Within this European Blackjack review, we take a look at the blackjack variant. European Blackjack is arguably the most popular blackjack variant and is one of the easiest to learn. Essentially, European Blackjack uses the most basic rules of blackjack and tends to be played with either 6 or 8 decks. However, there are also versions of European Blackjack played with 1 or 2 decks. Let’s take a look.
An Introduction to our European Blackjack Review
European Blackjack tends to follow the most basic blackjack rules. Players are dealt two cards whilst the dealer is dealt a face-down and face-up card. The aim is to get as close to 21 as you can, without exceeding. If you go over 21, you end up with a busted hand, which means an automatic loss.
In Blackjack, each card value is listed on the card. The picture cards – Jack, Queen, King – are all worth 10. As for Ace, it is worth either 1 or 11. To form Blackjack, the strongest possible hand, you are required to land an Ace and 10-value card. This hand is Blackjack and beats all other hands, except another Blackjack.
European Blackjack is a unique variation of the classic card game that you can only play online. It is fast-paced, exciting and very challenging, so if you are ready to take your skills to the next level, read this European Blackjack review to find out more about it.
Read on and learn why European Blackjack appeals to seasoned pros and newbies alike. You will also discover what makes it different from regular blackjack, how you can start playing it right away, and why it is simply one of the best virtual casino games out there.
What is European Blackjack?
European Blackjack is one of the several varieties of the classic card game Blackjack. The game is played with a standard 52-card deck, with the same number of cards for each player as there are in a regular game of Blackjack. The goal is also the same in all variations of the game – you want to get as close to 21 without going over. This is also the case for the dealer, if their hand exceeds 21, they go bust.
The main difference between regular Blackjack and European Blackjack concerns the number of decks used and certain rules about doubling down, splitting and so on. However, the majority of rules are the same as regular Blackjack. That is to say, you won’t find much difference in gameplay between European Blackjack, Vegas Strip Blackjack and Atlantic City Blackjack.
How to play European Blackjack
To play European Blackjack, you should first understand the steps that a round has. The dealer serves the player two face-up cards and takes a face-up and face-down card themselves.
At this moment, if the dealer is revealing a 10-value card, they check their face-down card to see if they have Blackjack. If they do, the round ends before any more money is placed. The same goes for if the dealer is revealing an Ace.
However, in that case, the player can place an Insurance Bet. The Insurance Bet costs half of the player’s initial stake and pays 2:1 if the dealer has Blackjack. This essentially reclaims back your stake. If the dealer does not have any Blackjack, the round continues as usual.
The player will have to pick an action based on the cards they received. Betting options include the standard Blackjack variations, such as “hit”, “stay” or “stand”, “double down” and “split”.
- Hit means to take an additional card. There is no limit on how many times a player can hit.
- Stand means to stick with their current hand and not to add any additional cards to it.
- Double Down means to take only one more card but to double their stake in taking it.
- Split can only be done when the player has pairs and wants to separate their cards, doubling their bet in the process.
In European Blackjack, the dealer will always hit on 16 and always stand on 17.
Why You Should Play European Blackjack
If you want to break out of the common routine, and challenge yourself with something new, European Blackjack is the game for you. This unique Blackjack variation is challenging and exciting, and will keep you on your toes from start to finish.
It is fast-paced: With two cards dealt per hand, you will be playing more hands and finishing your game faster than you would with just one card. This means less time spent waiting and more time spent playing.
It is very challenging: No matter how experienced you are with the regular Blackjack, European Blackjack will give you a run for your money. The fact that you are dealt two cards means that you have more options for hands, and are thus more likely to win.
It is unique: While regular Blackjack is very entertaining, the European version is completely different. It’s more strategic, and you have more chances to win. This makes it the perfect choice for those who are looking for a fresh challenge.
European Blackjack Scoring and Strategy
When you play regular Blackjack, you can choose whether or not to “hit” or “stay”, i.e. take another card. In European Blackjack, you have to take another card, as all hands have two cards. This, however, does not change the strategy you have to follow when playing Blackjack.
Most players believe that they need to get as close to 21 as possible. However, this is not the case. All you have to ensure is that your hand beats the dealer’s hand. Thus, if you know that the dealer has to hit on 16, that means they have a high possibility of going bust. If your hand is 16, there is no need to hit, as it may be enough to beat the dealer. This depends on the dealers’ cards as well.
The general rule of thumb here is to always expect that the face-down card or next card will be a 10-value card. In a standard Blackjack deck, there are sixteen 10-value cards out of 52. This means a high chance that a 10-value card will land.
Most European Blackjack games will come with Side Bets. Typically, the side bets will either be Perfect Pairs or 21+3, or even both! Below, we take a look at how to play these side bets and how much they could potentially pay out.
Perfect Pairs is played by forming pairs between the two initial cards that you are dealt. If you manage to have cards with a similar value, they pay off. Typically, the side bet costs €1 to play. Here is how it pays:
- Mixed Pair: If you have two cards that have the same value but not the same suit or colour, you receive a payout of 5:1. An example of this is the 7 of Hearts and 7 of Clubs.
- Matching Pair: If you have two cards that have the same value and colour but not the same suit, you receive a pay out of 10:1. An example of this is the 10 of Hearts and 10 of Diamonds.
- Perfect Pair: If you have two cards that are exactly the same, you receive a pay out of 25:1. An example of this is two Ace of Spades.
In addition to the Perfect Pairs, the 21+3 is also widely considered to be one of the most popular side bets in Blackjack. The game is played with the player’s two initial cards and the dealer’s face-up card. Thus, using these three cards, you should try and form poker combinations for payouts. Here is what you could get:
- Flush –Three cards from the same suit. For example, 3, 6, and 10of Hearts. It usually pays at 5:1
- Straight –Three cards in numerical order, for example, 6, 7, 8. The suit and color of the cards does not matter. It usually pays at 10:1.
- Three of a Kind –Three cards of the same value, regardless of suit. For example, three Jacks. It usually pays at 30:1.
- Straight Flush –Three cards from the same suit innumerical order. For example, 7, 8, 9of Diamonds. It usually pays at 40:1.
- Suited Three of a Kind –Three cards that are the same suit and value. For example, three 7of Clubs. It usually pays at 100
Where to play European Blackjack?
With so many variations of Blackjack, it is no surprise that there are a ton of virtual casinos that offer European Blackjack. You can find a number of sites where you can play it for real money, or simply enjoy the game for free. Here are the best options for playing European Blackjack online:
- 22Bet Casino
- 20Bet Casino
- 1xBet Casino
- King Billy Casino
- Bet365 Casino
- Omni Slots Casino
The Bottom Line
Thus, to conclude this European Blackjack review, we hope that you have enjoyed learning more about the variant. European Blackjack is widely considered to be the most popular version of blackjack. It has a straightforward gameplay to learn. In addition, there is a certain royal feeling about European Blackjack.
If you are looking for a challenge, or simply want to experience something new and exciting, European Blackjack is the game for you. This unique variation of the classic card game is challenging, fast-paced and exciting, and will keep you on your toes from start to finish.
If you are a Blackjack player, the European variation is a must-try. If you have never played it before, now is a great time to start. With its challenging gameplay and wide variety of online casino options, it is simply one of the best virtual casino games out there.