Getting to Know Baccarat
Before making its way to North America in the early 20th century, baccarat was the game of choice for French nobility. They played a version called Chemin de Fer, which was the same variant selected by novelist Ian Flemming for Casino Royale. James Bond’s defeat over Le Chiffre in high-stakes baccarat is an iconic scene, and largely responsible for introducing the game to the mainstream American public.
Baccarat’s association with James Bond and royalty gives it a bit of an exclusive pedigree. Maybe that’s why the tables are tucked away in high rollers’ areas, while the mainstream public is offered “Mini Baccarat.” Online gambling has definitely made the game more accessible. You can play a round for as little as $1 and you don’t need to wear a tux.
How to Play Baccarat
Baccarat is a card-game of chance. Two “players” (they’re both automated at Café Casino) go head-to-head, and you bet on whose hand will be closer to nine points: The Player’s or the Banker’s. Alternatively, you can bet on a tie; if you guess correctly, you win. Betting on the Player offers a 1:1 payout, betting on the Banker offers a 1:1 payout minus a 5% commission, and betting on the tie offers a 9:1 payout.
The cards values are as follows:
2 to 9: Face Value
10, Jack, Queen, King: Worth Zero
Ace: Worth One
To figure out the value of a hand, add the card values together, and if the sum is a two-digit number, use the digit found on the right. For example, if a hand consists of an Eight and Seven, the hand value is 5 (8+7=15 – use right digit, which is 5).
Of course, you won’t have to do math while playing. The values will be displayed beside each hand. All you have to do is bet on who or what will win. Once the Banker and the Player are dealt their initial two face-up cards, a winner will be declared on the spot if either of them land an eight or nine.
If not, additional cards will be dealt. The Player will draw a third card if the value of the two-card hand is between 0 and 5. If the Player has a hand value of six or more, no additional card is taken. As for the Banker:
- Another card is drawn if the total is 0, 1 or 2.
- No additional card is drawn if the total is 7.
- If the value is 3, 4, 5, or 6, the Banker’s actions depend on the Player’s card total.
A chart illustrates the Banker’s systematic moves on the Café Casino Game Guide, but these actions will happen automatically as you make your way through the round. Now that you understand the theory, try a round on Practice Play to see if baccarat online is the game for you.