If you are relatively new to live dealer blackjack, you may have heard about card counting. This guide is here to help you understand exactly what card counting is, and whether you should count cards when playing for real money at an online blackjack table.
What is Card Counting?
Let us start by thinking about the theory of card counting and how it works in its simplest form, rather than jump straight into card counting during a live blackjack game online. During a game of blackjack using a single deck of cards the house edge is virtually nil. This ensures that if you follow a strict strategy and are careful, over time, you will win and break even. With blackjack you will find that it is the only table game at a casino that provides players with such generous odds and it is for this reason that it is often the target of card counters.
Card counting put simple is a means of keeping a tally of cards as the dealer works his or her way through the deck. By keeping tally you can play with the same strategy, but have an idea of which cards are likely to come up in the next hand (for both you as the player, and the live blackjack dealer). Having that vital piece of information can help you to decide whether to bet small or to go large. If you have a higher number of low-numbered cards left in the deck you’re less likely to reach 21 points on the first two cards dealt and the dealer is less likely to go bust. Having higher-numbered cards predominantly left in the deck offers the likelihood of a more positive outcome for the reverse reasons. Counting cards won’t improve your odds by a massive amount, but over time it can make a difference.
Counting Cards in Practice
When it comes to playing for real money with live blackjack dealers, how does counting cards actually work? There are several card counting strategies in existence with the High-Low system the most well-known and easiest for beginners to pick up.
Let’s take a look at a few of the different card counting techniques and systems that are in practice the world over.
Hi-Lo – The most commonly used of the card counting systems Hi-Lo was invented by Harvey Dubner in 1963. If there are high-numbered cards left in the deck the player is in a good position. Using a simple calculation to determine the ratio of hi to low cards is a great process that allows you to keep track of your chances at any given moment during a live hand of blackjack.