aruzin
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February 12th, 2014 at 9:23:36 AM permalink
My friends reckon there is something fishy about this. To be honest I wasn't sure either but noticed some dealers keep changing this often during the shoe. I think sometimes there might be a casino rule but in the couple of casinos here they said it is up to the dealer.

Most dealers doing it consistently, and out of habit, always turn up the first or second. But a couple of them we found change this frequently. The conspiracy theories are that they might be able to see the face card reflection on the metal bar around the chip container (they sometime hover the second card a little over the first and then use it to flip the first or the second....odd !?), or cards are somewhat marked (in this small island where we are, rather not say the name, there is very little regulation or enforcement of gambling rules) so they can check for a ten or a face card to flip. Or simply they check the cards that comes in and then at the end decide what to do - I don't know how they can get any advantage with this really.

So we might just be paranoid but we get really frustrated when these dealers come over and keep turning up face cards hand after hand, pit boss doesn't usually change them either when they keep winning !? Any ideas...
Sonuvabish
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February 12th, 2014 at 10:02:51 AM permalink
Quote: aruzin

My friends reckon there is something fishy about this. To be honest I wasn't sure either but noticed some dealers keep changing this often during the shoe. I think sometimes there might be a casino rule but in the couple of casinos here they said it is up to the dealer.

Most dealers doing it consistently, and out of habit, always turn up the first or second. But a couple of them we found change this frequently. The conspiracy theories are that they might be able to see the face card reflection on the metal bar around the chip container (they sometime hover the second card a little over the first and then use it to flip the first or the second....odd !?), or cards are somewhat marked (in this small island where we are, rather not say the name, there is very little regulation or enforcement of gambling rules) so they can check for a ten or a face card to flip. Or simply they check the cards that comes in and then at the end decide what to do - I don't know how they can get any advantage with this really.

So we might just be paranoid but we get really frustrated when these dealers come over and keep turning up face cards hand after hand, pit boss doesn't usually change them either when they keep winning !? Any ideas...



They would get an advantage anytime the dealer decided to flip a 10 instead of a 2-6, because the player is going to bust more often. There would be an advantage for 7-8 against those who use surrender properly. There would also be an advantage against a counter when flipping a 10 instead of Ace because of the inability to take insurance. There would be no practical advantage to flipping over a 10 instead of a 9.

It is unlikely that the dealer is attempting to gain an advantage. He or she probably realizes that the cards are random and it does not matter what card is shown. However, this is obviously a cheating opportunity. You should bring it up to the pit, and insist a consistent procedure be followed--when they agree, if there is a lapse, demand the hand be dead as soon as it is dealt. If there is no cooperation, you should absolutely refrain from playing and report any unresolved issues to the gaming board.
AxelWolf
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February 12th, 2014 at 10:34:38 AM permalink
Quote: aruzin

My friends reckon there is something fishy about this. To be honest I wasn't sure either but noticed some dealers keep changing this often during the shoe. I think sometimes there might be a casino rule but in the couple of casinos here they said it is up to the dealer.

Most dealers doing it consistently, and out of habit, always turn up the first or second. But a couple of them we found change this frequently. The conspiracy theories are that they might be able to see the face card reflection on the metal bar around the chip container (they sometime hover the second card a little over the first and then use it to flip the first or the second....odd !?), or cards are somewhat marked (in this small island where we are, rather not say the name, there is very little regulation or enforcement of gambling rules) so they can check for a ten or a face card to flip. Or simply they check the cards that comes in and then at the end decide what to do - I don't know how they can get any advantage with this really.

So we might just be paranoid but we get really frustrated when these dealers come over and keep turning up face cards hand after hand, pit boss doesn't usually change them either when they keep winning !? Any ideas...

