Online Baccarat – Introduction

Online Baccarat - Card GamesBaccarat is a card game which, at first glance, appears to be fairly simple. Whilst it is fairly easy to play, Baccarat is a complex and tense card game. Here’s a quick guide to get you started playing this thrilling game:

The Baccarat Table

Baccarat is played at a table. Online baccarat generally features an animated table, as pictured:

Online Baccarat - How to play

The table is very simple and has three betting options where players place their chips to place their bets. This will be explained below.

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Online Baccarat Rules

Players bet on one of three outcomes:

  1. The player’s hand wins.
  2. The banker’s hand wins.
  3. There is a tie.

This can initially seem confusing because the player’s hand is not drawn by or dealt to any of the players at the table, and the banker’s hand does not belong to the house. It is easier to think of them as Hand One and Hand Two. A tie bet means that a player is betting that both hands are identical.

To place bets, the players place their chips in the appropriately labelled sections of the table. For example, if the player wishes to place a tie bet, they put their chips in the section labelled ‘tie.’ In online baccarat this is simply recreated by either dragging and dropping chips onto the table, clicking on the table, or pressing buttons labelled ‘Player’, ‘Banker’ and ‘Tie.’

Once all bets have been placed the dealer will deal two cards to each hand. The winning hand will be the one with the highest single numerical value. The total numerical value of a hand will always be between 0 and 9 (including 9) because, where a hand has a numerical total which is in double figures, only the second digit is counted. For example, if the first two cards are an 8 and a 9, the score of that hand would be 7.

10s and picture cards are worth 0 points and aces are worth 1.

If in the first two cards dealt, the total of the player’s hand or the Banker’s hand is 8 or 9, the game is over. This is called a natural win. If not, then things get a little more complicated….

Different rules apply to each hand.

The score of the player’s hand determines what happens next.

  • If it is between 0 and 5, a third card must be drawn.
  • If it is a 6 or a 7, the hand must stand.
  • If it is 8 or 9 it is called a ‘natural’ and the cards must be revealed.
  • The player hand pays even money – this means that if you bet ten dollars and you win, you gain 10 dollars.
  • Then you move onto the banker’s hand.
  • If the player’s hand draws no new cards and the banker’s hand has a total between 0 and 5, the banker’s hand must draw a third card.
  • If the player’s hand draws no new cards and the banker’s hand has a total of 6 or 7, the banker’s hand must stand.
  • If the player’s hand’s third card is a 2 or a 3 and the banker’s hand has a total between 0 and 4, the banker’s hand must draw a third card.
  • If the player’s hand’s third card is a 2 or a 3 and the banker’s hand has a total between 5 and 7, the banker’s hand must stand.
  • If the player’s hand’s third card is a 4 or a 5 and the banker’s hand has a total between 0 and 5, the banker’s hand must draw a third card.
  • If the player’s hand’s third card is a 4 or a 5 and the banker’s hand has a total of 6 or 7, the banker’s hand must stand.
  • If the player’s hand’s third card is a 6 or a 7 and the banker’s hand has a total between 0 and 6, the banker’s hand must draw a third card.
  • If the player’s hand’s third card is a 6 or a 7 and the banker’s hand has a total between 0 and 6, the banker’s hand must draw a third card.
  • If the player’s hand’s third card is an 8 and the banker’s hand has a total between 0 and 2, the banker’s hand must draw a third card.
  • If the player’s hand’s third card is an 8 and the banker’s hand has a total between 3 and 7, the banker’s hand must stand.
  • If the player’s hand’s third card is a 9, 10, picture card, or ace, and the banker’s hand has a total between 0 and 3, the banker’s hand must draw a third card.
  • If the player’s hand’s third card is a 9, 10, picture card, or ace, and the banker’s hand has a total between 4 and 7, the banker’s hand must stand.
  • The banker’s hand, like the player’s hand, pays even money. The tie bet, however, pays 8:1 – a big win for a big risk.

The beauty of playing baccarat online is that you don’t need to remember all these rules or look them up every time you play – the computer just does it for you!

Once all the cards have been dealt, the winning hand is calculated. The hand with the the total closest to 9 wins.

Baccarat Variations

There are three different versions of baccarat and online casinos often offer all three.

Punto banco is the most popular type of baccarat and it is the one I have described here.

Chemin de fer was the original version of baccarat. It is played by 2 – 8 players. The house sets a stake and the players bet against each other. If a player decides to match the house’s stake they become the banker. Betting goes around the table and if the banker’s stake isn’t matched, betting carries on and any players can increase their bets. If anyone wishes to bet more than the banker, the house can refuse this bet. The cards are then dealt. If the player’s hand wins, the banker must pay all the players. If the banker’s hand wins, the banker wins all the chips on the table, with a 5% commission going to the casino.

In baccarat banque, the banker’s hand is auctioned at the start and there are two player’s hands. Players can bet on both player’s hands. Players can out bet the banker and steal their position if they wish. This is called ‘going bank.’

Tips by Online Casino Masters

  • Although the big wins of the tie bet are alluring, you’re fighting a losing battle. It is a lot safer and more reliable to bet on either the player’s hand or the banker’s hand.
  • As the banker’s hand draws more cards, the odds of it winning are slightly better.
  • If you bet on every hand, you may find that baccarat can wipe you out pretty quickly so play intelligently.