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Like all the card and table games you can play here at Wildz, blackjack is a game that’s based on probabilities; whatever hand you’re dealt, there will be a certain probability of it being a winning or losing hand. The calculation of this probability is known as the blackjack odds of winning, and, in a perfect game of blackjack online, you would only be dealt the hands with the highest odds of winning.
The reality of blackjack means that anyone can be dealt any combination of cards – even the dealer – and it’s possible to make the wrong decisions still even if you hold the ideal blackjack starting hand. Knowing how to play the game strategically and making the right choices throughout the game is how you can stack the odds of winning more in your favour. Read on to learn about several common blackjack hands and their various odds of winning.
A look at some Blackjack odds examples using hands
Blackjack is a fascinating game because so many blackjack hand combinations can arise, each of which has a probability of busting (going over 21) when being dealt a third card from the dealer.
For instance, a starting hand worth a total of 11 or lower has a zero percent chance of busting, while hands that total 20 or more have a whopping 92% chance of going bust. This dramatic increase is because a hand worth 20 can only be improved by drawing an ace – itself, an action with a low probability of occurring. That’s why hitting may not be the best option depending on your starting hand.
Knowing what decision to make and when is fundamental to effective blackjack strategy; let’s take a look at some of the more common scenarios:
A hand that totals 16 can be awkward to play, as it possesses a 62% maximum chance of busting. Whether you should hit or not depends on the dealer’s upcard; hit if you see a 7 or 8 but stand or consider surrendering if a 9 or 10 is showing.
The odds of busting when holding a starting hand worth 12 are close when it comes to choosing to hit or stand, especially if the dealer holds a 4. A dealer upcard of 4 means they have a 40% chance of going bust if you stand, but your odds of losing shoot up to 58% if you decide to hit. A strategic move in this scenario will be to stand and wait for the dealer to go bust.
If the dealer’s upcard is a 3, the chances of you going bust in the event of hitting are lower, but you should only hit once.
As one of the least favourable starting hands in blackjack, a hard 15 is restrictive to play, especially if the dealer’s upcard is a 10-value card (10 or face card). If you hit in this scenario, you’ll only have a 22% chance of winning. However, even if you decide to stand, your winning edge will still be slight at just 23%.
Of course, dealers aren’t immune from going bust either. While the house edge can tip the balance more in favour of the dealer winning, you can take control of the game by making strategic decisions based on the upcard they hold.
For example, if the dealer stands on a soft 17:
- there’ll be a 42% chance of them going bust if their upcard is 5-6
- a 23% chance if the card is a 9 or 10-value card
- a 17% chance if they hold an ace upcard
How Do Blackjack Payouts Affect the Odds?
Blackjack is a favourite game amongst casino enthusiasts because it possesses a much lower house edge than other card and table games. Online blackjack wins can deliver payouts of 3:2 in the event of making the perfect blackjack, reducing the house edge to as low as 0.5%. It can be prudent in single deck blackjack variants to employ advanced strategic techniques like card counting to improve your chances of making a hand worth 21.