Learning a Little about Card Counting

Card counting is another strategy employed in the popular game of Blackjack. Basically, you keep track of how many high cards are in proportion to the low cards without using a pen and paper but only through memory. Yes, your memory is the only way you can keep track of the cards. High cards include Jack, Queen, King, (which all have the value of ten), and Ace which can take the value of one or 11. Since a blackjack game can be played with up to eight decks of cards depending on house rules and, as mentioned, keeping track of the ratio of high and low cards is done without a pen and paper, actual card counting may need a lot of practice. An extra dose of talent would definitely help a lot and may indeed get you a long way. However, as difficult or complicated as it sounds, there have been some systems that were developed to make card counting a tad or even a whole lot easier. Of course, for people born with natural talent, they wouldn't need this as card counting can become as natural as breathing for them.

Anybody Can Count Cards

Indeed, card counting seems like a very difficult, if not, impossible feat for those who do not have extra abilities and talents in terms of math and memory. Blackjack is a bit of a memory game. Then when we start to think of the number of decks used in a single Blackjack game, we become even more intimidated to try it out. Some people even got to the point of believing only special people or the savant will be able to perfect card counting. Although it really does help if a person has special abilities in math and memory, people can learn how to count cards. Card counting can actually be taught to anyone as long as he or she is interested in learning it. Otherwise learning it will become even more difficult. Well, since you are here, then you must be interested to learn how to count cards-that's good enough to get you started.

Some Card Counting Systems

Although you can learn to count cards in its very basic way of doing it, you can also opt to learn it and practice it by following some card counting systems developed by skilled people over the years. Take a look at some of the popular systems a lot of people use and practice to help them with the card counting feat.

  • The Canfield Expert system of counting cards makes use of a simple and balanced strategy. The goal of the strategy is to maximize playing efficiency but few people have been using this system as it was developed only for a single deck of playing cards. However, this is a good place to start and once you've sharpened your mind and memory, you can work your way up to the other"big time" systems.
  • The Hi-Low card counting strategy is also a level 1 strategy as is the Canfield Expert system. The level refers to how many different values are assigned to the cards where the lower the level number, the less values are assigned and the easier it is to learn and practice. It gets a bit more complicated as the level rises but become more efficient and formidable. This system is most likely the most used or practiced card counting system as it is easier to learn and is quite efficient.
  • A more difficult system is the Zen Count. It is a level 2 strategy. It's well balanced and designed to optimize betting decisions. This system is among the best developed systems under this level.

There are a lot more card counting systems like the KISS, the Red Seven, the Silver Fox, the Minus, etc. The actual rules and dynamics can be learned by acquiring the books written by the people who developed these card counting systems.

Some Things to Keep in Mind

Remember that the more high cards there are in the deck that hasn't yet been dealt, the better it is for the player. This is because there are more chances of getting a Blackjack and more chances of the dealer getting busted.

Your decision to purchase"insurance" will be better when using card counting. If you know there are little high cards left in the deck, purchasing insurance is actually not very advisable.

The more popular the card counting system you're using, the easier it is for casinos to detect that you're counting.

Although card counting is not illegal, casinos (if you're not playing online) still have the right to throw you out or disqualify you from playing the game


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