Well, ladies and gentlemen, if you thought that blackjack is a game of pure chance, you might want to sit down and put your thinking cap on. It’s time we deal with the hand we’ve been dealt and delve into the mysterious world of blackjack strategy at Fair Go casino. Let’s address the burning question: “Does your game plan really influence your long-term winnings?”
Strategy and Blackjack: an Indissoluble Marriage
If you’re an old hat at blackjack, you’ll know that strategy is key. Think of it like playing chess. Every move counts and a poor choice can be a real can of worms, leading to a swift checkmate.
Basic strategy vs no strategy
To illustrate this point, let’s consider the infamous ‘Basic Strategy‘ for blackjack. Cooked up by statisticians and mathematicians during the mid-20th century, this strategy utilizes probability to determine the optimal move based on the player’s hand and the dealer’s visible card. Following this strategy religiously can shrink the house edge to a measly 0.5%.
On the flip side, playing blackjack with no strategy is akin to driving blindfolded – it’s just a crapshoot. The house edge skyrockets to a staggering 2% or even higher draining your chips faster than a bathtub losing its water.
House edge based on the use of strategy
|Average House Edge
|2%, risky but rewarding
|2%, less risky than Martingale
|1-3-2-6 Betting System
|2%, more balanced
|up to 2% edge over house, very complex
Card Counting: A Sneaky Tactic?
When it comes to boosting your long-term winnings, no conversation would be complete without a nudge and a wink towards card counting. Made famous by the MIT Blackjack Team, this technique involves tracking the ratio of high to low cards left in the deck, giving you a leg up on when to bet big.
Now, you might say, “Wait a minute! I’m playing online blackjack. This trick doesn’t hold water in the digital arena, does it?”
You’re not entirely off the mark, but card counting can still be beneficial in live dealer blackjack games online. This might not be a silver bullet, but it can give you a slight edge and put a few extra chips in your pocket over time.
For the purpose of this analysis, let’s consider the five popular blackjack strategies: Basic Strategy, Martingale Strategy, Paroli Strategy, 1-3-2-6 Betting System, and Card Counting.
The outcomes derived below are based on the concept of “the longer you play, the closer your results will get to the statistical expectation”. However, bear in mind that individual results can still vary due to the inherent volatility and unpredictability of any casino game.
Martingale Strategy. This strategy involves doubling your bet after every loss. While you may see a higher number of short-term winnings, the Martingale strategy is a high-risk approach and can lead to substantial losses over an extended period of play.
The most important pitfall is that a series of losses will cause you to place incredibly large bets. It’s unlikely that your bankroll will handle such bets, and, more importantly, not every casino will allow you to make them, as many have a maximum bet limit.
As you can see, your winnings are always negligible compared to your maximum bet sizes in the long run.
In other words, if you want to have just a few games or play till you win, this strategy will work but will only award you with the sum of your initial bet. Considering the house edge you will likely be in red.
Paroli Strategy. This is the opposite of Martingale, where you double your bet after each win. Paroli has a lower risk compared to Martingale, but the winnings over time would generally follow a staircase pattern, indicating periods of stability followed by significant losses.
As you can see, you’ll stay in red with the Paroli system unless you quit during the winning streak. In the long run, this strategy won’t let you win a lot considering the house edge.
1-3-2-6 Betting System. This strategy involves adjusting your bet based on the outcome of the previous hand. Over the long run, you might experience moderate winnings, but there can be considerable ups and downs along the way. The strat suits the long game sessions pretty well.
It’s a balanced system that doesn’t require you to make cosmic bets, and it can even lead you to meaningful wins if you reach a winning streak of 4 in a row. But in the long run, you’ll still be at a disadvantage because it doesn’t increase your chances of winning, while the house edge remains.
Despite betting systems that don’t affect your chances of winning in any way, game strategies have their impact on the outcome.
Basic Strategy. As previously mentioned, by using the Basic Strategy, you can shrink the house edge to about 0.5%. This strategy has nothing to do with the betting system, so you will not see huge jumps on the chart, but rather a moderate decline when it comes to a large number of games.
By combining it with one of the betting systems, you can achieve an increase in short-term spikes in winnings. However, since the house edge is still positive, over the long term you can expect a fairly linear growth of losses.
Charts for basic strategy can guide you on the best actions based on mathematical probabilities.
Card Counting. If you’re playing a live dealer blackjack game where the deck is not reshuffled after each hand, card counting could prove to be a profitable strategy. However, over a significant period, your winnings would show a slow and steady rise, punctuated by occasional larger gains.
If you manage to perfectly count cards in blackjack, it will tip the scales in your favor, and in the long run, you’ll come out a winner.
By adding a flexible betting strategy to your card-counting game strategy, you can achieve significant profits.
Remember that this analysis does not consider elements of luck, or variations in betting amounts, while actual player decisions can greatly influence the results.
In the game of online blackjack, strategy is not just a nice-to-have, but rather, the ace up your sleeve. Using an optimized strategy, like the Basic Strategy, can drastically decrease the house edge and even put the odds in your favor over the long run. Conversely, throwing caution to the wind and relying purely on Lady Luck can turn your online blackjack experience into a bumpy ride.
The most profitable strategy for the long run, card counting, may not always be a feasible online strategy, yet it still could provide an added advantage in live dealer games.
In the end, if you want to rake in the dough in online blackjack, you’ve got to play your cards right. Strategize, adapt, and remember – blackjack, like life, isn’t always about getting dealt the right.