid 5 to 1, the payout in the case of two pairs is 8 to 1, and 4 identical cards are paid 40 to 1.
The perfect couple. This standalone blackjack variation is played on five standard decks (260 cards in total) and offers an additional bonus “Perfect Pair” bet. If the player receives the first two cards of the same value and suit, this bonus bet wins and pays 25 to 1.
Pontun. The English version of the game at 21. Pontun has similar rules to blackjack, but is spread mainly in Australia, some Asian countries and the UK itself. In pontoon, the highest combination is 777, which can be paid up to 5 to 1. Pontun, i.e., ace and ten are paid in this game 2 to 1, and a five-card trick (five cards without busting) – 3 to 2. At the same time, in pontune missing all the cards “tens” (only tens. Jacks, queens and kings participate in the game and are valued at ten points each).
Spanish blackjack. Among all the others, this type of blackjack is the most different in terms of rules from the classic game. For the game, 8 decks of cards are used here, but these are not the usual standard decks of 52 sheets, but the so-called “Spanish” decks, 48 cards each. It should be noted that the mathematical advantage of the casino over the players in this type of game is much higher than in classic blackjack.
The rest of the rules are similar to the classics, with the difference that the player can “split” the first cards three times, that is, play 4 hands at once. Also, sometimes the game takes into account the suit of the cards and for some individual combinations, the player is provided with additional prize payments:
- 21 points on 5 cards – paid 3: 2
- 21 points on 6 cards – payout 2: 1
- 21 points on 7 or more cards – payout 3: 1
- 6-7-8 and 7-7-7 offsuit – pays 3: 2
- Suited 6-7-8 and 7-7-7 – payout 2: 1
- Peak 6-7-8 or 7-7-7 – payout 3: 1
- Suited 7-7-7 when the dealer shows a 7 – pays 50: 1
For the variety and entertainment of their visitors, many land-based and online casinos organize blackjack tournaments. According to the original blackjack rules, the player has the opportunity to compete exclusively with the casino in the face of the dealer. (Translated from English, dealer – just means “representative” of the institution). Blackjack tournaments provide players with the opportunity to play blackjack against the dealer, while simultaneously competing with each other for the effectiveness of the game.
At the beginning of the tournament, each participant makes an entry fee and receives the same number of tournament play chips. Further, the game can be played in several rounds, for the elimination of the players with the smallest bank, or there is a time limit. The winner of the tournament is the player who has shown the best result in the game in terms of money. Sometimes there may be more than one prize.
Since tournaments require several free gaming tables at once, not every land-based casino is capable of holding regular blackjack tournaments for a large number of willing participants. However, for virtual casinos, the constant holding of tournaments for a wide range of players is not difficult, and online blackjack tournaments have long become a common gambling entertainment on the Internet.
The history of the emergence and development of blackjack
The “ancestor” of blackjack, the card game of 21 (or 31) points, did not originate in the American continent, but from there it migrated to casinos around the world. Moreover, games called “thirty-one” and “twenty-one” were popular in various European countries long before the emergence of the United States and the opening of a casino in Nevada. All varieties of such games appeared on the American continent only with the appearance of the first European settlers here.
In 17th century France, among all classes of the country’s population, from ordinary peasants to the royal family, the game “Vingt et Un” – which translates as “twenty-one”, enjoyed wide popularity. This particular version of the game is generally considered to be the closest ancestor of blackjack. However, the French game of 21 points was preceded by the equally popular card games “Chemin de Fer” and “French Ferme” – very similar in rules, but known almost a century earlier. The Italian literature of the early 15th century also mentions and describes the card game “Trentuno” (“thirty-one”). The principle of this game is similar to the rules of the game “21”, with the only difference that the player started a set with three, not two cards. And the maximum possible number of points without brute force was taken as 31. A popular game with similar rules and name, also describe Spanish historical documents from the 15th century. And in the 17th century, the famous Spanish writer Cervantes mentioned the game “Veintiuno” in his work. Its name also translates as “21” and speaks for itself. Of the card games with a scoring principle similar to blackjack, it is also worth mentioning the Italian game Sette e mezzo (Seven and a Half). It has been played from the 17th century to the present day. The name of the game usually corresponds to the maximum number of points before the bust, the deck consists of 40 cards. Cards with “pictures” here are considered as half a point, the king of clubs is a joker. also worth mentioning is the Italian game Sette e mezzo (Seven and a Half). It has been played from the 17th century to the present day. The name of the game usually corresponds to the maximum number of points before the bust, the deck consists of 40 cards. Cards with “pictures” here are considered as half a point, the king of clubs is a joker. also worth mentioning is the Italian game Sette e mezzo (Seven and a Half). It has been played from the 17th century to the present day. The name of the game usually corresponds to the maximum number of points before the bust, the deck consists of 40 cards. Cards with “pictures” here are considered as half a point, the king of clubs is a joker.
