Card games are exquisite forms of entertainment, and some of them have long been objects of our brainstorming sessions, ones that are meant to lead us to some sort of a facilitating strategy and show us an easier path towards winning. Blackjack, the most popular card game of all, is associated with a rather notorious practice of card counting. A lot of people consider card counting a form of cheating, even though the system doesn’t really make use of any side objects to function as it never leaves the player’s head. Like we’ve said, card counting is notorious, but in reality, the drama is bigger than the actual reasons and arguments for card counting to be so ill-famed. Fame and popular opinion aside, what is card counting and is it legal?
The ability to count cards can be learned with a healthy amount of effort and determination put into it, but the fact remains that this system can’t be applied always and in every blackjack situation. Also, not everyone has the audacity to use it. If you consider yourself a risk-taker, a bold and skilled blackjack player, you can try your luck with card counting. But know this – card counting has no effect on virtual blackjack games. It can only show results at live casinos and land-based blackjack tables.
As you can assume, card counting refers to a strategy that enables the player to keep track of specific cards as they are dealt and played. It’s not about memorizing every single card that has come out of the shoe; it’s about taking mental notes about particular cards in order to make elaborate assumptions about which cards are more likely to appear in the next hand. Card counting is not an exact science, most of the time it provides the player with approximate predictions based on which he/she will make favorable decisions about whether to hit, stand, double down and so on. After a while of making mental notes on certain cards already passing, you can get to a conclusion of whether there are more high-value cards left among the undealt cards, or a lot of low-value cards. Generally, if there are more ‘large cards’ left the player is in a better situation, with better chances of getting a blackjack combination that pays well. In a way, counting cards is like developing a strong chess strategy, and if that is not illegal why would blackjack card counting be?
If you master the skill of counting cards and you only use your brain to show your mastery, you won’t be doing anything against the law. People tend to think card counting is a crime due to what is shown in movies and TV shows, where a touch of drama goes a long way. In real life, using your mental capacities is not against any regulations and legal restrictions. However, casino establishments do not approve of this behavior and will reserve the right to ask a player to leave if management comes to suspect that he/she is counting cards. By counting cards you influence the house edge, depriving the casino of its expected profit. Still, you are doing nothing unlawful – only something that might raise a few eyebrows.