Blackjack will no doubt always be a favorite casino game to play. It’s one of the biggest card games in the world, and multiple strategies have been thought up for players to incorporate into their gameplay.
So, if you’re already a blackjack player or simply someone who wants to get involved in playing the card game, find out here how to beat blackjack without card counting. Here are some alternative tips and strategies that you may want to include in your gameplay.
Hole Carding Method
Some have argued that hole carding actually gives you a substantially higher advantage than card counting does, although generally speaking, it requires a lot more technical work to be put in. The basis behind it is being able to identify the unexposed card of the dealer. If you know this, then you hold an advantage over the casino itself. Once you manage to perfect this particular strategy, the profits can be so vast and frequent that you won’t want to utilize anything else.
As a player, you don’t see it or know what it is, so your blackjack decisions will be based on you having incomplete information. This is where hole carding comes into play. Managing to get a glimpse of the dealer’s hole card will provide you with a great advantage. While most players don’t try to look at this card when the dealer is looking for blackjack, anyone who does manage to spot it will put themselves in prime position.
Because of this, anyone wanting to take advantage of hole carding will usually need to sit in the first seat to the dealer’s left, which works well if the dealer is a right-handed dealer. The same is true in reverse if the dealer is a left-handed dealer. Alternatively, if you can’t get these seats, then you may want to find one that gives you the opportunity to sit closer to the table felt for a level view.
You’re dealt a five and a three as your first two cards. The dealer then dishes out an up-card of 10, and you manage to spot that the hole card is a 2. Now, the ideal outcome of this would be for you to double down against the dealer’s 12 total. But you’re not supposed to have information about the hole card. So, while this may be the optimal play for you, it’s also the type of play that suggests you’re privy to extra information or cheating.
Instead, you need to think long-term with this strategy and avoid making decisions that will out you as a hole carder. Play it safe and utilize it intelligently.
Card counters used to get by quite easily before the 1960s, but it was in this decade and onwards that casinos began to implement shoe games. The idea behind this was to provide a hindrance to these players by forcing them to have to count through multiple decks in each shoe. But card counters weren’t fazed by this, and instead, they just adjusted their strategy. This is what gave birth to shuffle tracking.
While this can be a much more effective strategy to use than standard card counting, it’s also much more difficult to utilize. This is because you’ll need to know an advanced strategy on top of card counting.
The general consensus behind it is that shuffles aren’t as random as they appear. Therefore, certain cards can be tracked following a shuffle. Most casinos don’t like their dealers to waste too much time shuffling, as it restricts how many games can be played, and in the process, how much money is being bet.
Card counting needs to be employed in some way for this strategy, but you need to unite it with shuffle tracking. This works best when you have a good idea of what card values are left in the shoe based on how many have appeared beforehand.
This is a slightly different form of card tracking where you need to be able to remember which cards are atop the ace in the discard pile. As a result, you make larger bets when you see these cards come out in hopes of being on the receiving end of an ace.
If you know that you’re highly likely to receive an ace in a deal, your advantage can push up to about 50% over the house. But this strategy is not easy to work with. You need to watch discard segments, where the aces go, and the sequences of cards. It’s a lot to deal with, although when used right, it’s one of the most efficient blackjack strategies.
Card Counting Isn’t Needed
As you can see, blackjack isn’t all about card counting. There are several strategies that can be used by players. Hole carding is perhaps the most used of the three mentioned above.
However, it’s important to remember that these strategies must be put to use at your own discretion. Most casinos won’t take kindly to players implementing such tactics to try and beat the house edge, so be wary if you intend to use any of them.