Baccarat is a traditional casino table game widely played in land-based casinos around the world. It is an elegant game that’s relatively easy to pick up but difficult to master. Following advances in online gambling technologies in the mid to late 2000s, the game was successfully ported over to web browsers. Today, online baccarat has become as popular as its bricks-and-mortar counterparts. So where did the game originate?
Brief History of Baccarat
The earliest known variant of baccarat emerged in the 14th century with a game called ‘baccara’. Despite significant differences to the modern game, this version led to the famed French interpretation known as Chemin de Fer. Initially played by French nobleman in the 19th century, Chemin de Fer became wildly popular in France and across Europe. However, the vast majority of modern baccarat games derive from Punto Banco – a Latin American version which was created in the 1950s.
Basic Rules of Online Baccarat
As with offline versions, Baccarat is usually played with six, eight or nine decks of cards of which each card represents a specific number of points. The goal is get as close to 9 points as possible with the sum total of one’s hand. Points for cards in the 2-9 range correspond to their face value, face and 10 cards are zero while Aces are worth 1 point. Prior to the cards being dealt, participants can bet on the banker or player winning. They can also bet on a tie.
Baccarat tables are marked with three boxes in which these bets can be placed. They’re usually located in front of player numbers marked 1 – 15. Once all bets have been placed, participants receive two cards.
Hands that are worth six, seven, eight or nine, immediately stand. Hands of five or lower are permitted to hit again. Despite the game’s apparent simplicity, things can get rather complicated with intricate calculations sometimes necessary in order to decide rounds.
Online Versions of Baccarat
Online versions of baccarat are heavily based on the variants played at bricks and mortar establishments. As already mentioned, there are three main versions: Chemin de Fer, Mini Baccarat and Punto Banco. Each game differs slightly to the other in terms of rules and gameplay.
Chemin de Fer features six decks as opposed to seven. Shuffling can only be performed by the croupier with the cards then dealt by the banker face-down. It’s up to the player whether or not to draw a third card.
Mini Baccarat comprises seven players instead of eight and, in contrast to Chemin de Fer, requires the croupier to act as the dealer and banker. This variant is particularly popular among players with modest budgets due to the lower bet rates.
For games of Punto Banco, as many as 14 players can take part. Six, seven or eight decks can be used with the shuffling and dealing of cards performed by the croupier. Participants are not permitted to choose a third card which is dealt anyway.
Playing Baccarat Online
Jumping straight into an online or live baccarat game can be rather overwhelming, even with such simple rules. So try your hand at computer baccarat first. You’ll gain a better understanding of the game as well as how it’s played within an online environment. It’s a good idea to learn the fundamentals first, before moving on to more advanced tactics. Once you’re familiar with the game of baccarat, playing online /live versions will be pretty straightforward.
Online Baccarat Tips
Strategies for playing online baccarat are the same as off-line versions. First of all, try to avoid betting on ties. Although they happen regularly, the chance one occurring during play stands at just 8:1. If you’re unfamiliar with the game, try betting on the banker and player – that way, you’ll get a better feel for the game.
Once you feel more confident, focus on banker bets. The casino has the lowest possible advantage for these types of wagers and the odds of winning are marginally more favourable.
Don’t Get Trendy
There’s no doubt that keeping track of trends and results can be helpful. But beginners can soon found themselves in a quagmire of statistics and numbers that don’t seem to make sense. If you’re starting out, it might therefore be worth forgoing any deep analysis until you’re properly clued up about the game. With that said, many live baccarat games, particularly those from Evolution, include tools which make it easy to keep tabs on results and sequences. So ultimately, the choice is yours.
Consider restricting your bets to sensible amounts, especially if you’re unfamiliar with the nuances of baccarat. Manage your bankroll carefully, reserving the big bets when your feel more comfortable with the game.
Online Baccarat with Blackspins
Here at Blackspins, we feature a variety of different baccarat versions, both computer-based and live. Here’s a run-down.
Speed Baccarat – Evolution Gaming
Speed baccarat reduces standard live game rounds from 48 seconds to around 30. So it’s not a game for the faint-hearted. Nor is it suited to novices. However, for seasoned players, it offers a white-knuckle adrenalin-fuelled gaming experience that requires quick-thinking and a calm mind.
Play Speed Baccarat at Blackspins
Baccarat Squeeze, Baccarat Control Squeeze – Evolution Gaming
Based on classic game variants, Baccarat Squeeze adds an element of suspense by revealing the cards one by one. In regular games, both cards are often dealt face-up. Baccarat Control Squeeze follows the same principle, but with the actual player revealing the cards.
Play Speed Baccarat at Blackspins
Baccarat Live – Evolution Gaming
For Baccarat Live, Evolution really take things up a notch in terms of realism, offering bean-shaped tables, face-down card dealing and various tools to keep a record of trends and side-bets. Games are also streamed via multiple HD cameras which can really enhance play.
Play Baccarat Live at Blackspins
Be sure to head over to our lobby to see our full complement of baccarat and casino games. It’s constantly being updated so be sure to visit regularly!