The Ancient Game Of Baccarat
The Basic Way to Play
Baccarat is a popular casino card game that is easy to learn and play. Here are the basic rules:
The goal of the game is to bet on the hand that will have a total value closest to 9.
There are three types of bets that can be made: on the player’s hand, on the banker’s hand, or on a tie between the two.
Each hand is dealt two cards, and the values are added up. Aces are worth 1 point, face cards and tens are worth 0 points, and all other cards are worth their face value.
If the total value of a hand is greater than 9, the first digit is dropped. For example, if a hand has a 7 and an 8, the total value is 5.
If either the player or banker has a total value of 8 or 9 with their first two cards, it is called a natural and no more cards are dealt.
If neither the player nor the banker has a natural, a third card may be dealt to each hand based on certain rules:
- If the player’s total is 0-5, they receive a third card.
- If the player’s total is 6-7, they stand and do not receive a third card.
- If the player stands, the banker follows the same rules to determine whether to take a third card.
- After all cards have been dealt, the hand with the highest total value (closest to 9) wins. If the player bet on the winning hand, they are paid even money. If they bet on a tie, they are paid 8 to 1, but this is a rare occurrence and not recommended as a regular betting strategy.
That’s the basic overview of how to play baccarat. Remember that the game is mostly based on luck, so always gamble responsibly and never bet more than you can afford to lose.
History and A More In Depth Account Of How to Play Baccarat?
It is a game laden with pomp and circumstance. It is a game of mysterious tycoons and oil sheiks, old-money European nobles and newly-rich Silicon Valley millionaires. It is the game which James Bond made famous, and which pours vast sums of money into (and often out of) casino coffers.
But despite all the opulence and tradition, the centuries-old game of baccarat actually means nothing. Literally.
The name baccarat (pronounced BOCK-uh-rah) is taken from the Italian word for “nothing,” most likely because that’s what the value of face cards and tens are — zero. But it means much more than that to the game’s many players, and to the casinos which offer it in elegant surroundings. Walk into a baccarat salon — usually a room or area separate from the main casino — and you will find beautiful women in evening gowns, dealers (croupiers) and casino executives in tuxedos, and players who toss around gray $5,000 chips like tiddly-winks.
Of most importance to you, though, is this important fact: Baccarat has one of the lowest “house percentages” — the legal mathematical edge that the casino has on virtually every wager it accepts — of any game in town. And because the rules and procedures of the game are fixed, there is no strategy to learn as in blackjack. Indeed, for all of its glamour and hyperbole, American-style baccarat is about as close to a coin flip as you’ll find in a casino.
So don’t let all the trappings intimidate you. Baccarat is a very simple game. And if you’ve got the money to play, you can walk right into the glitziest baccarat room at Caesars even if you’re wearing Levi’s and a Jeff Foxworthy T-shirt. And if your bankroll isn’t as fat as Bill Gates’, there’s still a version of the game which lets you enjoy the advantageous odds with lower wagering minimums.
How it’s played
Before we begin, let’s make clear the differences between standard baccarat and “mini-baccarat.” The mathematics and play of the game is identical; the two games differ only in the number of players at a table, the betting limits, and who handles the cards. We’ll describe the traditional game first, and detail the differences of mini-baccarat later.
American-style baccarat is derived from a very old French game called chemin de fer, often nicknamed “shimmy.” This game is still played in the ancient manner in Europe (plus a couple of places in Atlantic City and Connecticut), and differs mainly in that one player serves as the “banker,” covering all of the bets made by other players at the table. Our version is formally (but rarely) called punto banco, or “player banker,” because any player may bet on either of the two hands in the game — the “player” hand or the “banker” hand — at any time, and all bets are covered by the house.
The object of the game is to bet on whichever hand comes closer to a score of nine. The cards are valued according to their number, with faces and tens counting zero. If a hand exceeds ten points, the first digit of the score is ignored. In other words, a hand which contains a seven and an eight — scored as 15 at blackjack — would count as just five in baccarat. The terms “player” and “banker” are arbitrary hold-overs from chemin de fer — they could easily be called “hand A” and “hand B” for all the difference it makes. But baccarat is a game steeped in tradition, so the names of the two hands have stuck.
