Home » Casino news » Blackjack House Edge Explained
Blackjack is a casino game that has been around for as long as we can remember. The title is a classic that has entertained players for hundreds of years. However, it lagged in popularity compared to card games like poker. Its new reputation as the best casino game only came about somewhat recently. That reputation is owed to its excellent house edge, which is better than almost any other title.
Unlike most other games, blackjack’s house edge is not fixed. Instead, it depends on making the right choices while playing to achieve. What are these calls? How do you lower your blackjack house edge? How does it affect you as a player? Join us as we answer all of these questions one at a time.
Before we jump into the specifics, let us quickly refresh what a house edge is. The term is used to define the casino’s statistical advantage over the player. The exact details are defined by the game’s design and how players interact with it. Our go-to examples are American and European roulette. American roulette adds an additional zero. This increases the casino’s advantage, which in turn bumps up the house edge.
The house edge only applies over a statistically large number of bets. If you just play ten rounds, your results will not fit with the house edge. However, play ten thousand rounds, and the numbers will start matching up. Your gameplay sessions will rarely line up with the house edge due to the effects of luck. This is what allows players to beat the casino occasionally while playing their favourite games.
Blackjack is well known to offer the best possible house edge. Most reviews of blackjack will place the house edge around 0.5%. Indeed, when you compare it to other casino games, few come close. Online slots are popular, but their average house edge is 4%. Blackjack has such an advantage, it makes you wonder why it is so prominently featured in online casinos.
Well, that house edge is achievable. However, you can only do that if you follow the basic blackjack strategy. It is not enough to just play blackjack to get the best possible odds. You need to know how to respond to every card combination that can pop up. You need to know when to hit, split, double or fold. As such, the 0.5% house edge needs to come with a disclaimer. To achieve it, you need to learn how to play blackjack right.
Of course, we can play blackjack in demo mode until we master the strategy. However, many casino members will find that dull. Not only are you trying to remember the right calls, but you are also not getting any money out of it. However, incorrect play in blackjack can bump up the house edge to 2%. This is exactly what operators and software providers bank on. That you will make a mistake, and end up with a subpar house edge.
Several factors can also affect the house edge. These factors are seemingly minor details, but ones that add up over time. The number of decks, whether a dealer hits a soft 17, and can you double after splitting all affect the house edge.
The more cards you have in a deck, the higher the house edge will be. That is because you have a lower chance of forming a natural blackjack win. In a single-deck blackjack game, your probability of winning a natural blackjack after drawing an ace is 31.37%. If you play with eight decks, the probability of winning a natural blackjack is 30.84%.
How much money you get for a natural blackjack win can also change your expected return. Recently, blackjack tables with 6:5 natural blackjack payouts have started to appear. These tables add a whopping 1.5% to the house edge due to a decreased payout. As such, you want to avoid 6:5 blackjack tables at all costs.
Indiancasinoclub.in also advises you to look for tables where the dealer stands on a soft 17. Hitting a soft 17 can often lead to the dealer busting. However, it can also result in the dealer getting a much better hand! This happens often enough that dealers hitting a soft 17 results in a 0.2% increase to the house edge.