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How to play Pontoon


Pontoon is a card game very similar to Blackjack. Initially each player is dealt 2 cards, and the object of the game is to get as close to 21 as possible, without going over (busting). Some differences you will notice are the point system is a little different from Blackjack; as well the dealerís cards are both dealt face down. These factors change the strategy that Blackjack players have become accustomed to. Although card counting and shuffle counting are both still usable, you have less information at hand to help you make your important decisions. Without seeing any of the dealerís cards, it is harder to choose a strategy. Before, in Blackjack, when the dealer was showing cards valued 2 to 6, you knew the dealer was going to draw a card giving higher probability to bust. However not knowing any cards the dealer holds takes out all probabilities and forces you to make decisions on other factors such as what cards have been played in the past. Counting can be a great tool with the game of Pontoon, as knowing the past cards played, current cards you hold, and cards that other players are showing are the only tell signs left regarding cards that are in the deck and what the probabilities of a win are.

The best hand in Pontoon is Ace and a ten card which is referred to as Pontoon. The second best hand is drawing 5 cards without busting, known as a 5 card trick. Once a player has 5 cards they are not allowed to ask for any more cards, regardless of their card count. Similar to Blackjack, the point system counts cards adding up to 21 the next highest, and then adding to 20 and following with lower cards in sequence. The dealer has the odds in his favor, when a player ties the dealerís hand the dealer wins and the player loses. If the dealer draws a Pontoon then every player loses. If the dealer draws a 5 card trick, then players with a Pontoon win and players with a 5 card trick or lower lose. Basic Blackjack strategies as well as advanced Blackjack strategies still apply to Pontoon, with the thought in mind of the new point system.

However Pontoon rules and the game set up may differ from casino to casino, this is one example of how the game has been played and is still played in many casinos, both in land casinos and online alike. Knowing Basic Blackjack strategies and techniques can still help you giving you an edge while playing Pontoon. Like any form of Blackjack, the best strategy is to practice Pontoon as much as possible. The more exposure to Pontoon, the quicker you will pick it up the easier it will be to try new strategies. A great place to practice Pontoon for can be found at this free online games link. Amongst Pontoon you will be able to practice other forms of Blackjack, giving you the opportunity to learn different strategies for many forms of Blackjack.

Here are some different variants of Blackjack:

Blackjack Switch: A form of Blackjack you play 2 hands at the same time.

Caribbean 21: Similar to Blackjack with the goal of adding to 31.

Blackjack Surrender: A form of Blackjack that allows you to give up half your wager and surrender your hand, unless you bust.

 
 
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