The Rules of Blackjack

Hi there! You’re watching Rules of Blackjack, by Crazy Vegas Casino. In this video, we’re going to look at the rules of Blackjack. The object of the game is for the player is to draw cards totaling closer to 21 than the dealer’s cards, all without going over 21. Blackjack is played with one or more standard 52-card decks. These days, most games use four, six, or eight decks.

These decks are then shuffled and placed in a card holder called a shoe, from which the dealer can slide out one card at a time. Each card denomination is assigned a point value. Cards 2 through 10 are worth their face value, face cards (kings, queens, and jacks) are each worth 10, and aces may be used as either 1 or 11. The best total of all is a two-card 21, or a ‘Blackjack’!

Blackjack pays 3-2: that means that a two-card 21 on a \$5 bet will win \$7.50. However, if the dealer also has a two-card 21, the hand pushes, or ties, and you get your original bet back. On the other hand, if the dealer goes on to draw 21 in three or more cards, your Blackjack is still a winner with its 3-2 payoff! How do you play the game?

Play begins when you place a bet in the betting square on the table directly in front of you. After all bets have been placed, each player and the dealer are given two cards. A player’s cards are both dealt face up. In the dealer’s case, only one of their cards is dealt face up, and the other face down. When the dealer’s up card is an ace, players generally have the option to take Insurance, which is a side bet restricted to half of the original bet. Insurance pays at 2:1 if the dealer does hit Blackjack.

If the dealer has a ten or an ace showing, then he will peek at his face down card to see if he has a Blackjack. If he does, then he will turn it over immediately. If the dealer does have a Blackjack, then all hands will lose, unless a player also has a Blackjack, which will result in a push.

Then, each player in turn decides how to play out their hands, usually one of five options – hit, stand, split, double or surrender. Hit: Take another card from the dealer. Stand: Take no more cards, also known as “stand pat”, “stick”, or “stay”.

Double down: Players are allowed to double their initial bet, but then receive only one more card. Hitting a double down is not permitted. The double down bet is placed in the betting box next to the original bet. Split (only available as the first decision of a hand): If the first two cards have the same value, the player can split them into two hands, by moving a second bet equal to the first into an area outside the betting box. The dealer separates the two cards and draws a card to each.

The player then plays out the two hands. Doubling and further splitting may be restricted depending on the game, and Blackjacks after a split are seen as non-blackjack 21. Hitting split aces is usually not allowed. Surrender (only available as first decision of a hand): Some games offer the option to “surrender”, directly after the dealer has checked for Blackjack. When the player surrenders, the house takes half the player’s bet and returns the other half to the player, which ends the players hand. Once all players have finished, the dealer plays according to set rules: in Blackjack, the play is more restrictive for the dealer.

The dealer must draw more cards to any total of 16 or less and must stand on any total of 17 or more. In some casinos, the dealer will also draw to “soft” 17: this means that the total includes an ace or aces that add up to 17. And those are the rules of Blackjack. Pretty straight-forward, right?

Keep in mind that some of these rules will have variations depending on the game that you are playing – and don’t forget to practice playing the rules through for yourself, to get a good feel for the game. Thanks for watching and we’ll see you next time, when we’ll be looking at Blackjack Strategy.

Jerry Steeves