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Realtime Gaming Casino Blackjack Rules and Strategy

February 18, 2013

There are basically four types of blackjack at Realtime Gaming-powered online casinos based on how many decks are used and whether or not players have the option for a late surrender (Bovada offers this option, for example). Usually there are four decks used, but some online casinos have a two-deck setup instead. The dealer always hits on a soft 17 in these games, and you can double any two cards that are first dealt. You can also double on splits, and you can split up to twice in a single hand. These rules lead to a fairly favorable game that gives a 0.58 percent house advantage at worst, as long as you play with correct basic strategy.

Generally speaking, you can use a fairly standard basic strategy for these games with a few modifications. Most of the changes in strategy are when you should double. For example, you should double with a hard nine against a dealer two if you're playing in a two-deck game, but you should just hit instead when you're playing the four-deck game. With a soft 14, you should double against a dealer four in a two-deck game, but again, you should only hit if the game uses four decks. One non-doubling change to strategy is when you have a hard 16 against a dealer nine. If you're in the two-deck game, you should hit, but if you're in the four-deck game, you should surrender.

Playing with two decks under the Realtime Gaming rules gives the house a slightly worse advantage, so your payout rate will be higher, and this is why you can be slightly more aggressive with your doubling in the above scenarios. With two decks, the house advantage is 0.34 percent with the late surrender and 0.40 without the late surrender. Along similar lines, it's 0.49 percent in the four-deck game if you're allowed a late surrender, and it's just 0.58 percent if that play is not allowed.

Blackjack is one of the best games at RTG online casinos from the perspective of the payout rates. The correct basic strategies are not difficult to learn, and it's harder to make mistakes than in non-standard video poker variations. Overall, you should find out if your game uses two or four decks as soon as possible, perhaps by emailing the support team of your online casino, so that you can make the best plays available.