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Blackjack Rules

Learning blackjack isn't all that hard, though many people spend years fine tuning their game. Fat Tony can speed up the process a little though, by offering blackjack rules, strategy, and a free game all in one place.

First things first though. The goal of the game of blackjack isn't always clearly defined for beginners, which is a bit disappointing considering it's not such a hard game. The goal of blackjack should always be stated as: beat the dealer. One of the rules of the game is that your card total cannot go over 21. Sadly though a lot of people confuse this rule of the game for the goal, and end up trying to get a hand as close to 21 as they can, thinking of beating the dealer only being a side effort. This way of thinking about the game is pretty detrimental. Blackjack rules are the guides used to play, but don't hint at your true goal. You can beat the dealer with a hand total of 3, if the dealer busts. So why worry about the elusive 21, when anything at all will do, so long as it beats the dealer.

In the casino blackjack, the rules say you godda place a bet on the table before you get any cards. The dealer will give everyone including themselves one card, all face up, then they will give each player a second card face up, and themselves a second card face down. This face down card is known as the dealer's hole card. Some casinos deal blackjack all face down, in which case you have to touch the cards to see what you have. When you're playing this style, be sure to only touch your cards with one hand. While playing with friends however, you may want to take this opportunity to sharpen your slight-of-hand skills, up to you.

After your first two cards are dealt to you, you have to make a decision on the hand. Fortunately you already know the dealer's up-card, so you have something to go on.

Blackjack, Naturally
To get Blackjack and be paid back extra for it, you must hit 21 with your first two cards. An Ace and a 10 point card (10, Jack, Queen, or King) on the first two cards only, is considered a natural blackjack and is usually paid back at three to two. However, if the dealer also gets a natural blackjack, it is a push (a ties where nobody wins on or loses on their bet).

So if you've hit a natural blackjack you don't have to worry about making any decisions based on your first two cards. If you're not so lucky though, let's have a look at what blackjack's rules offer as other options.

More Blackjack Rules