Baccarat Games Review 2018
Baccarat is traditionally a “whale’s game” when played at a land-based casino. Thanks to the many internet casinos available nowadays, Baccarat can be played by anyone, even those of us on a budget.
What makes Baccarat appealing to most people is that it is a simple game to learn. The dealer does everything in the Mini Baccarat version that is played online. The only difference between regular Baccarat and Mini Baccarat is that the high rollers get to deal for themselves in the big casinos playing regular Baccarat.
Obviously no one can deal their own cards online, so the dealer does it for us. For online games it is all just referred to as Baccarat.
To start playing Baccarat you must simply open your favorite casino, such as Bovada Casino or PartyCasino, find Baccarat and open the game. You will have a table that looks like many card tables. There is a place for the cards to be dealt and a few betting lines.
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The basics of Baccarat are simple. All bets are placed before the cards are dealt. To place a bet, you simply choose a bet line, either Player, Banker or Tie and click on your bet. You can choose more than one line at a time.
Then, the cards are dealt by the dealer in two spots in the middle of the table. One spot is called the player’s hand and one called the banker’s hand, or just Player and Banker. The names are pretty much irrelevant, as you can bet on either hand to win, and there is no “player” making any decisions.
Two cards are dealt to each spot, starting with one to the player, then one to the banker then repeating.
Hands are read by adding up the total value of the cards dealt and ignoring the “tens” portion of the score. Suits are irrelevant in Baccarat. Aces are worth 1, number cards are worth their face value and tens and face cards are worth 0.
So for instance if the cards dealt to either the player or the banker are Jack of clubs, 6 of hearts then that hand has a score of 6. If they are dealt King of spades, Ace of spades, then they have a hand value of 1. A seven of clubs and 3 of clubs have a value of 0 since they add up to 10 and the 1 is ignored.
Whichever hand scores closest to 9 wins. There is no “bust” like in blackjack, if you go over 10 you just drop the first number. If the hands tie, then the tie bet wins and all other bets lose.
The part that is slightly confusing is the draw. The Player hand always scores first. If the total for the Player is 0 through 5, then another card is drawn for the player. If the score is 6 or 7, the Player stands, and if it is 8 or 9, that is considered a natural winner (unless the Banker scores the same or higher natural winner). Otherwise, play moves to the Banker’s hand.
The Banker will always draw on 0, 1, or 2. If the Banker has 7, 8, or 9, they will never draw. If the Banker has 3, 4, 5, or 6, they will draw depending on what the Player has drawn.
If the Banker has 3, they will draw if the Player’s third card is anything but 8. When the Banker is sitting on 4, he will draw if the Player’s third card is 2 through 7. If the Banker has 5, he will receive a draw if the Player has 4, 5, 6, or 7. Finally, if the Banker has 6, he will only draw if the Player has 6 or 7.
As you can see it would be difficult to have to remember all of these rules. Fortunately, that is exactly what the dealer is for, so you really do not have to worry about this. All of the rules are set beforehand, so all you have to do is guess who will win.
Payouts are even money on all Player bets and even money minus a commission on Banker bets. Ties pay usually 8 or 9 to 1, depending on the casino and how many decks they use, among other things.
At first glance it seems the betting on the Player all the time is the best bet because he would have just as good a chance of winning and you do not have to pay commission. Ah, but those tricky casinos figured you would look at it that way, so they set up the rules to favor the Banker.
Although the edge to the Banker is slight, it can add up over time. Bets on the Player carry a 1.24% edge to the house. Bets on the Banker only carry a 1.06% edge to the house, even with the commission.
The “sucker bet” in Baccarat is betting on a tie. The house advantage on tie bets can be as high as 14.4%, depending on the payout. So if you always bet on the Banker, you will still come out behind in the long run, but less so than if you had always bet on the Player or if you added any tie bets.
In the end, betting on a Baccarat hand is simply and purely luck. It is a very fun game and should only be played as such. Of course the game is set so that the house has the advantage but if you follow these guidelines you can at minimum make your money and fun last a bit longer and who knows… maybe you’ll get lucky!