Where is this at?
♪♪Now you swear and kick and beg us That you're not a gamblin' man Then you find you're back in Vegas With a handle in your hand♪♪ Your black cards can make you money So you hide them when you're able In the land of casinos and money You must put them on the table♪♪ You go back Jack do it again roulette wheels turinin' 'round and 'round♪♪ You go back Jack do it again♪♪
Deucekies
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February 12th, 2014 at 1:23:59 PM permalink
Statistically it wouldn't make any difference since the dealer could just as easily flip a 6 instead of an Ace as well as the other way around. However, casinos have internal controls that should dictate which card is shown, and all dealers are required to adhere to that. Whether it effects the odds or not, this should not be happening.
Casinos are not your friends, they want your money. But so does Disneyland. And there is no chance in hell that you will go to Disneyland and come back with more money than you went with. - AxelWolf and Mickeycrimm
AxiomOfChoice
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February 12th, 2014 at 1:55:58 PM permalink
Quote: Deucekies

Statistically it wouldn't make any difference since the dealer could just as easily flip a 6 instead of an Ace as well as the other way around. However, casinos have internal controls that should dictate which card is shown, and all dealers are required to adhere to that. Whether it effects the odds or not, this should not be happening.



It affects the odds if the dealer is peeking at one of the cards before he makes his decision of which card to flip.

In a hand-dealt game, is it not difficult to peek at a card while dealing. As a dealer I'm sure you know this :)

Peeking, and flipping the other card if you see a 10 or an ace is an old cheating technique. It's also extremely effective.
AcesAndEights
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February 12th, 2014 at 7:03:24 PM permalink
I have noticed this behavior as well, and I'm surprised it's never been discussed here!

I fully agree that assuming the dealer doesn't have knowledge of either card (which is the most likely scenario), it is totally harmless and doesn't change the edge at all.

But just the fact that it happens is discomforting to the skeptical player, obviously. If the dealer is getting some extra info, it could be devastating to the player.
"So drink gamble eat f***, because one day you will be dust." -ontariodealer
AxiomOfChoice
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February 12th, 2014 at 7:06:15 PM permalink
Quote: AcesAndEights

I fully agree that assuming the dealer doesn't have knowledge of either card (which is the most likely scenario), it is totally harmless and doesn't change the edge at all.



Well.... there are situations...
aruzin
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February 13th, 2014 at 9:18:12 AM permalink
Yes, as you guys mentioned if the dealer has no knowledge of the cards then it is not a big deal and random, but just doing this pisses off everyone at the table - specially when they are loosing and dealer flips 10 after 10 ... !?

But what if they peek or somehow get extra info about the cards and act accordingly, now that is simply nasty. I remember someone saying what is in it for the dealers if players win or loose, in fact they get more tips if players win. I thought the same for a while, but then I saw how the relationships are between dealers and pit bosses and managers, they are very friendly and close, I bet when the table keeps winning they all get a thumbs up from the boss and really comradely effect with co-workers. Now imagine a table looses night after night, I'm sure they feel some pressure... !?
Sonuvabish
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February 13th, 2014 at 10:09:29 AM permalink
Quote: aruzin

Yes, as you guys mentioned if the dealer has no knowledge of the cards then it is not a big deal and random, but just doing this pisses off everyone at the table - specially when they are loosing and dealer flips 10 after 10 ... !?

But what if they peek or somehow get extra info about the cards and act accordingly, now that is simply nasty. I remember someone saying what is in it for the dealers if players win or loose, in fact they get more tips if players win. I thought the same for a while, but then I saw how the relationships are between dealers and pit bosses and managers, they are very friendly and close, I bet when the table keeps winning they all get a thumbs up from the boss and really comradely effect with co-workers. Now imagine a table looses night after night, I'm sure they feel some pressure... !?



There is no point in wondering about what is in it for anybody. The facts have been laid out for you. It is likely unintentional, but it is a known cheating maneuver. You should insist that a consistent protocol be followed or refuse to play. You are now armed with knowledge, you need not wonder about anything.
Deucekies
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February 13th, 2014 at 12:31:19 PM permalink
Quote: AxiomOfChoice

It affects the odds if the dealer is peeking at one of the cards before he makes his decision of which card to flip.

In a hand-dealt game, is it not difficult to peek at a card while dealing. As a dealer I'm sure you know this :)

Peeking, and flipping the other card if you see a 10 or an ace is an old cheating technique. It's also extremely effective.


