The strategy of counting 10s in blackjack, like today’s online casino games, was re-elaborated in the ” Beat the Dealer ” edition of EO Thorp of 1966. Thanks to the help of electronic computers and the contribution of Julian Braun, it was shown that if applied correctly, it is greater than 6 times the 5 count strategy.
In the original discussion, Thorp explains that what needs to be calculated is the ratio of (the other cards in the deck excluding the 10s) to the 10s.
PS: By 10, we mean the 10, the J, the Q, and the K.
In a game with 6 decks of cards, then we will have a total of 312 cards, and there will be 216 other cards and 96 “10”. The ratio between 216 and 96 is equal to 2.25.
Insurance in blackjack
Using the count of 10, there are also variations in the basic strategy. For example, in the case of insurance. Insurance is never convenient for the player, but when the ratio is less than 2, the insurance becomes convenient, and you have to take advantage of this advantage insuring.
How to use the 10 count technique practically
We start from a situation of a newly shuffled and, therefore, new deck. With a 6-deck game, the situation is the following: 216 other cards and 96 “10”. The ratio is 216/96 = 2.25, and you begin to take note of the cards that gradually come out …
The first card that comes out is a “5”, so you keep in mind: 215/96, then a “4” comes out, you keep in mind 214/96, then a “10” comes out, you keep in mind 214/95, then come out respectively “3”, “2”, “6”, “7”, we keep in mind 210/95 and so on and when it is our turn we should mentally calculate the ratio and know if the situation of the deck is our favorite and therefore increase the bet or not and then continue with the minimum bet and basic strategy.
Memorizing this huge amount of information takes a lot of skill, but you have to start step step. For example, we know that at the beginning of the deck, the other cards / 10 ratio is 2.25. Knowing this, we initially memorize all those decisions that are in the 2.1-2.4 range, which are the ones that will mostly happen on average in a normal game session. Subsequently, when we have found a certain familiarity, we could take into consideration those decisions that are in a wider range of 2-2.5, etc., etc.
The knowledge of these tables in quotients around 2.25 will bring significant advantages to the bench.
Card counting made easy, HI-LO or HI-LOW (high/low) counting
It is a very simple counting system where the cards are divided into three groups with a different value:
- two, three, four, five, and six are worth +1
- seven, eight, and nine are worth 0
- ten, jack, queen, king, ace are worth -1