Australian Baccarat Guide - The Game of Bond, James Bond

If you're a movie buff and fan of the James Bond series, you're no doubt aware that Baccarat is a favourite game of the fictional spy. This game has survived over six hundred years. Baccarat was derived from an Italian game called 'Baccara' in the 1400s. Over the years, it has been modified and claimed by the French as Baccarat. It's often mispronounced with a sound similar to the writer of many Grammy winning songs (Bacharach), but is actually pronounced bah-kah-rah in keeping with the French pronunciation.

Baccarat is an elegant game of intrigue and mystery, which is possibly why it was selected as the game of Bond. The popularity of this game is growing in leaps and bounds, not unlike the many other casino games. This is primarily due to the wide variety of online gaming, and accessibility of online casinos. This simple game of chance is about knowing what to bet on. Much like Roulette, it's a matter of betting at the right time. Many say there is no real strategy, just simply understanding the bets and the variety of Baccarat games available.  So, if you are ready to venture away from the slots and the Roulette table, you might be ready to move up to this game of chance. Pick your table, pick a bet, and watch it win!

How to Play Baccarat

The beautiful thing about Baccarat is that you get to change roles during this card game. What will you bet on - the Player or the Banker, or maybe the Tie? The overall process is easy to learn and in the end the one closest to nine is the winner.

All numbered cards (2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, and 9) count at face value, with an ace counting as one. Face cards (Jack, Queen, King) and ten count as zero. Suits are meaningless. Card values are added, and any tens place of the result is discarded.

Example Baccarat Hand Values

  • Ace(1) + 3 + 2 = 6 → 6
  • King(0) + 9 + 4 = 13 → 3
  • 2 + 4 + 3 = 9 → 9

First, the cards are shuffled and placed into the shoe, a dealing device. There can be up to eight decks of cards shuffled at one time. The number of decks of cards used depends upon the casino. For online games of Baccarat, the cards are dealt by RNG (Random Number Generator). So, although many people will look for patterns, or even attempt to count the cards, with online it is impossible to do so. Many professional live players will attempt to count cards, but the greater the number of decks used, the smaller the chance for effective counting.

After the shuffling is complete, the dealing commences. The first and third card dealt go to the Player's hand, and the second and fourth goes to the Banker's hand. The dealer will announce the initial point totals. Should either hand add up to 8 or 9, that hand is called a Natural and no further cards are dealt. If neither hand is a Natural, one additional card may be dealt to each hand in keeping with the table overleaf known as the Table of Play or Tableau. Winning bets on the Player's hand are always paid even money 1:1.

Baccarat Rules

As we mentioned, all numbered cards are as valued except for 10. Ace has the value of one, with all Face cards and 10 being valued as zero. Because two cards are dealt to the Player and to the Banker, the idea is to achieve a nine, as that is a Natural. When no Natural is dealt, a third card is necessary. Special guidelines for the third card apply.

The Third Card

After the dealer has dealt the first two cards for the Player and Banker hands, the third card becomes very valuable. A player has no say in how the cards are dealt. The dealer determines all that. The rule is very specific: the third card overrides all other cards. Therefore, no other cards will value more than this card. If the Banker and Player are dealt equivalent hand values, a Tie is declared.

When the first two cards for the Banker have a hand value from 0-7, the player must draw his or her hand according to the rules of the third card. If the Player has a hand value from 0-5, it is necessary to deal in another card. However, if the hand proves to be valued between 6-7, then it's not mandatory to deal an extra card. Remember the hand closest to nine wins after the third card is dealt, if and when necessary. Once the Player finishes the game accordingly, the Banker's pass is conclusive. An extra card is passed to the Banker if the card value in hand is 0-2. But if it is 3-6, the third card for the players will decide if the Banker will continue or draw. The dealer will stand if the hand value is seven.

What About the Best Wagers?

The game of Baccarat has three different and very distinct options. We say distinct because of the payouts and odds. In order to capitalize on your wagers, you need to know the potential outcome of each and value them accordingly. They are the "Player", the "Banker", and the "Tie".

  • Player payout: 1:1
  • Banker payout: Winning bets on the Banker's hand are paid according to the version of the game being played.
  • Tie payout: 8:1

The two primary bets - Player and Banker - will pay you even money. The tie is an 8:1 payout. The 'Tie is very enticing and exciting. However, the odds are against you and for the house, so the likelihood of winning is low compared to the 1:1 odds. Many experts highly advise against betting the Tie. It is important to remember that because the Banker bet wins more often than the Player bet, the house will often charge a commission of 5% on all payouts in order make back the frequent losses. It is actually one of the few wagers in the house where a single bet wins more often than it loses.

