Blackjack Stand

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To stand means declining to take any further cards, and to sit tight with your current total, hoping it either beats the dealer score, or the dealer goes bust. That all sounds rather easy, doesn’t it? Well, that’s because it is! All you must do is follow a basic blackjack strategy of when you should hit or stand. If the dealer has 17 points off the deal without an Ace, most blackjack rules say the dealer will stand, even if a 21 player has a higher total. The dealer also might have a soft 17 hand, which is one that includes an Ace and any other cards whose combined value totals six points.

Hit or Stand gameplay is based on Atlantic City and Las Vegas multiple deck casinos rules. Blackjack rules vary from casino to casino, which makes learning blackjack strategy more complicated. However, many correct moves are fundamental enough that they do not differ from casino to casino, and most large scale casinos have very similar rules - usually matching those in Vegas or A.C. The strategy tables for Vegas and A.C. are displayed below. To find strategy tables for a particular casino, you can visit BlackJack Info, a site that can generate customized tables.

Basic Blackjack Rules:

  • The goal of blackjack is to beat the dealer's hand without going over 21.
  • Face cards are worth 10. Aces are worth 1 or 11, whichever makes a better hand.
  • Each player starts with two cards, one of the dealer's cards is hidden until the end.
  • To 'Hit' is to ask for another card. To 'Stand' is to hold your total and end your turn.
  • If you go over 21 you bust, and the dealer wins regardless of the dealer's hand.
  • If you are dealt 21 from the start (Ace & 10), you got a blackjack.
  • Blackjack usually means you win 1.5 the amount of your bet. Depends on the casino.
  • Dealer will hit until his/her cards total 17 or higher.
  • Doubling is like a hit, only the bet is doubled and you only get one more card.
  • Split can be done when you have two of the same card - the pair is split into two hands.
  • Splitting also doubles the bet, because each new hand is worth the original bet.
  • You can only double/split on the first move, or first move of a hand created by a split.
  • You cannot play on two aces after they are split.
  • You can double on a hand resulting from a split, tripling or quadrupling you bet.

For more information about Blackjack rules,strategy, and etiquette you can visit Hit or Stand's recommended book list.


Below you will find the strategy tables for both Atlantic City and Las Vegas. These table are what the Hit or Stand games is based on. Hit or Stand accepts a correct move from either Vegas or A.C.(they differ only slightly). It needs to be noted that using the below tables will not cause you to make money - the odds are still against you. The only way to put the odds of Blackjack in you favor is to count cards which is a large topic of its own.

Blackjack Standard Deviation

Las Vegas Multiple Deck
Dealer’s Up Card
Your
Hand
2345678910A

8

HHHHHHHHHH
9HDDDDHHHHH
10DDDDDDDDHH
11DDDDDDDDDH
12HHSSSHHHHH
13SSSSSHHHHH
14SSSSSHHHHH
15SSSSSHHHHH
16SSSSSHHHHH
17SSSSSSSSSS
A,2HHHDDHHHHH
A,3HHHDDHHHHH
A,4HHDDDHHHHH
A,5HHDDDHHHHH
A,6HDDDDHHHHH
A,7SDDDDSSHHH
A,8SSSSSSSSSS
A,9SSSSSSSSSS
A,APPPPPPPPPP
2,2HHPPPPHHHH
3,3HHPPPPHHHH
4,4HHHHHHHHHH
6,6HPPPPHHHHH
7,7PPPPPPHHHH
8,8PPPPPPPPPP
9,9PPPPPSPPSS
10,10SSSSSSSSSS
Atlantic City Multiple Deck
Dealer’s Up Card
Your
Hand
2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 A
8HHHHHHHHHH
9HDDDDHHHHH
10DDDDDDDDHH
11DDDDDDDDDH
12HHSSSHHHHH
13SSSSSHHHHH
14SSSSSHHHHH
15SSSSSHHHHH
16SSSSSHHHHH
17SSSSSSSSSS
A,2HHHDDHHHHH
A,3HHHDDHHHHH
A,4HHDDDHHHHH
A,5HHDDDHHHHH
A,6HDDDDHHHHH
A,7SDDDDSSHHH
A,8SSSSSSSSSS
A,9SSSSSSSSSS
A,APPPPPPPPPP
2,2PPPPPPHHHH
3,3PPPPPPHHHH
4,4HHHPPHHHHH
6,6PPPPPHHHHH
7,7PPPPPPHHHH
8,8PPPPPPPPPP
9,9PPPPPSPPSS
10,10SSSSSSSSSS

People often ask how it is known that the strategy tables such as the ones above are correct. They are created and validated in two ways: The first method involves applying probability theory which uses extremely complicated mathematics. The second technique involves using computers to simulate thousands of blackjack deals that are played using different strategies to see which combination of moves give the best end results (the moves that cause one to lose money the slowest).