I'm assuming the selection is random. If the dealer is peeking, that's beyond dirty, and that's why there are internal controls in the first place. You're right, it would be very easy to peek, even on accident. I've had a few times where I have accidentally stuck my 7-up into the peeker, and had to put my poker face on knowing I had 18.
Casinos are not your friends, they want your money. But so does Disneyland. And there is no chance in hell that you will go to Disneyland and come back with more money than you went with. - AxelWolf and Mickeycrimm
FinanceDegree
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February 24th, 2014 at 7:22:39 AM permalink
Was this casino in the Dominican Republic? I played at a casino in the DR where the dealers did this. It was very frustrating. They alternated the up card randomly. 9/10 times the up card was a ten and the hole card was usually a 2-6. It was frustrating because you hardly ever got to stay on your hands because they always showed a ten. The count also got mysteriously high multiple times. Penetration was terrible and I wasn't side counting aces but it seemed there was an unusually high number of aces.
AxiomOfChoice
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February 24th, 2014 at 12:23:02 PM permalink
Quote: FinanceDegree

Was this casino in the Dominican Republic? I played at a casino in the DR where the dealers did this. It was very frustrating. They alternated the up card randomly. 9/10 times the up card was a ten and the hole card was usually a 2-6. It was frustrating because you hardly ever got to stay on your hands because they always showed a ten. The count also got mysteriously high multiple times. Penetration was terrible and I wasn't side counting aces but it seemed there was an unusually high number of aces.



You were being cheated, pure and simple. Why did you keep playing?
geoff
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February 24th, 2014 at 12:25:59 PM permalink
Do you have the name of this place with an unusually high number of aces? I would quite like to play there.
FinanceDegree
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February 24th, 2014 at 12:45:03 PM permalink
It was in Puerto Plata. I dont remember the name. I quit playing after i realized what was happening. I walked away up a few dollars.
aruzin
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September 27th, 2019 at 9:32:23 AM permalink
Quote: FinanceDegree

Was this casino in the Dominican Republic? I played at a casino in the DR where the dealers did this. It was very frustrating. They alternated the up card randomly. 9/10 times the up card was a ten and the hole card was usually a 2-6. It was frustrating because you hardly ever got to stay on your hands because they always showed a ten. The count also got mysteriously high multiple times. Penetration was terrible and I wasn't side counting aces but it seemed there was an unusually high number of aces.



It's been a while but that is the place....and still the same trick is performed , but very occasionally and we don't play when those dealers come !

This island casinos do what they like really, there are zero inspection or regulation and the corruption rate is so high anyone can be bought. Hence we only play a few dollars a hand and be prepared to loose and walk away. It is really for entertainment....

What I realized is that they seem to go through a few weeks of cleaning up and winning, then they allow players to win a bit... !? Almost at will...

I have tried carefully to see if and how they can do it, but still nothing concrete. The technique described above is less used now and we don't play with one or two dealers who do that. But we have tried to see if there are other tricks.

The game is mostly 6 decks with stand on all 17, pays 3:2 on BJ and surrender and insurance offered 1:2, and double and split on any hand as many as you like (no repeat split of As though), just no peek at 10, only A. So this is a very fair game with low house advantage. But nowadays they cut the deck to 50% or lower, so no card counting can really succeed. I have written a BJ simulator myself and tested a lot of counting strategies and if the deck is cut at 50% it results in no real advantage.

But on some nights the dealer just cleans up, everybody looses. This can go on for a week or two, then back to normal for another couple of weeks. We think they are up to no good, but how.... !?

They can take a few 10s and As out of the deck, but that does not result in such annihilation, that gives the house a bit more edge, but just a bit.

We check the hands of dealers carefully, they really do not or can not do any tricks like dealing the second cards if the cards are marked... !

Only other thing could be some trick in the hand shuffling, but this is 6 deck and they just do the normal shuffle every time, I have no idea how they can manipulate and take such high advantage in that.

Just can't think of anything else, the pure luck or streak can't bring about such a consistency, can you think of any ?
michael99000
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September 27th, 2019 at 11:00:53 AM permalink
Interesting.

I wonder if basic strategy changes if you know the dealer will always show his higher card of the two heís dealt.
charliepatrick
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September 27th, 2019 at 1:46:11 PM permalink
If they were cheating it might not be their best tactic always.

With a 10-up you know nothing about their second card, (except it doubles the chances of a non-ten), however with an 8 they have 10 thru 16, so it might pay to stand. Similarly for 7. However now a 6 or 5 would be a dangerous card. etc.

It's an interesting mathematical problem what is their best strategy!! I should guess they want to make as many cards as possible dangerous, so you tend to hit more and double less.