Thus, the exact information about where and when the blackjack prototype was invented is lost in the depths of the history of medieval Europe. However, the place, time and reason for the origin of the current name of the game are known for certain – these are gambling houses in the USA of the 19th century. By this time, a separate version of the game “21” had already been proposed, with the rules modified for playing against the house.
To increase the popularity of such a game, the casino owners made separate combinations of the first two cards as prize and began to pay them higher than a simple win 1 to 1. The greatest combination was then considered a combination of a jack and an ace of spades, which was called “Black Jack” (literally: “black jack “) – this is what gave the name to the new version of the game.
In a later version of the rules, which is now considered classic, the maximum combination of cards is still called “blackjack” and pays 3 to 2, that is, one and a half times more expensive. Only the role of a jack with an ace – now any ten can play, and the suits of cards – have completely lost any meaning in the game.
Blackjack Vocabulary and Table Terminology
Since the generally accepted version of blackjack has developed in American casinos, most of the terms of the game are translations or transcriptions of English words.
Bankroll – the player’s bank (budget) allocated for the game.
Bankroll Management (bankroll management, bank management) – a special list of rules and principles for the competent spending of the game bank.
Blackjack (blackjack, blackjack) – the maximum winning combination in the game (payout 3 to 2), and at the same time – its name.
Box – The name of the place to place a bet on the casino card tables, usually marked with a rectangle. The player has the right to simultaneously place bets on any of the free seven boxes. At the same time, on each box where the bet was made, play on a separate hand.
Blackjack Tournament (tournament on blackjack) – a separate type of competition between blackjack players (each one alone against the casino) with a limit on the bank and time to play. The prize fund of the tournament is won by one or more players with the best performance
Burn Cards (burned cards, demolition of the top cards) – the top cards of the deck (usually the first three), just shuffled by the croupier and cut by the player, which are “burned” (removed from the game in the discard, counting face down). Usually an additional security measure. Depending on the rules of a particular institution, one top card of the deck remaining in the shoe can also be “burned” when changing the dealer at the table.
Bust, Break, Too many (bust) – the player’s loss, when typing more than 21 points for the box. Having received a bust on any of the boxes, the player immediately loses the bet on it, regardless of whether the dealer has bust.
Cash Chips (cash tokens, cash chips, cash) – tokens with a permanent and signed digital denomination, which are circulated in the casino instead of cash. It is these tokens that are used to play blackjack.
Cut the deck – 1) The player splits the cards of the shuffled deck into two parts, which are then swapped. It is offered to the player as an additional guarantee of the pure randomness of the results of the game on the part of the house. 2) In land-based establishments without shuffle machines – a mandatory procedure for the dealer
Cutting Card (cutting card, false card) – a special card made of plastic, does not participate in the game, is used to remove the deck by the player, as well as the dealer’s marking of the last distribution in games without using shuffle machines for land-based casinos
Dealer (dealer, croupier) – a casino employee who represents him and plays at the table.
Deck (standard deck of cards ) – a standard 52-sheet deck of cards. Sometimes in blackjack, a “deck” can mean a collection of all cards for the game, consisting of 6 (in some variants – 2, 5, or 8) standard decks.
Discard Tray (discard, bump, sump, tray for discarding cards) – a special device (usually to the right of the dealer) for storing played cards. Not available on tables equipped with shuffle machines.
Double Deck Blackjack (two-deck blackjack) – a type of blackjack with a deck of 104 cards (2x standard decks)
Double Down (doubling, double) – An opportunity for the player to double the bet on the box with the first two cards. If the bet is doubled, only one card is added to the box with the double.
Double Exposure (double exposure) – a type of blackjack in which both dealer cards are open.
Draw, Hit, Card on… (another card, a card on… [number of points on the box]) – A player’s request to the dealer for an additional card for the box.
Eight Deck Blackjack (eight-deck blackjack) – a type of blackjack with a deck of 416 cards (8 standard decks)
Even Money (equal money) – An opportunity for the player to receive a payout on the boxes with blackjack 1 to 1 before the start of the draw. Offered when the dealer has an ace. If the player refuses to have equal money, he will receive a payout of 3 to 2 if the dealer has no blackjack, or a draw if the dealer’s second card turns out to be any ten.
Face Card, Paint (“pictures”, or “cards with faces”) – jacks, queens and kings. Each of the listed cards in blackjack has a face value of 10 points.
Face Down Game is a type of blackjack where the first card is dealt to the player face up, and the second is dealt face down.
Face Up Game – A variation of blackjack in which all cards are dealt face up.
Five Card Charlie (five-card Charlie) – a box on which there were five cards without busting. For example, 2,4,5,6,7.
Floorman (inspector) is a competent casino employee who does not play at the table, but is responsible for compliance with its rules and accuracy of payments.
