Blackjack is one of the world’s most popular casino games. At online casinos, you will generally find a huge variety of blackjack games on offer, with options that include several tables with different limits, rule variations, and themes based on new concepts—and in some cases, progressive jackpots.
In this quick guide, we are going to provide you with a brief introduction to online blackjack so that you can go into the game with some knowledge and fare better than if you played blind. Many of you may have played blackjack casually at home before. As you may think, the goal of blackjack is to get as close to 21 as possible without going over. This isn’t entirely true, though; the goal is to beat the dealer.
To beat the dealer, the golden rule is not to bust—this is when your cards go over 21. In blackjack, the player wins if the dealer busts or if the player has a higher total than the dealer.
Therefore, in blackjack it is simply you vs the dealer, even if there are other players at the table. Somebody else winning or losing has no impact on your chances… this is key to know if you plan on playing online blackjack at a live casino.
When the game starts, you will be dealt two cards face up. The dealer will be dealt one card face up and one card face down. Any card with a picture is worth 10 points, other cards are worth two to nine depending on what number is on the card. An Ace can be either one or 11 points.
Once you have your cards, you have the following options:
As you can see, the game is pretty straight forward. You can continue to ‘Hit’ until you either reach 21 or until you go bust.
A final and rarely used option is to ‘surrender’. This is where the player will give up immediately after seeing their initial two cards. When a player surrenders, they receive half of their stake back
When the players have finished making their decisions, the dealer will now reveal their hole card (the one that is face-down). If the dealer has 16 or less, they will draw another card and will stand if the total is 17 or more. If the dealer goes over 21, they will bust and any player still in the hand will win.
If the dealer doesn’t bust, the higher total between the player and the dealer will win. If both the dealer and the player have the same total, the hand is a push and the stake will be returned to the player.
Blackjack may seem like a complicated game to the uninitiated, however, it is conceptually simple. Once you have played a few games through, you will start to get a hang of it. It is simply a case of you vs the dealer—forget about the other players—in an attempt to not exceed 21 with your cards. That’s it.
There are a huge number of online casinos that offer blackjack. In fact, most, if not all, of them do. This is because it is a hugely popular casino game that is one of the classics. Many casinos will even offer a live version of blackjack where real, professional croupiers are playing against you.
Finding the right casino to play online blackjack is your biggest challenge. Because virtually every casino offers online blackjack, you are spoilt for choice and, as a new player, you may find it difficult to discern between good and bad.
We recommend choosing a recognisable brand name until you grow comfortable with not only online blackjack but online casinos in general. Only once you become an experienced player will you be able to make the best and most informed choices.