Blackjack players are the best off when it comes to casino games. For one thing they have a lower house edge to begin with. On top of that they can actually use strategy to influence the outcome of a round of blackjack. Players are also lucky because they have the easiest to use and most effective strategy tool: basic strategy.
Basic strategy is a chart that player can use to determine what the best play to make is. And when I say ‘best’ I mean the best statistical play to make. Players are not going to win every single hand, but they will win more hands with it than without.
The reason for this is that the chart features a column for every possible dealer up card. It also features rows for every possible starting hand for the player. Where the columns and rows meet the best statistical play for that starting hand against that dealer’s up card. All the player needs to do is make that play.
Because basic strategy is made up of the best statistical plays for every starting hand, if the blackjack player plays each hand according to basic strategy, he can lower the house’s edge to 0.5%.
The lowered edge happens because those best statistical plays that make up basic strategy are there to minimize losses in times of being dealt difficult hands, and to take the most advantage of times that present money making opportunities.
Such as double downs. A successful double down can take 1.6% off of the house’s edge. But you of course need to know when those times are. And that is exactly what basic strategy is for—to tell you when to make the most opportune plays, like when to double down.
Because of its ease of use and what it brings the house edge down to, basic strategy is the best strategy tool to use when playing blackjack.