Also see https://wizardofodds.com/games/down-under-blackjack/
aruzin
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September 30th, 2019 at 5:56:38 AM permalink
I have no idea if you need to play differently but for sure it is in dealer's advantage to turn up the 10 instead of a lower card, player busts more and does not double as often as he should. I don't think they care about higher card so much, it's the 10 that they show if there is one in the two...
michael99000
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September 30th, 2019 at 6:56:29 AM permalink
Quote: aruzin

I have no idea if you need to play differently but for sure it is in dealer's advantage to turn up the 10 instead of a lower card, player busts more and does not double as often as he should. I don't think they care about higher card so much, it's the 10 that they show if there is one in the two...



If thatís what the dealer is doing, always showing a 10 if either of his cards is a 10, then that means he shows a 10 about 64% of the time.

Itís hard to believe people would keep playing in a game where they face a dealer 10 that often.
aruzin
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September 30th, 2019 at 8:22:03 AM permalink
Quote: michael99000

If thatís what the dealer is doing, always showing a 10 if either of his cards is a 10, then that means he shows a 10 about 64% of the time.

Itís hard to believe people would keep playing in a game where they face a dealer 10 that often.



Well, they probably don't do it with that frequency, but enough to make a big difference...

The other big issue is not busting enough (I think on average should be every 3 or 4 hands) and specially not busting enough when showing 5 or 6 and even make 20 or 21 out of those hands (beating most of double-downs). This could well to do with taking 10s out of the deck, but how many 10s should they take out to make it so noticeable. I always thought you need to replace a lot of 10s with smaller cards for players to really notice it (in a 6 deck shoe)... !?

My next plan is to go at 8pm, they start BJ tables at that time and usually in some casinos you can see them laying all the deck cards faced up, so you can see them all in plain view and can check that there are all there (whatever swap they may do is when the table is empty and maybe afterwards when nobody is around - but that will also be so tricky and hard to do (no idea)....!
gordonm888
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September 30th, 2019 at 9:41:09 AM permalink
Quote: michael99000

If thatís what the dealer is doing, always showing a 10 if either of his cards is a 10, then that means he shows a 10 about 64% of the time.

Itís hard to believe people would keep playing in a game where they face a dealer 10 that often.



There would be no, or very little, advantage to the casino to show a Ten when the other card is a 7,8 or 9. If you were designing a cheating system you would probably only turn over a Ten when the other card is a 5 or 6. And maybe a 4.

If you combined that tactic with using a deck where you have removed 3/16 or 4/16 of the Ten cards -as suggested by the post above - then it would be harder for players to discern that either tactic was being used.

Edit: Someone should work out house edge for this case:

Rules as OP states, 6 Decks, S17, 3-2, DAS, DOA, Surrender, Resplit to 4 hands except Aces, Dealer peeks on Ace but not on Ten.
Remove 3/16 of Tens
When dealer is dealt a T-6 or T-5, he shows the Ten.
********************************************
Last edited by: gordonm888 on Sep 30, 2019
So many better men, a few of them friends, are dead. And a thousand thousand slimy things live on, and so do I.
michael99000
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September 30th, 2019 at 9:58:06 AM permalink
Quote: gordonm888

There would be no, or very little, advantage to the casino to show a Ten when the other card is a 7,8 or 9. .



Dealer has a 10 and a 7 for 17, I have 9. Anytime the dealer shows his 7 Iím doubling. If he always shows his 10 in that case, then Iím never getting the chance to double my 9 against him
gordonm888
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aruzin
September 30th, 2019 at 11:05:58 AM permalink
Quote: michael99000

Dealer has a 10 and a 7 for 17, I have 9. Anytime the dealer shows his 7 Iím doubling. If he always shows his 10 in that case, then Iím never getting the chance to double my 9 against him



I agree, though I would put that in the category of "very little edge." (And if some Tens are removed from the deck then the decision changes anyway, such that it is best to Hit 9 vs 7.) The big edge comes from when dealer has 10 and 6, or 10 and 5 and shows only the 10 - player will bust with frequency of 34% and split and double less often against the dealers 10-6 and 10-5.

If you were a crooked casino designing a crooked BJ game that gamblers would have a hard time detecting (on an Island where most of your customers are tourists who may never come back) what would you do?

