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Vampire: The Masquerade

Fortune Games® Slots Review of Vampire: The Masquerade Slot Game 

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First, let's review the general rules of blackjack before we get into the specifics of this variant. Playing cards are shuffled together and dealt out of a shoe in this game. A player receives two face-up cards after making a bet, while the dealer receives one face-up and one face-down card.

The rank of a card determines its score. Numbered cards are worth their value; for example, a seven is worth seven points. Asses can be worth one or 11, depending on the situation. Face cards are worth ten, while face cards are worth ten. To win at blackjack, players must have a better hand than the dealer; the best possible score is 21, and players try to stay within that range.

Blackjack is the best hand in this game. An ace and a ten-point card give a player or dealer a "natural." These hands pay at special 3-2 odds unless the dealer also has a blackjack.

The dealer will first check if they have a blackjack if their up card is a ten or an ace. If the card is an ace, the player can also bet on insurance. This bet typically requires one-half of the initial wager. In the event that the dealer has a ten underneath, all insurance bets pay out at 2-1 odds.

Therefore, players will break even if their insurance pays off (since they lose their initial bet), and blackjacks will pay even money rather than 3-2 (dealers often simplify this option by simply offering even money before checking their down card).

If the dealer does not have a blackjack, play continues. Players can now make decisions about their hands to improve their chances of winning. There are several options available, including:

  • Stand: If the player chooses to do this, they pass the option of taking more cards, ending their turn.
  • Hit: The player receives one more card from the dealer. They can then choose to continue hitting or stand at any time.
  • Double Down: This option is available when the player has two cards. They then receive exactly one more card, after which they must stand.
  • Split: This option is only available when the player starts with two cards of the same rank. They may then split them into two separate hands – played for one bet each – which then get played out as normal.

Each player plays his or her hand until he or she stands (or is forced to after doubling down), or until their hand contains 22 or more points, at which point they have "busted." A busted hand loses all bets immediately.

The dealer will take the turn after all players have played their hands. Upon revealing their down card, they must follow the rules written on the table regarding how to play their hand. On all hands of 16 or less, dealers almost universally hit, and on all hands of 18 or more, they stand.

All games require the dealer to stand on a "hard" 17, but they may or may not hit on a "soft" 17 - one that contains an ace and counts as an 11.

If the dealer goes bankrupt, all remaining player bets win at even money. When the dealer stands, a player's hand is compared to the dealer's. Any player who has a higher hand than the dealer wins even money on all bets. If the dealer hand is higher, the player loses all bets. If there is a tie, all bets push.

Understanding the Vegas Rules

The online version of Vegas Blackjack is pretty standard. It's pretty close to what most people consider the "default" rules, so there aren't many surprises here.

Each hand is dealt from a four-deck shoe that is continuously shuffled. Two-card hands may be doubled and split exactly once, up to a maximum of twice. Each new hand receives only one card, and the new hands must stand after splitting aces. The dealer will stand on all 17s.

Overall, this version of the game offers very good odds to players. Some of the best online variants have a house edge of about 0.40%.

Crafting Your Strategy

When developing a strategy, it is important to know what decisions to make in every possible situation. For almost all variants, you can purchase, print, or memorize charts that teach you how to play mathematically correct games. In particular, this is true for rulesets similar to those used in Vegas Blackjack.

When you don't want to search for a complete chart, you can use a simplified strategy to get close to the optimal house edge without deep memorization. Based on a strategy created by The Wizard of Odds, this strategy has been simplified even further.

You can take the recommended action based on the hand situation you are in. "Soft" hands are those with an ace still worth 11 points, whereas "hard" hands are those without an ace. Any card between a two and a six is considered a low card, while a seven through an ace is considered a high card.

*All values (Bet Levels, Maximum Win, etc.) mentioned in relation to this slot game are subject to change at any time