Blackjack Plus

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This is a variant said to be found only in New Zealand and Australia.  The versions are slightly different, so there are variances in the variant!

The basic rule changes, followed in both versions, that make this variant interesting are:

  • Five-card Charlie (non-busted 5 card hand, automatic win)
  • Blackjack and 21-point hands automatically win
  • Dealer receives one card, until all players actions have been completed (known as European style dealing)
  • Six standard decks are used
  • If dealer totals 22, it is a push for all players with cards remaining
  • Blackjack pays even money

RULES DIFFERENCES

New Zealand Rules

  1. Dealer hits on soft 17
  2. Player can double on any two-card hard total
  3. Player can double after splitting
  4. Player cannot re-split
  5. Split Aces receive only 1 card

Australian Rules

  1. Dealer stands on soft 17
  2. Player can double on any 2 or 3 card hand, totaling less than 21
  3. Player can double after splitting
  4. Player can re-split only once
  5. Player cannot re-split Aces
  6. Blackjacks pay 3-2

STRATEGY & HOUSE EDGE

Fortunately, the use of basic Blackjack strategy is suggested when playing Blackjack Plus.

Unfortunately, the rules changes in this version actually give “the house” a greater advantage. The house edge in a standard Blackjack game is said to be about 1.5%.  However, because of the rules variations in Blackjack Plus (mainly the dealer “pushing” with 22), the house edges jumps to as much as 6.36%!

Obviously, this makes Blackjack Plus one of the worst variants ever created for a player.

FINAL THOUGHTS

On the surface, the differences appear to be intriguing enough to take the challenge of playing.  However, this variant was created by casinos to fool the uninformed player. The best strategy for a player in this game is to NOT play the game!  I would bet that you would have a lot more fun playing the boring traditional Blackjack and winning, than playing this version and losing quickly!

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