Blackjack has sometimes been compared to poker; both games are played using cards and both are games of choice by many professional gamblers. Some time ago, blackjack was more popular than poker and they believe it or not, some casinos closed down even their poker rooms because of the lack of interest between the gaming community.
Nowadays, Poker has surpassed blackjack in terms of popularity, mass appeal and lucrative prizes. High-stakes and televised poker tournaments (such as the World Series of Poker and World Poker Tour) have helped generate a lot of hype and publicity for the game. Blackjack, however, has not lost its appeal among its die-hard fans. Blackjack tournaments, like the last round of Blackjack, are fast approaching the popularity of their poker counterparts, with these tournaments attracting not only top blackjack players but also the world’s best poker pros.
Blackjack had its beginnings in the early 20th century, although similar card games were played in other parts of the world, such as France. Back then, blackjack was called “vingt-et-un” – the French word for “twenty-one.” The game was soon officially known as “blackjack” after casinos began to introduce prizes to start the hands with an ace of the forks and a card the face / ten clubs / of the fork.
Blackjack rose in popularity after the game became legal in Nevada in 1931. Before that, blackjack was played illegally in casinos and impromptu card rooms. With the arrival of legalized casinos, blackjack players came in droves and the game became one of the most popular casino games, second only craps.
Another factor that contributed to the popularity of blackjack was World War II. Blackjack became the favorite pastime of American soldiers during the war and when they returned home they brought along their preference for gambling. By the 1950s, blackjack had become one of the most popular games in casinos.
The introduction of powerful blackjack strategies and tactics designed to help the player beat the dealer, as epitomized by the best-selling book “Beat the Dealer” by Edward Thorp, forced the casinos to change certain rules and introduce the games multiples of the platform. However, some players still found a way to “beat the system” and win in blackjack despite the odds stacked against them.
Blackjack can be a profitable gambling activity if you take the effort to master the basic and advanced strategies. There are numerous blackjack strategies readily available in the market, such as Hi-OPT II and the Revere system. Find one that you are comfortable using and apply it to your blackjack game. If you can count cards, so much the better.
It really does not matter what card game, blackjack or poker, you prefer to play. Both games rely heavily on money-checking skills and have an element of luck involved, so if you are good at blackjack then you should be pretty good at poker, and vice versa.