Blackjack is the biggest of all of the Casino card games for a number of reasons. It’s a game that suits gambling due to its large elements of chance and its quick pace. Whereas a game like Poker might get bogged down in complex strategies and alternate variations, Blackjack is a beneficiary of its own inherent simplicity.
Blackjack is an obvious close relative of games like Pontoon and Twenty-One; in fact many people still refer to it as Twenty-One which highlights its basic characteristics. The player will be dealt two cards by the dealer and will then stick with their lot or twist and accept another card until they get as near the twenty one mark as they dare without going bust: exceeding the twenty one points.
Because of Blackjack’s simplicity, its origins are hotly debated and can be traced back as early as Roman times. The Roman’s were keen gamblers, and played a similar counting game with numbered rocks.
Like many card games, Blackjack really began to emerge as the game we know today in the 18th century. Countries like France and Spain often pioneered simple card betting games. ‘French Ferme’, ‘Chemin de Fer’ and ‘Vingt et Un’ were all popularised at around this time.
The game would travel to America along with the early colonialists, still under the guise of ‘Twenty One’. It would remain as Twenty One up until the 30s, notably when Nevada legalised gambling and the early Casinos were built. Casino house rules would state that a hand with either of the ‘Black Jacks’ and the Ace of Spades would win a one off prize at odds of ten to one. The name Blackjack was born and entered our common vocabulary.
Blackjack is now a huge favourite in the online Casino, which seems to emphasise its adaptability from its somewhat ancient heritage.