Hard Ace (hard ace) – The situation when the ace on the hand can be equal to only 1 point (otherwise, there is an overkill)
Hard Hand – A hand with a hard ace.
Hole Card ( face down card) – a card lying on the table face down
Insurance (insurance, insurance against blackjack) – a bet on an additional safety field offered to the player with an open ace, and, accordingly, a high probability of the dealer’s blackjack. Offered and accepted prior to the start of the additional set of cards. The maximum can be insured only half of the total amount of bets made by a player on all boxes. If the player has made insurance and the dealer has blackjack –
Late Surrender (late refusal) – the player refuses to continue the game after the dealer has checked the hole card and said that he does not have blackjack.
Multiple-Deck (multi-deck decks) – decks for blackjack, consisting of two or more standard decks of cards.
No double after Split (doubling after splitting is impossible) – a prohibition for a player to double his bet after splitting (splitting) a pair into two separate boxes.
Pat Hand – A hand with a score between 17 and 21.
Perfect Pairs – add. a bet that the player’s first two cards will be of the same value
Pit Boss (pit boss, pit boss) – a casino employee, a lower management position, manages dealers in the casino hall and controls the game at the tables.
Push, Stand Off, Tie (push, tie, stand-off, expense with friends, draw) – A draw when the dealer and the player scored an equal number of points. A bet on a box with a push is not taken away, but it is not paid either.
Resplit – additional splitting of cards after a previously made split.
Round (game round) – a cyclically repeating segment of the game process, from the beginning of accepting bets and dealing cards, until the end of the payment of winnings.
Session – the total time spent playing without interruption.
Shoe, Sabo (shoe, sabo) – a special box for a large deck, from which the dealer deals blackjack cards.
Shuffle (shuffle, shuffling of cards) – random shuffling of cards before the game.
Single Deck Blackjack is a blackjack game with one standard 52-card deck.
Six Deck Blackjack (six-deck blackjack) – the classic and most common version of blackjack with a deck of 312 cards (6 standard decks).
Soft Hand (soft hand) – a hand with an ace, which is equal to 1 or 11 points.
Soft Double (soft double, doubling of a soft hand) – doubling of a bet on a box with a soft hand.
Split (split, splitting, splitting, splitting) – the player splits the first two cards of the same value into two separate boxes by adding a bet.
Stand (stop, enough) – the player’s refusal of an additional card.
Stand-off (draw) – when the player’s and the dealer’s hand have the same value, the original bet is returned.
Stiff Card (malka, trifle, insignificant card) – the dealer’s open card, in denominations from 2 to 6.
Stiff Hand (insignificant hand) – a player’s hand, the sum of points of which is from 12 to 16.
Surrender (refusal to play, surrender, surrender, part-time care) – a player’s refusal to collect cards for a box and continue playing on it. It is only possible on the first two cards and is usually impossible with the dealer’s ace open. If you refuse to play on the box, half of the original bet on it is returned to the player, the other half goes to the casino bank.
Table Limits (table of minimums and maximums of a table) – a table indicating the maximum and minimum possible bets on each box of this gaming table.
How to win at blackjack
We’ll talk about the basic strategy of playing blackjack a little below, but for now we’ll tell you about what other ways to win in this most popular game exist. A very popular strategy is the classic doubling. Having lost the round, the player doubles the bet – and so on until the victory. And if you win, it immediately returns to the original bet amount. But here it is important to have a sufficient amount of money on hand, and also that there is no limit on the amount of the bet in the casino. The strategy is risky, but if these two conditions are met, it may well lead to a win.
You can also use the 1-3-2-6 approach to win when playing blackjack. It is based on an increase in rates with a successful outcome in the sequence indicated in the name. Having won the first time, you raise the rate threefold, then after the next win you will double it, and finally, after another luck – six times. But each failure should return the player to the original bet amount.
You can also play chase. Before the game, you set your own minimum and maximum bets. The minimum is better to take one percent of the bank, and the maximum is 10%. Start with a minimum. Having won, bet the maximum. And so on until the first defeat, then all over again.
Basic Blackjack strategy
The most common strategy for playing blackjack, which is chosen by many players who spend an hour or two in online casinos, is the usual adherence to the indicated rules of the game with an inevitable desire to avoid losing cards. In other words, a strategy is considered basic, in which a player who has received a dozen or more points in his hands passes so as not to risk running into ten points, because such an alignment is quite possible.
But there is a flip side to the coin. By using only a basic strategy when playing blackjack, you slightly lower your chances of winning. Let’s say a few percent. More sophisticated blackjack players, and especially gamblers, usually use different tactics. There are also types of basic strategy when playing 21×8 decks. There are four and six deck options. But again, the general provisions of the strategy are approximately the same as when applying the strategy for one deck. The chances of a player who has cards with 12-16 points in their hands with additional recruitment are clearly low. Only in five cases out of 13, an additional card taken will not lead to an enumeration, but will improve the situation.