Blackjack Odds (or House Advantage)

There are a lot of card and table games that you can play in casinos, both online and offline. One of them is blackjack. Unlike the other card games, blackjack is not just about chance. It's also about strategy. How you play your hands (or the cards with you) will determine if you're going to win the game or not.

The Objective of Blackjack

Influenced by the twenty-and-one of the French, blackjack is all about reaching a particular number: 21. However, since there is a slim chance that you can really obtain it, most of the casinos will make you the winner if the sum of the cards with you is closest to 21, but it should never be more than that. It sounds easy, right?

The answer is no. This is because you're going up against a dealer. It doesn't matter if you're playing online or land-based casinos, the rule stays the same. You will get busted or lose the game if the dealer happens to reach closest to 21 first before you do. You will also lose the game if both your hands are tied. For example, if both of you have a total hand of 17, then you lose the game, and the dealer wins what you have just bet.

Bringing on the House Advantage

The setup itself brings about a house advantage. Usually, the house advantage is at 5%. This means that if you don't play your cards well, around 5% of the initial bet will directly go to the dealer. Thus, besides making sure that your cards are very close to 21, you also have to ensure that you can lower down the house advantage to as low as 1% and make every game favorable to you.

How to Reduce the House Advantage

Blackjack then becomes a game of strategy. You have to keep in mind that the high-valued cards on the deck will make the player win while the smaller ones will be in favor of the player. (There are more chances of going over 21 when you have higher cards with you. In the end, you will lose the game.) Usually, the basic technique used is card counting. However, this one can be very complicated, and there are certain formulas that need to be followed. Using it is impractical, especially for a beginner. Moreover, card counting is not allowed in some casinos, and you may be banned from playing if you have been discovered. Meanwhile counting online is impossible since RNG blackjack games are dealt from a full virtual deck each deal, and live blackjack games are reshuffled mid shoe to prevent count penetration.

So how can you basically lower down the house advantage in blackjack? First, you may want to make sure that you can get cards that are 8 or even less than that. Avoid the ace as much as possible, as it can have a value of 11, depending on what other cards you're playing with.
You should also learn to stand when you're already hitting 17 or higher-but definitely never more than 21-with your hands. You may also want to double down when there are more tens on the deck, as it may mean that you have better chances of getting a very strong hand.