Baccarat - Simple Playing Tips and Strategy

Simplicity truly is the name of the game. The best strategy is to first understand the basic premise of the game, which we have outlined here. Secondly, it is to use one of the recommended online casino sites listed here and take advantage of free play. Be ready to toggle between your free play session and this page for reminders. Finally, keep track of your own approach to winning. Ask yourself a few simple questions. "Did I have a good feel for the game?" "Did I fall into a nice rhythm?" "Was I able to sense when to bet and when not to bet?"

Seriously, ask any avid player of any game and they will tell you that they just click with the game. It's why some people love slots, others poker, and still some go crazy for Craps or Sic Bo. Just what is it about games like Roulette or Baccarat that makes people fall in love with them?

When you have found your pace, venture out and play for real money at one of our recommended sites. Enjoy some of the many welcome bonuses there to help you increase your bankroll. Remember the basic laws and principles of the game and you will be the master of the game in no time at all.

In reality, our experts believe there are two primary strategies to winning at Baccarat. One involves betting on the Banker and is the best approach in all instances. The other is to begin to recognize streaks and patterns and follow your gut. It also requires enough focus to begin to pay attention to what card may be resting in the shoe. Over time you will learn to trust that intuition while avoiding superstition.

Baccarat Glossary

Baccarat is a game that became famous in France, so here is some of the terminology associated with this entertaining game. And while you are at it, enjoy “Parlez-vous Frances? Qui, Qui! Je parle baccarat.”

  • Baccarat
    A hand equal to zero. The worst hand possible. Scenario: King+10+Jack=0
  • Banco
    This word means bank. This is what is said when a player wishes to bet the bank, i.e. all their money.
  • Croupier
    Means "dealer" in French. In English speaking casinos, the dealer is simply the "dealer".
  • Le Grande
    A natural that is dealt in the first two cards that equals nine. A Natural.
  • Le Petite
    A natural that is dealt in the first two cards that equal eight. A Natural.
  • Mini-Baccarat
    A variation with a smaller table, with fewer seats and only one dealer. This is the most common version at casinos. 
  • Punto
    The actual players in Baccarat. What you will be called when you begin playing.
  • Sabot
    The French term for the shoe. The shoe is where cards are shuffled and dealt.
  • Vigorish
    The commission players pay the casino when they win on Banker hands.
 

FAQs

  • Can I play Baccarat online for free?

    Yes, you can. Most online casinos offering Baccarat for real money will also offer it for free. In fact, beginners should get familiar with the game playing for free and advancing on when they are ready to turn the fun into fun with rewards.

  • Is online Baccarat better than live?

    Yes and no. It all depends on what your preference is. First of all, online casinos are great for switching between free and real money play. You cannot play for free at a live casino. Another benefit to online play is that it is at your convenience. Let's face it, sometimes you just want to dress down to lounge wear and have fun. Then there are times when dressing to the "nines" (or should we say "dressing up to win the nines"?) is the only thing that will satisfy that winning drive. Regardless what your final choices will be, online casinos offer fabulous sign-on bonuses. All of the casinos that our team of experts have recommended here are top-shelf, safe, secure, and very entertaining.

  • What is the best strategy for winning at Baccarat?

    The best strategy is to bet/wager with the Banker. Although you will have to pay a 5% commission - the "Vigorish" - you will have a greater chance of winning. The worst bet is to go with the Tie. Although the payout is significantly more than the Player, it is still best to just go with the flow, go slow, and learn the game. Every now and then when your bankroll is increasing, venture out and go for a Tie. In the end, Baccarat is much like Roulette and Sic Bo, truly a game of chance.

  • What is the difference between Baccarat and Mini-Baccarat beside the amount of the bet?

    In Baccarat, you must determine if you want a card and when you want it played. In Mini-Baccarat, the rules determine when and if a card will be placed on Player or Banker. The choice is removed in Mini-Baccarat. Mini-Baccarat is the most frequently found game in live casinos. Both games are available online.

  • Are there other variations of Baccarat besides Mini-Baccarat?

    Yes. One of the other not so common forms of Baccarat is "Baccarat en Banque" where the Banker is auctioned off to the players and the highest bid wins the position of Banker. Another is "Chermin de Fera", which is played in European casinos and some U.S. Casinos. Each player is allowed to take a turn dealing out the cards. Also, each player has an option of taking up to five total cards. In America, there is a version called "Super Pan 9". It's played with the total of 36 cards. And then there's "Three Card Baccarat", inspired by Macau. Did we mention that one of the beautiful things about online casinos is that most have a wide variety of Baccarat variants as well as super welcome bonuses?

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