algle
Joined: Aug 12, 2010
• Posts: 82
August 1st, 2011 at 9:31:43 PM permalink
Quote: Wizard

Quote: algle

Here is the ultimate simple blackjack strategy - ONE RULE BLACKJACK:

1. Assume every remaining card in the shoe is a ten, and play to win accordingly.

For one thing, what do you do when the dealer is showing an ace? The dealer peeks and confirms no ten, so what do you assume?

That issue aside, it also calls for doubling any hand under 11 against a 2 to 6, because the dealer must bust. For example, doubling 4 against a 2. Maybe there is no better one sentence strategy, but I can't advocate it.

I'll admit I hadn't thought of the no-ten hole card - but that's only because I've never played blackjack where the dealer draws a hole card. I suppose you would have to assume it's a ten anyway - or at least a total of ten, e.g. 5+5 for 21 - otherwise I would have more than one rule (and that was my own challenge - one rule only).

I am nonetheless heartily chuffed to hear the Wiz himself speculate that maybe there is no better one sentence strategy!
If nothing will change then I am nothing.
MarkAbe
Joined: Oct 23, 2010
• Posts: 50
August 1st, 2011 at 11:34:49 PM permalink
Quote: algle

Rules, rules, and more rules!
This is supposed to be SIMPLIFIED basic strategy!
Those who can't or won't learn proper basic strategy are going to struggle with only five rules too.

Here is the ultimate simple blackjack strategy - ONE RULE BLACKJACK:

1. Assume every remaining card in the shoe is a ten, and play to win accordingly.

Even worse, it would have you hit a hard 19 against a 10 in an attempt to beat the dealer's guaranteed 20!

My own favorite version of 'simple for newbies' goes like this:

"Always" rules:
Mimic the dealer by standing on hard 17 or soft 18
Double 10's and A's [I know always double 10's is wrong, but easy to remember. Always double A's is actually correct against H17 or double-deck]
Split A's and 8's.

Against 2-6, explained as 'when the dealer is more likely to bust'
Don't bust first! (stand on hard 12)
Double 9's and soft 16, 17, 18.
Split everything except 'fours, fives, and faces'

I don't explain about 'surrender' because most LV casinos don't do it and almost all newbies won't remember it.

I only wish I could remember who told me this...
algle
Joined: Aug 12, 2010
• Posts: 82
August 2nd, 2011 at 5:32:37 PM permalink
Quote: MarkAbe

My own favorite version of 'simple for newbies' goes like this:

"Always" rules:
Mimic the dealer by standing on hard 17 or soft 18
Double 10's and A's [I know always double 10's is wrong, but easy to remember. Always double A's is actually correct against H17 or double-deck]
Split A's and 8's.

Against 2-6, explained as 'when the dealer is more likely to bust'
Don't bust first! (stand on hard 12)
Double 9's and soft 16, 17, 18.
Split everything except 'fours, fives, and faces'

That's at least six rules. My point is that the (literal) Ultimate Basic Strategy would be one rule only. Obviously it's not going to be as good as a 2-rule strategy, let alone a 6-rule strategy. However I can change the wording to improve it as follows:

1. Assume every remaining card is a ten, and hit to 17 or let the dealer bust first.

Can anyone do better in one rule? I would suggest it has to be one sentence only, with no more than one "AND", one "OR", and one comma.....
If nothing will change then I am nothing.
Wizard
Joined: Oct 14, 2009
• Posts: 18820
August 2nd, 2011 at 8:34:41 PM permalink
Quote: algle

1. Assume every remaining card is a ten, and hit to 17 or let the dealer bust first.

I think just "mimic the dealer" might be better.
It's not whether you win or lose; it's whether or not you had a good bet.
algle
Joined: Aug 12, 2010
• Posts: 82
August 2nd, 2011 at 8:47:48 PM permalink
Quote: Wizard

I think just "mimic the dealer" might be better.

Possibly, but you would never get the opportunity to split, or double, or stand on a hard 12-16.
If nothing will change then I am nothing.
Wizard
Joined: Oct 14, 2009
• Posts: 18820
August 2nd, 2011 at 9:01:10 PM permalink
Quote: algle

Possibly, but you would never get the opportunity to split, or double, or stand on a hard 12-16.

True. How about something like "Double all 10 and 11, otherwise hit to 17 against a big card (7 to ace), otherwise hit to 12."

It is a run on sentence, but I think your rules were to allow for two conjunctions/commas. Splitting is actually that not much benefit to the player in the big scheme of the game. Where I think this sentence lacks in addressing soft hands.
It's not whether you win or lose; it's whether or not you had a good bet.
DrEntropy
Joined: Nov 13, 2009
• Posts: 199
August 2nd, 2011 at 9:17:20 PM permalink
Here is my attempt at a one line strategy:
Print out the strategy card AND bring it with you to the table, OR memorize it.

<* GRIN *>

But, in all seriousness, buying/printing a card and at least spending some time learning how to read it quickly is one approach.... I know many casino's let you use a card, though I think I heard some might restrict you to only use 'store bought', I have not tested that experimentally.
"Mathematical expectation has nothing to do with results." (Sklansky, Theory of Poker).
Wizard
Joined: Oct 14, 2009
• Posts: 18820
August 2nd, 2011 at 9:19:21 PM permalink
Here is yet another extra simple strategy. Use the first rule that applies:

1. Always splits eights and aces.
2. Always double 10 and 11.
3. Hit hard 9 or less.
4. Hit hard 12 to 16 against a 7 to ace.
5. Hit soft 17 or less.
6. Otherwise, stand.

That is just 32 words, and that counts the numbers (but not step numbers) as words. The cost above perfect basic strategy is 0.44%. That is about half of the average blackjack player.
It's not whether you win or lose; it's whether or not you had a good bet.
algle
Joined: Aug 12, 2010
• Posts: 82
August 2nd, 2011 at 9:31:36 PM permalink
Quote: Wizard

True. How about something like "Double all 10 and 11, otherwise hit to 17 against a big card (7 to ace), otherwise hit to 12."

It is a run on sentence, but I think your rules were to allow for two conjunctions/commas. Splitting is actually that not much benefit to the player in the big scheme of the game. Where I think this sentence lacks in addressing soft hands.

Agreed. That's getting quite close to my original "basic basic strategy" - before I started on "one rule blackjack" - which went something like this:

Follow these steps in order for each hand, assuming every remaining card is a ten:

1. Never bust if the dealer will bust.
2. Double 9/10/11 if you will win.
3. Split if both hands will win.
4. Hit to hard 17.
If nothing will change then I am nothing.
MarkAbe
Joined: Oct 23, 2010
• Posts: 50
August 3rd, 2011 at 10:11:12 PM permalink
Quote: algle

Agreed. That's getting quite close to my original "basic basic strategy" - before I started on "one rule blackjack" - which went something like this:

Follow these steps in order for each hand, assuming every remaining card is a ten:

1. Never bust if the dealer will bust.
2. Double 9/10/11 if you will win.
3. Split if both hands will win.
4. Hit to hard 17.

Hmm...Double 9/10/11 if you will win sounds pretty good, it's close for 9 and right for 10 and 11 (as the Wiz's simple strategy uses).

I have a problem with split if both hands will win - it's going to get you to split 10's pretty often.

You didn't do anything about soft hands - what would your strategy be for them?

Mark