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Help me be a more degenerate gambler

Discussion in 'Casino Gaming' started by BreakEven, Jan 26, 2013.

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  1. BreakEven

    BreakEven Low-Roller

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    My name is BreakEven and I have a gambling problem.

    My problem is that I really only play slots & JoB VP. Most other games look way too complicated. Even basic strategy on Blackjack seems tough to memorize. Then when I look at something like craps, roulette or baccarat, I can't wrap my head around all of the combinations when I'm sober!

    But I would like to expand my gambling horizons.

    On the VP side, I believe that Double Double Bonus has rules that are close to JoB, and so shouldn't be a tough transition to make.

    Anyone have a suggestion on some VP/table games to start with that have a somewhat simple basic strategy so I can test the waters on my next trip?

    For VP, any suggestions on good training software? I know wizardofodds.com has some games online, and then videopoker.com and bob dancer also sell software.
     
    Only 2nd trip for year :(
  2. AndyAkeko

    AndyAkeko Time magazine's 2006 Person of the Year

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    Three card poker: Raise with Q-6-4, fold with anything less. That's it for strategy (according to the Wizard: http://wizardofodds.com/games/three-card-poker. No strategy involved if you make the pair-plus bet: you either make a hand or you don't.

    Let it ride is fairly simple, basically keep the bet out if it's a winning hand (duh!) or if it's three cards to a straight flush. After the first community card, keep a flush draw or open-ended straight draw. http://wizardofodds.com/games/let-it-ride. The optimal strategy consists of five rules for the first bet and five rules for the second bet, but those are the basics.
     
  3. Smo

    Smo Mr. Las Vegas

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    For a free downloadable trial version of the best VP trainer, go here ----> http://www.zamzone.com/
    It's what I practice with.

    Go learn the basic rules of BJ, sit at a $5 table, tell the dealer you are new, and they will 'help' you with your game. So may the other people at the table. It is the easiest table game to learn and maybe even win on IMHO.

    You can try roulette, they even have cards at most tables that explain the game and the payouts, you can take these with you or use them at the table. Roulette is simple, but it is merely just a game of luck.

    I was like you some 25+ years ago until I bought some books about various table games and studied them. Just go and give it a shot. We all hard to start out just like you. Lucky for you though, you have the internet to use for research. It wasn't even really around when I first started playing table games.
     
  4. Corinne

    Corinne Low-Roller

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    You can have the BJ strategy chart with you at the table so you don't need to learn it by heart. It's only ever Wynn that has stopped me putting it on the table and then they were happy for me to have it on my lap.

    I found 4 card poker very simple and you can practise that online and for me it was a lot less volatile on the bonus bets than 3 card poker.

    Most dealers and other players will help you make the correct play if you just ask and if you do something very wrong they will likely tell you before you lose your bet.

    Corinne
     
  5. blackjacker2

    blackjacker2 Low-Roller

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    If you are going to play Blackjack at the tables for any serious amount of money you should at least learn basic strategy. It won't make you win, but you will lose less. Buy any decent book or access a website such as www.blackjackinfo.com and you will find loads of material/resources. Be very careful which game of blackjack you chose, there a subtle but important differences which can we viewed from the following site/link http://wizardofvegas.com/guides/blackjack-survey/

    I've tried most of the other table games, never really liked any, but roulette can be exciting and I have had a few good wins, but it is a cruel game if you hit a cold streak. Some great advice on this site, so use it.

    good luck!
     
  6. Buddha

    Buddha VIP Whale

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    You might also consider learning the table game of "Pai Gow Poker". It is a slower game, with lots of split-winner ties, which allows you to have fun, without a fast drain on your money ... and there is only one MAIN rule. You are given 7 cards, and you have to arrange them into a 5-card hand and a 2-card hand, where the 2-card hand can never be higher than your 5-card hand. There are other hand-by-hand strategies in trying to make both hands a winner against the dealer, because you can only win or lose your bet if you win or lose BOTH hands. Some basic research will make this an easy game to play.
     
  7. mike_m235

    mike_m235 Tourist

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    I second the blackjack with the basic strategy card. Just print it out and bring it with you. You can also practice on a free trainer at wizard of odds.
     
  8. blackjacker2

    blackjacker2 Low-Roller

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    I agree, a card is good and learning it cold even better. Wizard of odds site is great as is blackjackinfo.com
     
  9. BreakEven

    BreakEven Low-Roller

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    Thanks all for the advice so far! Well on my way towards my goal I think.

