Blackjack card counting is based on the knowledge that a blackjack deck with a lot of high cards in it creates an advantage for the player. This is because, under the rules of blackjack
, the dealer must hit whenever his hand totals less than 17. So a high probability of drawing a high card means a high probability that the dealer will bust and the player will win the blackjack game.
A deck that is rich in Aces is also good, because an Ace and a Ten makes a Blackjack. True, it can make a Blackjack for the dealer too, but your Blackjacks pay out 3-to-2 and his don't, so a likelihood of more Blackjacks helps the player more than the dealer.
Now, when you play in a land-based black jack casino, the composition of the deck does not remain constant. The cards that are dealt out to the players and the dealer are removed at the end of the hand and set aside. If a lot of low cards are used up, the percentage of high cards remaining will go up. If a lot of high cards are used up, the percentage of high cards remaining will go down.
Card counting as a winning blackjack strategy does not mean memorizing every single card that has been dealt. It means keeping an accurate running count of the high cards and low cards that have been dealt out and discarded. You can assign a value of -1 to the Aces and 10-value cards, and +1 to the low cards 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6, and ignore the middle cards and keep a running tally of the total plus or minus score.
If your running total has a high value, it means that a lot of low cards have been used up, so the deck is now rich in high cards. This means you have a higher chance of winning the black jack game, so you can increase your bet. And when your running total is low, the deck is rich in low cards so it is time to lower your bet.
Of course, this is not easy to do. A table in the blackjack casino can accommodate six players plus a dealer. That means you have to do a quick and accurate count of seven hands of black jack cards, while simultaneously concentrating on playing your hand with the best blackjack strategy and trying to win the blackjack game. So you can see that mastering black jack card counting is a difficult feat requiring immense powers of concentration and much practice.
Unfortunately, card counting is not an effective strategy when you play blackjack online
. This is because the online casino
shuffles the virtual blackjack cards after every hand, so nothing is discarded and there is no running total to keep track of.
Nevertheless, many online blackjack
players find card counting to be a fascinating subject to learn about and study. After all, card counting has played a major role in blackjack history
and was a key factor, for example, in the success of the MIT Blackjack Team immortalized in the movie "21".
Even without card counting, online blackjack is still a great and exciting online casino game
with good chances to win. Just remember that the best strategy when you play blackjack online is to follow the blackjack basic strategy
. You can memorize the blackjack basic strategy tables, or print them out and keep them by your computer. Either way, the basic strategy gives you a good chance to win at blackjack
and to have a great time playing blackjack in the online casino.