The live casino games market is one that is taking the industry by storm. The interaction that this format of casino play allows punters gives them a feel of being in a real casino rather than simply playing online against the computers random number generator. The popularity of a game, such as Blackjack, which is renowned for its game interaction, seemed like an obvious choice and since its introduction, live blackjack has gone on to become one of the most popular choices in this format.
The main difference between live blackjack and that of the format you would normally associate online is the way in which the cards are dealt. In short, the online version will use a Random Number Generator (RNG) to deal the cards, whereas live an actual dealer will be dealing real cards from the deck each time.
To go into a little more detail; the RNG is basically a computerised program, which virtually spins the cards around constantly and in no order. This spinning of the cards only stops when a decision is made by the player and card is used, before being discarded from the pack. An easy way to think of this is if someone shuffled a deck of cards before running their finger down the side and asking you to say stop at a random point before that card being drawn. Now take that concept, incorporate the multiple packs of cards used for blackjack and times that speed and sequence by a huge amount and you get your blackjack RNG. The live blackjack format has the decks pre-shuffled and then are drawn when needed by the dealer, just like they would in a real casino.
The table layout for each will likely vary, but generally, you get a camera looking at the dealer with the table so you can see the cards that have been dealt. Instead of real chips being used, your monetary chip amounts will be super-imposed over the table to make it look like money is exchanging hands, when in fact it’s all done virtually. In some cases you will be able to zoom out and just see the cards that have been dealt in digital format – as if you were playing online – but still being able to see the dealer and interact with them.
More often than not other players will be at your table, but if this isn’t the case you are able to take up a many spots as you wish that are available. There will be a chat box that the dealer can see and they are encouraged to interact with players for the most part. Their job is to simply deal the cards as the monetary side is done electronically. One thing you will notice is that they are often in a room with several live dealers where you can hear the hustle and bustle of what mirrors a proper casino. In reality though, this is likely just a sound file played continuously, but it does add to the atmosphere.
How to Play Live Dealer Blackjack
The rules of the game remain exactly the same to that of playing online or even in a brick and mortar casino. The aim of the game is to beat the dealer’s cards with a number higher or at least equal (this will result in a push) to theirs. A massive misconception is that players are required to get as close to 21 as possible. This is not the case! You must take into account the dealers cards and this should have an effect on every decision you make at the blackjack table.
The game starts with each player receiving two cards face up and the dealer receiving one card face up and one card face down. The betting happens in a clockwise direction and once this complete the dealer then plays out their hand. Now at this point is where it gets tricky as there are a number of forms of blackjack rules which differ ever so slightly. The sections that change is generally on what the dealer sticks on and has to twist on. This is usually around 16/17 but the rules will be available to see on the table in front of you before you place a bet.
Each card has a numerical value with deuce to 10 all representing those numbers, all picture cards valuing 10 and then the Ace which can be either one or eleven, depending which best helps your hand. Blackjack is the best hand you can get which is an Ace with a picture or a 10. If you receive this hand then you instantly win and will be paid at around 3:2 for every unit you wagered.