What’s the Best Blackjack Version to Play as a Live Dealer?

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Blackjack, like slots and poker, is a game offered by every casino worth joining. Whether you visit a Las Vegas casino or sign up to an online casino, you can be confident you’ll find the game. But which blackjack version should you play? 

First off, blackjack isn’t the easiest game to win. You need a few strategies and a bit of luck to beat the dealer. And if playing a live version of it, you must figure out how to outsmart your opponents. 

Because blackjack is available in many versions, it’s also important to specialize in one or a few variations. Choose one of these games:

  • Classic Blackjack

This is blackjack in its purest form. The goal is to beat the dealer by accruing cards whose total value is closest or equal to 21. You get two cards at the start of the game the same as the dealer. You can view one of the cards dealt to the dealer, which should help you strategize adequately.

Classic 21 is the most popular version of blackjack online. So, should you grasp the ins and outs of the game, you can play it comfortably against anyone.

 Speaking of playing the game against other players, you don’t need to visit a land-based casino. These days, you only need to join a good live blackjack casino. You stream the action through a web camera, which is how you are able to interact with fellow blackjack fans and human dealers. 

  • European Blackjack

European blackjack is one of the fastest-growing versions of the game. Some experts also believe it's the earliest version of blackjack. Nonetheless, it's a simple game played with 2-8 decks. Its objective is similar to that of classic 21: produce a hand whose value is closest to or equals 21.

The game holds two differences to classic 21. First off, your first two cards come both face down. Secondly, the dealer doesn't get his second card until you decide on what to do with your cards.

You could split aces or double down. But it's until you make that decision that the dealer gets his or her second card. Another exciting feature of this game is that you can win or lose the game before the dealer plays. 

In an example, let's say you get an ace card plus a 10-value card. Your hand will be 21, and as the rules say, you win automatically. On the other hand, if you make a move and bust; you lose straight away.

  • Atlantic City Blackjack

This blackjack version came out in 1976, several months after the US state of New Jersey licensed gambling. It’s still popular to date, including as a live dealer. Similar to most blackjack version, players get eight decks at the start. 

The dealer gets one face up and another face-down card. But then the plot thickens. Based on the game's rules, a dealer must stand on soft 17. A soft 17 for the uninitiated is a hand made up of an ace card plus a 6-value card. It could also be made by combining an ace plus two 3-value cards.

When a dealer stands on soft 17, the odds of winning that game shifts to your favour. That's because unlike the dealer, you have a chance to produce a hand with a value of 18-21.

  • Spanish 21

Spanish 21 is a blackjack game meant to help players win as much as possible. It uses 6-8 decks like most versions of the game. But instead of a 52-card deck, Spanish 21 features 48 cards in each deck. How’s that possible? 

Spanish 21 doesn't include 10-value cards. That doesn't help you as a player, obviously. But the game compensates its fewer cards with better rules. For instance, there’s nothing like “a push” in the game. If both you and the player produce a blackjack 21 hand, you win. 

Similar to European blackjack, a dealer must stand on soft 17. By contrast, you can either stand or hit. You can also surrender the two initial cards late into the game. That’s almost always illegal with other blackjack versions.

  • Blackjack Switch

Blackjack Switch shares something in common with Spanish 21: they both have extremely low house edges. First introduced in 2009, Switch is yet another game designed to increase a player’s odds of hitting 21 faster than the dealer. 

At the beginning of the game, a player receives two hands instead of one. That means for the entire game; you'll be playing two hands with two chances of producing two blackjack hands. What's more, you can exchange the top cards from either hand before the game begins.

In an example, let's say you get one hand of ace and 5 and another consisting of 10 and 2. You can join up the 10 value card with the ace to get a straight blackjack hand. 

With a house edge of 0.5%, blackjack switch is worth every player’s attention. However, you might not love its 1:1 payout rate or the fact that a dealer’s 22-hand is considered a push instead of a loss.

  • Vegas Strip Blackjack

Vegas Strip is named after the 6km stretch where most Las Vegas casinos lie. It’s a popular game in brick and mortar casinos. And ever since Microgaming adopted it for online players, it's become quite popular in online casinos.

Similar to classic 21, the objective of completing Vegas strip to get a hand whose value is closest to or equals 21. If you produce a hand valued at 22 or a higher value; you bust. For the most part, this game shares similar rules to the classic game. The only difference is that the dealer must stand if they hit a soft 17. 

  • Pontoon

Pontoon is regularly referred to as the British version of blackjack because of its popularity in the UK. Its distinguishing features include its unique terms like 'twist' for hit and 'stick for' stand. It also holds unique rules like allowing players to hit even after doubling down.

It's worth noting; however, there's also a Malaysian version of Pontoon. If you decide to play the game; seek clarification which version is offered.

To Conclude

Blackjack comes in many forms. You can choose the classic version or try your luck with its variants. Regardless, you'll find your favourite blackjack version in all casinos with a live dealer section.

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