Most casino players have heard of poker, blackjack and are also familiar with the layout of a roulette table, but what is baccarat? The card game is rarely viewed as a mainstream gambling feature and yet, it is one of the oldest and most iconic casino games of all time. Despite some controversy regarding its first origination, baccarat has been a predominant part of the gambling world since the 19th century and the game remains just as popular in the modern day.
Fans of the James Bond franchise may recognise the game in many of 007’s films and despite his flashy persona, the game is simple to follow. Like blackjack, it is played around a semi-circular card table and players are in competition with the dealer. Normally, you can find up to around 12 players sitting around a singular table, but it’s not unusual for there to be one player. Despite there being a few different forms of gameplay inside baccarat, we will be focusing on the most popular – Punto Banco.
The name of this game is not the most complex, with ‘Punto’ referring to the player and ‘Banco’ referring to the dealer. Alongside either a player or a dealer win, there is also a chance for the game to finish as a tie, with the odds on this outcome being 8:1.
Confused? Don’t be. To find out how to play baccarat in more detail, we’ve put together a simple guide on its gameplay and format.
How To Play
Before cards have been dealt, all players must stake their bet. There are three outcomes that can occur in baccarat and players can bet on each outcome:
- Player victory – The player will win the game.
- Dealer victory – The dealer will win the game.
- Tie – The player and dealer will both have the same value of cards.
The odds for a player or dealer victory are equally 1/1. However, if players bet on the banker to win and they do, the house will claim a 5% stake of your winnings. A tie is the most unlikely outcome and the odds of 8-1 reflect this.
Once bets have been placed, the dealer and players are dealt two cards each facing upwards. One iconic part of the game is the inclusion of the baccarat pallet which is sometimes used to place the cards onto the table, although, many modern casinos no longer use the piece of equipment. The two cards that are dealt will equal a total value. The value of each card in baccarat is as follows:
- 2-9 = Face value.
- 10, J, Q, K = 0
- Ace = 1
A player’s total score is their two card values added together, with the objective of the game being to land as close to 9 as possible. However, if any score reaches double digits, the left number must be dropped. For example, if you are dealt a 5,9, then the total value is 14 but your card value is 4. If you are dealt a 7,8, your total sum is 15, but your value in the game is 5. Got that?
The best score a player can land is a nine, which is considered a ‘natural.’ If you or the dealer do not receive a value of nine, the winner will be the person who has a value closest to nine. If you have bet on the winning outcome, you win.
It’s important to note there is also the potential for a third card to be drawn. Third card rules are not essential for a player to know as they are compulsory, meaning that the dealer will place it down whenever necessary. The rules, therefore, have no impact on your gameplay but for those interested, we have the scenarios below:
- When a player’s value is between 0-5, they will be drawn a third card.
- When a banker’s value is between 0-2, they will be drawn a third card.
- If a dealer’s value is between 3-6, the drawing of a third card is dependent on the player’s third card.
The gameplay of baccarat draws similarities to blackjack, with a few alternate outcomes added. The simple objective to take away is that you need to aim to bet on the winning outcome of either a player or dealer win or even a tie. Players with a value of nine, or closest to nine, is the winner.
Play Baccarat with Temple Slots
Here at Temple Slots, we hold all the classic casino games, including baccarat itself. You can play baccarat online today. Inside the game, players will solely play against the dealer, as it is not available to play alongside fellow players. Minimum bets start at £1 per pay so beginners and experienced players are both welcome. Grab a chair and take a seat at the table – will you be backing the house or yourself?
If card games are not your cup of tea, why not check out the other online slot and casino games? We have player favourites like Starburst and Hugo 2 and new depositing players can qualify for a special welcome offer.