    For BJ, I've seen people complain about newbies doing the wrong thing and "screwing things up" for the rest of the table. Maybe I can get a "trainee" button and wear that while sitting at the table.

    Playing with the strategy card sounds like a great idea, but does it slow the game down too much? Again, not really a problem for me, more a problem for other players. I guess as long as I don't join an already full table I should avoid pissing people off. If they see my strategy card and choose to sit down anyway, then it's their problem :)

    When getting started, I obviously don't want to be at $25/hand tables. Any good suggestions for both strip & downtown casinos that tend to have lower limits? The $5 tables mentioned above sound like a great starting point.

    I'm pretty sure I've seen signs in some casinos (though can't recall which ones) that will teach you the basic strategy of some games. Anyone know which casinos do this? You get to practice at a real table, and I assume they will teach you some basic table etiquette too.

    (And damn this thread for putting the song "Let It Ride" in my head!)
     
    Only 2nd trip for year :(
  10. nostresshere

    nostresshere Mr. Anti Debit Card

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    Though it is a common perception, it is a terrible myth. Your play has no impact on what happens to the draw of the cards. But, to avoid much of the issue, sit as close to first base as you can. Actually, I would not sit at first as you are the first to play each hand.

    Unless you are a totally thick skinned thick headed person, do not sit at 3rd base (last player). No matter what that person does, he gets blamed. Does not matter if he plays perfect strategy. It is still his fault.
     
  11. blackjacker2

    blackjacker2 Low-Roller

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    Don't worry about being a newbie at Blackjack. My very first game was at the Barbary Coast, I had no idea what I was doing, must have looked a complete idiot, before my next trip to Vegas I did my homework. Only jerks will give you a tough time, but just ignore them. Remember it's your money and your decision, but I agree, stay away from third base until you are more proficient. My tip is never ask another player for advice, such as "what should I do"?" better to just ask "what is the correct play here"? Some players will not answer that question (or any like it - I don't), so you could ask the dealer, but you don't rely on the fact that anyone will always know the answer. Hence the good advice on using the card and putting in the hours to learn basic strategy.
     
  12. mike_m235

    mike_m235 Tourist

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    If there's someone being a jerk to you because you don't know how to play, two things.

    1. The guy is an idiot who doesn't really know how the game works.
    2. There are a ton of other tables.

    Personally I love playing with newbies. It's entertaining, plus they take a long time which means I get more table time with fewer bets, which is good for comps. I'll sit at a $5 or $10 table playing $50 a hand on two hands.

    For low level BJ on the strip ($5 or $10) you're going to want to stick to MGM properties mostly. Most of the low level CET tables are 6:5 BJ when you're playing nickels or dimes.

    You can find $10 blackjack almost all the time at NYNY or Monte Carlo, sometimes you can get $5 there. To keep your min bets low, look to play at non peak hours. During the day, especially weekdays, you can find $10 at MGM, Mirage, and sometimes even Bellagio. Those mins will go up at night and on weekends.
     
  13. IvanBeausky

    IvanBeausky Low-Roller

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    When you said degeneracy, I expected to see something more along the lines of "where can I sell platelets for the most $$$ so I can get back to the craps table!"

    My own version is to grind 8 hours playing poker, win $400, then go drop $1500 in 20 minutes on the craps table.
     
  14. seviay

    seviay High-Roller

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    If you play at non-peak hours, learning the simplest rules of BJ or craps will put you in a position not to be an idiot, but usually the dealers will also be willing to help you if you ask a question.

    To be really simple for craps, you can stick with just pass line + odds, though that can be boring. Read up on the wizard of odds site if you want to explore placing numbers or playing come bets. If you ask the dealers at a slow table, you should be okay.

    As others said with BJ, most places will let you keep the card on the table. I will caution you against listening to dealers' advice. Some of them are sharp as sh*t, but others are just plain idiots who will give you awful advice.
     
  15. topcard

    topcard Older than the Stardust!

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    Simple 'Basic Strategy' for Blackjack

    As others have posted, there are plenty of basic strategy cards available and most casinos have no problem with you having it at the table while you play.

    What you may want to consider, however, is that for most of the hands, you already know what to do:
    If the dealer has 7 or better showing, you hit any hard hand until you get to 17 or better.
    If the dealer has 3 through 6 showing, you stand with any hard 12 or higher.

