Unlike the other popular card games, baccarat requires no skill. It is played on a special table in a separate area of a casino. There are seven to 14 seats at the table. Each player has a separate betting area. Each group of players plays against the banker. The object is to guess which of the three possible propositions will win in the next round.
Each group of players receives two hands of cards, one for the Player and one for the Banker. The Player hand must have the highest value after all cards are dealt. The Banker has the option to draw for a third card. The Banker has more freedom, though, as he or she only needs to choose the third card based on what the player has already shown.
The total of the two hands is determined by the points on the cards. If both of the player’s hands are a pair, the hand that has more points is the winner. If the two hands have the same number of points, then the two hands are matched, which is called a tie. If the totals of the two hands are the same, then the bets on the Tie bet are returned.
Aside from the basic rules, there are side bets you can place at baccarat tables. These are another way for casinos to make money. Some casinos even offer a side bet for the Banker or Player to have all black cards. The odds for this are usually 8 to 1, but you can get slightly better odds if the bet is placed on the Tie bet.
Whether you want to bet on the Player or Banker, you will be charged a commission on your bet. The House edge is 1.36 percent for the Player and 1.17 percent for the Banker. This means that the best bet is to bet on the Banker. Generally, the House has a lower edge on the Player bet, as a larger number of decks are used to play the game. Having a lower number of decks makes the Player bet more expensive.
The first two cards that are dealt to the player are known as the “Decision Cards.” They are not revealed to the other players. The player can then decide whether to call for a card or not. If the hand is a six or seven, then the active player must call ‘non’ and the player must not draw a card. If the hand is a zero, then the player must call ‘carte’ and the banker must make a choice.
The player’s third card is placed face up. The face cards are worth zero, while the aces are worth one. All the other cards are given numerical values. The player’s third card is considered the most important card, as the total of the hand is then the closest to nine. When all the pips are added up, the winning hand is the closest to nine.