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Good, it does. Let's make sure it does for all the other outcomes. Looks good so far. All right, now, let's think about the American rules.
Blackjack is the same, all other things being equal in the US and Europe if the dealer's showing a two through nine because there's no chance a dealer can have a blackjack, so we can just refer to the European numbers for two through nine.
Let me add another row here for the total. For the 10 and the ace, there's no chance the dealer has a blackjack because he already peeked for it and again, we'll adjust for that later on when we figure out the house edge.
But if the dealer has a 10 showing and when he hits that, that could leave him with a 12 up through a 19, each with one chance and four chances of the 20, and we divide it by 12 because there's 12 ranks, not counting the ace.
Similar kind of logic with the ace, but there you can end up with a soft 12 up to a soft 20 and divide by 9, because there's only nine ranks that won't give them a blackjack.
There are all your dealer probabilities. Let's save this before I forget. We'll just call this "basic strategy. Let's make our next sheet called "stand.
Let's do everything by the possible dealer up cards. Let's do all the player sheets according to having anywhere from a hard four all the way to 31 and a soft 12 all the way to Let me make the screen a little bigger for you.
I hope that helps so you can see what I'm doing. All right. What if the dealer stands on a four against a two? The only way he's going to win is if the dealer busts.
His expected value is the probability of the dealer busting minus the probability of anything else happening.
So, he can expect to lose by standing on a four against a two of about That's the same number for standing on everything all the way through a 16 because a 16 is no better than a four or a zero.
Things start to get better with a 17 because now, a 17 is going to turn from a loss to a push, so the expected value there is the probability of the dealer busting minus the probability of an 18 through a We can ignore the dealer getting a 17 because that's going to result in a push with a player.
Eighteen, expected value is the probability of the bust or 17 minus the probability of a 19 to With a 19, expected value is the probability of a dealer having a bust 17 or 18 minus a 20 or With a 20, it's a bust through a 19 minus a 21 and with a 21, it's anything except another 21 which would be a push.
So, the expected value of a 17 against a two is a expected loss of about If the dealer gets to 22 or more, these loss's expected value is negative one.
So, let's copy and paste that all over through to an ace. Now, with the soft totals, it doesn't help the player if it's soft if he's just going to stand on it.
We can just refer to the hard totals. Soft 22 is the same thing as a soft 12 and expected value for standing. There's our expected values of if the player stands.
Let's talk about hitting next. You will be dealt cards and can now play Blackjack. Test Your Skills and Play Online!
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If you are new to video blackjack, the first thing that you want to do prior to sitting down at a machine is understand exactly what you and the electronic dealer are attempting to do.
You initially receive two cards, and you can be dealt as many additional cards as you would like. The goal is to get closer to 21 without going over than the dealer does.
All numeric cards are worth the number on them, all face cards are worth 10, and As can be worth either one or 11, whichever option gives you the highest total without exceeding The best possible hand is being dealt blackjack, which is an A combined with a 10 or a face card.
This two-hand combination also outranks somebody hitting 21 with three or more cards. Whether it is most likely a loser, a small winner, a moderate winner, or a jackpot winner has already been decided.
Slot players can do nothing to change the odds either for or against them. Some slot machines allow the player to hit a stop button that immediately stops the reels from spinning and show the result, but hitting that button makes no difference in the result of the spin.
Whatever was determined at the instant the spin started will still be the result. Unlike slot machines, video poker games allow players to have a say in the game they chose to play.
Like slot machines, randomness is also involved. But that is where the similarity with random slot machine play ends. The video poker player has total control over the initial five cards that have been dealt.
It is his or her choice what to do with those five cards. The decisions about whether to keep all of them, discard all of them, or anything in between is totally theirs.
It is actually totally yours. After all, you are the one reading and learning from this guide. You could choose to throw away the entire hand and hope to be dealt a royal flush.
You could also choose to hold just the ace and throw away the four 3s and, again, hope for a royal flush. With this hand it should be very obvious that you would make the most money by saving the four 3s and collecting the winnings for a four of a kind.
Here is another example that might not be quite as obvious. Assume you are dealt four cards of a royal flush in spades and an ace of diamonds.
In this case you have a high pair of aces as well as four cards of a royal flush. What do you save? Do you save the high pair for a sure win and a possible four of a kind?
Or would you rather take a shot at the royal flush? This is not quite as easy as the last hand. Here is another example along the same lines as the previous hand.
Assume you are dealt a flush in spades. Here is your hand: Ks Qs Js Ts 3s. While you have total control over the five cards that have been dealt, not every decision that you might make has the same impact.
To use an extreme example, let us assume you are dealt a hand containing four 3s and an ace. What would you do here?
Would you save the straight flush consisting of the 9 of spades through the king of spades? Or would you decide to save the four cards of a royal flush and once again hope for lightening to strike?
A straight flush pays very well, but a royal flush pays many times more. This is a truly difficult decision. Again, the choice is totally yours.
Do you save the flush for the sure win? Or would you rather save the four cards of a royal flush and hope to hit the jackpot?
Since a flush pays quite a bit more than the high pair that was in the previous example, the decision with this hand is even harder to make. It should be obvious that the proper play is to hold the two kings.
There is really nothing else worth saving in the hand. This tends to be the case for most of the hands that you are dealt.
Most video poker players make their decisions about what to hold and what to discard based on intuition or hunches.
In this hand: 4c 5c 6c 7d Ts. This type of video poker player bases every hold decision on what he or she feels is the best play.
Are there a lot of high pairs? How about straights — are they happening fairly frequently? Have there been streaks of full houses or flushes?
These players make their hold decisions based on how the cards have been flowing in the recent past. Holding cards based on what you feel is correct or holding based on the flow of the cards are both technically strategies.
But the video poker game manufacturers set up pay tables based on the math of the game so the casinos will be sure to make a profit from them.
Therefore in order for you to make the most of your video poker playing experience, you need to use a strategy that is based on the same math.
Playing hunches or streaks may work for a hand or two or possibly even a session or two , but far more often these tactics will not work.
In fact, by employing these types of playing strategies, you will end up giving the casino even more of your hard earned money than you need to.
Only by using mathematically derived video poker playing strategies will you get every cent you can from your video poker play over the long run.
Obviously you will not run across hands such as these very often, but they do demonstrate a point. That point — each hand that is dealt is a unique situation.
Some could argue that one of the downsides to video blackjack machines is loneliness. Because the game pits you one-on-one against the dealer, the "social" element of the traditional game is eliminated.
Many players cite this interactivity as one of the things they like best about blackjack. If you're one of these players, you may want to stick to the tables.