바카라 (baccarat) is a popular casino game in Asia and among high-rollers worldwide. This table game has charisma unlike any other in the casino. Maintaining an atmosphere of exclusivity is important, especially in high-stakes VIP rooms, and all of this conceals that this is a direct competition to bet on and play.
However, many casino goers are still hesitant to try their hand at baccarat. While the betting and strategy are simple, the gameplay elements, mainly how winners are determined, can be a little perplexing. Over the years, some efforts have attracted new players through simplification. One such attempt is No-Commission Baccarat, eliminating the odd fee deducted from winning banker bets. However, as with most “simple” rules, there is a cost for players.
Baccarat is a card game played similarly to blackjack and from an eight-deck shoe. Baccarat is also known as punto banco. The objective of each round is to correctly guess whether the player’s or the banker’s hand will emerge victorious. There’s no guilt in betting on any of these hands because they’re both within the casino dealer’s control (though in high-stakes games, a player may get to hold the “player” hand). You can also place bets on whether or not the hand will end in a tie.
The dealer will play out the hands after you have placed your bet. Play of a baccarat variant that has been around for millennia in which a player and banker compete by using strategy and independent hands. Each hand has two cards, which face up in the modern game.
The current moment is an excellent opportunity to go over the hand scoring for this game. All numbered cards are worth their face value, while an ace is worth one point. To determine a hand’s score, add all the points on the cards in it. So 3, 13, or 23 all equal three points.
The action comes to a halt, and both the player and the banker have the option to stand if they have a hand that is worth eight or nine points. In all other circumstances, the player will “hit,” which means they will take one more card if the value of their hand is five points or less, but they will “stand” if the value is six points or more. Both hands are eligible to receive only one more card each.
After the player has decided, it is the banker’s turn to play. If the player stands, the banker must make the same decision: stand with six or more, hit with five or less. If the player takes a card, the banker’s strategy will be a more complex chart that considers both the banker’s hand and the card the player just received. This reversion to the original rules of Chemin de fer, in which the initial hands were dealt face down, but a player’s third card faced up, providing the banker with crucial information.
Today’s banco games continue this tradition by dictating the banker’s action partially based on what the player receives on the third card while ignoring the total strength of the player’s hand. Based on the power of the banker’s hand, the dealer applies the following rules:
- It will always hit them if the banker scores two or less.
- If the banker’s score is three, they will hit unless the player’s third card is an eight.
- If the banker has a four-digit score, they will strike if the player has a two, three, four, five, six, or seven.
- If the banker has a five, they will attack if the player has a four, five, six, or seven.
- If the banker has a six, they will crash if the player has a six or seven.
- They will always stand if the banker’s score is seven.
Little Strategy, But Choose Carefully
Despite its reputation as a complex game, you need very little to play 바카라 (Baccarat) like the pros. We would tell you to bet on the banker every hand in a standard game.
In standard baccarat, the banker bet has a 1.06% house edge, compared to 1.24% on the player bet (still good) and 14% on the tie (very, very bad). Mathematical.
No-Commission Baccarat changes the math. The rules haven’t changed, so the edges on player and tie bets are the same. The banker’s payouts and house edge are different. The change isn’t good, as the banker bet now has a house edge of 4.07%
In this variant, always bet on the player’s hand. Some commission-free games may be different. Most versions make it better to bet on the player, with some rare versions making the two bets equal (within 0.02%). Casino gimmicks are designed to make the house more money. Stick to the player bet at No-Commission Baccarat tables.
Another warning is to ignore the board that shows recent results or live players tracking every hand. Every hand is independent, so these efforts can’t hurt or help. Card counting is mathematically impossible, even in a brick-and-mortar casino where the shoe after every hand. Keep your strategy simple to improve your odds.
Enjoy the Atmosphere (And the Odds)
It is one of the most enjoyable casino games. There’s no strategy, and the gameplay is so simple that you may find it boring. The aura of a good table, the fair odds, and the relaxed pace of play (especially at high limits) make for memorable sessions.
None of the 바카라 (baccarat) doesn’t deviate. While there’s no reason to play this version over the original, it does make the payouts easier to understand. If you stick to the player bet, you won’t lose anything compared to more traditional forms of this classic.