Casinos and table games go together like Bond and martinis. We've put together a guide to the basics of some of the best games to get you started.
Blackjack one of the simplest games in the casino, making it especially good for beginners. The basic aim is for the player to reach 21 (face cards are worth 10, ace is 1 or 11) without exceeding that number. The player starts with two cards. Pretty straightforward. Yet there are interesting variations. A bonus win might be enjoyed if you achieve a five card trick (five cards with a value 21 or lower), and a smaller bonus for 'blackjack' (21 with the two starting cards). Differing rules can have the dealer compelled to take another card at differing values of their own hand.
There's a huge number of poker variations, with Texas hold 'em probably the most commonly played and one of the best. Texas hold 'em features two face down player-specific cards and five face up communal cards (shown in stages of three cards, fourth card, and the final card). Players seek to make the best five card hand. Or to pretend they have the best five card hand, and bluff their opponents into folding rather than matching a bet. The psychological drama and wide range of possible hands make poker an exciting mix of playing the cards and playing your opponents. Of course, it's also easy to get carried away, and knowing when to fold is perhaps the most critical skill. Other poker games include five and seven card varieties. Because poker has perhaps the most variations of any table game be particularly careful to check the rule set. The last thing you want is to suddenly discover wild card jokers are included and your opponent has one.
Craps involves betting on a roll or rolls of a pair of dice. One of the more complex table games, the array of bets available can seem bewildering at first. That said, the range of betting options can also make craps all the more interesting, explaining the game's popularity. There are line bets, single roll bets, and multi-roll bets, and more besides, with the specifics often varying from one casino the next. As with poker, be sure to check the particular rules variation that's being applied.
Baccarat is a card game where hands are compared between the player and banker. As well as either side winning, ties are also possible. There are a number of variations, in some the player's moves are forced by the cards dealt, in others both the player and banker can make choices. Face cards are worthless, aces worth 1 and other cards worth their number, with the best hand being a 9 (double digit hands have the value of the rightmost number).
Some love the bluffing of poker, others the simplicity of blackjack. Just be aware there are many variations of each game and check specifics before you lay down any money.