Points and Values: Understanding Blackjack Rules

Blackjack is a widely-known game throughout the world, and even non-gamblers are somewhat familiar with the game, if not exactly knowledgeable of how it is played. The rules of blackjack may appear complicated to the amateur, but they are in fact relatively easy to learn. Once one has a better understanding of the game, even a novice can begin to play like a professional.

The key object of blackjack is to gather together a set of cards with a value not exceeding 21 points. Each card has a corresponding value; Kings for instance are worth 10 points, so the player must build up a deck of cards whose values add to a sum of 21, and not any more than that. A game of blackjack is typically played with six players, although eight players can be allowed to participate in some cases. The players then each place a bet, which will be their stated minimum, after which the game begins.

The players are then dealt cards of different values, and sometimes players are fortunate enough to collect 21 points with the cards that they have initially been given. To get 21 points, by the way, is to get a "blackjack," which is where the game gets its name. Should a player encounter such luck, it is up to them to continue to press their luck by continuing to play, or quit the game altogether with their winnings intact.

If a player loses, the rest of the players instantly win. A number of decks of cards can be used in a single blackjack game, or for a long duration of subsequent games, but it is considered much more efficient and financially-beneficial to play with as few decks as possible.

Blackjack rules sometimes suffer minor modifications from casino to casino. For instance, Vegas blackjack varies from the traditional rules in that one game makes use of two decks of cards, in which case the house hits on hands not going over 17 points.

One doesn't need to be a complete expert in order to enjoy and understand the game of blackjack. Just having a familiarity with the game's basic rules should be enough to get one through. Even when discrepancies crop up in how blackjack is played in certain casinos, a rudimentary knowledge of the game helps one fill the gaps. Playing blackjack is full of risks, but with a combination of skill, intelligence and luck, one should do just fine.