Payouts in Super Fun 21

Super Fun 21 is a blackjack game that is a variation of the original game form. There are a few different house rules—some good and some bad. But of all the variations, which I still do not recommend playing, Super Fun 21 is the one with the lowest house edge of all the different blackjack games.

First let’s take a look at the house rules that have changed a bit.

First off all player blackjack wins. There is no topping a player blackjack, not even for the dealer. Even if the dealer also has a natural blackjack, he will still lose to the player—not a push, but a full win.

However, to counter this nice happy house rule, blackjack will only pay even money, or a 1-1 payout. The only blackjack that pays differently is if both the Ace and the 10 value card are diamonds. Then the payout is 2-1.

You might be thinking that settling for even money payouts and the occasional 2-1 payout is a fair trade for having a blackjack that wins no matter what.

You would be thinking wrong, and you would be settling.

Of all of the blackjack that can happen in a game, only one in every sixteen blackjack will be made up of two cards that are both diamonds. That translates into 93.75% of those blackjacks not having diamonds, and a 93.75% chance that you will only be receiving even money for your blackjack.

Over time the amount of money lost in even money and the occasionally 2-1 payouts will add up. Let’s say that you have played enough $10 rounds to have 100 blackjacks. In a regular game of blackjack those $100 blackjack would have given you $1,500.

But according to Super Fun 21 rules, and rounding the 93.75% to 94% to simplify math, you would be making $940 in even money payouts and $120 in the Super Fun 21 diamond blackjack payouts; that brings you to a grand total of $1,060. That is a $440 difference that you lost from playing Super Fun 21. Imagine what you would lose if you were wagering more than $10 per round.

So despite that with a specialized basic strategy played perfectly that can reduce the house edge to 0.8%, the money lost is still just too much for this blackjack variation.

Blackjack Promotion at Virgin

This week is World Space Week. Virgin Casino is encouraging blackjack players to celebrate our world’s most awesome accomplishments by hosting a World Space Week promotion.

This online blackjack promotion is being shared with online roulette players. But we all know which casino game is better.

Up for grab is a prize pool of £5,432.10. Yes, for players who are a part of the winning team, they will win a share of that £5,432.10 prize pool.

In this World Space Week promotion there are four teams for players to choose from. Blackjack players can choose to root for in Virgin’s space race are the United States of America, Great Britain, China or Russia. Players can only choose one team.

Upon registering for the World Space Week promotion, players choose one of the aforementioned teams. Then they must wager a minimum of £100 on any of Virgin’s online blackjack games or online roulette games. As long as the £100 is wagered on any of those types of casino games, players are then entered in the space race for the team they have chosen.

The World Space Week promotion began yesterday, October 4th, and will continue through Sunday, October 10th.

At the end of the promotion on October 10th which ever country’s team has made it to the moon first will win the World Space Week promotion. Players who chose the winning country when they registered will be awarded a share of the £5,432.10 prize pool.

This is one easy online blackjack promotion to play in. Choose a country and wager a minimum of £100 to receive a share of that £5,432.10 if your country wins. Too difficult at all and a fun way to celebrate our world’s space achievements.

Surrendering to Blackjack

Okay, this is more about a play used in blackjack rather than some romantical notion of giving in to desires hidden beneath the surface.

Players in blackjack have one of the most awesome ways to exit a round of blackjack in which the odds are just too high against them to win: surrender. Sometimes the underdog stays under. And if it looks like a round is just not in your favor, you need to get out.

With this blackjack rule, players can give up half of their original wager, keep the other half and exit the round. There is no other cost for exiting a round other than that half of your original wager.

Not too bad considering blackjack and poker are the only casino games that give players a way out of an unfavorable round—and poker players have to give up all of their wager. So, blackjack players, we have it pretty nice.

Surrender comes in two varieties: late and early.

Late surrender allows the player to surrender after the dealer has checked for blackjack. Only after he has checked can surrender be chosen. So if the dealer does have a natural blackjack you are just out of luck. But if you are able to make the play, it can increase your edge by 0.08%.

And while that 0.08% is not too bad, early surrender fives you an even bigger boost: 0.24%. The reason for the larger boost is because players can surrender before the dealer checks for blackjack. Once you surrender, even if the dealer does have a natural blackjack, you still have only lost half of your wager.

But there are only a few times in which surrender is meant to be used. This is not a play to be used like a petulant child does a temper tantrum. A basic strategy chart can tell you when the best times to surrender are.

In fact, that is your homework—find out when the best times to surrender are. The answers will be posted tomorrow morning.

Card Counting Devices in Blackjack

While I am sure that just about every blackjack player out in the world would love to have the advantages that card counting provides, the truth is that the majority of blackjack players will not take the time nor make the effort to gain the skill.

