I am new and Looking for a good BETTING STRATEGY
  • Hello all,
    I have been reading many posts of this site in the past few weeks.
    I am not a card counter and I don't think I am that devoted to the game yet to start to learn how to count.

    What I am wondering....
    is what is a good betting strategy?
    of course I know when to hit/stand etc. But I have always heard Blackjack is a game of STREAKS. I have never been able to find a good betting strategy as far as how many units to put down when.
    right now I sort of just put down what I want to, no rymn or reason behind it.

    I have heard some people increase their bet 1 unit after each winning hand untill a hand is lost. Does this work well? please let me know some of you betting strategies concerning how many units you put down for each hand (and when).
    THANKS a bunch!
  • Brandon,

    Here's the deal. NO betting strategy that's not dictated by the count can increase your odds. Sure, some people increase 1 unit after a win until they lose. Others increase 1 unit after a loss until they win. In the end it makes no difference. Blackjack (as all casino games) is a negative expectation game. The more you bet, the more you'll lose. Unless you know when to increase your bet because of the composition of the remaining cards, through counting. This is not my opinion, this is a mathematical fact. Read any knowledgable author (Snyder, Renzey, Wong...) and they'll tell you the same. Or you can listen to anonymous people on these boards who claim to win thousands by doubling their bet after a loss, or using a 1,2,5,8,12 progression, or a 1,3,7,15 progression or any series of numbers, it doesn't matter. If you have a good blackjack program on your computer, try out any progression method you like and if you play long enough, you'll lose no matter what. Or read up on computer simulations (millions of hands) that have tested different progressions and found them to be practically the same. Losers one and all.

    Counting is the only way to go. If you don't want to count, take my advice and bet low stakes and try to get lucky every once in a while. Of course I realize I'm just another anonymous person giving you advice and I suppose you don't have to believe me, but the more you read (respectable authors) the more you'll realize it's the truth. I'd suggest Blackjack Bluebook II by Fred Renzey first. It's not aimed at professional counters and it explains the game very well.

    I know I didn't answer your question but I hope I've helped.
  • Leon just gave you the straight truth of the matter and I'll try to add just
    a little. I think that you will agree that a win, loss or push on the next hand
    or sequence of hands is an unknown to everyone, including card counters.
    Some call this luck,variance or strandard deviation and it occurs in every
    conceivable form. Betting stategies are pre-conceived programs that
    attempts to forcast, in advance, how the variations will playout in a BJ game. This is an impossible task and you can prove it to yourself by trying to develop some strategy that will allow you to win money in a coin tossing game. In 100 trials with a coin, streaks will occur in many forms(shapes)and you can not configure any betting strategy that can capture this unknow to your advantage. If by some change you win money by using some betting strategy, it is pure luck......a stab in the dark that
    occasionally hits the mark.

    Streaks occur in many gambling situations, but when and in what form
    is not known by anyone, including the mystics who say otherwise. Math
    (probabilities) can tell us how often we should win/lose some number of
    hands, but it can't tell us when and in what sequence.

    An example: Probabilities has it that we should receive a BJ once every
    20 hands or about 5% of the time. In reality we could play 95 hands
    without a single BJ and then receive 5 in a row.....that is still 5% of the
    time on average.
  • I understand what both of you are trying to say. And I do realize that once you get past the basic skill, blackjack is still luck.

    if I wasn't clear before, What I am trying to say is....
    how do you vary you levels of betting while playing blackjack.

    If you do not count cards we all know that the number of hands that you will win will be against you. But the player affects if you will come out with posative or negative cash flow regardless if you have won more hands than the dealer or not.

    SO...
    if you are NOT a card counter, what is your betting strategy like? Bet the same amount each hand? increase your bet until you win a hand? double? just curious on all of your betting strategies because I need some plan behind my currently random betting moves.
    Thanks for the help!
  • Because no betting strategy has any intelligence to it, pick one. One is
    just as good as another. 5-10-15 or 10-20-30-40 what difference does
    it make?
  • the latter loses faster. :)

    because your average bet is higher.

    For BS players (not card counters) the best strategy includes:

    (1) betting the table minimum, and be sure to play at the lowest min bet table you can find, usually $5, except on the Vegas strip where $10 is usually the min and it can go up when it is crowded.

    (2) playing at a full table, with a slow dealer, with side-bets if possible (such as 3 card poker side bet, lucky ladies, over/under, etc). Side bets are good because they slow the game further as the dealer has to pay those bets off separately. Of course the BS player is not going to place any of those side bets.

