Baccarat is related to the card game of BlackJack, but is even simpler. Popular in Europe, the main difference between Baccarat and Blackjack is that not only can you bet on the ‘player’, but also on the ‘Bank’ or a ‘Tie’. Experienced players (certainly everyone at http://www.supabets.com ) never bet on a Tie, as the odds are definitely against you here, and if you remember that rule, all you have to do is decide who you think will win a hand, the Bank or the player. In simple terms, you are betting against the cards themselves, NOT other players or the Bank.
This means you can ignore what the other people around the table are doing, and focus solely on your own hand, which is dealt from a stack of 8 decks (no jokers). To start a game (or when the ‘Cut’ card turns up in the shoe), the dealer shuffles the decks and returns them to the shoe, then ‘burns’ a number of cards equal to the value of the first card in the shoe (sometime the shoe itself is called the ‘Bank’). The player to the right of the Dealer now gets the Bank, and can hang on to it as long as the Bank wins. If the Bank loses, it passes to the next player on the right. Bets are placed before each player receives any cards.
Players get 2 cards each, and closest to 9 wins. Simple huh? If the first 2 cards dealt total Eight or Nine that is known as a “Natural” and wins immediately, unless another player also has a natural, which of course makes it a Tie. If no naturals are drawn, more cards are dealt. If you bet on the winning hand, you get a 1 to 1 payoff. Betting on a Tie gives a 1 to 8 payoff, but as ties only happen maybe one in 10 hands, we at http://www.supabets.com don’t feel that the odds justify the bet.
To count the cards in Baccarat, the value of Tens, Jacks, Queens and Kings are ZERO. An Ace is 1, and cards from 2 to 9 count face value. Sounds weird? Just remember that you ignore the ‘first digit’ in any hand. That is why a Ten is worth 0. An eight plus a 4 makes 12, and if you ignore the first digit, you have a 2! As you always ignore that first digit, you can’t overdraw in Baccarat, making it a much more dynamic and fluid game than Blackjack. Have fun now!
By Sean Cameron
Sean is an experienced Baccarat player and writes the Baccarat column for www.supabets.com the home of free bet tips and tricks.