How to Play Baccarat

Baccarat, actually pronounced “baa-ca-rah” with a silent “t”, is often perceived as a somewhat sophisticated and mysterious casino game. This couldn’t really be any further from the truth, as baccarat is actually a very simple card game where you have three choices, to bet on the Banker, a Player or a tie between the two.

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Before the game begins is when you place your bet on one of the three options. The house edge for a bet on the Banker is 1.06 percent, with the edge on the Player at 1.24 percent. The house edge on a tie is 14.36 percent. For a winning Banker bet, a five percent commission is also collect.

After bets are placed, the Banker and the Player are each dealt two cards. The object of the game is to bet on whichever of the two hands has a value closer to 9. The suit of the card is not considered in this game, only the value. Cards 2 to 10 are at face value, with face cards worth 0. An ace counts as 1. If the hand value is more than 9, ten is subtracted to give it a value below 9.

The Player turns over his two cards first, followed by the Banker. Achieving a total of either 8 or 9 with the first hand is known as a natural, and this means an automatic win unless it is matched or beaten by a 9 to an 8. If neither the Player nor the Banker achieves a natural, play continues.

For the Player’s hand, if first two cards drawn are not a natural but equal 6 or 7, the Player must stand without drawing another card. If the cards equal anything between 0 and 5 then the Player draws a third card.

The game progresses according to what cards the Player then draws and whether the Banker stands or draws as well. Eventually, when both players stand and reveal their cards it is the hand closest to nine that wins and if you have bet on that hand you receive a return.

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