Sunday, September 2, 2012

E-29: Blackjack House Edge Misconceptions

There are many parts of casino odds that people don't quite understand.

* How do the casinos have an edge in blackjack when they are forced to play a set of rules, such as always hitting on 16 and no option to surrender etc?

Casinos gain the edge by always playing their hand last. By going last, the advantage is solely theirs. The player may have already bust and the dealer has collected their chips, even before they have hit their hand.
The dealer may also win by simply beating the remaining players. The casino gets two bites of the cherry.

*Do automatic continuous shuffle machines increase the house edge?

No. A shuffle machine doesn't change the odds at all, it just means you play more hands per hour and therefore expose more of your bankroll to the existing house edge.
A shuffle machine is completely random and can not be rigged to advantage the house.

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