The History of Blackjack

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The History of Blackjack

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When someone says gambling, the first game that would pop up in your head would most probably be Blackjack right? It is the most common game and e

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When someone says gambling, the first game that would pop up in your head would most probably be Blackjack right? It is the most common game and everyone knows about it. Not to mention, it is also the game that they play in movies and shows that have gambling scenes in them. People either know it as Blackjack or as 21. 

 

Blackjack is a game that is filled with tradition. It has been played for decades and developed into the game we know today over the course of the years. So how and why did Blackjack get so popular amongst humans? What makes it so interesting to play?

 

The Origins of Blackjack

 

There are a lot of different theories as to when and how the game started but there is one theory that is accepted widely and that is, the game started in France, in the 18th century. The game that had been famous at Louis XV ‘s courts was called Vingt-et-Un or Vingt-Un, which translates into 21. 

 

The modern game had some variations, such as only the dealer being able to double down, and bets being made for each card being dealt, but it had the same basic aim of getting as close to 21 as possible without busting.

 

Vingt-et-Un ‘s game came in with French colonists to America. In 1820 New Orleans hosted the first legalized and house-banked games. Although at this point non-legal and player-banked games could be found elsewhere in the city. The game started to be called 21, and it soon spread through North America as a whole.

 

In 1931, the federal legalization of gambling in Nevada led to the game of 21 is widely popularised. The word blackjack finally contributed to a major change in the rules here. A special payout of 10 to 1 was made for a hand containing the ace of spades and a blackjack. 

 

The unexpectedly large payoff for that hand was soon dropped, but the name “Blackjack” henceforth stuck with the game. The basic rules of the game that we know today were introduced by the Nevada Gaming Commission around this time.

 

Strategy and Card Counting

 

The growth of legalized game popularity in Las Vegas ‘s great casinos brought with it a flood of players who developed tactics and systems to maximize successful play. Card counting was probably the most popular of these schemes. Professional players then started to use card counting to beat the house and books about how to win in blackjack started getting published. 

 

The 1962 release of Beat the Dealer by Edward O’Thorp really caught the attention of both players and casino operators. Some find Edward O’Thorp ‘s book the true birth of card counting. O’Thorp researched and examined how it was possible to recognize tracking cards when the player had the advantage and could bet high. His ten-count system gave the casinos a number of new players to take their chances at the machine. Casinos also responded by increasing the number of decks used in the game and a few other steps to try to reduce the system’s effectiveness. 

 

Through the years several other players have adapted and developed the card counting concepts. Players tend to use methods for card counting to this day. While not being technically illegal, it is a practice that casinos do not favorably look at.

 

Modern Blackjack 

 

The next big advancement in the blackjack game came with the growth of the internet. By the mid-1990s the first online casinos were introduced, ensuring blackjack could be played from the comfort of your own home for real money. This began with only the original, standard version of the game, but soon afterwards new and unique versions were made available for online play.

 

Games like Blackjack Switch, Double Exposure Blackjack and Duel 21 have arisen. They became a major hit with players seeking a new and thrilling take on the standard game, thanks to their innovative gameplay and adaptation of classic game rules. There were also a wide range of optional side bets launched across various versions, giving players a chance at greater payouts.

 

There’s no question that online blackjack was a success, but some players consider the lack of real casino atmosphere a big downside. Live Blackjack ‘s arrival helped close the difference between playing on the internet and playing at a traditional casino. Technological advances allow you to play the 21 game in real time, with an actual dealer, without even having to step outside the house. 

 

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