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Blackjack Strategies

1. If the dealer's up card is a seven (7) or higher, YOU SHOULD PLAY TO SEVENTEEN! That means if you were dealt a 10 and a 2, you have 12. You MUST hit this hand until you reach 17. Let's say your next card is a 4. You now have 16. You MUST hit this hand until you reach 17.

2. If the dealer's up card is a six (6) or lower but higher than a three (3) YOU MUST PLAY TO TWELVE AND STOP.

3. If the dealer has a six (6) showing and you were dealt a 10 and a 2, you have 12. You MUST stand on this hand.

4. If the dealer's up card is a two (2) or a three (3) YOU MUST PLAY UNTIL 13.

5. If you were dealt a 10 and a 2, you have 12. You MUST hit this hand! Let's say the next card is an Ace. You now have 13. You MUST stand on this hand.

Card Counting
The technique of card counting allows the player to take note of changing probabilities and by altering playing and betting strategies accordingly, they can gain a statistical advantage over the casino.

To learn the the skill of card counting is relatively simple. And no, you don't need to have a photographic memory or a freakish mathematical ability.

The card counting system described below is designed only as a rough guide to give you an idea how card counting is done. It is not recommended that it be put to use in a practical sense.

This is intended only to give a feel for how card counting is done, and is not recommended for actual practice.

For single deck games:

1. Start the count at -4 when the deck is shuffled.
2. Count -2 for 10, J, Q, K
3. Count +1 for everything else (including aces)
4. Bet low when the count is negative, high when the count is positive (actually, simulations show that you can bet high for a count of -2 or above).
5. Take insurance when the count is positive.
6. Play basic strategy at all times.

Single Decks
Suppose you took a single deck of cards, shuffled them, and then randomly picked one card.

What is the probability that you'll pick an ace? Since there are four aces in a single deck of cards, the chance of drawing one of those aces is the ratio of 4 over 52.

Once you draw the ace, you are left with 51 cards to draw a ten-value card. There are 16 ten-value cards in a deck of cards (the four tens, jacks, queens and kings) so the chance of drawing one is the ratio of 16 over 51.

If you multiply these two ratios, you will compute the probability of getting an ace followed by a ten-value card in a single deck to be 2.41%.

Multiple Decks
If the person eventually wants to learn card counting, it is much easier to start with Single Deck and become proficient at it, before proceeding to Multiple Deck.

If you make a mistake counting down a single deck, it is easier to find your mistake. If you cannot count a single deck proficiently, how in the world can you expect to count multiple decks?

There are many similarities between the Single and Multiple Deck Strategy, so the transition from one to the other is no problem. There is one important difference in the Surrender category.

In Single Deck, the surrender strategy is for late surrender, while in Multiple Deck there is a strategy for both late and early surrender.

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