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Best of John Marchel

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Special decks for blackjack

15 June 2019

To become an excellent player and card counter at blackjack requires a lot of time and effort on the players part, most of it at home studying and practicing.

To aid with the learning process to become skilled at the game, suggest you create special plus and minus decks. For your plus deck, using two standard-52 card decks, add four small cards, four extra aces, and four extra neutral cards to one deck. In addition, remove 12 high cards from the first deck. This will result in a plus 16 deck.

Using this special deck will allow you to get more small and soft hands requiring you to hit more often. This should aid with large count numbers and more unusual basic strategy moves.

The cards removed from the first deck should be placed in the second deck. This will result in a large negative minus 16 deck. That deck will also be used when practicing basic strategy and card counting.

In addition to doing some counting drills with the two decks, which should be played separately, play out regular hands of blackjack to get the full effect of high negative and positive counts. Use both decks periodically to keep you sharp for those unusual situations while playing in the casino.

Remember, practice, practice and more practice are really what makes great (and winning) players.


BET YOU DIDN'T KNOW

• In 1970, Jerry’s Nugget Casino in North Las Vegas printed a special deck of cards and sold them in their gift shop for 50 cents. Today, these decks fetch $200 to $500 or more per deck on the second-hand market.

• Looking at the court cards in a modern deck of cards you will find that the Jack of Spades, Jack of Hearts, and the King of Diamonds are depicted as profiles, meaning you only see one side of their faces. This gives rise to the terms “one-eyed jacks” and “one-eyed royals.”

• Adding all the eyes visible in a standard deck of playing cards the total is 42.

• When Charles Fey built his first gaming machines in 1887, he pasted a tax stamp on each machine. At the time there was a 2¢ federal revenue tax on each deck of playing cards. Fey though it was wise to buy the stamps since his slot machines had card symbols on its reels.

• The Joker in a deck of playing cards is considered an American invention and was first introduced in the 1870s. Initially called the “Best Bower,” then the “Jolly Joker” and finally “Joker.” They were used as an extra card if a card in the deck was lost or damaged but they were eventually used as a “wild” card.

• In 1825, the Illinois legislature passed a law imposing a fine of $25 on every individual caught who brought into the state a deck of playing cards.

• In 1848, an American deck of playing cards appeared with George Washington as President of Hearts, John Adams as President of Diamonds, Benjamin Franklin as President of Clubs and Lafayette as President of Spades.

• The queens in a deck of standard playing cards all hold flowers.

• In a deck of standard playing cards, the King of Diamonds is the only king holding an axe instead of a sword.

• In 1869 Hans Christian Andersen (Danish author of fairy tales) wrote a short story about court cards. He described the various playing cards kings, queens and knaves in a make-believe castle.
Recent Articles
Best of John Marchel
John Marchel
John Marchel is an author, speaker, teacher and player -- what John plays are casino games. He’s been a casino player for over 25 years and has played successfully in Europe, Panama, the Caribbean, Canada, Atlantic City, Las Vegas, on Indian reservations, cruise ships and in over 350 casinos throughout the US. He is also the author of six books about gambling, and has written numerous magazine articles and is currently a columnist for three gambling magazines and one internet magazine.

Since 1988 John has combined his experience as a manager, teacher and player to present seminars and lectures about gambling. In addition, John has had an Internet website since 1995 that offers books, special reports and tips about gambling. He also publishes a monthly Internet gambling newsletter. The newsletter keeps subscribers alert to trends, information and winning techniques that allows them to be more successful when visiting casinos.

John Marchel Websites:

johnmarchelgambling.com

Books by John Marchel:

KISS Guide to Gambling

> More Books By John Marchel

John Marchel
John Marchel is an author, speaker, teacher and player -- what John plays are casino games. He’s been a casino player for over 25 years and has played successfully in Europe, Panama, the Caribbean, Canada, Atlantic City, Las Vegas, on Indian reservations, cruise ships and in over 350 casinos throughout the US. He is also the author of six books about gambling, and has written numerous magazine articles and is currently a columnist for three gambling magazines and one internet magazine.

Since 1988 John has combined his experience as a manager, teacher and player to present seminars and lectures about gambling. In addition, John has had an Internet website since 1995 that offers books, special reports and tips about gambling. He also publishes a monthly Internet gambling newsletter. The newsletter keeps subscribers alert to trends, information and winning techniques that allows them to be more successful when visiting casinos.

John Marchel Websites:

johnmarchelgambling.com

Books by John Marchel:

KISS Guide to Gambling

> More Books By John Marchel