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It’s All About the Seat: Picking Where to Sit at the Blackjack Table

Apr 8, 2014

blackjack-tables-1-080414Blackjack tables

Card table seating arrangements are often neglected among regular players, while some believe shifting seats manages one’s chances to win.

Some might argue that seating arrangements around a card table are of no big consequence, as a player nevertheless has to rely on something that cannot be influenced, luck.

Others, on the other hand, say that one may increase his or her “luck” by carefully selecting the proper vantage point. Not only that but positioning oneself strategically around the table can very well be factor that determines whether a player wins or loses.

Generally, a blackjack table consist of either five or seven players and is shaped as a semicircle. Therefore, the point of view of each player is slightly different from the next, which can lead to some players taking advantage of their position.

The far right seat creates better odds?

As one faces a blackjack table, the first betting seat on a person’s far right is commonly referred to as the “first base.” Some gamblers believe that this seat is reserved for the leaders in blackjack.

Although not generally practiced, at certain moments unofficial blackjack rules state that the leader of the game should sit at the first base.

• Preferable but risky positions – first and third base

• Safer but less eventful – in between first and third base

• Neutrality – reserved for youngsters

• All in all – luck plays a role

The leader will receive cards first and will lead the order of the play. The importance of an experienced player sitting in this position also lies in the fact that he will dictate the flow of decisions, something that young and inexperienced players can learn from, if they’re playing.

Additionally, what makes the first base more intriguing are claims that assert the choices made by the first player will influence and affect other players cards.

For this reason, testaments made by a section of blackjack players highlight that some people will wait for the first base to become available, before they join a table.

Nevertheless, first base also features some frightening disadvantages. Depending on specific circumstances, cards can be dealt that do not serve the first player very well, leaving him with bad cards. On the contrary, the dealer might end up with great cards, making the first player go bust.

Third base seat is adored by some players

The opposite end of the table is known as the “third-base position”, and is more commonly called the “anchor player.” This player will be the last to receive cards and last to make a playing decision.

While many regard this position as a common misconception, regarding as to why the dealer won and the players busted, others say that this position can influence the nature of the game.

Often times, an amateur player may be subjected to condemning looks and heavy scrutiny for choosing to sit at the third base. That is because some of these players believe that only a mature and experienced player may hold this position.

They are afraid that a player with limited playing time will mess up the game, which will make the players go bust and the dealer win.

blackjack-tables-2-080414Which one to choose?

There seems to be no difference between play in casino and online. The same practice is evident on online blackjack games, where experienced players opt to select their seat on the far left of the table.

Although playing online does not enable a player to see a glimpse of the card the dealer has, but rather this constitutes a superstition maintained by some.

When it comes to card counting, the third base is considered the prime position for the unorthodox practice, as they have a better chance of spotting what card the dealer is holding. However, for that reason security is at times extra vigilant of that seat.

Neutral positions are in between the far sides

A player that plays blackjack on a regular basis will argue that surely there is no difference in seating positions. There are no preferential seats that will affect the player’s expected return.

Remaining neutral can actually serve beginners in their game. Choosing to sit in between the first and last seat, might benefit one a great deal.

Sitting in the first base is usually reserved for experienced players, and the dealer expects this gambler to make quick decisions, to keep the game moving.

The third base can also be nerve-racking, as some players may become upset with a young player for sitting in that place. The irritated player might believe that he was dealt bad cards because the third base player has misplayed his hand, which resulted in the dealer winning.

Therefore, picking any one of the seats in between the far sides, may be helpful for a younger player. This will also help an aspiring gambler in terms of having more time to think about their next move, which will result in a better game and more winnings.

Players with lack of experience ought to adopt the same practice when playing blackjack on mobile casinos. Even online, players are subjected to the same expectations depending on their seating arrangement.

So therefore, we may conclude that although luck does play a role in any card game, players still like to believe in the old players’ adage, “You make your own luck!”

Experienced and skilled players might take advantage of anything that can be taken advantage of. If a pro player suspects that a careless dealer is more susceptible to giving away a glimpse of the card to the sides of the table, then the player will sit either on the first or third base.

Just like in life, often we will take anything that is given to us. Why not take the opportunity, even if the chances or odds increase only slightly, especially since it is given for free.


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