Blackjack is a card game played between a dealer and one or more players. It is a game of strategy, and the goal is to get a hand value closer to 21 than that of the dealer without going bust. The cards are dealt face up, and the player must work out the value of their own cards as well as those of the dealer. Depending on the values of the cards and the dealer’s up card, a player will hit (take another card) or stand, double down, split or surrender. It is a popular misconception that the only way to beat the dealer’s hand is to get a blackjack, or “natural.” However, this is not always the case. In fact, a blackjack only counts if it is your first two cards and is an Ace with a ten-value card. If you split a pair of Aces and then draw a ten-value card on one of them, the hand is not considered a blackjack, but rather a total of 21. The dealer will check for a blackjack before he or she takes your bet and hand. The dealer will then reveal his or her cards and the players will be able to decide whether or not to continue playing the hand. If the dealer has a blackjack, the players will lose their insurance bets and their original bets will remain in play. A dealer’s blackjack is also known as a hole card. Unlike the card face which is exposed during the dealing process, the dealer’s second card is held in his or her hand and not displayed. The dealer will only reveal the second card after all bets have been placed. In the past, blackjack was king of the casino tables and enjoyed a revival after the 2008 film 21, based on the real-life exploits of the MIT counting team, introduced the game to a new generation. But nothing lasts forever, and as competition from other games like baccarat has increased, the edge on blackjack has been whittled down a bit. So if you want to increase your chances of beating the dealer, read on to learn some tips and tricks for playing blackjack successfully.
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