Jack2022
Jack2022
Joined: Dec 31, 2021
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December 31st, 2021 at 10:04:28 AM permalink
HI. I'm new to Blackjack but I've now played over 1000 hands, with tiny stakes as an experiment, using perfect basic strategy expecting a return of around 99.5% but in reality achieving only 85%. I realize this is a small sample size but I'm wondering if there's something about the game I don't understand?
I've only played live online, RNG online, on a couple of apps and on the Wizard's trainer. All have seen disappointing results and a similar pattern where I fall behind, occasionally swing back towards break even, but generally hover around a 10%+ loss.
What are other people's experiences playing basic strategy? Have you achieved the expected return and over what sample size? Thanks.
billryan
billryan
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Jack2022
December 31st, 2021 at 10:12:00 AM permalink
Are you playing in a way that the machine corrects your errors? If not, I'd suspect you are making mistakes you aren't aware of.
A thousand hands is not enough to get a good sampling, in any event.
If you are questioning if BS really works, it does but very few beginners can play BJ perfectly.
You have to play on sites that correct you, or you'll just keep making the same mistakes over and over.
The difference between fiction and reality is that fiction is supposed to make sense.
ChumpChange
ChumpChange
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Jack2022
December 31st, 2021 at 10:19:09 AM permalink
If just 1,000 hands were played and you bet $10 per hand (flat bet), your total bet would be $10,000 and you'd wind up with $8,500 or a $1,500 loss. Would that be 425 wins and 575 losses? Yes, losing streaks happen! But you might expect to lose $50 instead of $1,500 due to the HA.
kewlj
kewlj
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Jack2022
December 31st, 2021 at 10:35:31 AM permalink
I don't think we should question whether the OP is really playing perfect basic strategy as he claims. Probably not perfect, BUT it really doesn't matter. The cost of a few basic strategy mistakes playing $10 is nothing. It isn't the cost between winning and losing a hand, as many players think. It is the difference in expectation between the optimal play and less optimal play and for $10 wagers that will be pennies or even fractions of a cent. So let's dismiss the idea of these poor results as being due to imperfect basic strategy play.

My read was that the OP was really asking if his online game is legit, fair and honest? I will let you guys with much more online experience than me duke that one out. I am sort of in the Op's camp in that I have never felt to my satisfaction that I am guaranteed this. That is why I don't play a lot of online games.
Ace2
Ace2
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OnceDearJack2022teliot
December 31st, 2021 at 10:48:09 AM permalink
For 1000 hands your expectation is to be down 5 units +/- 36. If youíre down 150 units, thatís about 4 SDs south of expectations, roughly a 1 in 30,000 chance

Could be extremely bad luck, a rigged game or youíre not actually playing proper basic strategy
Itís all about making that GTA
mwalz9
mwalz9
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Jack2022
December 31st, 2021 at 11:07:26 AM permalink
Quote: kewlj

I don't think we should question whether the OP is really playing perfect basic strategy as he claims. Probably not perfect, BUT it really doesn't matter. The cost of a few basic strategy mistakes playing $10 is nothing. It isn't the cost between winning and losing a hand, as many players think. It is the difference in expectation between the optimal play and less optimal play and for $10 wagers that will be pennies or even fractions of a cent. So let's dismiss the idea of these poor results as being due to imperfect basic strategy play.

My read was that the OP was really asking if his online game is legit, fair and honest? I will let you guys with much more online experience than me duke that one out. I am sort of in the Op's camp in that I have never felt to my satisfaction that I am guaranteed this. That is why I don't play a lot of online games.
link to original post



Depends on what Online App it is. I can 100% attest with solid proof that FanDuel BlackJack on NetEnt, regulated by the WV Lottery Commission is legit. I have been on the app for 3 years now. I have used 100% basic strategy, I know it in my sleep. I have almost $2,000,000 coin in, and before any promos my net is very, very close to house edge. Throw in the promo money and I am slightly ahead. $2,000,000 coin in, and close to 1,000 days of play is a sample size big enough to produce this evidence, in my opinion. I feel like if it was rigged, I'd be getting destroyed.
Jack2022
Jack2022
Joined: Dec 31, 2021
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December 31st, 2021 at 11:50:00 AM permalink
Thank you all for your replies. I've been using the basic strategy charts and on the wizard's trainer I've always opted for the recommended play. I'm sure I've made a small number of errors but assume that the reduction in expected return would be small. My understanding is that, even with perfect BS, you will lose more hands than you win and theoretically claw back most of those losses by doubling down when appropriate and benefitting from the 3 to 2 BJ pay out so I was asking if the patterns I've experienced are typical. That is being in the negative by 10% plus a lot of the time but occasionally swinging back towards break even and rarely being in the positive.
Jack2022
Jack2022
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December 31st, 2021 at 11:52:34 AM permalink
Thanks @mwalz9 that's a large sample size so it's reassuring that you've realized the expected return while utilizing basic strategy.
billryan
billryan
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December 31st, 2021 at 11:55:03 AM permalink
Quote: kewlj

I don't think we should question whether the OP is really playing perfect basic strategy as he claims. Probably not perfect, BUT it really doesn't matter. The cost of a few basic strategy mistakes playing $10 is nothing. It isn't the cost between winning and losing a hand, as many players think. It is the difference in expectation between the optimal play and less optimal play and for $10 wagers that will be pennies or even fractions of a cent. So let's dismiss the idea of these poor results as being due to imperfect basic strategy play.

My read was that the OP was really asking if his online game is legit, fair and honest? I will let you guys with much more online experience than me duke that one out. I am sort of in the Op's camp in that I have never felt to my satisfaction that I am guaranteed this. That is why I don't play a lot of online games.
link to original post



He said he played on several sites, including the Wizards. I don't think there is any question that site is legit. 99% of the time when new players get worse results than expected, it is their play that is sub-optimal, not the sites.
The difference between fiction and reality is that fiction is supposed to make sense.
kewlj
kewlj
Joined: Apr 17, 2012
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December 31st, 2021 at 12:07:08 PM permalink
Quote: billryan


He said he played on several sites, including the Wizards. I don't think there is any question that site is legit. 99% of the time when new players get worse results than expected, it is their play that is sub-optimal, not the sites.



Billryan, it is going to take one heck of a lot of mistakes to go from a player disadvantage of 0.5% to 15%.

I mean what are the most common basic strategy mistakes? Standing 16 vs 10 instead of hitting. Standing 12 vs 2 and 3 instead of hitting. Standing soft 18 vs 9 or 10 instead of hitting. Maybe standing soft 18 vs 5 or 6 instead of doubling.

If you were to make these plays incorrectly each and every time, plus throw in a few more even, the house advantage is still less that 1%. He is talking about a house advantage of 15% over his 1000 hands. A few (or even many) basic strategy mistakes just is not going to account for that.

Probably it is just bad variance over a small sample size, but as somebody pointed out, that is 4 standard deviations. That is pretty high. I personally thought it might be lower than that like in the 3 standard deviations area, but I trust the 4 standard deviations number.

You are either talking really bad variance over a small sample size, or something isn't legit. If a guy says he is playing good basic strategy, a few mistakes, would account for nothing.

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