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Soft and Hard in Blackjack – In-Depth

Soft and Hard in Blackjack – In-Depth

Blackjack is one of the most popular casino games, both in land-based and online platforms. The objective of the game is simple – to beat the dealer. To do this, you need to have cards with the highest possible value without going over 21 while beating the hand of the dealer. You will initially have two cards, and one more card can be requested based on your strategy.

In theory, Blackjack seems like a straightforward game. In practice, it is more difficult. You need to understand a lot of things, such as soft and hard in Blackjack. With the right knowledge of the latter, it will be easy to beat the dealer and win big. So, if you want to know what does hard and soft mean in Blackjack, we got your back. Keep on reading and learn from some of the valuable insights we’ll be sharing in this short guide.

So, What is Soft and Hard in Blackjack?

Understanding soft hard Blackjack is crucial for any novice. These are some of the most important lingos you need to learn. More importantly, these hands will dictate what your next call will be, and hence, it will be largely influential in the outcome of the game.

When you have a hard hand in Blackjack, it means that you do not have an ace, and if you have, it isn’t flexible, and hence, the value is only 1. You cannot count it as an 11. If you count is as an 11, then your card total can go over 21, which will result in a bust. For instance, if your card is a Queen and a 7, this means that there is no Ace, so it is a hard hand. This is a hard 17 since face cards are counted as 10.

On the other hand, a soft hand in Blackjack means that you have an Ace in your cards and you can count it either as 1 or 11, depending on which is better for you. For instance, if you have an Ace and a 5, then you have a soft hand. Counting your Ace as 11, then you have a soft 16.

Now, between the two hands, you are most probably wondering, which one is better? Soft hands are better for players because you will have greater flexibility. Since you can count your Ace as 1 or 11, the value of your hand can change depending on the third card. The best thing is that even with a third card drawn, it is impossible to bust (go over 21) when you have a soft hand. Because you have an Ace, which is the most powerful card in your deck, you will have the freedom to decide on its value.

How Frequent Do You Get These Hands?

In understanding soft and hard hands, many people are also interested in the frequency of getting them. It is likelier that you will be getting a hard hand than a soft hand. This is because a soft hand requires an Ace, and in a standard deck of cards, there are only four Aces, which limits the frequency of a soft hand.

At the start of every round, you can be dealt with 34 different hands. As many as 14 can be hard hands. Meanwhile, as many as 8 can be soft totals. As you can see, there is a higher chance that you will have a hard hand than a soft hand, which, as noted earlier, is because there are only four aces in a deck.

Tips and Tricks for Getting These Hands

For a better understanding of what is soft and hard in Blackjack, let’s also talk about some of the best strategies. Once you have these hands, you should be smart enough to decide what to do next.

The strategy is not as simple as it seems. There is no rule of thumb, but you can use our recommendations in this section as a guide. If you have a hard hand, below are some of the things that you can do:

  • If you have 8, hit.
  • If you have 9, double down if the dealer has 3 to 6. Otherwise, hit.
  • If you have 10, double down if the dealer has 2 to 9. Otherwise, hit.
  • If you have 11, always double down.
  • If you have 12, stand if the dealer has 4 to 6. Otherwise, hit.
  • If you have 13, stand if the dealer has 2 to 6. Otherwise, hit.
  • If you have 14, stand if the dealer has 2 to 6. Otherwise, hit.
  • If you have 15, stand if the dealer has 2 to 6. Otherwise, hit.
  • If you have 16, stand if the dealer has 2 to 6. Otherwise, hit.
  • If you have 17, stand all the time.

On the other hand, if you have a soft hand, below are the basic strategies:

  • If you have a soft 13, double down if the dealer has 5 to 6. Otherwise, hit.
  • If you have a soft 14, double down if the dealer has 5 to 6. Otherwise, hit.
  • If you have a soft 15, double down if the dealer has 4 to 6. Otherwise, hit.
  • If you have a soft 16, double down if the dealer has 4 to 6. Otherwise, hit.
  • If you have a soft 17, double down if the dealer has 3 to 6. Otherwise, hit.
  • If you have a soft 18, double down if the dealer has 2 to 6. Hit if the dealer has a 9 to an Ace. Otherwise, stand.
  • If you have a soft 19, double down if the dealer has a 6. Otherwise, stand.
  • If you have a soft 20, stand all the time.

Final Verdict

By now, we hope that you already know what’s hard and soft in Blackjack. To recap, a hard hand is when you do not have an ace. If you have an ace as a third card, in a hard hand, it is counted as one and not 11. Meanwhile, a soft hand is when you have an Ace in your first two cards and you can count it as one or 11 depending on what is better. A soft hand is better because it is more flexible and you cannot bust, even when you have a third card.

Now that you know about Blackjack soft and hard hands, it is time to play the game. If you are looking for the best place where you can play the game online, make sure to check out Digibet!

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