A Guide to Advantage Play in Blackjack – Blackjack for Advanced Players

Welcome to this GamblingSites.org how-to video. Today, we’ll be providing you with our Advanced
guide to Advantage Play techniques. Usually, the casino has an advantage over
you when gambling, but if you’re familiar with certain techniques, you’ll be able
to get an advantage over the casino. This video will offer you an overview of which
techniques blackjack players commonly use to get an edge over the house. Before we can get into all of that, we have
to start with explaining how mathematical advantages work. The simplest way to explain probability and
odds is through an example. You can also find our complete video on Odds
and Probability in the “Intermediate” section. For this example, let’s say you’re playing
a casino game based on a coin toss. You bet on the coin coming up heads or tails. Half the time you’ll win and half the time
you’ll lose, right? But what if you have to bet two dollars every
time, and only win one dollar for a correct wager? That’s a clear example of how a casino gets
an advantage over a player. It’s an extreme example, but it helps illustrate
the point. The casino is more likely to create a situation
where you have to bet $1.10 to win one dollar. They could call that extra 10 cents an “ante”
or something like that. Every casino bet works this way, and… if
you place enough bets… the math will always work in the casino’s favor. So let’s get into the different advantage
play techniques that can be used to try and swing the advantage away from the casinos. Casinos hate advantage gamblers, because they
eat into their profits. A casino full of nothing but advantage gamblers
is a casino that’s about to become a lot poorer. The first technique that is technically “advantage
gambling” is just flat-out cheating. Most types of advantage gambling are NOT cheating,
but things like marking cards with a sharp fingernail or changing your bet after you
know that you’ve won or lost or using some kind of machine or technological device to
commit some kind of fraud against the casino. Cheating is illegal in most states, and is
actually a FELONY in Nevada… home to Las Vegas. There are ways to gain an advantage that don’t
risk jail time, so we would, obviously, tell you to NOT resort to cheating. Comps and Rebates are a way that casinos give
at least a teeny tiny bit of their edge back to the bettor. These rewards are offered to players to encourage
more action, and usually requires signing up for the casino’s players’ club. The casino uses this to track how much you
wager and how long you play for, distributing points accordingly. Rewards might be worth as little as point-two
or point-three percent of how much you’ve wagered, and aren’t related to how much
you actually win or lose. The return is small, so you won’t make back
your losses just through comps. However, if you combine comps with basic strategy
in blackjack at a table with really favorable rules, you could end up playing without much
house edge, or even with a slight advantage yourself… especially if you take advantage
of special promotions where the casino might offer double or triple points during certain
hours or on certain days. That’s called “comp hustling”, and that
can be used to help increase your edge over the house. While you’re not permitted to mark cards
when playing blackjack, it IS possible that cards could develop irregularities during
regular play. This is one of the reasons that the casinos
will rotate the decks out frequently. But if you can spot an irregularity in the
cards, it’s not cheating to notice them and take advantage of them. Players who are able to identify groups of
cards that are important… like the aces and 10-cards in blackjack… are able to get
a huge advantage over the house. Edge sorting is used in multiple casino card
games, including baccarat and Caribbean Stud. Eliot Jacobson has a book on the subject called
“Advanced Advantage Play” that our writers recommend. The final three methods of Advantage Play
are counting cards, hole carding, and shuffle tracking. We go in-depth on each of those topics in
separate videos and articles … so make sure to check out GamblingSites.org for even more
on the game.

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