How To Play BlackJack

Blackjack is one of the most popular games in the casino. It may seem like a simple game on the surface, but you will need great skills and instincts if you want to be a good player. Unlike other casino games, blackjack allows players to dictate and alter the course of the game by their actions, and it is certainly a very exciting game for those who wish to rely on skills more than chance.

The rules of the game are quite simple. Players at the table, including the dealer, are given two cards each. Usually, both the players’ cards are dealt face up, while the dealer has one card showing and another facing down. Cards 2 to 10 are worth exactly their face values while Jacks, Kings and Queens are valued at 10. An Ace can be either 1 or 11, depending on the other cards in the hand. To win the game, the total value of your cards must be higher than the dealer’s hand without exceeding 21. After the initial cards are dealt, the game begins with the player to the left of the dealer, and it proceeds clockwise around the table.

There are a few actions available to you in a blackjack game. Ordinarily, you just have to decide whether to “hit” or “stand”, but if you have a certain combination of cards that allows for “double down” or “split”, you may do so as well.

Hit and Stand

By hitting, you are asking for one more card to raise the combined value of your hand. If you think you have a winning hand, you can simply choose to stand and pass the turn to the next player. If you call for another card and the total value of your hand exceeds 21, it means that you “bust”, and the dealer will take your money immediately. The dealer has to reach a minimum total value of 17 to get a valid hand, and if he busts in the process of trying to do so, all the players that are still in the game will be paid even money. In the event that you get an Ace along with a Face card or a ten for your first two cards, you have a Blackjack, and this pays 1.5 times the amount you bet.

Double Down

If your first two cards have a total value of 10 or 11, it is a good opportunity to “double down”. While some casinos only accept double downs on 10 and 11, other casinos will let you double on any two cards. To double down, you have to place an additional bet that equals your initial wager. With that, you will be given only one card, and you have to stand on that whatever the outcome is.


If your first two cards are of the same value, you can choose to “split” them into two separate hands. You are required to come up with another wager of the same amount as your first bet to play the split hands.

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