Baccarat is played with standard playing cards, usually eight decks at a time (sometimes more), which are shuffled and put into a shoe, just like multi-deck 21 — in fact, the shoe used at blackjack came from baccarat. The first card is “burned,” but unlike blackjack, that burn card determines how many additional cards are also burned and taken out of play. Why is it done this way? No one seems to know — “tradition” seems to be the most plausible answer.
Baccarat is unique in that the players, not the dealers, actually deal the cards. The shoe is passed around the table to each player in succession. That player is designated as the “banker,” though he or she does not have to bet on the banker hand in order to handle the shoe. (Superstitious players who usually bet on the player hand will often ask that the shoe be passed to the next player when their turn comes, but there’s no real reason to do so.) The caller, who stands in the middle of the dogbone-shaped table and verbally directs the game, will tell the banker to deal when all bets are set. The banker then deals four cards from the shoe — one to the player, the next to himself as banker, another to the player, and a final card to himself.
The caller will then pass the player’s cards, face down, to the person who has bet the most money on the player hand. This person now has an exceedingly technical and highly-skilled task: he or she must look at the cards, turn them over, announce their total if he wishes, and pass the cards back to the caller. As you’ve probably figured out, there’s no real reason to do this — it’s all just part of the show. It can be a very annoying part of the show, as the person handling the player’s cards will sometimes stare, twist, bend, fold, spindle and otherwise fidget with the cards before finally returning them to the caller. The likelihood that someone will go through this act seems to be proportionate to the amount he has bet — the bigger the bet, the more he’ll fiddle with the cards, even though he has absolutely no say in what action is taken on the hand.
The banker then takes his two cards, which he had tucked barely under the front corner of the shoe, and goes through the same dog-and-pony show as the other guy. Eventually, all the cards end up face-up in front of the caller, who announces their point totals. If either hand totals eight or nine, that hand is a “natural” and wins automatically — unless the other hand also has a natural eight or nine. Tie scores or eight or nine are “pushes” for both sides, but a natural nine beats a natural eight.
Those complicated rules
If neither hand has a natural, the game then moves into a somewhat complex set of rules which determine whether or not a third card is dealt to the player hand, the banker hand, or both. Thankfully, the banker does not have to remember these arcane rules. He simply follows the direction of the caller, who will say “Card for the player,” “Card for the banker,” or “Two card draw” as appropriate. If third cards are drawn to either hand, the banker slides them out and directly over to the caller, who turns them face up, announces their value and the new total for the hand(s), and then declares a winner or tie.
Those third-card rules really aren’t as complicated as they look, especially for the player hand. If the player’s total on the first two cards is five or fewer, another card is always drawn. If it is six or seven, the player hand stands. The banker hand’s third-card rules are best illustrated in a table:
When banker’s first
two cards total… Banker draws when
player’s third card is…
0, 1, 2 Always draws
3 Anything except an 8
4 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7
5 4, 5, 6, 7
6 6, 7
7 Always stands
If the player does not draw a third card, then the banker uses the same rules as the player to determine whether or not to draw (five or fewer) or stand (six or greater).
All banker and player bets pay even money. However, winning bets on the banker hand are charged a five-percent commission, a running tally of which is kept by the dealers using special non-value chips (often called “lammers”) in numbered boxes. Those numbers correspond to the seat number for each player at the table, one through fifteen — there are actually only fourteen sets, though, but unlucky number thirteen is not used. If you win a $100 bet on the banker, the dealer will place a lammer marked with a “5” in your commission box, indicating that you owe the house five dollars. These chips will be added to as you win other banker bets. You are required to pay this commission when 1) you leave the table, or 2) when the shoe is completed, just before the cards to to be shuffled. You may also pay all or part of your commission at any other time.
Why is the commission charged? Well, those strange rules that govern the drawing of third cards actually give the banker hand a slight mathematical advantage over the player hand. To maintain its advantage over the bettors, the casino charges the commission to overcome the math. The banker hand still wins more often — you just get paid 95 cents on the dollar, in effect, as opposed to the straight even money for the player. Even with commission, the banker hand is still slightly better to bet, percentage-wise. It has a house advantage of just 1.15%, compared to 1.21% for the player hand. And if you play at the Horseshoe downtown, you’ll get an even better deal on the banker — the “Shoe” charges only a 4% commission, or $1 for every $25 bet, for a house percentage of 0.65%. Either way, the house “vigorish” is pretty low, which gives those of us at the table a better shot at the casino’s bankroll.
