Blackjack is one of the best games to play at an online casino, thanks to the huge rewards it offers, entertainment, and, more importantly, its simplicity. With so many online casinos in NZ now offering blackjack games, it is hard to find the perfect casino site for all of your needs.
Fortunately, the team at CasinoCrawlers has created this blackjack guide to answer all your questions about the game and help you find the best blackjack casinos. Also contained in this guide are all the tools you’ll need to succeed at playing both free blackjack and real money blackjack games.
Stick around and find out everything you need to know!
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The origin of blackjack is relatively unknown. Some people believe that blackjack originated in China, while others think it originated in Spain during the 17th century. However, most researchers believe the game was most likely first played in France around 1700. According to these experts, the cards were called “Vingt-et-Un” or “Twenty-one” in English. It is believed that these cards bore a resemblance to Chemin de Fer, the popular card game of the time.
The game’s rules back then are no longer what they are today, as there have been some changes along the way. During the game’s early days, players were not allowed to double, and a round of betting took place between each of the cards dealt. But all that has changed now.
Blackjack is a straightforward game, and single or multiple players can compete against the croupier. There are a few possible outcomes in Blackjack:
The player who defeats the dealer will win double the amount of the dealer’s bet (1:1). Whoever hits blackjack (the value of 21) will win a payout of 3:2 of the original bet.
A player is given two cards at the start of a blackjack round and can make one of the following moves:
The game of online blackjack is so interesting because it has simple rules. However, there are different game variations, meaning the rules can vary from one casino to the next. For instance, one casino may use eight decks, while another may use four. A particular casino may require the dealer to stand on soft 17, while the dealer may have to hit at another.
Online blackjack has many variants, some of which go by the names of where they are played. The most famous blackjack games include Vegas Strip Blackjack, European Blackjack, and Atlantic City Blackjack. Other blackjack variants are Blackjack Double Exposure, Blackjack Switch, Progressive Blackjack, Perfect Pairs, and many more.
Below are some of the most common blackjack rule variations that you’ll come across.
A surrender is when a player forfeits their hand after a deal. The price for doing this is half of their stake. Players can only surrender in a few situations, but doing so can be advantageous.
A resplit is when a player splits a card that has been split before, and you can usually split a minimum of three times. However, it is not allowed in some blackjack variants. If a resplit is not allowed, the house edge is increased by around 0.1%.
This is when a blackjack player is dealt a pair of cards and splits to get a good hand. Doubling after split is accepted in some games but not permitted in others. Players who double after splitting see it as an advantage, but if it isn’t successful, the house edge is increased by around 0.15%.
An early surrender occurs when a player gives up their hand the instant that cards are dealt but before the dealer checks for a natural blackjack. The player will forfeit half their original wager in an early surrender.
These are odds casinos use to pay players. If you have a winning blackjack hand, you will receive $6 as payment for every $5 you bet, which is 1.2:1 odds.
You can have up to 8 decks in multi-deck blackjack. You can double down on 8 in a single deck if the dealer shows a 5 or 6. The dealer will have a harder time making a winning total with such a low card.
It is easy to work out the value of the cards dealt to you. Regardless of the card suits you hold, the most critical factor is the value. Here is a breakdown of blackjack card values:
Online blackjack is popular because anyone can quickly learn how to play it. By using a basic blackjack strategy, a player will have a better chance of winning.
The aim of the game is to receive cards and beat the dealer by getting as close to 21 as possible without going over the number. You place a bet before receiving your first two cards, and afterwards, you can ask for an additional card or “stand” if you choose not to continue. The best strategies for blackjack games are explained below:
This is a common strategy used in online blackjack. Unlike what most players believe, standing on soft 17 is more advantageous for the player than when the dealer hits on soft 17. This is because the dealer has two opportunities to make a stiff hand of 17 or better. The dealer’s average hand amount is about 18.5, so when a dealer stands on 17, it’s good news for the player.
When a dealer hits on soft 17, the player can double down on an 11 if the dealer shows an ace. Also, if the dealer has a 6 and you have a soft 19, you should double down. Lastly, if the dealer has a 2, you will double down on a soft 18.
Something else you can do to improve your blackjack strategy is to play free games first. Most blackjack sites offer demo games that allow you to play a real blackjack game without risking any money. By using these games, you can practice, learn the rules, and become skilled at blackjack.
When playing online blackjack on your mobile device or laptop, you may have very little use for the game’s specific terms. But when you play with other players in a brick-and-mortar casino, having a good knowledge of blackjack terms is essential. It is not a bad idea for players to learn these terms, whether they are playing from home or in a local casino. For this reason, we’ve compiled some common blackjack terms below.
This is when you request another card from the dealer after receiving your two original cards.
This is when a player does not want to collect any more cards. That is, the player already has a total of 19 with their two cards and is trying to avoid going over 21.
