New to the board, and a couple observations.
  • Hey everyone, i've been lurking for a while and decided to join.

    Just wanted to say thanks, this board has been a great source of info....especially since I am starting to get into Blackjack more seriously than I had before.

    Took a trip to a casino here in Ontario (i'm in Toronto) last weekend, and tried a few things I observed on this board.

    1) I learned BS for 8 deck perfectly, still takes me a couple of seconds when soft counts come out, but i'm getting better and better, especially with!

    2) I have a couple of books on order, so I haven't committed 100% to a counting strategy yet, so I thought I'd just try a couple of the simpler ones I found on here as I was going just for fun.

    Played on a nickel table, nice having those when i would like to practice, dropped down $300 and proceeded to play.

    I used the A/5 counting strategy that Nickels & Bullets proposed a few pages back, from for dealer stands on 17. Rama doesn't allow surrender, so i was stuck on that part, but for the majority, it seemed to work really well!

    My first time counting, of course it was a pretty simple strategy, but still a lot of distractions :)

    Played from 12:30pm to 5:30pm, 5 hours worth, and ended up ahead about $50.

    It was amazing to see the count either crash or explode on a shoe, and i'd say 90-95% of the time the cards would coincide and everyone would be like "Damn, why didn't i bet like that guy did".

    Great time, great fun, and looking forward to learning a more advanced strategy.

  • Mike, great to hear about your progress. Don't feel bad about "pausing a few seconds" with soft doubles - the point is that you made the right move. Keep a card in your pocket in case you forget - better to look stupid than to give your money to the casino.

    I think you're ready for the hi-lo count. Practice with 2 decks. When you can count down 2 decks in 60 seconds, without making a mistake, you're ready for 8 decks. Practice at home with 8 decks (with the TV on and other people in the room). When you are only off by +/-2 at the end of 8 decks, you're ready for the real casino.

    If you play at the red chip level, (i.e. $5 or $10 tables), don't worry about cover. (just don't count out loud, or look disappointed when you get 10,10 or ignore the pit boss when he says, "hi, how's it going?")

    Good luck!
  • Thanks, I figured that about the red chip level for now....that's why i'm taking it easy in there for a while!

    Any thoughts on the KO strategy? Seems like pretty good betting correlation, and I won't have to find the true count.......
  • I have the KO book and the strategy looks pretty easy. You can just learn the count first, then progress to indexes and finally adjust betting based on the count. It is nice that you don't have to adjust to a true count, especially if you're dealing with 8 decks. I just don't see the point of adding MORE math if there's a way around it.
  • Sorry for the lack of info on NO Surrender. Essentially, Basic Strategy declares to HIT if you can't surrender. I double checked Hard 16 vs. Dealer 10 to see how close a decision this is. You may sustitute the Situation of 3+ 16 ( three card 16) for the 2-card hard 16 vs. a dealer 10... that is to stand at a score of ZERO or higher. All other surrenders are always HIT.


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