*******************************
Rules as OP states, 6 Decks, S17, 3-2, DAS, DOA, Surrender, Resplit to 4 hands except Aces, Dealer peeks on Ace but not on Ten.
Cheat 1: Remove 3/16 of Tens
Cheat 2: When dealer is dealt a T-6 or T-5, he shows the Ten.
**************************************
Without the cheats, the house edge is < 0.4%
My "back of envelope" calculation is that the 2 cheats would result in a house edge of roughly 2.8% when player plays basic strategy.

If the two cheats were: Remove 4/16 of Tens, and always show the Ten when dealer has T-6, T-5, or T-4, I roughly estimate a house edge of 4%, given that player uses basic strategy.
So many better men, a few of them friends, are dead. And a thousand thousand slimy things live on, and so do I.
aruzin
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October 1st, 2019 at 7:04:49 AM permalink
Quote: gordonm888


If the two cheats were: Remove 4/16 of Tens, and always show the Ten when dealer has T-6, T-5, or T-4, I roughly estimate a house edge of 4%, given that player uses basic strategy.




Very useful info, thanks. Now I have to try and see how many (minimum) hands one needs to play to approach the only 4% losses to casino... !?

I think this was discussed in another thread, but when stats are quoted about house edge, you think you should walk away with loosing just 4% of your money, but this is if you play (large) X number of hands - due to various STD and other factors, something always hard to grasp.

So if I play 100 hands I could double my money or loose 100%. But if I play say 100,000 hands or a million I should approach that 4%. I have seen some numbers in another thread, but what is your take of what that number is (approx.)... !?
DogHand
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aruzin
October 2nd, 2019 at 8:47:02 AM permalink
Quote: aruzin

Quote: gordonm888


If the two cheats were: Remove 4/16 of Tens, and always show the Ten when dealer has T-6, T-5, or T-4, I roughly estimate a house edge of 4%, given that player uses basic strategy.




Very useful info, thanks. Now I have to try and see how many (minimum) hands one needs to play to approach the only 4% losses to casino... !?

I think this was discussed in another thread, but when stats are quoted about house edge, you think you should walk away with loosing just 4% of your money, but this is if you play (large) X number of hands - due to various STD and other factors, something always hard to grasp.

So if I play 100 hands I could double my money or loose 100%. But if I play say 100,000 hands or a million I should approach that 4%. I have seen some numbers in another thread, but what is your take of what that number is (approx.)... !?



aruzin,

According to gordonm888, your Expected Value per hand is -4%, or -0.04. This means that if you play "n" hands, your total EV will be -0.04*(n).

For flat-betting with Basic Strategy, BJ has a Standard Deviation per hand of about 1.15. This means that if you play "n" hands, your total SD will be 1.15*(n)^0.5. Approximately 95% of the time, your actual result will be within 2SD of your EV.

Let's play with some numbers to illustrate.

If you play 100 hands, your EV is -0.04*100 = -4 units. Your SD is 1.15*100^0.5 = 1.15*10 = 11.5, so 2SD's is 23. This means that, with 95% certainty, your actual result will be between (-4-23) and (-4+23), so in the range of -27 to +19 units. If you are flat-betting $10 per hand, that's -$270 to +$190. Thus, you have a reasonable chance to be ahead after 100 hands.

If you play 10,000 hands, your EV is -0.04*10,000 = -400 units. Your SD is 1.15*10,000^0.5 = 1.15*100 = 115, so 2SD's is 230. This means that, with 95% certainty, your actual result will be between (-400-230) and (-400+230), so in the range of -630 to -170 units. If you are flat-betting $10 per hand, that's -$6,300 to -$1,700. Thus, you will almost certainly be losing after 10,000 hands.

Now you try! What will your 95% confidence range be if you play one million hands at $10 per hand? Hint: it won't be pretty ;-)

Hope this helps!

Dog Hand
aruzin
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October 2nd, 2019 at 10:04:41 AM permalink
Quote: DogHand


Now you try! What will your 95% confidence range be if you play one million hands at $10 per hand? Hint: it won't be pretty ;-)

Hope this helps!

Dog Hand



Thanks for the explanation, I think it is becoming clear where I was getting confused. I always thought about the 4% house edge or -EV in terms of my own bank roll and not the actual hands value played... !

