A century ago, the idea that gambling could become an industry worth hundreds of billions per year that would be vital to the US and global economy would have seemed ridiculous. But times have changed, both in terms of attitudes toward gambling and the technology that makes fair and professionally operated casinos available to all of us.
In the 1920s, gambling was a serious business in which fortunes were made or, more often, lost. Today, it is a leisure activity. Casino gamblers play for fun, knowing and accepting that the odds are against them. After all, a casino is a business, and it has to make a profit. However, the beauty of a game of chance is that occasionally, the law of averages might go on the fritz, and luck can be on your side.
The likelihood of that happening is highly dependent on the game you choose to play. Here, we present three casino games in which the perfect strategy and some good fortune have a reasonable chance of working in your favor.
Sometimes known as 21 or Pontoon, blackjack is one of those card games that are simple to learn but has hidden depths. Those depths are well worth exploring. Approach the game with knowledge of the basic rules but nothing more, so decide on impulse whether to hit, stand or split a pair, and the house edge is around four percent, meaning you’ll win about 96 coins to every 100 you lose.
Adopt a basic strategy, however, by learning the optimum decision for every situation according to your cards and the dealer’s upcard, and that can come down to one percent. Advanced blackjack strategy can reduce the house edge even more, but to achieve this, you will have to learn some basics of card counting and compositional dependent theory.
Craps has a history dating back about 900 years and is probably the most popular dice game. If you’ve never played before, don’t let the apparent complexity of the table put you off. Have a few practice games online first – most of the sites listed at gamblingsites.org offer some form of craps, either as a digital video game or in a live casino setting.
The key to craps success is to do the basics well. In particular, play only the pass / no pass bets. These have practically no house edge. Ignore the props and side bets. They are just distractions.
With any poker game, you need a blend of luck and skill to succeed. Video poker has a number of different variations, and the more advanced you get, the lower the house edge – if you play your cards right.
Deuces Wild is a variation in which 2s are wild cards, which adds plenty of complications to your strategy. Make the perfect call every time, however, and the odds are slightly in your favor – that’s right, the house edge is less than zero.