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Variations of Blackjack Games

Blackjack, the world’s most popular casino game, has a number of different variations. Traditional Blackjack enthusiasts, new players and amateurs will enjoy almost all varieties of the game. The rules vary from casino-to-casino, and most of its variations generally make changes to both the structure of play and the payout. The differences in the game of Blackjack vary quite considerably, sometimes making the game more challenging and exciting for the player and other times more favourable for the dealer and/or casino. No matter what you call the game, or what variety of the game you play, the main objective is to beat the dealer.

Following a simple strategy can ensure that you come out on top. Analysing your hand to a mathematical rhythm is usually the way that most players ensure a win in Blackjack and other games. To understand the differences between the variable games of Blackjack, let’s take a closer look.

Traditional Blackjack

Blackjack can be played with one, two, four, six or eight decks of cards. You and the dealer receive two cards, however the dealer’s are placed with one face up and the other face down – the latter is known as a hole card. If hand dealt, the cards are placed face down and the player is allowed to pick up the cards. However, if playing a multi-deck game then the cards are dealt face up to the player and are left on the table (not to be picked up). To win, your cards should total higher than the dealer’s, without exceeding 21. However if your hand does go over 21 then you ‘bust’, which is an automatic lose.

The name Blackjack is the term for when you or the dealer is dealt both an Ace and a second card worth the value of ten - this is a natural win. To win, you must beat the dealer without exceeding 21, or busting, outscore the dealer or the dealer should bust.

Blackjack Switch

This is where you place an additional side-bet that the cards in your hand will contain either a pair, 3 of a kind or 4 of a kind – with odds up to 40/1.

Face Up 21

In this casino game, the dealer wins all ties. However you can see all the dealers’ cards, unlike traditional Blackjack where you can only see one. This gives players an advantage, making it easier to reach a decision as to whether to hit or stand.

Spanish 21

With this game you start off with a 52-card deck, only you remove the four tens. This creates a 48-card deck, with only 12 cards in the deck being worth ten – Jacks, Queens and Kings. Although this deck offers for a more exciting game, the altered deck ensures it is in the house’s favour.


Friendly, easy game to play – it can be learned in a couple of minutes. This simple, yet fun, family favourite is a British domesticated version of Blackjack. The aim of the game is the same, to reach 21 in two cards and beat the dealer. However, the game has some differences in rules and has been made a lot easier to play at home. Twist, Stick or Bust to gain a hand that is unbeatable.

If learning about the different types of this traditional game has whet your whistle, get in some blackjack practice and take a look at our casino games where you can learn the rules and strategies behind this deceptively complicated game!

06 June 2013


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