BLACKJACK MYTHS After several consecutive losses, a player is “due” to win. In blackjack, as in roulette and at slot machines, the outcome of the previous game has no influence on that of the next, as cards have no memory. A player is never “due” to win. Inexperienced or bad players can influence the outcome of the game. Having a bad player at one’s table may be annoying or irritating, but, from a mathematical standpoint, that person has no true long-term influence on how the game unfolds or its outcome. >Before each gambling session, set reasonable limits on the amount of money and time to spend, and be sure not to exceed them. > If your gambling habits are having negative consequences for you or your loved ones, be wise and take a break. IT’S ALL ABOUT BALANCE! The sequence in which cards are dealt is “sacred.” If you choose to play, be sure that gambling is only one of several entertainment options. Having games of chance as your only form of entertainment can result in losing control over your gambling habits. Other tools that promote low-risk gambling habits are available. Tips, information and resources March 2017 Some players believe that the sequence in which cards are dealt must not be broken. In their opinion, the arrival of a new player or departure of another before the end of a deal destroys their odds of winning. A change in sequence has an equal chance of having a positive effect on players as a negative one. LIMITS MATTER! BLACKJACK’S power of attraction Blackjack, also called “21,” was introduced in Europe in the early 1700s. Like other games of chance, some of its characteristics can be surprising: Being able to make decisions may give players the impression of having control over the game and that they cannot lose. Players who lose rarely doubt their decisions, “game strategy” or “system.” Players have a number of options to play their hand They can hit (receive another card), stand (keep their hand “as is”), double down (increase the wager and receive another card) or split a pair (split two cards of identical value to create a second hand). Players may attempt to predict the game Knowing which cards were dealt and “card counting” do not enable players to predict the next cards or guarantee a win. Having that information does not contribute to improving players’ skills and, as cards are shuffled manually or mechanically in a random manner, it is impossible to predict which ones will be dealt next and to which player. Chance remains the key factor. You can hope to win, but you must expect to lose! equal EVERYONE IS IN THE FACE OF CHANCE Blackjack is a single-player game in which each player goes up against the house, not the other players. Even if other players at the table have a higher point total in their hand, the individual will still win with a hand that is higher than that of the house (without exceeding 21) or if the house goes over 21. The dealer represents the house and plays according to pre-established rules that give the house a mathematical advantage over players. In addition to benefiting from players’ errors, the house keeps wagers placed by players whose hand goes over 21 points, even in cases where the dealer’s own hand goes over 21. In blackjack, house advantage usually varies between approximately 0.44% and 0.66%, depending on the rules being applied. Players’ decisions may also increase those rates. HELP IS AVAILABLE Anyone who is concerned by his own gambling habits or those of a loved one may contact Gambling: Help and Referral at 1-800-461-0140 or go to aidejeu.com. ONLINE BLACKJACK Many people like to play blackjack online. Unlike live blackjack, the online version is played with cards electronically shuffled and dealt randomly at each hand. It is therefore impossible to collect information on the cards that were previously dealt. Online blackjack also has characteristics that may lead players to lose control: As in every other online game, it is easy for players to go beyond their limits in terms of time and money, unless automated limits are programmed into the system. It’s easy to lose track of how much money is at risk, as the wagers are often displayed in numbers (or credits).
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