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  9-Feb-13, 19:12   #1
Blackjack 0 
oliv1 
Joined: Jan '13
Location: Belgium
Age: 26 (M)
Posts: 23
A few weeks ago I went to a casino in Belgium and I played a few games of blackjack. I was wondering whether this "card counting" is a fairytale or not. Because there were a couple of players who could really predict which card would come up next...

     
  9-Feb-13, 19:30   #2
  0 
Macubaas 
Joined: Apr '11
Location: Romania
Age: 27 (M)
Posts: 6668
I'm not an expert on casino games but i saw some documentaries about blackjack and card counting and it definately works...

From what i understand it basically grows your chances of winning. Of course any device that could help you do it it's illegal but you can always use your mind Smile

     
  9-Feb-13, 23:11   #3
  0 
KowKain 
Joined: Feb '11
Location: Slovenia
Age: 26 (M)
Posts: 109
Cardcounting is THA SHIEET!!

When counting cards in BlackJack, you'd get the most stable income you can get out of card based games.

While not illegal in a legal sense, it is however highly risky bussiness - most casinos are privately owned and this is deemed inapropriate behaviour which could get you into some serious trouble.

Aside from that, I was thinking if I am capable of doing that, so I'd go to casinos every once in awhile and get something out of it. You know, like Friday before going out partying, you could freeroll the whole evening.
And probably wouldn't get noticed as this would be minimal payouts. (just-lucky-I-guess style)
There's a lot of books about the subject, but to really grasp it, I think you need well above average IQ as well as very good(perfect) memory.

Also, if you haven't already, got and watch movie called 21. It's all there Blink

     
  9-Feb-13, 23:34   #4
  0 
erru9107 
Joined: Oct '11
Location: Sweden
Age: 25 (M)
Posts: 910
It is a real thing. I know how to do it but I'm not that good at it. I'll elaborate on this when I get on my computer.

------------
Alright so... The thing with counting cards is pretty much that you're keeping track of the number of high/low value of the cards in the deck. Sure, they use a number of decks in Black Jack but in this case it doesn't matter since they are all complete decks.

The easiest method (and the one I use since I haven't really practiced that much) is to assign a value to a number of cards. Any 2-6 card would be a +1, 7-9 would be 0, T-A would be -1.

Now, what you want to do is join a table as soon as they reshuffle the decks and you want to bet the minimum amount. When the cards are dealt, you quickly calculate what the count would be. Say there are 3 players (including yourself) plus the dealer and the deal goes like this:
Player 1: 27
Player 2: J4
Player 3: KQ
Dealer: AX (last card is usually upside down or not even dealt)

Alright, so a quick look at this would say that using the values the cards were given player 1's cards would have a value of +1, player 2 a value of 0, player 3 a value of -2 and dealer a value of -1.

Now, add these together and you'll find that the total value is -2. This means that in the remaining cards in the deck, there are more likely to be drawn a low value card since it's been dealt most of the high cards.

Now, keep track at the cards through the whole game. You should adjust your betting according to the current value of the deck. If the value goes under -10, you should probably sit out a few rounds, blame it on that you're just not feeling it right now or whatever. When the count is back up to about -5 (lowest I would recommend) you can start sitting in again with the minimum bets.

When the value of the deck increases, you increase your bets. Say that the value is +8, that would mean the deck a hot. A high value on a deck means that you as a player are more likely to be dealt BJ or another high combination. Meanwhile, the dealer who can't stop at 16 even if he/she wanted to has to draw another card. This means that with a higher number of high value cards in the deck, you know to not draw another card if you have 14-16 but the dealer has to and will most times get bust.

Well, that's pretty much it really. Not that hard but of course there are more complicated ways of doing this that gives you a better idea of the value of the deck but I won't go into those here since it would just be a pain to try and explain it here.



I use the technique I've described here the few odd times I play. I only play when I'm out drinking with my friends. We have a nice night club here where we usually go and they have BJ tables set up so the drunks can throw their money away Tongue I usually just go in with 200 kronor (about $30) and I leave when I reach 400-500 kronor. That way, I'm up at least 200 kronor so I basically get my ticket in (100 kronor) and a couple of beers for "on the house" Cool

This technique works but good in a night club but I wouldn't recommend it in a casino, they probably have better security and dealers there that'll recognize this easy way of doing it. and if you try it in a pub or a night club or whatever, don't overdo it and try to win more. Leave when you've doubled up or close to and be happy with that.

