HansGruber
HansGruber
Joined: May 1, 2018
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May 1st, 2018 at 9:43:42 AM permalink
I have a question that has bugged me for years. I am a casual player with an OK [I hope] grasp of basic strategy, but certainly not an expert.

Here is my question: When a deck is heavy with high cards we are advised to increase our bets because we are at an advantage. I don't disagree / distrust the advice but there is something about it that I do not understand, and it drives me crazy: How am I at more of an 'advantage' than the dealer taking cards from the same deck? Are we not equally likely to draw, say, two face cards?

The only explanation I've heard that makes sense is that I might adjust my basic strategy further into the hand and stand on, say, a 12 vs a 2 showing because I know the odds of the dealer busting are higher. What I cannot wrap my head around is how increasing my bet at the start of the hand is more in my favour than the dealer's. Although I am more likely to be dealt a high hand, are they not equally likely to be dealt something good? How is my 'advantage' not perfectly matched by the dealer's 'advantage' of taking cards from the same rich deck??

I'm not challenging the orthodoxy - I am just frustrated that I've never understood the concept behind how a deck full of high cards offers more advantage to me than it does the house.

So my question boils down to this: If I play 10,000 hands with a normal deck and 10,000 hands with a deck loaded with face cards, will my winning percentage through identical basic strategy play be different? And if so, how can that be when the dealer also has a greater chance of drawing face cards? Forget bet size for a minute - if I just play the exact same with different cards, will I win more hands?

I have always felt stupid for not understanding the concept behind this. Any explanations will be much appreciated.
gamerfreak
gamerfreak
Joined: Dec 28, 2014
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May 1st, 2018 at 9:53:10 AM permalink
Most of the EV from a deck rich in high cards comes from doubles and splits.

The dealer cannot do either, so the player has the advantage.
HansGruber
HansGruber
Joined: May 1, 2018
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May 1st, 2018 at 10:01:40 AM permalink
Right - that makes sense. You can choose to be aggressive there but they have no such choice. But, again, that's an example of something you might do based on how the hand progresses [like deciding not to hit a 12 against a 2]. I've always struggled with whether I have any advantage on those first two cards.

If all of the advantage comes after the initial deal.... that makes sense to me. And I should think that way/act on it next time I'm in Vegas. Thanks for the reply. Much appreciated.
Ibeatyouraces
Ibeatyouraces
Joined: Jan 12, 2010
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Thanks for this post from:
Romes
May 1st, 2018 at 10:07:55 AM permalink
There are 6 reasons why:

1) Blackjacks. Although the odds are same for both the dealer and player to get a blackjack, we get paid a premium of 3 to 2 (barring you aren't playing a short pay game). The dealer only gets even money.

2) Insurance. When the deck is rich in 10's, we can bet on insurance and have an edge. The dealer cannot do this.

3) Double Downs. We can double in favorable situations and have a better chance at winning. The dealer cannot double.

4) Splitting Pairs. We can split pairs, the dealer cannot.

5) Dealer bust rate on stiff hands increases. We don't have to hit a stiff hand, the dealer MUST.

6) Surrender. We can surrender lousy hands, when allowed, (16 vs 10). The dealer must hit.
DUHHIIIIIIIII HEARD THAT!
Joeman
Joeman
Joined: Feb 21, 2014
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May 1st, 2018 at 10:08:14 AM permalink
Also, with more 10 value cards in the deck, the probability of getting a BJ increases. While you and the dealer are just as likely to get one, you get paid 3:2 for yours; he gets paid 1:1 for his.

EDIT: Ugh, too slow again, IBYA beat me to it!
"Dealer has 'rock'... Pay 'paper!'"
billryan
billryan
Joined: Nov 2, 2009
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May 1st, 2018 at 10:10:01 AM permalink
A rich deck produces more blackjacks. You get 1.5 units when you win with one. Dealer doesn't.
The difference between fiction and reality is that fiction is supposed to make sense.
HansGruber
HansGruber
Joined: May 1, 2018
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May 1st, 2018 at 10:11:46 AM permalink
Thanks - that all makes sense. Other than blackjacks paying more [which is great] it seems to come down to decisions later in a hand. I'm going to try to remember that and act on it next time I'm at the Golden Gate or Binions. Appreciate the advice.
Venthus
Venthus
Joined: Dec 10, 2012
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May 1st, 2018 at 10:12:26 AM permalink
Also, you get 3:2 on a player BJ but lose only 1:1.

Edit: ...This is what I get for opening a thread and responding way later.
billryan
billryan
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May 1st, 2018 at 10:28:17 AM permalink
Quote: HansGruber

Thanks - that all makes sense. Other than blackjacks paying more [which is great] it seems to come down to decisions later in a hand. I'm going to try to remember that and act on it next time I'm at the Golden Gate or Binions. Appreciate the advice.





Does Binions have playable blackjack?
The difference between fiction and reality is that fiction is supposed to make sense.
Venthus
Venthus
Joined: Dec 10, 2012
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May 1st, 2018 at 10:38:25 AM permalink
Quote: billryan

Does Binions have playable blackjack?



Last time I was there, all their BJ was 6:5, with the exception of Zombie, which was 3:2. Also, it's one of the few (only?) BJ variants where you get to actually hit a 17v8+, so people can finally quit it with the mother-in-law jokes.

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