    Half of every 'basic strategy card' is taken up by these hands.

    I suggest making your own card - one that helps you with the more difficult hands.

    I prepared one for a newbie-girl a few years back, and this is what is reflected: (I've 'bolded' the 'common-mistake' hands)

    Always split nines, except against 7, 10 or Ace

    Soft 18 – hit against 9-10-Ace; Stand against 2, 7 or 8.
    Double-down against 3 thru 6.


    Soft 17 – double against 3 thru 6 – otherwise, always hit.

    Hit 12 against dealer 2 or 3
    Never take insurance.


    Other Soft-Doubles:
    You have A2 and the dealer has 5 or 6.
    You have A3, A4 or A5 and the dealer has 4, 5 or 6.
    You have A8 and the dealer has 6. Otherwise just stand.

    Split pairs when you have:
    7-7 and the dealer has 2 – 7. Split against 8 if DAS allowed. Hit if 9-10-A.
    6-6 and the dealer has 2 – 6. Split against 7 if DAS allowed. Hit if 8-9-10-A.
    4-4 and the dealer has 5 or 6 only if DAS allowed. Otherwise hit.
    3-3 and the dealer has 4 through 7. Split against 2 or 3 if DAS allowed.
    2-2 and the dealer has 4 through 7. Split against 2 or 3 if DAS allowed.

    Don't worry about others complaining about your play.
    I lost count of how many times I've been criticized for doubling my A-8 against a dealer 6... or hitting my 12 against a dealer 2.

    As for seating, I would always suggest leaving 3rd base open until/unless you start counting.
    On a 2-deck game, there is a very good chance that the 3rd base player is a counter. Watch his betting & the mix of 10-cards to crap-cards. If you see him pressing after hardly any 10s came out on the last hand, he's probably counting.
    You can then mirror his presses, or his back-downs.
    I do this some times when I've had a few too many, or I'm just too tired/lazy to keep a good count.

    As for where to play? You will find plenty of $5 tables, pretty much anytime, if you join the rest of us degenerates downtown.
    Good luck!
    :beer:
     
    Seems like forever from now, but the flights are booked, so it counts!
  16. Nevyn

    Nevyn VIP Whale

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    Start with blackjack.

    You can simplify basic strategy and get most of the value of it while being pretty easy to remember.

    The very simple version

    Never take insurance or even money
    Double down on 11
    Split Aces
    If dealer shows 7,8,9,10,J,Q,K,A, hit until you have at least 17
    If a dealer shows anything else, stand on anything over 11.

    The above isn't perfect, but is close and is really easy to remember. It will get you comfortable enough to sit down and get into the game. Any weird situations (whether to double/hit 'soft' hands for example, you can ask what the book says or carry a basic strategy card with you..

    As you play more, you can learn the tougher to remember exceptions to the above and special cases.

    In the meantime, playing the above will be a lot less house edge than slots!
     
  17. letsgotovegas

    letsgotovegas Low-Roller

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    Excellent post topcard!

    I usually like to play 3rd base and will often catch a lot of grumbling from other players when I hit 12 against dealer 2 or 3.

    And soft 17! Oh, so many self-proclaimed experts who refuse to hit soft 17. Drives me insane.

    It's hard to remember, but the non-basic strategy play by another can just as often help you as hurt you. It seems human nature to only remember the "hurt you" plays.

    Naturals to all!

    Cheers,
    Kelly
     
  18. gradytripp

    gradytripp Low-Roller

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    You will find $5 blackjack at Ellis Island, behind Bally's, 24-7. It's where I first played.
     
  19. gradytripp

    gradytripp Low-Roller

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    That's $5 3-2 blackjack at EI, I should add.
     
  20. topcard

    topcard Older than the Stardust!

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    Splitting 8s

    ...I forgot to mention splitting 8s and shoe-games where surrender is available.

    Most basic strategy cards will tell you to always split 8s.
    I don't always.

    Certainly, with a dealer 2 through 8, I will always split them.

    Against a dealer 9,10 or Ace? Well, if I'm playing a shoe game, I'll surrender the hand. If I'm playing 2-deck, I will typically just hit the 16.

    But that's me. The math says to go ahead and split them everytime.
     
    Seems like forever from now, but the flights are booked, so it counts!
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