If anything is unclear, say so and I'll try to explain it a little bit better Smile

Edited by erru9107 (Sunday, February 10, 2013 @ 00:59 GMT)


     
  10-Feb-13, 09:07   #5
  0 
pochui 

Joined: May '08
Location: Lithuania
Age: 32 (M)
Posts: 8638
yes it's a real thing & yes it work...with the most basic card counting system (i.e. hi-lo) u can play a game of blackjack with virtually no house edge, sure u can get your nose ahead, but imo even playing break even game is a cool achievement with the added value of casino comps...but casinos really don't like when people are doing this, so you can be kicked out very quickly if they spot u doing this (even though u are not breaking any rules technically)

     
  10-Feb-13, 13:03   #6
  0 
Zen1004 
Joined: Apr '12
Location: Korea, Republic of
Age: 54 (M)
Posts: 244
Most casinos use a 6 or 8 deck shoe for dealing. You can just ask how many decks are used in the shoe, they have to tell you. There are adjustments that can be made to counting systems to improve the players odds of winning. anyone that wants more information just do a google search it will explain it far better than I can.

While counting is legal, casinos don't like it because it cuts down or even eliminates their edge. As long as you are going solo it's actually pretty hard to catch. What casinos usually catch are the Blackjack teams that have counters playing for min. bets with teammates that wait for a signal from the counters to jump onto tables that are hot. That is far easier to catch and will get you banned from casinos.

     
  10-Feb-13, 17:24   #7
  0 
Mober 
Joined: Mar '09
Location: Greece
Age: 39 (F)
Posts: 10034
It is a real thing. Besides some people using different techniques, there are some also with a very good memory.
But casinos try their best in figuring out whos doing it, plus they keep adding decks to the game
making it even harder. They also shuffle in a predetermined spot in the game, and by doing so
they are eliminating the best guesses as the cards run out.
Usually they shuffle on 5 decks out of 8.

     
  10-Feb-13, 18:31   #8
  0 
erru9107 
Joined: Oct '11
Location: Sweden
Age: 25 (M)
Posts: 910
Posted by Mober:
plus they keep adding decks to the game making it even harder. They also shuffle in a predetermined spot in the game, and by doing so they are eliminating the best guesses as the cards run out.

This really doesn't affect the card counting. As long as you're keeping track on the current value of the deck, it doesn't matter how many more decks they add, the count would still be the same and the odds for drawing a specific card is still the same. Read my previous post and you'll understand why.

     
  11-Feb-13, 10:30   #9
  0 
oliv1 
Joined: Jan '13
Location: Belgium
Age: 26 (M)
Posts: 23
But I don't understand why it's illegal because you mainly make use of simple maths.. I mean I understand that casino want to make profits but I guess it's not illegal when a player knows a strategy to gain more money..

     
  11-Feb-13, 13:19   #10
  0 
Zen1004 
Joined: Apr '12
Location: Korea, Republic of
Age: 54 (M)
Posts: 244
Posted by oliv1:
But I don't understand why it's illegal because you mainly make use of simple maths.. I mean I understand that casino want to make profits but I guess it's not illegal when a player knows a strategy to gain more money..


It's not illegal! That's just B.S. the casinos put out to discourage people from trying it. The casinos do have the right to refuse service to anyone though so if they catch someone counting cards they will ask them to leave. If it was actually illegal the casinos would be prosecuting people they catch card counting.

     
  11-Feb-13, 13:32   #11
  0 
erru9107 
Joined: Oct '11
Location: Sweden
Age: 25 (M)
Posts: 910
Posted by oliv1:
But I don't understand why it's illegal because you mainly make use of simple maths.. I mean I understand that casino want to make profits but I guess it's not illegal when a player knows a strategy to gain more money..

Well, it's not illegal actually. The thing is that most casinos are private owned which means that they can put up their own rules regarding what is permitted or not wile playing games at their property. If you do not follow their rules, you're kicked out. Simple as that really.

     
  11-Feb-13, 15:08   #12
  0 
Fakiry 

Joined: Apr '09
Location: Portugal
Age: 37 (M)
Posts: 4764
A good shuffle between every single hand should be able to elliminate all the chances to make a liable card counting, but it seems some guys can always count on that shuffle to play well. There's a "magic"trick with cards that can help understand this subject. Shuffle the deck, ask someone to pick a card, look at the card near to where the picked one is going to be put and ask the person to shuffle. The odds of the card still be in the same place are huge, believe it or not!

     
  11-Feb-13, 15:34   #13
  0 
Zen1004 
Joined: Apr '12
Location: Korea, Republic of
Age: 54 (M)
Posts: 244
Posted by Fakiry:
A good shuffle between every single hand should be able to elliminate all the chances to make a liable card counting, but it seems some guys can always count on that shuffle to play well. There's a "magic"trick with cards that can help understand this subject. Shuffle the deck, ask someone to pick a card, look at the card near to where the picked one is going to be put and ask the person to shuffle. The odds of the card still be in the same place are huge, believe it or not!


There are two problems with that.

1. shuffling after every hand will reduce the time that players at a table are playing and it eats into the casino's profit. Each shuffle may take less than a minute but over a day it adds up.

2. Tables that shuffle after every deal will have fewer players. I believe that casinos actually tried that in the early days oof organized card counting and found it to be counter productive.

