Ask any random person on the street to name the most enjoyable or straightforward casino games and chances are none of them will name baccarat. For some reason – which to this day remains something of a mystery – people wonder how to play baccarat and often think it’s complicated and difficult to get into.
In fact, baccarat is by far and wide one of the simplest and most uncomplicated casino games you’ll ever have the opportunity to try out. Once you’ve got to grips with the basics, there’s absolutely nothing daunting or intimidating about baccarat.
Whether you prefer playing online or fancy heading out to a real-life casino, here’s all you need to know to get started:
The Basics of Baccarat
Baccarat is a classic casino game that is typically played in a separate room, adorned with a larger table and a selection of posh-looking players. Despite the fact that baccarat has an air of exclusivity and refinement about it, anyone is welcome to take part and you don’t need deep pockets to qualify.
That is, unless you find yourself at a high stakes table, where vast sums of cash often change hands like monopoly money.
Contrary to what you may have heard, baccarat is very easy to play having no strategies required. The whole thing is all about luck – you simply have to have a better hand than the banker to win. Realistically, the only thing you have control over when playing baccarat is how much you bet, so there really is no real skill or strategy involved.
Just to repeat that point once again – baccarat is easier than it looks. This is a game of pure chance where players are required to guess which of the two hands have a combined sum closest to 9. Similar to other card games, baccarat makes use of a standard playing deck composed of 52 cards.
Though there are instances where a game can involve anything from 6 to 8 decks.
The game proceeds when the dealer delivers two random cards, known as the player’s hand and the banker’s hand – both of which will be placed facing up. Above all else when learning how to play baccarat, players must know the total values of each possible hand.
An ace will be equivalent to 1, cards 2 to 9 will have the same value as their ranks, and K, Q, J, and 10 will be zero. So, if the starting hand forms an ace and a Q, then the total will be 1; to win, the hand must have a combination of 7 and 2.
However, if the points exceed a double-digit, then the values placed on the ones will be used. For example, a combination of 7 and 8 will originally result in 15, while for the baccarat’s value, this will be equal to 5.
For each coup, bets will be placed on either the banker’s hand or the player’s hand. Although it may seem like a win-win match, the house edge for each hand differs. A bet on the banker’s hand offers a lower house edge and a higher win probability than a bet on the player’s hand.
To balance this disparity, the wins of the banker’s hand are charged with a commission while the wins of the latter hand will be paid back full. Thus, if an individual bets $1 on the player’s hand and wins, then the $1 will be paid back with the addition of the winning price.
The Third Card
One of the most important things to know with regard to how to play baccarat is the third card; this last move will dictate who will have the advantage. As such, a third card will be drawn depending on the initial points formed on each hand.
If the player and the banker both receive a total of 8 or 9, then no further cards will be drawn. However, if one of the hands sits a total of 0 through 5, then a third card will be dealt out; the new value will be added to the sum of the primary cards.
Why Starting Out Online Makes Sense
Technically speaking, whether you win or lose is more or less out of your hands. This is because there’s no realistic way of knowing what kind of hand either of you will be dealt.
It’s simply up to you as to whether you bet on your own hand or the banker’s hand, which will determine who wins and who loses.
In any case, playing baccarat online before heading out to a real-life casino makes sense for a variety of reasons. Assuming you’re new to baccarat, here’s why starting out online really is the way to go:
Play for free. Right off the bat, playing online means having the option of playing for free. Or if you prefer, playing for extremely low stakes that would be out of the question in a conventional casino.
Learn the rules. When you play baccarat online, it is physically impossible to do anything that contravenes the rules of the game. This makes it great for learning the rules and finding out what you can and cannot do.
No pressure or nerves. Playing from the comfort of home also eliminates the daunting prospect of taking a seat at a casino table when you’ve had no real clue what you’re doing.
Convenience and accessibility. For obvious reasons, being able to play baccarat from any connected device on a 24/7 basis is far easier and more convenient than heading out to a real casino.
Bonuses and promotions. As an added incentive, playing online means gaining access to a wide variety of bonuses and special offers to make your bankroll stretch that little bit further.
Once again, the key to mastering baccarat lies in nothing more than getting to know the various hand values and knowing how to make a sensible bet. After which, the rest really is all down to pure luck and nothing more.
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