How to Play Live-Dealer Baccarat
Live-dealer baccarat is generated by computer software. A web camera (webcam) brings you the real-time image of the dealer at the table and you are able to chat with him or her during the game. This technology brings a new dimension to the game that online gambling never had before; with live-dealer baccarat, you are transported to the casino (despite remaining in front of your computer). You can interact with other players at the table as well as with the dealer, creating an atmosphere that is way more stimulating than a mere simulation.
Of all the popular casino games baccarat is arguably the least well known. Long thought of as an exclusive and elite game, baccarat has, with the help of the Internet, become way more accessible and, as a result, way more popular. Baccarat’s been around for hundreds of years and originated in Italy. As the game spread to different parts of the globe, other baccarat variants developed as per the requirements and styles of the individual countries in which it was played. The most well-known baccarat variant is Punto Banco, which is Cuban baccarat; in France, a variation called Chemin de Fer is played and American baccarat is what you’d find in the U.S. All these games are essentially the same though each one has its own home-grown modifications and little changes that make the game unique to each locale.
Nine is the Object of the Baccarat Game
Play starts when the dealer deals out four cards face up. The first and third cards are dealt to the Player portion of the table in front of the dealer, and the second and fourth cards are dealt to the Banker portion of the table in front of the dealer. Once the initial four cards are dealt, the value of the hands is tallied. Certain values require the dealer to deal a third card to the Player hand and/or to the Banker hand. For example, when the Player’s first two cards total 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5, and the Banker hand has a point value of 7 or less, the Player gets a third card. Whether or not the Banker gets a third card depends on a series of pre-determined factors — the dealer does not have any latitude in deciding whether or not a third card is given.
How to Win at Baccarat
After all cards have been dealt, the hand which has a point value closest to 9 is the winner. In baccarat, face cards and tens are worth zero, while aces are worth 1. All other cards are counted at face value. The point value of each hand is the last digit of the sum of the cards. For example, a hand of a Jack, 5, and 9 has a point value of 4 — the jack is equal to zero, the 5 and 9 total 14 and the 1 is dropped, leaving the value of 4.
The highest total any baccarat hand can have is 9. A two-card total of 9 is called a “natural” and cannot lose. A total of 8 is the second-best hand. If both the Player and the Banker are dealt identical hands, it’s a tie — neither the Banker nor the Player wins, but whoever bet on a Tie wins big. Winning bets made on the Banker are subject to a 5% “commission.” This is because, statistically, Banker hands win slightly more often.
You win at baccarat when the hand you bet on ends up winning the baccarat game.
A bet on the Banker’s hand pays out even money on the original bet minus the 5% commission. A bet on the Player’s hand pays a straight 1:1. And a bet on a Tie pays 8 times the original bet. If the hand you’ve bet on loses, you lose your bet, but if there is a tie — and you’ve bet on either Banker or Player — your bet is returned to you.