Basic Strategy Chart 1
Rick's blackjack system has been stolen and plagiarized from some of the finest gambling books available, although there is some original content. Remember to look at the charts as your reading this, it'll make more sense.
Double Down Strategy Chart 2
Splitting Strategy Chart 3
Soft Hand Strategy Chart 4
With this system you can increase your chance of winning at Blackjack to 49.4%, just about the highest win percentage you can achieve without counting cards. On some nights you will see a lucky ignorant player winning big cash while you play "perfect" cards and lose. However, this is not usually the case. This system will give you the best chance for winning, now all you have to do is supply the luck.
BASIC STRATEGY--Chart 1
This is the basic strategy. You want to imagine that the dealer's hole card (the one you can't see) is always a 10. This is why you will sometimes stand on "lousy" hands. It is the hope that the dealer will break if he has a 2 thru 6 showing. Never take a chance of breaking if the dealer has one of these "bust" cards showing. The exception being if you have a 12 and the dealer has a 2 or 3 showing. Obviously if you have less than 12 you are always going to at least hit. This chart is easiest to remember if you remember to think of the dealer's hole card is a 10 and you expect him to bust if he has a 2-6 showing (then you would not want a card that could potentially bust you).
DOUBLE DOWN--Chart 2
This is the chart for "hard" hand doubling down. The reason these hands are seen as "hard" is that there are no aces involved. (An example of a soft hand is an ace and a six. This is a "soft" hand because it could be either 7 or 17). This is an easy chart to memorize. Always double down on eleven. You double down on 10 when the dealer is showing a 2 thru 9. The logic of this chart is you have to assume that a 10 will be your next card and you want to bet extra on it. Remember to assume that the dealer has a 10 for a hole card. That is why you do not double down when you have 10 and the dealer has a 10 showing. You assume that the dealer has a 10 for a hole card. If he already has 20, you would not want to double your bet when the best hand you can get is a 20. You could possibly catch an ace, but it's not a good bet. Double down on hard 9's when the dealer has a 3 thru 6 showing. An easy way to remember this is 3+6=9. Knowing when to double down makes you a much stronger player.
SPLITTING STRATEGY--Chart 3
This chart is a little harder to memorize than the first two, but it is not too difficult. There is a pattern. Just start at the top and start memorizing by repetition. Always split aces and eights. Never split tens, because you already have a very strong hand.
Splitting 9's, 7's, and 6's is easy to remember. Split 9's if the dealer has 2 thru 9 showing, split 7's if the dealer has a 2 thru 7 showing, split 6's if the dealer has 2-6 showing. Do not split 5's, if you receive a pair of 5's, refer to chart 2 where you have a 10 and you must consider doubling down. Never split 4's and split 3's and 2's when the dealer has a 4 thru 7 showing. This chart may seem daunting at first but you will soon find out it's not really that hard (Kristi memorized it in 20 minutes!).
SOFT HAND STRATEGY--Chart 4
Very few people know what to do with "soft" hands. This chart will make people believe you are a very good player and some ignorant players will think you are a moron. The pit boss's and dealers will know that the former is true. The key to this chart is the ace-7, the soft 18. All the other sections are easy to remember except the soft 18. Always stand on soft 19's and 20's. Soft 17's, 16's, 15's, 14's, 13's are the same. Always hit them unless the dealer showing a 4 thru 6, then double down. There is no easy way to remember the soft 18. Hit it if the dealer shows a 2, 3, 7, or 8. Double down if the dealer is showing a 4 thru 6. Just take a hit if the dealer showing a 9, 10, or an ace.
Some final advice:
To make you the strongest player possible we need to talk about some options that casinos may offer. First of all, never ever take insurance. It is a complete sucker's bet. Some people will tell you it is smart to take insurance when you have a Blackjack and the dealer has the ace showing. It is your option to take "even" money instead of the 1.5 times the dealer should pay you. This is your choice before the dealer checks his "hole" card. Here is why you should not do it. There are 52 cards in a deck and 16 of them are 10's. That means that the other 36 cards are not. Chances are 9-4 that he does not have a Blackjack. You don't really need to know the reasoning behind why not to take insurance, just remember the dealer wouldn't ask if it was in your favor!
Casinos will stand on a 17 or higher. Some will hit a soft 17, others will not. It is in your favor to play at a table where the dealer stands on all 17's.
The last thing to discuss is the option of surrender. I have only seen this is Las Vegas. It is definitely not in Atlantic City. Ask the dealer if he offers "surrender". This option is advantageous to the player. If you decide to surrender you lose half your bet and your hand is over without any further activity. You want to surrender if you have a 15 or 16 and dealer is showing an ace or a ten. These are the only times when it is good to exercise this option.
Study hard and good luck!
HTML created by Martin Colello.