Blackjack advanced strategy – card counting




We should point out at the outset, that in the case of online gambling, each new game is dealt from a shuffled full deck, so card counting is not possible.  However, I’m sure you are interested in how the pros beat the casinos – so here’s a brief summary…


In order to hold a long term advantage over a casino in a given game, you need to know at which points in that game you hold an edge, so that you can bet more, and at which points in the game the casino holds an edge, so you can bet less.  Keeping track of cards already dealt in blackjack (ie card counting), lets you do this, giving you a long term advantage over the casino.  And don’t feel daunted, its really quite simple.


To start with, you must understand that the probability of winning a hand in blackjack is very dependent upon the mix of cards remaining to be dealt. If this mix happens to contain an abundance of large cards like 10’s, picture cards and aces, then your chances of winning improve. On the other hand, if the mix of unplayed cards contain an abundance of small cards like 2 though 6’s, then the odds shift in favour of the dealer.


Reasons for this are as follows:


When you have a mix of unplayed cards that contain an abundance of large cards there will be more blackjacks dealt – and yes the dealer has just as much chance of getting a blackjack as a player, but the player gets paid a bonus on a blackjack hand (3 to 2 payoff).


When the dealer has a stiff hand (like 12 to 16) he must draw. If the deck is rich in large cards, the dealer will most likely bust. Unlike the dealer, the player does not have to draw on a stiff hand from a deck rich in large cards.


Players will profit more when doubling down in a mix rich in large cards. Likewise if a player has a pair, he can split the pair into two hands, a sometimes lucrative play when the dealer shows a weak face card. The dealer on the other hand will usually make good when he holds a stiff hand and draws from a mix of cards containing an abundance of small cards.


So the key is to know whether the remaining Slot Gacor cards are large card or small card rich.  How is this done? You must keep track of the cards as they are played because with this information you can deduce whether the unplayed cards are rich in small or large cards.


Tracking the cards is simple – each is assigned a tag which you then add as each card is dealt. The dealer favourable small cards – 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 – have a tag of +1 (plus one). The player favourable large cards – 10, J, Q, K Ace- have a tag of -1 (minus one). The remaining cards – 7, 8, 9 – have a tag of 0.


So your count after the shuffle, and before the first deal is 0 (this indicates an equal number of large and small cards). As the first round of play begins and cards are dealt, you must add the tags of each card. If the first dealt player shows a 4 and 6 your count is +2 (sum of +1 tag for the 4 and +1 tag for the 6). Continue to add the card tags for every card that you see. If it’s a small card you increase you count by 1. If it’s a large card you decrease your count by 1. At the end of the first round your count will be either a plus or negative number. If your count is positive it means that there were a lot more small cards than large cards played in the previous round. That means the reverse must be true for the unplayed cards – namely the unplayed cards contain a slight excess of large cards over small cards. This is precisely the point at which the edge swings to the player on the next hand and therefore the player should make a larger bet. Likewise when the count is negative, the edge is with the

dealer and the player should bet the minimum.


Simple huh!


Now before you hit the tables, you should probably practice your counting, so deal yourself a deck and keep count as you go.  If your running count is 0 after dealing the last card of the deck then you were spot on.  You should also practice counting groups of dealt cards – and a handy tip, when a group of cards is dealt, simply cancel out all small/large pairs and count only the unpaired cards.


Now that you know how to count cards, all you need to know is how to bet based on the count.  In simple terms, you play basic strategy and up the ante when the count is positive, and lower your bets when the count is negative.