There’s one more bet in baccarat that I haven’t mentioned yet, and for good reason — it’s a sucker bet. The “tie” bet pays 8-1 whenever a hand ends in a tie. The problem is that the mathematical odds of a tie are a bit over 9-1, giving the house a 14% edge on this awful proposition. Stay away from it.
I mentioned earlier this version of the game, which is functionally the exact same game as that played at the traditional table. Mini-baccarat, though, is played at a table the size and shape of a blackjack table — when causes brief embarrassment for the unsuspecting customer who walks up to the table with money in hand, only to see the betting spots of player and banker and inquire of the dealer, “What the $%^@! is this “back-uh-ratt” thing?” The big difference is that one dealer, not four, runs the game and handles all of the cards himself. This alone makes the game about twice as fast as traditional baccarat. While betting limits at regular baccarat usually start at $25 and often go up to $100 or even $500, mini-baccarat minimums are rarely more than $10, and frequently just $5. The El Cortez has even had a mini-baccarat game with a $2 minimum. Just remember that if you play the banker hand, you need to bet in $5 increments, as commissions are normally rounded up to the nearest quarter.
So how do you make money at this game?
Since there is no playing strategy to speak of, the way to win money at baccarat is to either be lucky enough to get a hot streak on the hand you’re playing, or to employ a money-management system that works with the usual back-and-forth fluctuations between banker and player. Obviously, the latter is the more prudent method for consistent success. Indeed, baccarat is in many ways the perfect system-player’s game, since there are only two realistic betting interests in the game as opposed to the myriad bets at a crap table, or the various strategy options at blackjack.
We’ll cover some systems you can use at baccarat, and any other game with a decent even-money wager, in our next installment. Until then, head for the Strip or the Horseshoe and take a look at the game of baccarat. Get comfortable with the game, then plop a bet or two on the banker or player hand. It’s an easy game, and one of the fairest bets in the casino. You might even want to order a vodka martini — shaken, not stirred.
Where to Play online Baccarat?
Our detailed guide will tell you everything you need to know about play baccarat online, the best live casinos and how to get the best bonus offers. To answer this question and guide you on how best to choose the best live online baccarat sites, we have come up with a yardstick for why we choose some online baccarat sites and not others. We have compiled a list of mobile casino apps based on their game variety, payouts, compatibility and security.
Playing Baccarat at a Casino Online?
When playing baccarat online, whether with a live dealer or a random number generator, the long-term odds are not in your favor and, as they say, you can definitely beat the casino and win some hands. Baccarat Betting Betting is one of the few options players can use to influence the outcome of a real money baccarat game. Online Baccarat Betting Tips Because most of the game is played by the dealer, players can focus on their bets in the game of baccarat. The rapid development of the online casino industry has allowed players to try their hand at the exciting game of baccarat without leaving home.
There is a wide variety of baccarat to choose from online and you are welcome to offer players plenty of bonuses and cash promotions, the casino, whose software and games are regulated, fairly and legally playable in a variety of currencies, unmatched convenience, top-notch graphics, And the overall gaming experience is very rewarding. In those years, players and casinos created different versions of baccarat to keep baccarat fresh.
Online baccarat was one of the games that soon became compatible with the live casino format and introduced additional side bets (perfect pair and oversized bets). As soon as online gambling became popular, casinos took a big step and started offering not only random number games (simulated by computers) but also live dealer casino games: real people deal cards and spin the reels while players play on the other side of the world. One end, watch live, and bet directly at the dealer-controlled table.
Most recently, IGT announced that Resorts World Casino in New York City can now entertain Resorts World Casino players with IGT’s ETG (Electronic Table Games) with compelling Baccarat RNG (Random Number Generated) online content. IGT systems and slots offer contact with many live table games such as roulette, multi baccarat, sic bo, live blackjack in a format that will attract many players.
Many experts believe that this popular board game is as popular now as it is now thanks to the success of the James Bond 007 movies and the way they talked about the game. Baccarat is one of those casino card games that has been popularized all over the world through movies and literature.
