We’ve put together the ultimate basic blackjack strategy guide to learn how to play blackjack. The basic Blackjack strategy was created by Edward Oakley Thorp in 1962 following the study of thousands of hypothetical games. It is empirically proven to work long term, as long as it is used as shown in the tables. Any random decision can lead to failure. Probability and statistical calculations minimize the house edge and favor the player. Thanks to the basic strategy it is easier to determine when to stand, ask for a card, double the bet or divide the game
The first time you see the table of the basic strategy of blackjack, you will think that it is crazy and that you will not know how to follow it. In the beginning, it is best to always have the tables with all the variables at hand. Gradually you will memorize and automate the movements, and it will be easier for you to play. So you can know how to play blackjack and, most importantly, how to win blackjack.
Basic blackjack strategy
The table describes the basic strategy of the American version in which four or more decks are used. Remember that:
- The dealer cannot be planted with a score of fewer than 17 points.
- You can split the hand in the event that two equal cards are drawn and double the bet.
- The player can surrender with any card.
The basic rules of the European version are not too far from the American one.
There are three tables: Hard Hand Strategy, Soft Hand Strategy, and Pair Hand Strategy. The dealer’s hand is described on the horizontal axis, and the player’s on the vertical axis. The symbol determines the best possible decision based on the recommendation of the basic strategy.
Meaning symbols in the basic strategy of blackjack:
- Ask for a card: the player wants a new card and lets the dealer know.
- Stand: the player does not want more cards and decides to stand, either because he has achieved 21 points or because his number is very close to BlackJack
- Split: The player’s first two cards are the same, and the player decides to split and play two games.
- Double: the player can double his bet in exchange for one more card.
- Surrender – This option is available in a version of the BJ called Blackjack with Surrender. The player can leave a game and recover half of their initial bet.