Wanderer
Wanderer
Joined: Jul 9, 2014
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July 10th, 2014 at 5:17:16 AM permalink
There's a casino near me that has a few double deck pitch tables and at least one of them is almost always empty - at least early in the day. I do not have any math numbers to back me up, but I feel like (as a card counter) that playing the dealer head to head gives me a more accurate read on the flow of high cards that will be distributed to us. Every card has relevance and I think that helps. There's no John Doe beside me who might take all the aces and tens that I'm hoping will give me a good hand and/or bust the dealer.

Aside from being able to play more hands per hour, can anyone tell me if card counting is indeed more effective head to head vs. the dealer?
RS
RS
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July 10th, 2014 at 5:59:33 AM permalink
Quick answer, yes: You are better off playing head to head than with other players.


You're better off playing heads up (just you vs dealer) for a number of reasons, in no particular order:

1] The game is played at your speed. You don't need to wait for other players to make their playing decisions, buying in, etc.
2] You only make money (EV money) in those positive counts (~ TC = 2+). This does not come by often. You want all the +EV rounds to yourself.
3] Yes, you'll also have to sit through those negative count rounds, but in a DD game, it shouldn't be that bad, especially considering you get all the +EV counts to yourself.
4] No players to get mad at you if you make an index play (not that them getting mad at you matters...but if they start causing a scene by "this guy split Tens against dealer 6!!"...that's bad).
5] Most obviously -- playing 150 hands/hour will make you more money than playing 75 hands/hour.
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FleaStiff
FleaStiff 
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July 10th, 2014 at 7:58:50 AM permalink
Quote: RS

Most obviously -- playing 150 hands/hour will make you more money than playing 75 hands/hour.

Yes, most obviously. So you get noticed as being a winner because the dealer ain't got nothin' else to notice. Now this is a card counter's worst fear, but then are such worst fears really justified?
1BB
1BB
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July 10th, 2014 at 8:22:38 AM permalink
I'm very fussy when it comes to double deck. For me it's all about penetration and rules. I will not play with less than 60% penetration. Penetration will also dictate how many other players I will play with. The better the pen, the more players I'll sit with. Up to a point of course.
Many people, especially ignorant people, want to punish you for speaking the truth. - Mahatma Ghandi
RS
RS
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July 10th, 2014 at 9:00:49 AM permalink
Quote: FleaStiff

Yes, most obviously. So you get noticed as being a winner because the dealer ain't got nothin' else to notice. Now this is a card counter's worst fear, but then are such worst fears really justified?



I'd rather play an hour heads up than 3 hours in crowded conditions.

Also, that's why you rat-hole chips as well as play short sessions!


Would it be better to give surveillance and the pit 3 hours to evaluate your play or only 60 minutes? (Or less than 60 min!)
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Wanderer
Wanderer
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July 10th, 2014 at 9:27:36 AM permalink
Quote:

2] You only make money (EV money) in those positive counts (~ TC = 2+). This does not come by often. You want all the +EV rounds to yourself.



Here's my reasoning from my original post: In a DD game, it's only takes a RC of 2+ to get a TC of 1+ right at the start. And while that's good, those numbers are sensitive and can drop very quickly. Let's say after the first hand that we're calling the RC as +4 and the TC as +2. That's good for the player. But if you're playing 3rd base in multiplayer game and the two players to your right both get 10's on the 2nd hand, then your RC (as you are about to get your first card) is now +2 and your TC is about +1. I don't like that. Of course, the reverse could happen with them getting low cards to take the RC/TC even higher than it was originally, but I think (as card counters) that we want to deal with as few variables as possible.

If I am playing H2H and on the 2nd hand the count is +4/+2, I feel good about that. But if three other players are going to get a card before the dealer and I do, I don't feel as confident. Like I said, I don't have any figures or anything to back me up. I just feel like it's better for the counter when every card matters, as it does in H2H.
AxiomOfChoice
AxiomOfChoice
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July 10th, 2014 at 11:13:18 AM permalink
Quote: Wanderer

There's a casino near me that has a few double deck pitch tables and at least one of them is almost always empty - at least early in the day. I do not have any math numbers to back me up, but I feel like (as a card counter) that playing the dealer head to head gives me a more accurate read on the flow of high cards that will be distributed to us. Every card has relevance and I think that helps. There's no John Doe beside me who might take all the aces and tens that I'm hoping will give me a good hand and/or bust the dealer.

Aside from being able to play more hands per hour, can anyone tell me if card counting is indeed more effective head to head vs. the dealer?



It is better, but not for the reasons that you mention. Remember that another player can take bad cards as well as good cards. There is no "flow" of the cards, and your edge on a particular hand is calculated before you place your bet, and that is accurate regardless of the number of other players at the table. Eg, if the TC is +4, and you place a large bet, your edge on that bet is the same regardless of whether it is 1-on-1 or the table is full. Others taking cards makes no difference, since the cards that effect you are chosen randomly, and they are not in some specific order.
Wanderer
Wanderer
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July 10th, 2014 at 1:12:11 PM permalink
Quote:

Others taking cards makes no difference, since the cards that effect you are chosen randomly, and they are not in some specific order.



You're probably right. I still feel more comfortable, though, playing a game where all the cards dealt are relevant and I get my cards as quick as I can on a positive count. Maybe it's just one of my quirks. But since H2H has clear advantages in other regards, no one could consider it a costly play. At worst, it's irrelevant.

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