Blackjack is arguably one of the most popular card games in the past couple of decades. While poker has largely gone mainstream, it still loses out to the worldwide appeal of Blackjack and its variations. A huge contributor to the game’s popularity is the fact that it’s relatively easy to learn and difficult to be good at. Anybody can pick up on Blackjack’s core concepts but making money from playing the game will require a lot more time and practice to pull off. So if you want to get good at the game, how should you go about it?
Understanding Blackjack’s core concepts
Perhaps the first step to getting good at Blackjack is understanding its core mechanics. Unlike poker, players compete against a dealer and not against each other. In a standard game, the dealer hands out 2 cards (from a deck of 52) to players (and to himself). For the players, the objective of the game is to beat the dealer by getting a hand with a card score that’s higher than that of the dealer’s but lesser than or equal to 21. Of course, scores are assigned to each card similar to poker (the difference being that aces can have a score of 11 or 1 depending on the player’s hand).
Card counting and practice
Once they’ve familiarized themselves with Blackjack’s concepts, the next step for players is to go into card counting. Basically, this is a strategy that players can use to determine whether the hand that they’ll be dealt with next is advantageous to them or the dealer. Depending on the Blackjack variation, there are a number of card counting systems that players can implement or advocate. Fyi one of the best blackjack books for mastering the game is Blackjack For Blood by Bryce Carlson.
Regardless of the system though, what’s important is for players to religiously practice them. This is essentially when most players give up. Before online and live casinos, players had to either practice by themselves (as dealer and player/s) or go to land based casino and get into one of the blackjack tables there. While they could improve by practicing alone, players would tend to learn more if they were in an actual game. The problem with this is that it would take time and money for player to get to a land-based casino just to work on their card counting skills. Thankfully, advances in the internet in the last decade or two has allowed players to have access to a casino’s services at the comforts of their own homes. A lot of online casino brands have live dealer sections and live casino promotions that players can now take advantage of.
Choosing a live casino for blackjack practice
Whereas the dilemma before was to practice alone or to go to a land-based casino, players now will only need to consider which online casino they’ll need to register with. To sweeten the deal for players, some brands offer live casino promotions while others offer more variety with their live dealer titles. For players who are already at the point where they’d like to practice, these three online casino brands could be great places to start:
The LeoVegas brand has been around for some time and has gotten a lot of recommendations for independent casino gaming platforms. Other than the myriad of live dealer titles it offers, what should get players’ attentions is its live casino promotions. Players who register for the first time will get to enjoy a 100% match bonus that can go up to £250. With double the amount they deposited, players can practice longer, and consequently get to learn faster.
One of the top online casino, sportsbook, and poker brands in the industry, Unibet arguably has the most reasonable live casino promotions of any brand in this list. More importantly for Blackjack players, the live casino section has a welcome bonus package that they can take advantage of to get more value for their money. By registering, players will get a 200% match bonus that can go up to £200 (usable on Live Casino and slot titles) to go along with 10 free spins for their initial deposit. Players who want to brush up on their card counting skills can then do so by joining NetEnt or Evolution Gaming’s Live Blackjack Lobbies.
If money is not an issue for them then players who want to get good at Blackjack might want to give Genting Casino and its live casino promotions a try. The Genting Casino platform connects players to a number of land-based casinos owned by the Genting Group. Players who register with the brand will get to enjoy a welcome bonus package that covers their first set of deposits. For the initial deposit, the brand will give players a 100% match bonus that can go up to a whopping £1500. As if this wasn’t enough, players can get a 50% match bonus that can go as high as £1000.
Regardless of the brand they choose to register with, it’s important that players still exercise some restraint with their wagers. More importantly, players should always brush up on their knowledge and not just rely on one reference for the system that they may be using. Sites like Wizard of Odds and The Pogg have guides, odds, strategies, and even game calculators for Blackjack (as well as a variety of other card games) that players can refer to if they want to take their skills to the next level.