Say I go to holiday here or Vegas and want to budget $1000 to play BJ in casino. I always thought if I play well and according to house edge I should loose -0.04 * 1000 = -$40.... and I only achieve that if I play enough hands in order to get close to that - because otherwise in the first night I could just loose -$500 but the next night might win, but if played enough I should loose approximately the -EV.... !!!

I see now that this is totally wrong, I need to take into account the total value of hands I play for -EV, so if I play 1000 hands of $10 each, then I am expected to loose -0.04 * 1000 * 10 = -$400, and if play 10000 hands, then -$4000 (that of course never happens because I have already lost my bank roll way before that !).

But what do you guys really consider your "n" to be, on one night in casino, on your two weeks holiday, per year, over the course of your life time ... !!!?

I was also thinking how to calculate what is a good amount to take to play for one night for say a $10 table (considering good/bad streaks can happen) - I have seen many who walk in with their credit card and look so miserable when leaving, loose a lot more than they wanted/could afford. I always go with a fixed amount I plan to loose in my pocket and no more, it is mainly for entertainment and some fun, my moto is to loose X amount on a night or double it to 2X and walk out - it's not ideal but works for me, sometimes... ! lol
Last edited by: aruzin on Oct 2, 2019
dddkkk1
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October 19th, 2019 at 8:34:00 PM permalink
Quote: aruzin

... what if they peek or somehow get extra info about the cards and act accordingly, now that is simply nasty....


Yes it is terrible if they are cheating, below is probably the worst hand the dealer can do this to you on, but I haven't checked doubles or splits.

For this game the cost of hitting a 16 (10+6) against a dealer 16 (10+6) is 59.34%, because if the player stands then the EV is +22.08% and if the player hits then the EV is -37.26%.
Also, if the dealer only cheated on the hand stated above, "player 10+6" vs "dealer 10+6", it would add 0.064% to the house edge for a basic strategy player.
The working out I used for the figure above is as follows:
"Chance of Player 10+6" x "Chance of Dealer 10+6" x (-59.34%)
= ((96/312 x 24/311) x 2) x (95/310 x 23/309) x (-59.34%) = -0.064%

Note: I know the true chance of a dealer 10 + 6 is ((95/310 x 23/309) x 2) in the above scenario, but the chance of a non-cheating dealer getting a 10-up hand in the above scenario is 50%, so that is why i did the working out like that.

Lastly, it seems other replies have already worked out the EV for a "cheating dealer" for this game already so I probably won't analyze this any further.
Last edited by: dddkkk1 on Oct 19, 2019
aruzin
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November 4th, 2019 at 10:05:49 AM permalink
In our dodgy casino I noticed there is still one dealer who shows up different card as dealer card (sometime her first and sometime second), no idea why, but I stop play when she comes, other 3 or 4 dealers don't, so I play with them.

But from a few weeks ago they started a new rule, they peek the whole card for BJ when showing 10s. This was done in another casino but not here, but they started it now. They used to just peek under A... !

I was wondering why they started this, I am sure it benefits the odds of the casino, they never do anything to benefit players... ! lol

So this is a 6 deck game, pays 3/2 on BJ, accepts insurance and pays 2/1 for A and stays on all 17s. Can surrender any hand (not against A) and split any hand and as many times (for AA only can split once).

In old days if you doubled down (say your 11, or could for any hand) against dealer 10 and he flipped a BJ you only lost half the wager - so not much of an advantage to anyone now that they are peeking at hole card under 10s, because this scenario never happens.... (we lose the same amount when dealer has BJ when showing 10s).

But you can only surrender now before dealer peeks on 10s, most guys are not paying attention and/or are not quick, so maybe that is where the casino get an advantage.... !? Any idea how much advantage that adds to house edge/EV and do you need to change basic strategy because of this new peek... ?

Also I guess another advantage to casino is that it speeds up the game, once he peeks on 10s and has a BJ everybody loses and no need to waste time and play the hands anymore (unless if you have BJ too, which will be no loss). This also could lead to other issues, as dealer behavior can change once he knows what he has, in a corrupt environment he can help a player or otherwise, I tried to observe them afterwards for any changes or look at their eyes when they peek and see if anything can be read ...! (this was only available for As peek before, now more common).

(Also dealers cut the deck to 50% or lower, so most card countings are pretty useless on their table.)
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