    (3) find the slowest dealer you can find.

    Since your hourly EV is proportional to average bet times number rounds played per hour, you want to minimize both of those factors to minimize the casino's ability to eat away at your bankroll...
  • True, but that assumes that you are playing for the hell of it. Most play
    with the idea of winning money, basic or counter. Thus, your conditions
    are poorish, depending,of course, on objective.

    SSR- where can I find counter basic strategy and references?
  • Learn to count and you still have to have ESP to know what card comes next.... Counters sell books to make money and play blackjack on occasion from the profits from their books. Unless you can figure out a way to know what card is next in the shoe--- you are still gambling..... On some instances you will find a guy at the table who will tell you what card was going to be next after it was pulled out of the shoe by the dealer, now if he could do it before I would start sitting next to him.
    Basic stategy is close to being a good tool even though it is wrong in several plays..... Take a deck of cards and deal hands on your kitchen table and deal the dealers up card...... take your calculator and figure the odds on each hand.... If this math is too hard for you --- then go to the slots.....
  • And one more piece of advice: Don't listen to unclenorm!
  • Leon...

    Were you the guy at my table saturday that told me "you should not have it that 12, because you took the dealers 10 which was her bust card"?

    Why would you say don't listen to me you don't even know me....????
  • Ray:

    "bigplayer" (on another message board) pointed me to this a long while back. While I don't remember the specificss, two things stick in my mind:

    1. CBS comes from taking your counting system (hi-lo commonly) and assuming a TC of +2. Take all of the BS departures that happen at +2 (for example, stand on 16 vs 10 at 0 or higher, etc) and make those plays your "new counter's basic strategy". Real BS is based around a TC of roughly zero, which means it was derived from zillions of hands of simulation, with no regard to any "count".

    2. CBS was really devised for teams. Particularly teams employing the "big player" concept where you have a spotter playing and betting the table min while counting, and the big player is called in by the spotter at some positive true count (+2 is common). By doing this, the big player doesn't have to know any BS departures, as his "basic strategy" is already tuned to a +2 or higher count. This makes team play/training easier and greatly reduces errors since the big player just plays until signalled to leave, and he plays each and every hand exactly the same each time he gets one. And since he has a big bet out, he is making the correct play all the time anyway.

    This has a couple of useful aspects. 1. many team managers talk about errors. Even the MIT team talked about dumping the index plays because they led to so many errors. This idea takes that one level farther in that you just remember the optimal play and that's it. 2. Many "counter-catchers" use BS departures, particularly insurance and 16 vs 10 as "counter tells". CBS would say "always insure" and at +2 that would be correct most of the time. It would also say "stand on 16 vs 10" so that there is no choice about hitting or standing depending on the count, which would be a plus for cover.

    of course, this would make you look less like a wild-assed gambler that plays on "hunches" but many like the idea.

    Hope that helps. I suspect this is covered in an old post somewhere. cardcounter.com, advantageplayer.com, blackjackfforumonline.com, bj21.com, etc... But if you take a BS card and "override" any playing decisions that have a +2 index (double at +2 or higher, etc) then you will have the idea...
  • unclenorm said:
    Leon...

    Were you the guy at my table saturday that told me "you should not have it that 12, because you took the dealers 10 which was her bust card"?

    Why would you say don't listen to me you don't even know me....????


    I'm half joking Norm. But only half. It's just what you said about BS being wrong in many instances. If you're using the correct basic strategy chart for the game you're playing, then it's right in all instances (assuming "off the top" statistics).

    And the whole idea of counters only making money by selling books. I know some people who would disagree with that and have the bank statements to back it up.
  • unclenorm said:
    Basic stategy is close to being a good tool even though it is wrong in several plays...


    Actually, if played to perfection, it's "wrong" 49.5% of the time. :wink:
  • JeffDubya said:
    Actually, if played to perfection, it's "wrong" 49.5% of the time. :wink:

    Huh??.......Would you care to explain that??
  • I know all the experts will say progressions don't work but the following works for me specially in OL casinos where steaks appear to ocur more often.
    I play 5 boxes head to head 2 units on each, any loosing box is abandonned, bet on winning boxes with a unit progression 3 4 6 9 13 19 28 40 55 70 85. Pushed boxes bet 3 units when all boxes have lost, start over.
    I feel this maximises the chances to catch winning streaks. If I am 30 units down I switch to 1 box until it gets better.

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