Blackjack Cheat Sheet
It’s not a secret that the most successful players know how to act on every single hand. They know blackjack basic strategy by heart and, of course, some advanced tricks too. Beginners would have to spend months or even years to achieve such level. So, how to take good decisions without prior knowledge or experience? What blackjack strategy should you follow to master all the betting moves? The first step is to start with our blackjack cheat sheet.
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Each of the casino games, except for table poker, is designed to bring losses to a player in the long term. This is gambling - you want to play, you have to pay the tax. The same thing happens at blackjack. That’s why people search for different solutions to decrease the house edge. OddsBusters know about it and that’s why we prepared a powerful tool necessary for everyone who plans to spend some time playing against dealer.
Warning! The strategy is crucial
Let me introduce you to blackjack cheat sheet - something as important to a player as a wrench to a plumber. Literally. You’ll use it as a tool to improve your game, maximize chances for earning money and minimize the house edge.
There are 2 blackjack strategy sheet below. What are the differences? One presents the circumstances when the dealer stands on soft 17, and the other when the dealer hits. What does it mean and what is “soft hand”?
The hand is soft when it contains an ace and when you can’t bust after draw. Because the ace can be counted as 1 or 11, the total value of your hand can’t exceed 21. For example, if you have A and 6, it can be 17 or 7. We call the hand “soft 17”. This great attribute allows you to draw freely, without a risk of breaking. Even if another high card comes, you are safe and you’ll never lose by busting. All the soft combinations possible:
A2 - 13 (13 or 3)
A3 - 14 (14 or 4)
A4 - 15 (15 or 5)
A5 - 16 (16 or 6)
A6 - 17 (17 or 7)
A7 - 18 (18 or 8)
A8 - 19 (19 or 9) - almost always stand
A9 - 20 (20 or 10) - always stand!
And obviously any ace with 10 or a face card makes unbeatable blackjack.
Hard hand (total) is the combination of any two cards excluding ace. In this case busting is possible after another card draw. The examples of hard totals are as follows : 9-7 (hard 16), 8-6 (hard 14) or 10-7 (hard 17). If a high card comes in this situation, there is a great chance to break. So drawing is a definitely more risky when your hand is hard.
Another cheat sheet is perfect for 4-8 deck blackjack game and the dealer hits on soft 17:
How to read the blackjack strategy card above? Let’s go through a quick tutorial and the crucial blackjack phrases.
Hit - to hit means to draw another card. You take your decision after the dealer shows his card.
Stand - your hand is mathematically good enough to keep it. Stand and count for positive results ($).
Double down - you can increase your initial wager twice if it’s allowed (we recommend choosing these variants of blackjack which allow players doubling down). The most common play here is when you hold hard 10 (except for situations when the dealer holds ten or an ace) or hard 11, double down if possible, otherwise hit. You should play the same way if you have soft 13-17 and the dealer shows 5 or 6. But not only then. To explore all the intriguing things about the game, you should definitely spend some time and analyze the charts above.
Learn by analyzing - blackjack tips
You can analyze these blackjack cheat sheet and draw conclusions. For example, you may notice that at the most cases you shouldn’t split pocket pairs lower than 88 if the dealer shows 8 or higher. There is also one commonly-known tip: never split tens (TT). This hand is just too strong (total: 20). Never split it, better keep it and grab the money.
Another interesting point is to always split aces and almost always split 88s. The reason for splitting aces is quite straightforward. A total value of AA is 12, which is not too good. But 2 aces separately may bring you a good profit - you’ve got 2 soft hands now and great probability to win double.
A magic pair of 88s is a bit more tricky. Here the problem is slightly different, because the hard total of two eights is 16, which is considered as the worst total in blackjack. There are hardly any chances to win naturally and high chances to bust if you decide to draw. After splitting you have chances to hit 9 or 10 and win with 17 or 18, which is obviously better than 16. There is one exception: if the dealer holds an ace, your 88 is not in good shape at all. You should surrender if possible, otherwise hit.
Is it enough to master the game?
To become a stronger player, you should learn more. All the necessary strategy guide you can find on OddsBusters.com. The complete blackjack basic knowledge includes:
How much can you earn using blackjack cheat sheet?
Well, you should ask this question yourself. Every time you take decision at the blackjack table, it may bring you dollars or losses. In the long term, even 0,5% become a big number, sometimes determining its advantage and profitability. By using the optimized blackjack strategy, you accumulate these little advantages and simply make money. How much you will earn depends on how much you play blackjack and what stakes you play.
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