The popularity of baccarat combined with technology has made it possible to offer live baccarat, one of the most popular card games in the casino world.
Today, baccarat is famous all over the world and players can easily find the baccarat name in many famous online casinos. Times are changing and today’s baccarat can be played at traditional brick and mortar and online casinos and is very accessible. Originally, it was a form of entertainment primarily for the wealthy, regardless of the country it was broadcast in.
In the past, baccarat has been associated with grace and wealth, as it was played mostly by the nobility. Baccarat players in the 19th century were preferably wealthy and aristocratic, as only they were allowed to play (which is why the game of baccarat still has the reputation of a gentleman aristocrat and a luxurious game).
Thanks to this fact, the history of baccarat can only tell us about members of the royal families who were big fans of baccarat. There is a famous case of a baccarat dispute that occurred in the 19th century in the 19th century involving King Edward VII. The history of baccarat is full of interesting events and famous players who have contributed to the development of baccarat. Baccarat has been around in Europe for hundreds of years and is played by millions of people across the continent.
Today every famous online casino offers both online and offline baccarat as baccarat has proven to be one of the funniest and funniest games ever played.
Baccarat In Las Vegas
Even on the list of games in the early drafts of early Las Vegas legislation, baccarat only began to take a more prominent place in the Strip’s casinos in 1959. Then, in the late 1950s, Tommy Renzoni brought the baccarat card game to the Sands Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA. As Las Vegas became the center of the gambling community, casino owner Tommy Renzoni (Sands Casino) brought baccarat to his casino under certain conditions.
With the rise in popularity of baccarat, many casinos in the city of Las Vegas now offer this game and most people will jump on the mat first. Baccarat often features a high minimum bet in downtown casinos and the Las Vegas Strip. It is also available at some downtown casinos and large local casinos.
While it won’t be the resort’s last stop on the Las Vegas Strip, the Bellagio has a solid reputation as one of the trendiest casino hotels in the area and is sure to attract its fair share of whales playing table games, poker and, Of course, baccarat. . There are several local casinos and several establishments in the city center, and baccarat is also popular. Wynn Resorts Ltd. and Las Vegas Sands Corp. operate two casinos on the Las Vegas Strip, and Las Vegas Sands Corp. generates most of its revenue from Asia, where baccarat is the undisputed king of the game.
Big players, mostly from Asia, are flocking to Las Vegas to play baccarat and greatly increase the overall profits of the LAS VEGAS casino. Baccarat of any level is a game where big money spins fast, so playing Las Vegas usually requires a big bankroll. The house edge in baccarat is small enough, and many of the stakes are large enough, that baccarat revenue can fluctuate a lot compared to other games, often dropping sharply one month and rising sharply the next. However, despite the simplistic nature of the games, baccarat results play an important role in satisfying the user experience and game content and variation todays online casino players have come to expect.
Baccarat rules in Las Vegas are fairly standardized, making it difficult to choose between different casinos. Baccarat of any level is a game where big money spins fast, so playing Las Vegas usually requires a big bankroll.
The reason baccarat is dangerous for casinos is that because of the high stakes and low house edge, players can win some serious money at the expense of the casino. Smaller casinos often offer mini baccarat, where the dealer handles all the cards and makes the game go faster. At casinos in Las Vegas and Atlantic City, this version of baccarat is often played in a special room separate from the main gaming floor, ostensibly for added privacy and security, as the stakes are high.
In 1959, Sands in Las Vegas opened a third variation of the baccarat table… and famously lost a whopping $250,000 on opening night. It was seen less as a failure and more as a marketing opportunity that allowed Baccarat to stay true to its roots and become a fun game for high rollers.
Baccarat, On-Land vs On-Line?
Online baccarat uses basically the same rules as land-based baccarat, but they are completely different in terms of atmosphere. Playing baccarat in Las Vegas isn’t necessarily represented in pop culture. For a card game that generates a significant portion of Nevada’s table gaming revenue, baccarat is a fairly simple pastime (see rules below).
Baccarat has easily surpassed blackjack in terms of Las Vegas casino revenue, and now accounts for nearly 60 percent of MGM Grands table game revenue over the past year. Consider that baccarat is available at approximately 259 tables in 25 casinos.
House Edge %
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