These days casinos use multiple deck shoes usually 6 or 8 decks and shuffle the decks before all the cards run out. The multiple decks reduces the benefit from counting and makes the job of counting more difficult.

they also watch betting behavior. counting systems work on betting large when the deck is hot. When casinos suspect players they will shuffle early or replace decks to get rid of the hot shoe. When they are certain players are counting they will refuse to let those players play in the casino.

     
  11-Feb-13, 17:08   #14
  0 
KowKain 
Joined: Feb '11
Location: Slovenia
Age: 26 (M)
Posts: 109
What I' interested in, is online blackjack. How exactly could one apply the theory there. I mean, I've never played BJ before, not even live...
Probably, if possible, card counting would be even more difficult online, as one could set the computer parameters to detect any 'irregularitis' in the system - such as one player repeatedly winning.

If anyone could answer that, I'd be most pleased. Maybe I'll change my job then Big Smile

     
  11-Feb-13, 17:38   #15
  0 
Mober 
Joined: Mar '09
Location: Greece
Age: 39 (F)
Posts: 10034
No matter what i wouldnt play online Blackjack at all for real money.
Especially in small sites.
If you have access to a land casino you better try there.
At least you can see the cards, and decks.

     
  11-Feb-13, 17:53   #16
  0 
pochui 

Joined: May '08
Location: Lithuania
Age: 32 (M)
Posts: 8638
Posted by Zen1004:
Each shuffle may take less than a minute but over a day it adds up.

dunno if you tried it personally (i did, when i was a dealer) but it takes way more than that- if you shuffle 6-8 properly (according to rules casinos set)- you take about 5 mins & if you would shuffle after every hand, then you would be looking at a dealer shuffling cards 99% of your play time...even those 5 min eat away into casino profit...& 1 more thing: card counters are a rare thing to be honest, even thought all the info is on the net, it still takes a lot of time to perfect your skills & u must have a good roll (and you can have a large downswing too, just like in poker)...so a few card counters isn't that bad compared to a host of drunk dudes who make 90% of casino profit...

     
  11-Feb-13, 23:57   #17
  0 
KowKain 
Joined: Feb '11
Location: Slovenia
Age: 26 (M)
Posts: 109
Posted by Mober:
No matter what i wouldnt play online Blackjack at all for real money.
Especially in small sites.
If you have access to a land casino you better try there.
At least you can see the cards, and decks.



So what you're trying to say is that online BJ is b******t? Cause if that's the case - who can guarantee poker (RNG) to be true?

Yeah, counters probably aren't that common - as I've stated before, it takes one hell ofa mind to be able to do it.
I can't say I know casinos policy about cardcounters, but from what I've heard (and saw portraied in movie 21) it can get you into much trouble. At least if you're being correct about it.

I believe that someone who thinks he know how to count, but in reality doesn't, can do even more damage to his bankroll. Confused Probably worse than drunk dudes, just gambling, messing around.

     
  12-Feb-13, 00:46   #18
  0 
Greenmohave 

Joined: Jan '11
Location: United States
Age: 52 (M)
Posts: 3361
Ever watch the movie Rainman. There's a skit in the movie where the individual that has autism is counting cards his brother and they get busted.

I suppose if one could keep track of what 4 to 6 decks of cards there would be some benefit to counting the. The trick is keeping track plus the odds of what cards would fall each time based on what's already been dealt out.

     
  12-Feb-13, 13:31   #19
  0 
Zen1004 
Joined: Apr '12
Location: Korea, Republic of
Age: 54 (M)
Posts: 244
Posted by pochui:
Posted by Zen1004:
Each shuffle may take less than a minute but over a day it adds up.

dunno if you tried it personally (i did, when i was a dealer) but it takes way more than that- if you shuffle 6-8 properly (according to rules casinos set)- you take about 5 mins & if you would shuffle after every hand, then you would be looking at a dealer shuffling cards 99% of your play time...even those 5 min eat away into casino profit...& 1 more thing: card counters are a rare thing to be honest, even thought all the info is on the net, it still takes a lot of time to perfect your skills & u must have a good roll (and you can have a large downswing too, just like in poker)...so a few card counters isn't that bad compared to a host of drunk dudes who make 90% of casino profit...


When I wrote that I was thinking about single decks but it seems that shuffling is even more time consuming than I thought which only makes the point i was making of it wasting time and cutting into casino profits even more relevant.

     
  12-Feb-13, 17:58   #20
  0 
pinku135 
Joined: Sep '12
Location: India
Age: 24 (M)
Posts: 335
Good day everyone Smile
Well the card counting thing is true ... it happens and works .. it is greatly explained in the movie 21 ... a good movie ... and also in the movie hangover Big Smile ...thats really nice indeed ... but blackjack in land based casino is the best option when compared to the online ones ... online's casino's are really not good !! Good luck at the tables Thumbs Up Thumbs Up

     
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