Classifying Online Blackjack Games

December 11, 2015


After pokies, blackjack has the most variants at Australian online casinos. Beyond a point, online blackjack games become impossible to categorize because each variant has strong individual features. This article recaps the variety of blackjack games.

The most important categorisation of online blackjack variants is into American and European blackjack games. In American blackjack variants the dealer deals to himself a second card, which is face down. This is after dealing the player’s first two cards and his first card face up. If the dealer’s face up card is an ace or a ten value card then the dealer peeks at his face down card to check for blackjack. If the dealer has a blackjack, the game ends with the player losing. However, if the player also has a blackjack then the bet pushes. There are three versions of American blackjack based on major land casino centres. These are Vegas Strip Blackjack, Vegas Downtown Blackjack and Atlantic City Blackjack. They differ in the minor rules.

There is only one version of European blackjack called European Blackjack. In this variant the dealer hole card is not dealt. So there is no question of the dealer checking for blackjack up front. He deals his second card face up after the player has played out his hand. The American blackjack variants offer a slight advantage to the player. He is prevented from adding on to his stake through the split or double down moves if the dealer has a blackjack and thereby limits his losses.

Another way of categorising online blackjack variants is as single hand and multi-hand. This is just a difference in the game play. The rules are the same in both cases. In single hand black games you play one hand against the dealer’s hand. In multi-hand blackjack games you can play up to five hands against the dealer’s hand. It is just like five players sitting at a blackjack table in a land casino. After the initial cards are dealt, you play each hand completely in turn and then the dealer plays his hand. Multi-hand blackjack increases the pace of wagering.

Finally, you have the exact same land casino blackjack variants, which are preferred by expert players. Then you have games in which different kinds of side bets and innovations have been added to give players something different. In Pontoon you play without seeing any of the dealer cards, where as in Double Exposure you see them both. Perfect Pairs offers a side bet based on the first two cards dealt to the player.