This is the second part of my ongoing series of blog posts on the basics of playing blackjack.A round of blackjack actually starts when each player places a bet in the circle or logo that is in front of him. The dealer would then give each one of the players as well as himself two cards.
The player cards are usually dealt with their faces showing. One of the dealer cards is faced up while the other card is faced down. If the dealer shows a ten or an ace as his up card there is a possibility that he has a blackjack. When this happens all the player hands will lose except for the player that also has a blackjack. In the United States, the dealer will immediately check for a blackjack, and if it is possible. If there is indeed a blackjack then he will collect all of the losing bets immediately.
In the eventuality that the dealer has an ace as the up card, he will let the players insure their respective hands against a blackjack. This is much akin to any kind of insurance policy in which you are betting that something bad might occur.
The insurance bet in a game of blackjack pays 2:1 in case the the dealer has a blackjack. If the dealer’s card shows an ace and a player has a blackjack, the dealer may decide to ask for even money. The reason for this is because if the player has a blackjack the result of both the blackjack and the insurance bet is likely to be an even money win and it does not matter if the dealer has a blackjack or not. After all of the players have accepted or declined the insurance the dealer can check the hole card.
The rules of blackjack state that the dealer must go second and so they have what is called “absolute position” on the player at all times. This means that every time that the dealer busts after the player has bust then the dealer still wins. This is where the house get their edge from and even when a player used accurate basic strategy then they still play under a slight disadvantage in most cases.
It takes the player to be able to get away with card counting for the player to be able to gain an edge at all and even card counting is no guarantee of success these days.