Baccarat is one of the longest running casino games in the world, and for very good reason. It is a simple, yet highly enjoyable game, with each round taking just a few moments. It is also one of few casino games that allows large groups to play simultaneously, making it an excellent choice for social gatherings.
As opposed to real money blackjack games, the player does not have an active role to play. Instead, the player simply bets on what a potential outcome will be. This means that many players can all make their own bet, and observe, without the outcome being impacted in any way.
Place Your Bets
There are 3 bets, and only ever 3 bets, that can be made in Baccarat; player, banker, and tie. It is this simplicity that makes the game so appealing, given that virtually anyone can start playing immediately, and place a bet that has a good chance of winning.
Note that even the player at the table, facing the dealer, can bet on the house, or banker, hand. There are no limitations in this regard.
But What Is Being Bet On?
The croupier deals out 2 hands of 2 cards, one set to the dealer, and one to the banker. It is the total of these cards that will decide which is the winning hand. But, the way in which the total of the cards is calculated is important. The total closest to 9 wins.
All 10s and face cards count as 0. All other cards are counted as per their assigned value. A 5 and a 4 will equal 9. But, if the total of the cards equals a value of above 10, only the second digit is counted as the total. For example a 7 and a 7 equals 14, but is simply counted as 4.
On some occasions, if the total of the cards is 0-5, an additional card will be drawn. The dealer will do so automatically, according to the rules.
What To Bet On?
So, is Baccarat simply a matter of choosing a bet, and sticking with it? No, there are certain benefits to each betting option. Betting on the banker hand pays out 1:1, but with the caveat that 5% of the bet goes to the house. Betting on tie pays out a much more generous 8:1, or 9:1, depending on the casino, but the odds of this outcome are low.
In more detail, the chances of the game ending as a tie are just 9.53%, the chances of the house winning are 45.85%, and the chances of the player winning are 44.62%. Which means that betting on the bank is more likely to yield positive results, but payouts are slightly less. The chances of a tie being the result are rather low, but with a massive payout amount.
So in conclusion, Baccarat is easily understood, with simple, fair rules. Choose a bet, let the hand play out, and collect your winnings, if you’ve won any.