And there are companies out there that will try to turn a profit off of those blackjack players looking for an easy way to have the benefits of card counting without putting in the time. Such companies will create card counting devices and put them up for sale.

These little devices often are the size and resemble those little devices that you hang on your keychain to control your car alarm. In short, these little card counting devices—through the manufacturer’s technology—will do the counting for the blackjack player.

Now, while casinos consider card counting cheating, blackjack players think a little bit differently.

Card counting is not cheating. It is a skill that requires time, effort and practice in order for it to be of any use. Casinos do not like card counting because it can give players an edge, and how dare players find a way to even the odds or beat them.

But blackjack players do consider card counting devices as a way of cheating only because such devices take the skill out of card counting and take away from the skill’s prestige.

One more thing of note: while getting caught at card counting can get you thrown out of a casino, getting caught with a card counting device can potentially get charges filed against you. This is because the device proves you were cheating, while card counting as a skill cannot be proven as its evidence is really only circumstantial.

The point here, blackjack players, is that card counting devices should never, ever be used. They are riskier and pose grater consequences if you are caught with one. Just take the time and make the effort to learn to card count properly.

General Tips for Playing Soft Hands

Aces are the best cards in a game of blackjack. Your first thought as to why might be that an Ace is the best card because it is necessary to having a natural blackjack.

But if that were true, then why are cards worth 10 not considered the best?

Simply put, Aces are the best cards in blackjack because of their flexibility. Hands with Aces, called soft hands, do not bust like hard hands—hands without Aces—do. This is because Aces in blackjack start with a value of 11, but their value can be reduced to 1 if the player hits their hand too high.

For example, if you had a hard 16 versus a dealer up card of 5, you would not hit your hand because the chances of busting are too high. But with a soft 16 (an Ace with a five) you would hit against a dealer’s 5. If you receive a six or higher, the value of the Ace comes down from 11 to 1. So if you were to hit a soft 16 and receive an 8, your hand total would be 14 instead of 24, allowing you to still stay in the round.

But once an Ace is reduced to a 1 the hand then becomes a hard hand.

The general rule of thumb with a soft hand is that a soft 17 or lower should be hit, while a soft 18 or higher should stand—the hand value for a soft 18 and higher is too valuable to risk hitting and losing.

But the best way to play a soft hand in blackjack can be found on a basic strategy chart which is a chart with how to play every hand—soft, hard or pairs—in blackjack with the most advantageous play. But soft hand strategy should be studied so that opportunities to win money are not lost from misplaying those hands.

Online Blackjack Players Not Happy with Government

We owe it all to the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Ace (UIGEA). When we used to log on to our favorite online casinos there was never a problem. Now our cards are being declined and we are being deprived of a form of entertainment that we enjoy. All because the U.S. government knows what is best for online blackjack players.

This is the prohibition of online gambling.

This is not just about what UIGEA has done to online blackjack players—it also effects online poker players, online slots players and anyone else who does some online gambling for entertainment.

UIGEA was squeaked in under the skirts of a port security bill rather than been discussed and voted on separately like it should have been. So that is the first strike against it. Then this poorly planned law to protect our morals from ourselves puts the burden of enforcement on financial institutions without any clear way of dealing with gambling transactions.

Not to mention overseas online casinos can probably find a way around it, making their transactions to and from players not obvious or linked to the online casinos. And European online casinos are very not happy resulting in the European Commission saying that UIGEA is working against our European Union trade agreements.

Players are frustrated at not being able to choose how they spend their time and money. They are also frustrated with Democrats who say they are working to overturn UIGEA, but cannot see those Democrats making any actual effort—other than Barney Frank, who is still sitting on his bill.

Players are also of the mind that some lawmakers are intentionally keeping UIGEA in place to protect their own interests in land-based casinos.

“If casino gambling was illegal in the U.S., then I would find it acceptable to make internet gambling illegal. But many of these lawmakers, especially Harry Reid, are just keeping prohibition in place to protect the interests of the land-based casinos in their states, and that’s where I have a problem,” player Ralph Butaro said.

Other than lawmakers who appear to be protecting interests, a good many people want UIGEA repealed—financial institutions, professional gamblers and even some of our own land-based casinos, not to mention the aforementioned European Commission.

Voters will make themselves heard in the upcoming mi-term elections, aiming their votes at lawmakers who will be aggressive in repealing UIGEA.

My thought, online blackjack players, is look to history. What happened when the government banned alcohol in the 1920s? History shows that the first Prohibition was not a success. I do not foresee this one being a rousing success either. Americans will find away like they did in the 1920s.