The Unique Game of Bacarrat

Bacarrat remains a very interesting card game. There is an air of sophistication associated with it. The game, along with Canasta, was featured prominently in the early James Bond films back in the 1960’s. The allure of the game — in film and real life — was its high stakes nature. Interestingly, the game was preferred by those willing to wager a great deal of money even though the odds of winning are mostly 50/50. Interestingly, blackjack, a game with more rules and varied ways of winning, catered to high and lower stakes gamblers.

Today, the advent of lower limit “mini-Bacarrat” tables at brick and mortar and online casinos has opened the door to people of all different budgets. If you wish to bet very little, so be it. If you are interested in wagering a great deal of money, you have that option as well.

The Rules of Play

The rules of the game are fairly easy to follow. The dealer is “the bank” and the bank opposes the players and all parties are trying to achieve a two or three card hand that equals nine. Whether the bank or the player wins will be based on who achieved the higher numercial total. Numbers are face value. Aces equal one. The name of the game comes from the Italian word “baccara”, which means zero and this is what the face cards are worth. Consider Bacarrat one of the few card games in existence in which face cards are of no positive consequence.

When the totals of the cards are in the “teens”, then the one is dropped. In other words, 18 = 8.

Choosing the Player vs. the Bank 

In Bacarrat, there is an interesting component to game play. A player can choose to bet against him/herself and put money on the bank. Granted, you also give up all decision making on the draw of the cards when you wager on the bank but, if the dealer goes on a hot streak, switching your wagers to the bank allows you to ride the tide to your own fortune.

On a side note, the bank chooses to hit or stand automatically based on the particular cards dealt to the dealer in relation to the cards the player has. For example, the bank will only hit on a 6 if a player has a 6 or 7 total.

One thing a player has to be aware of when betting on the bank is a fee will be charged. Yes, you have to pay the bank a certain percentage of the wager.

Keeping Track of the Outcomes

Players often will log the number outcome of the various hands. Upon examining the wins and losses of the bank, a player may try to guess the probability of future outcomes. No, this is not an exact science by any means. Some have been able to make good guesses with this strategy so who is to say its not worth trying out?