Blackjack Counting Simulator

  

Blackjack Running Count, True Count, and Player Advantage Simulator

The following Excel spreadsheet simulates the dealing of 6 decks of cards at random. It graphs the running count, true count, and player advantage as the cards are dealt. When counting cards, you should make your minimum waiting bet when the player advantage is zero or negative. When the player advantage goes positive, you should bet a percentage of your bankroll equal to your player advantage, according to the Kelly Criterion.

Instructions

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  1. If necessary, bring the two graphs into view using the scroll bar:
    Running count / True count
    Player advantage %
  2. To deal another 6 decks and update the graphs, first click to select any cell (such as K4), then press the F9 key. Press F9 again for another 6 decks. If your device does not have an F9 key, reload the page.

2 days ago Rules. 3-4-5X odds are allowed. To simplify the game, instead of offering both place and buy bets, I offer just one for each number. Each number pays the better odds between place and buy bets.

Notes

  • To see graphs for a single-deck or double-deck game, click the 'Single' or '2 decks' tab at the bottom of the window.
  • If you accidentally modify a cell value or formula, you might ruin the graph. To fix it, reload the web page.
  • Another way to deal 6 decks is to click the Refresh icon( )at the bottom of the spreadsheet window.

Instructional Videos


Running Count

True Count

Two Decks

Six Decks 3:2 6:5

Running Count / True Count Graph

The running count (grey graph line) keeps track of the number of high vs. low cards using the classic Hi-Lo count strategy, where cards 2-3-4-5-6 have a value of +1, cards 7-8-9 have a value of 0, and cards 10-J-Q-K-A have a value of -1. The count at the beginning is zero. The count at the end is also zero, because the numbers of low and high cards are balanced.
As the cards are dealt, the count randomly varies between positive and negative values, depending on whether more low or high cards are dealt out. The graph is equally likely to be above or below zero.
The true count (blue graph line in top graph) is the running count divided by the number remaining decks to be dealt. This adjusts the running count to determine the true effect, fraction-wise, on the probability of dealing out high or low cards from the remaining decks. For this reason, I prefer to call this the 'true-effect count' or 'one-deck equivalent count.'

Player Advantage Graph

The player advantage graph shows your advantage as a percentage of your bet. For example, when your advantage is 1.00 percent and you make a $20 bet, your average win on that bet will be 20 cents. Not a huge advantage by any means!
You have an advantage when the graph goes above zero, as indicated by the solid black horizontal line. The dashed horizontal

Blackjack

purple line - - - - - - - represents the basic strategy player edge for a typical good 6-deck game, -0.6 percent. The player advantage graph is centered on the dashed purple line; it is equally likely to be above or below this line. Thus, you play at a disadvantage more than half the time.
The player advantage graph is shown solid for the first 4.5 decks and dashed for the remaining 1.5 decks. This is because most casinos shuffle when there are 1.5 decks remaining. That means you will not have any opportunities to make bets in the dashed portions of the graph.
You can place a bet only at the end of each round. At an uncrowded table, maybe 12 or so cards are dealt in each round, on average. Therefore, I've spaced the card number labels at the bottom at intervals of 12. These represent (approximately) the intervals at which you can place bets.
Cell N2 contains the basic strategy player advantage at the start of the game, -0.60 percent by default. For a game that pays only 6:5 on blackjack, the player advantage is worse by 1.4 percent. To see the effect of a 6:5 payoff, enter -2.00 into cell N2.

Player Advantage Pie Chart

The pie chart shows the relative amounts of time that you play at an advantageBlackjack Counting Simulator, at a disadvantage, and even with the casino. A player edge between -0.25 and +0.25 percent is considered even. The pie chart applies only to the part of the graph before the shuffle.

For More Information

For more about card counting, see Does Card Counting Really Work? (web page or YouTube video)
Or see the whole YouTube playlist 'Easy basic strategy, house edge, and card counting'
For another good introduction to card counting, see The Wizard of Odds website
For a very good and free online book on blackjack, see ModernBlackjack, An Illustrated Guide to Blackjack Advantage Play, by Norman Wattenberger
For a detailed technical look at the game, see Wattenberger's How Blackjack Works

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Learn the ins and outs and that daunting sentiment quickly disappears. It’s not like the Hollywood portrayal of high-roller James Bond types. A dress code of men in white tuxes sipping on martinis and lovely ladies blowing on their dice isn’t reality.

Blackjack Card Counting Simulator

Come as you are…shorts, sandals, beer in hand and a stack of chips

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It might seem overwhelming and confusing at first. But let’s be honest that goes for anything when not well studied. With a bit of research, you’ll beat the house and be bumping elbows with the best of players. After all, it could be you as the next craps champion

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Does the roll of the dice have any impact of the game? That is one controversial question with many players having their own theories. Watch each die long enough and decide for yourself!

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Read MoreRead Less

Rules

  1. 3-4-5X odds are allowed.
  2. To simplify the game, instead of offering both place and buy bets, I offer just one for each number. Each number pays the better odds between place and buy bets. I refer to these as 'buy bets.' They pay 7-6 on the 6 & 8, 7-5 on the 5 & 9, and 39-20 on the 4 & 10.
  3. Lay bets pay true odds, but player must prepay a 5% commission, based on the possible win. This works out to odds of 19-25 on the 6 & 8, 19-31 on the 5 & 9, and 19-41 on the 4 & 10.
  4. If the player selects 'keep bets working,' then all bets will be on for come out rolls. Otherwise, buy, hard ways, and odds on come bets will be turned off.
  5. If the player selects 'leave winnings bets up,' then only wins will be returned and the original wager will be re-bet. However, winning come and don't come bets are always returned. Winnings odds bets on come bets will remain up if there is a new come bet to associate them with. If the new come bet is less than the winning one, the amount of odds on the table will be the same multiple bet on the odds of the winning bet and the rest returned to the player.
  6. Bets may be taken down by shift-clicking.
  7. Put bets and taking down don't pass and don't come bets, that are already on a number, are not allowed.

To slow down the payment stage of the game, hold down the shift and control keys when you click 'roll'.

Online casino loans. For fans of my buggy old version one, I still have it. However, I highly recommend playing this current version instead.

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Blackjack Card Counting Simulator

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