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The entire game of blackjack is based around the two words “Hit me”. All of the strategy and logic in the game comes down to whether or not you want to get another card added on top of your first two cards. Remember, the goal of blackjack is to either make the dealer bust, hit 21 yourself, or have a higher number than the dealer ends up with.

Most of the variance in the game comes from the idea of hitting or standing when you either get another card dealt to you, at risk of busting, or stay where you are, and risk the dealer beating you. This is a complex decision making process, and it’s important to know how to approach it.

Blackjack Stand On 17 Strategy

This page details all of the methods you can use to understand when to hit or stand, and at the end, you can find a chart explaining why. Let’s jump right into it with a discussion of the dealer’s up card and why that matters.

Knowing When To Hit Or Stand - The Dealer’s Up Card

Understanding the implications of the dealer’s up card is very important. Basically, you get to see one of the dealer’s cards, and that allows you to make some guesses as to what number they are at, and what their decision making process will be. The higher the dealer’s up card, the more likely the player is to want to hit, as a general rule. This is because, once again, the goal is to beat the dealer - to get the closest to 21 without going over. The card you see tells you a lot about the range of possibilities they could have. For example, if you see a 2, you know that their total is relatively low, and if you have a decent total, it could be correct to stand. That’s the basics of understanding a dealer’s up card, but there’s so much more to understand what the process is behind choosing to stand.

Hit or stand blackjack practice

When To Stand In Blackjack

The basic idea of when you want to stand in blackjack is when you have a pretty good idea that your total is pretty close to 21, you don’t want to risk going over, and you want to put the onus on the dealer to beat your total. This tends to mean that you want to start seriously considering standing at around 17 total. The idea here is that, unless you can see an ace from the dealer, you’re fairly likely to have more than them at this point, given the amount of times cards that are worth more than 7 appear in the deck. If you have 19, you’re always standing, for example. You’re likely to bust if you hit, and it’s relatively hard to beat. The rules for this are fairly fluid so understand them well.

When To Hit In Blackjack

The basic idea behind when you want to hit in blackjack is twofold. First, you want to hit when you aren’t in much danger of going over or busting. Second, you want to hit when you need to beat a decent dealer total. This means that if you have a middling hand, let’s say 15, you’ll want to stand if the dealer’s face up card is fairly low, but hit if the dealer’s face up card is higher. This is because you can extrapolate the range of possible outcomes from the dealer’s face up card, and understand when you need to hit, and when you need to stand. There’s a lot of math that goes into this, but you can play by intuition as well. Remember, the goal of the game is to beat the dealer without going over - and that’s devilishly simple, but devilishly tricky as well.

When Does The Dealer Have To Hit In Blackjack

Blackjack Standard Play Chart

The basic rules that most dealers follow, across the board, are determined to their mathematical advantage over years of study and play. The dealer will always hit on anything below a 16 total. This is why, when you have a 17, you tend to consider staying - you have something fairly close to what they tend to stay at. This can get a little more complex when people start considering aces, which allow the concept of hard and soft 17s to enter the equation, but that’s mostly a discussion for a different page. Suffice to say, the basic rule they follow is that they will hit anything that is a 16 total or below.

When Does The Dealer Have To Stay In Blackjack

Dealers in blackjack follow strict rules - rules that are designed for them to play as optimally as possible against you. The basic idea behind most of them is to optimize their mathematical odds at victory. For this reason, almost all dealers will stand when their total is 17 or above. As before, aces throw a bit of a wrench into this equation, but there is a lot of grey area in Blackjack. The basic rule they follow is to stand on 17 because that puts the onus on you to beat a 17, which is pretty hard to do without going over.

Hit Or Stand Cheat Sheets

Here is a very basic legal blackjack hit or stand cheat sheet. Remember that the math changes depending on which type of blackjack you’re playing, so make sure you understand what’s going on in each variant you play.

Blackjack Standard Play

Your HandUp Card
2345678910A
<11HitHitHitHitHitHitHitHitHitHit
12HitHitStandStandStandHitHitHitHitHit
13StandStandStandStandStandHitHitHitHitHit
14StandStandStandStandStandHitHitHitHitHit
15StandStandStandStandStandHitHitHitHitHit
16StandStandStandStandStandHitHitHitHitHit
17-21StandStandStandStandStandStandStandStandStandStand