Why High-count Decks Are a Dealer’s Greatest Nightmare¬†

Kevin Mackoy
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Which Path Will You Take?

This is the inevitable question that occurs after every game of blackjack. You may also be able to split, double down, or even surrender if these options are available; but, the long and short of it is that you must either accept another card to beat the dealer or keep what you have and hope that they go bust.

The optimal choice is usually found by applying fundamental strategy, which is looking for the best possible move in each scenario to reduce the house’s advantage to the smallest possible level. Using the fundamental strategy, you can reduce the house’s advantage over you to as little as 0.75 percent if the regulations are set up appropriately.

However, if you are serious about advantage play, you must first understand card counting and the significant advantages that come from possessing a high-count deck. You won’t be able to take advantage of the circumstance if you don’t. Although card counting has various advantages, the most significant benefits come from using a deck with a high count.

What exactly is the game of card counting?

But, before we go any further, what exactly is card counting? The basic concept was developed around the year 1962 by Edward Thorp and aims to answer the question of whether or not it is possible to get an advantage in the game of blackjack by counting the cards delivered. Unsurprisingly, the correct answer was yes.

Thorp observed that by keeping note of how many cards of a specific value were dealt, you could predict which card would be dealt next with a high degree of accuracy and therefore enhance your bets. In most circumstances, the cards with a ten-point value are the ones to look for. Throughout history, casinos have devised a wide range of countermeasures to minimize the utility of the card counting approach. The most common approach involves employing multiple decks at once and continually shuffling them so that the counter is never sure where they are in the deck’s progression.

Card counting is a fully legal activity, regardless of how casinos manage it. However, if you do decide to use it, you should be aware that the casino has the right to eject you out if they become suspicious of your activity.

How Does It Work?

Card counting is a technique in which players attempt to predict the outcome of a hand by assigning a value to each card in the deck and keeping track of which cards have been played thus far. The Hi-Lo system, which maintains track of card values greater than 10 and less than 6, is by far the most common. If you get a number greater than 10, you lose one point from the total, and if you get a number less than 6, you gain one point.

This means that your deck will have a positive count after a few hands with low cards. This means that there will be more cards in the 7 to the ace range, giving you a better chance of landing a solid opening hand. Your deck will have a positive count after a few hands with low cards. If the deck has a negative count, you should stay away from the table as much as possible since you will get worse hands and have a higher probability of losing your whole investment. Notably, if you play blackjack online, you will be unable to count cards since you will not be able to determine when the decks are shuffled. This precludes the use of card counting methods. Unless, of course, the casino games app you’re playing offers a live blackjack variant. So, what is the significance of having a high count?

To the advantage of the participants

The biggest important advantage is that your starting hands will get substantially stronger. If you use the basic strategy and have some concept of what you’re going to get, you’ll be able to place larger bets and so obtain a larger payout.

You’ll have a better idea of what to expect when you emerge from the deck, which will raise your confidence and allow you to perform more sophisticated plays like splitting and double down. This helps you regain whatever points you may have lost as the game proceeded and the count climbed.

If the deck contains a considerable balance of 10s and aces, you are more likely to see a blackjack, and the higher pay-out of 3:2 will help to compensate for any losses you may have incurred along the way.

However, despite the numerous possible benefits, there is also the chance of certain hazards. If you are dealt a difficult 12 (for example, a nine and a three), it is riskier to hit since you are more likely to go bust. However, keeping in mind that all of the variables that give you advantage can severely limit the dealer, even this can be viewed as an advantage if you play the game correctly.

Dealers are at a disadvantage

If a deck has a high count, the dealer will have a few problems to deal with, which the astute gambler can easily exploit to make extra money.

First and foremost, consider the difficulties that a hard 12 presents to a player. You won’t be able to get rid of the hand, and you’ll be hesitant to play it using the traditional strategy due to the count, but you do have the option to stand. If the dealer has a hard 12, they must hit since they must go to 17 at practically every table. This means they have no choice except to strike. It’s vital to know whether it’s a hard or soft 17, but the number won’t change regardless of the answer.

Furthermore, with a high-count deck, a player has a better chance of comprehending the card that the dealer is holding face down. If they are showing a six and have a face-down card, even a hard 12 should be safe to hold because it is quite likely that they will go broke in this round of play if they have both of those cards.