If you think that receiving an extra card will help you beat the dealer, you are free to double your initial bet and draw one card. Double down allows you to bet of your original amount again.
When a player receives two great opening cards, they are allowed to split the cards and have two active hands.
Some blackjack variations allow players to surrender their hand, and only half of their stake will be returned to them. Surrender means you forfeit half of your bet if you believe that you can’t defeat the dealer.
If a dealer starts the hand with an ace, you can purchase insurance for half of your total original wager. This protects you from the level of loss that would typically occur if the dealer gets blackjack.
Bust means that a player has run out of money by exceeding 21. A player can also go bust by standing on less than 21, but the dealer's total card value is higher than yours and less than 21.
A push is when a player ties with the dealer, a situation where the player is neither the winner or loser.
Blackjack has a lot of variants. Some are only available in certain countries, and you can only find others online at blackjack sites. The following are some of the popular variants of blackjack you can play.
This variant is a multi-hand blackjack that requires players to play two hands. This means the player must place two stakes that are equal at the beginning of each round.
This is a blackjack variant that you can play in a live casino. It features a real blackjack table and real decks of cards shuffled and dealt by a human croupier.
In Atlantic City blackjack, the aim is to beat the dealer, and at the beginning of each hand, eight 52-card decks are shuffled together. Dealers get one card and automatically check for blackjack if they have a ten-value card or an ace.
This variant is like the standard version found in casinos, except for some basic rule changes.
This is a variant that introduces a side bet. The side bet wins in this game if the player is dealt any pair. Payout varies from one blackjack site to the other and is based on the rank of the pair. Suited pairs usually receive higher payouts.
You’ll be able to play online blackjack for free or for money. Most casinos offer both types of blackjack, so players can play for fun or gamble, depending on their mood.
We recommend using free blackjack games first if you’ve never played blackjack before. This provides plenty of benefits; firstly, you can learn all blackjack rules and practise different strategies. Secondly, you can make mistakes without risking your actual money.
You can also play free online blackjack if you have exhausted your daily or weekly gambling budget and want to continue playing. We recommend only playing real money online blackjack games if you know the rules, are prepared to risk money and feel confident in your blackjack abilities.
Like most online casino games, online blackjack has a fixed house edge. The house edge is designed to favour the house, and it is common knowledge that the house always wins. A house edge can be defined as a guaranteed percentage that is returned to the casino for every game you play.
As a player looking to win big, a proper understanding of the house edge is significant. With the knowledge of how the house edge works, winning can be much easier for you.
Listed below are three ways you can beat the house edge in a blackjack game.
Players use this blackjack strategy to determine if the upcoming hand will give a probable advantage to the dealer or the player.
Shuffle tracking is a blackjack strategy that gives the player an advantage. The player tracks certain cards or card sequences through a series of shuffles which help predict the next cards to be dealt.
The dealer receives two cards, one up (exposed) and the other down (hidden). Players can find a way to identify cards to the extent of knowing the value of those facing down. This blackjack strategy can help them beat the dealer.
If you’ve read this guide, you’ll know that blackjack is a relatively straightforward game to play. There are plenty of strategies you can employ to beat the dealer and win big, but we recommend doing the following:
Online blackjack is available for demo play, allowing you to try out different variants of the game without wasting real money. After practising, you’ll be ready to play a real game of online blackjack! Browse our recommended list above and find the best casino for your needs. Don’t forget to gamble responsibly – only stake an amount you can afford to lose. Have fun and good luck!
Yes, you can trust online blackjack games. The games are not rigged and can be fairer than those at land-based casinos. Online blackjack games are fair and honest, and can easily be reported to the appropriate authorities if players are suspicious. However, players must ensure they play online blackjack at licensed casino sites to enjoy fair games.
The house will always win no matter how good you are at the game. So basically, you can’t beat the house in blackjack. However, there are ways to improve your chances of winning; with the right strategy, you can win big.
The return to player (RTP) is the house edge and how much money players receive from the casino. It can be calculated by subtracting the house edge of your preferred blackjack variation from 100%. Theoretically, the RTP of blackjack is 99.54%.
Yes, it is. Playing online blackjack in New Zealand is legal as long as it is done at regulated and licensed casinos. Players can enjoy the game and withdraw winnings with easy and secure payment methods.
There are lots of ways to increase your chances of winning at online blackjack. Although the game has its fair share of challenges, it is not impossible to succeed, especially if you follow these tips: learn the rules; do a test run with free blackjack games; stick to a budget.
Yes, there are plenty of live casinos where you can participate in live online blackjack games with other players. These games usually have a live dealer, allowing you to interact with other players.
You can count cards in online blackjack, assuming it is a live game. If you're playing a computer-generated game then you won't be able to count cards.
Most casinos offer free demo blackjack games where you can practise online blackjack. Check out the casinos on our list to find sites with free blackjack games.