The Contrast of Casino Blackjack and Tournament Play
If you fancy yourself a Blackjack player, you might want to consider which type of Blackjack play you should engage in on your next trip to the casino. You naturally want to spend your Blackjack time in such a way that would allow you to make the most money. You can always go sit down at the standard table and play single hands like you usually do or you can decide to maximize your time by entering a tournament. In a tournament, you are not competing against the casino. You are competing against other players. Every player starts out with an equal number of chips and an equal chance of winning; chances that increase with each round depending on the players with the best strategies.
The dealers do not start at the first seat like standard casino play. In tournaments, there is a button placed in front of the player who is “first base” on that hand, and this button rotates around the table with each hand. This allows you an advantage that you don’t get in standard play because you are able to strategize where you sit and how you bet judging on the position of the button. This means that, depending on how far to the right you are of the button, you will have more of an advantage the more players who have to bet before you. Naturally, the closer the button starts to your right, the more conservative you have to be in your betting because you don’t have the knowledge of what the other players are going to bet.
Just remember that, with tournament play, your success relies greatly on your strategy and your strategy relies greatly on your knowledge of the rules. Every tournament has their own set of rules so make sure you know them all before the tournament.
Lefts and Rights and Other Tips for Blackjack Tournaments
There are many things to consider when entering a Blackjack tournament, but nothing is more important to consider than your left and rights. By this I mean your position to the left or right of the button. There is a button placed in front of the player that goes first in each round, so the betting and playing order follows the button around the table. For this reason, your position to the left or right of the button is crucial to your style of betting.
The player to the right of the button always has the advantage. He is the only one who gets to hear the bet of every player at the table before he decides on his. An important thing to remember in this aspect is that, if you get to choose your seat, you should always sit to the left of a player that is known for his skills. The player on your left always has advantage over you because he always sees what you bet first except when the button is on him. If you should find yourself trailing said person on the left when the button comes to him, this is the time you need to bet aggressively to try to catch up. Any other hands before and after this one may force you to be more conservative with your betting because that player “has your number” so to speak.
For more advanced strategists, it is best to try to be the last position in the last round. Advantage goes up and down and back and forth with each round, but the most important round is the last one. This is the one where most tournaments are decided. If you are last to bet, you have more of an incentive to bet aggressively and pull off a last minute win.
Blackjack Tournaments: Small or Large?
If you are considering entering a Blackjack tournament, you should decide whether you are going to compete in a small or large scale tournament. Each has their own distinct advantages and drawbacks, but the first thing you should look at is the entry fee. Of course, you don’t have to enter a fee based tournament. There are some tournaments out there that are free to enter, but also have very low payouts and are not worth the time you would spend competing. The prize for tournaments is usually 100 percent of player entry fees so, the larger the tournament, the higher the fees which corresponds with a much higher payout.
One advantage of smaller tournaments, besides lower entry fees, is that many of them have a first round that consists of several qualifying rounds. If you don’t advance, you still have the chance to re-enter and claim the prize. One major advantage that larger tournaments have is that they offer special room rates and free food. If you save money on your room and food, it gives you more money to enter the larger tournaments.
As with any gambling, the more money you put in, the more money you have a chance to win. Many casinos offer prizes to the top six in a tournament which increases your chances for a return on your investment. Small tournaments can start as low as a $10 entry fee with $500 to $1,000 in winnings, but if you are able to enter a larger tournament; the largest ones have an entry fee of as much as $1,000, but have the enormous payout of up to $1 million. So, what are you waiting for? Go out there and learn your strategies and you just might end up a millionaire overnight with a little luck and a lot of homework.
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