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Can You Manipulate the House Edge in Blackjack?

There are a ton of blackjack systems out there: card counting, Martingale, Parlay, Labouchere, and so many more.  Online you will find free systems as well as systems you can buy.  Some of these systems are funding management plans, while others focus more on the individual decisions you make each time a card is turned over.  Some of these strategies work, while others will cause you to go bust.  But do they change the house edge?

 

The house edge in blackjack is 48%.  There are a couple of things you need to know about this.  First is the fact that this house edge is already assuming all players are playing perfectly through use of card count (a system that does work, though it is very hard to master).  So you cannot improve your edge over the stated house edge by playing well.  The edge already has that assumption built in.  That means if anything, your odds are actually even worse than that, unless you are already a stellar card counter.

 

Another thing to realise is that if you have a certain score and the dealer turns over a particular card, your chances of winning are the same regardless of how much money you have put down on the table.  This is another issue altogether, but it is a vital point to examine.  Why?  Because so many blackjack systems are built around funding management and how much or little you bet.  Martingale, for example, is a system where you bet more and more for every lost bet.  The idea is that eventually you will recoup all your losses and then profit.  The key word here is eventually.  And you can lose a lot of money before you reach that point, if you get there at all.

 

Systems like these do not make it any more likely you will win.  The cards still say whatever the cards say, and nothing you do will change that.  And the truth about the Martingale system is this:  it is very hard to win with it.  Even though the theory behind it is simple, most players simply will not last that long.  You will go broke following the Martingale system, sooner or later.  There are other systems out there which offer a much more sound approach, and which are better worth your time and money. 

 

The long and the short of it is that you cannot change the house edge through any blackjack system, except to adjust the odds in your favour until they actually match the 48%.  And that is with card counting.  Card counting is a great mathematical strategy, but you need to be willing to work really hard to learn it.  Strategies that rely on money management may or may not help you stay in the game, depending on what you use.  But it is important to accept that they cannot change what the cards say, and they cannot boost your edge on their own.

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