How to Play Blackjack
Blackjack is the most popular table
game in casinos because it is a true game of skill, in which the
casino is most easily beatable. it was played in old times as the
"21" game and was not very popular initially. To make the game
more enticing, some clubs began offering a 10 to 1 payout to any
player who got on his first two cards the Ace of Spades plus the
Jack of Clubs or the Jack of Spades, that is, one of the two black
jacks. Hence the present name of the game. Evolution changed
the rules somewhat. Nowadays, a blackjack is any two-card hand
that adds up to 21 points, regardless of the face or color, which
implies any ace plus any other card of value 10. The usual payoff
for this hand also dropped to 3 to 2.
of the game is to beat
the dealer, by making a higher valued hand than the
dealer's hand, while not exceeding 21.
The value of a hand
is found by adding
up the value of all the cards in the hand. Face cards
(jacks, queens and kings) are valued as 10. All other
cards are counted at face value, except for the aces,
which can be counted as either one or 11, whatever better
suits the hand being played.
The Game: When the value of a hand exceeds 21 it is
a "bust". If either the player or dealer busts,
the other wins automatically. When dealer and player have
hands of the same value it is a "push" or standoff and neither wins.
If the first
two cards dealt to the player or dealer are an ace and a
10-valued card (a 10, jack, queen or king), he or she has
a "blackjack". A blackjack is an immediate winner and
pays the player one and a half times the bet (3 to 2
odds). All other winning hands of the player are paid at
one-to-one or even money. If both the dealer and player
are dealt a blackjack, it is a "push" with no
At the 4 Jacks
Casino, the game is played with a six-deck
shoe with a reshuffle after two thirds of the cards have been
drawn. The dealer distributes two cards to the player and
two to herself, dealt one at a time, with the first card
going to the player. One of the dealer's cards is dealt
face down and the other face up. The player plays his
hand first, by taking additional cards ("hit") or finishing the hand ("stand") or making other decisions as described
below. Then plays the dealer according to fixed rules and
hands are compared.
How to Play: To begin play you
should first place a bet by clicking the left button of the mouse on the
chip or chips you wish to bet. Betting chips are located in the lower part of the
table. You can bet as many chips as you wish, while the added value of
the bet does not exceed the maximum allowed. Each click adds
one chip to the bet and its value is automatically
deducted from your balance. The total amount of the bet is shown in the
"Bet" indicator at the lower right corner of the screen. If you change your mind and
want to withdraw some or all the chips from the bet, you
can do so by clicking the right button of your mouse on
the betting circle. You can mix chips of different value
in your bet. When the bet equals or exceeds the allowed
minimum, the "DEAL" button activates. Then you
can continue increasing your bet or can click on the
"DEAL" button to be dealt your cards. Bets
cannot exceed the allowed maximum and cannot be further
changed after clicking the "DEAL" button,
except by doubling the bet (see below).
Once the first two cards are
dealt, several buttons may activate. These are the
"HIT", "STAND", "DOUBLE",
"SPLIT", "SURRENDER", "INSURANCE" and
In normal hands only the
"HIT", "STAND", "SURRENDER" and "DOUBLE"
buttons are active. You may request an additional card by
clicking on the "HIT" button, and so increase
the value of your hand. You can "HIT" as many
times as you like, but keep in mind the risk of exceeding
21 or "bust" and lose the hand. You may stop
taking cards at any time you wish. Simply click on the
"STAND" button to indicate you are done. Then
the dealer will play her hand by taking cards until her
total hand value is greater than sixteen.
The "DOUBLE" button
offers you the option to duplicate ("Double Down") your bet after knowing what your two
first cards are. But if you "double down" your
hand, you will be dealt one and only one more card, so
your hand will end with three cards. The
"DOUBLE" button is active only when you have
the first two cards dealt and deactivates after you
receive a third card.
The "SURRENDER" button offers you
the option of withdrawing half your bet after you have seen your two
first cards and the face-up card of the dealer. Obviously this option
should be chosen only when you decide that your hand is a probable
loser, so you can cut your loss in half.
and "SKIP" buttons go active only when the
dealer's face up card is an ace. You may select the
"INSURANCE" option to make a second
"insurance" bet to protect yourself against the
possibility that the dealer has a blackjack (if her down
card has a value of ten). The insurance bet is fixed as
half the original bet and pays 2 to 1 if the dealer has a
blackjack (so you may lose the main bet, but winning the
insurance bet you break even). If the dealer has no
blackjack, you lose your insurance bet and the game
continues. To take insurance you only need to click on
the "INSURANCE" button, and the bet is made
automatically. You can refuse insurance by clicking on
the "SKIP" button.
The "SPLIT" button
activates whenever you are dealt two cards of equal value
(i. e. two fives or two jacks, etc.). You can click this
button or play your hand ignoring it. The
"SPLIT" option separates the two cards into two
separate hands and places a corresponding second bet
automatically, of the same amount as the first bet. Each
hand is then played independently, the second after the
first is completed. A red number (the total count of the
hand) on a black square over the cards identify which
hand is being played. You may split your original hand up
to two times, making a maximum of three separate hands.
You may take as many additional cards as you like for
each hand, except for split aces, which are dealt one and
only one additional card on each of the new hands.
Combinations of different cards such as a jack/king,
ten/queen, jack/queen pair, etc. cannot be split. The
"Double Down" option is not available to split
Sound: The game is loaded in silent
mode. To activate sound, click and depress the small
button with a musical note located at the upper right of
the screen. A second mouse click will release this button
and return to silent mode.
Rules for the Dealer: After the player has completed his or her
hand without busting, the dealer plays hers following two
simple fixed rules, regardless of the value of the
a) If the dealer has sixteen
or less, she must draw additional cards until she
reaches seventeen or more.
b) The dealer must stand on
hands totaling seventeen or higher, even if this
value is lower than that of the player's hand.
Winnings: When the player wins, the computer pays
showing the winnings as a pile of chips and adds the bet to
the player's balance.
Payoff: All normal hands pay 1 to 1 or even money.
A blackjack hand pays 3 to 2 or one and a half times the bet.
Insurance bets pay 2 to 1. These rules and payoff regulations
apply to the blackjack game played in the 4
Jacks Casino and conform to the rules and
regulations found at most blackjack tables around the
world, including those found in Las Vegas casinos.