Using strategy charts is an essential trick to help new blackjack players master the game. Developed over the years, these charts have been statistically proven to improve the odds of success.
In this article, you’ll learn more about the best blackjack betting strategy charts and how to use them to maximize your winnings. Once you’re up to speed, all you need to do is pick the best online casino and let the charts guide you.
Introduction to Blackjack Strategy Charts
Since blackjack is a solved game, the exact move to make in every scenario to maximize profits and minimize losses is already known. But it’s not always easy to remember, especially under pressure. A chart tells you the correct play, eliminating the need to know when to split, when to double down and other such decisions.
How To Read a Blackjack Strategy Chart
When getting started with online blackjack, you’ll discover that there are many variants of the game. However, they all have the same basic rule: beat the dealer’s hand without exceeding 21 points. Blackjack always uses a standard 52-card deck, although the number of decks used varies by game.
In blackjack, face cards are worth 10 points, while an ace counts as either 1 or 11. All other cards retain their face value. You start the game with two cards and can choose to hit or stand. If you hit, you’ll receive another card, but standing means you’ll retain your current hand.
The typical blackjack strategy card features a matrix chart with two axes. Possible hand values lie on the vertical axis while the dealer’s upcard is on the horizontal axis. After receiving your initial hand, find its value on the chart, then look across to the corresponding upcard. Here you’ll discover exactly what move to make.
To help players find their move quickly, charts may be color-coded. The main symbols on the strategy chart are H for hit, S for stand and D for double down. Each chart is different, of course, but you’ll always find the meanings of symbols explained on it somewhere.
What Is the Best Blackjack Betting Strategy Chart?
Luck and strategy are the key ingredients for every successful game of blackjack. You still need good fortune because you can’t control the cards you’re dealt. But after this, long-term success depends on your own decisions. Strategy charts come to the rescue, helping you to pick the most profitable move every time.
Basic Blackjack Strategy Chart
The most common blackjack chart addresses standard blackjack games that use six to eight decks. It is based on millions of computer simulations that calculate the most profitable play in every scenario. This allows you to play the best possible hand, known as basic strategy.
The best approach for new basic strategy blackjack players is to print your chart out or keep it on a nearby device. However, if you’re playing at a live casino, you may be asked to put it away. So in an ideal world, you’ll commit the chart to memory.
Playing perfect strategy blackjack doesn’t guarantee success with every individual hand you play. However, play for long enough and you can greatly reduce the house edge. Depending on the exact rules, it could be as low as 0.5% if you execute it perfectly.
There are different basic strategy cards available for different rule variations. For instance, some forms of blackjack don’t allow early surrender. Standard strategy dictates that you should surrender a 15 against a 10, for example. But if that rule isn’t in play, you’ll need to use the appropriate chart.
Single-Deck Basic Strategy Chart
Blackjack games that only use one deck are advantageous for the player since the game has a lower house edge. But with so few cards in play, the game requires a different approach. A single-deck blackjack chart features a simplified layout and adjusts recommendations accordingly.
This kind of blackjack also has different rules, such as dealers hitting on soft 17 or players not being allowed to double after splitting. These variations also mean that perfect strategy charts for single-deck variants cannot be the same as standard charts.
Double-Deck Basic Strategy Chart
Similarly, changes must be made to strategy charts designed for games using two decks. Unlike the single-deck variant, the dealer usually stands on soft 17 and doubling down after a split is normally permitted.
Multi-Deck Blackjack Strategy Chart
Multi-deck blackjack variants are the most common at both online and brick-and-mortar casinos. But there are subtle differences in probabilities depending on the exact rules and number of decks used. It’s vitally important to make sure you’re using the correct chart for your chosen game type.
Improve Your Strategy With Card Counting
Using perfect strategy for blackjack reduces the house edge, but it doesn’t completely overturn it. However, as you become more skilled in navigating the ideal moves for certain scenarios, you can start to revise your overall strategy.
One popular tactic used by blackjack players is card counting. This involves monitoring the cards dealt to see what’s left in the shoe and leveraging this information to shape your decisions.
In the most common card counting systems, you assign +1 to the low-value cards from 2–6. Neutral cards from 7–9 are assigned a value of 0, while high-value cards from 10–ace are assigned -1. Whenever a card is dealt, you add its corresponding value and keep a running count until the dealer shuffles the shoe.
When the casino uses multiple decks, it becomes necessary to obtain the true count. This involves a quick calculation, depending on the exact counting method used, to convert the running count to a more accurate value.
Ultimately, counting gives you an idea of the ratio of high- to low-value cards left. The higher the true count, the greater the number of high cards left, which is to your advantage. As a result, you should increase your stakes.
Blackjack Strategy Charts: Your Blueprint To Ace the Game
Playing blackjack may seem daunting because of the unpredictability of the game. However, with a strategy chart at your side, you’re better equipped to make decisions that count.
These charts have been carefully refined over the years and are proven to massively reduce the house edge. Better still, they can be used to play in a land-based casino or online in live dealer blackjack games.
Arm yourself with a blackjack strategy chart and approach your games more confidently. You’ll only get better with practice. Register at BetMGM today to get started.