Baccarat is one of the most popular casino games, played all over the world. It is a simple game with two main bets, the Banker and Player. The goal of the game is to guess which hand will win.
Baccarat was invented in medieval Italy, but has since spread throughout the world and is now a widely popular casino game. There are three different variations of the game: Punto Banco, Chemin de Fer and Baccarat Banque.
Punto Banco: This is the most common form of baccarat and is found in casinos in the United States, Canada, Europe and Australia. This game is based on the Italian game baccara and involves a shoe with six or eight decks of cards.
A croupier deals the cards and the players make their bets. The banker puts down an initial stake and then the other players place their bets in turns, starting with the nearest player to the croupier and continuing counterclockwise until each player has placed at least half of his or her total wager. Observing bystanders may also bet if they wish, but this is usually only done for small amounts.
The banker then decides whether or not to draw a third card, if he does he stands and if he chooses to take a third card he takes a gamble that the player will have a higher total than the banker’s. If the player does not draw a third card, then the Banker will have to decide which hand to expose.
If the player’s hand is higher than the banker’s then he pays out, collects or returns the players’ bets depending on the rules of the game. If the players’ hand is equal to the banker’s then it is a tie and the players’ stakes are returned.
Traditionally, the players’ hands were not exposed and only the third card was dealt. However, it is now accepted that the Player can expose his or her hand even if the banker has a low total, and this has resulted in more sophisticated strategies.
Chemin de Fer: This version of baccarat is the most traditional and was a favourite amongst the aristocracy in the 19th century. It is now largely out of favour in the US but is still played in some European countries and Russia.
It has a long history of being a very exclusive game and attracting high rollers, including James Bond himself. It is now often played in luxurious baccarat pits, a sealed-off area in a casino where the table is hidden behind special doors and appointed with posh leather chairs.
There are many other side bets available at online casinos, although most of them cost more than the main bets. The Tie bet is a particularly risky bet, with a 14.1 percent house edge and is best avoided.
It is always best to play Baccarat with a minimum of $5 and with an intelligent strategy. If you have the money, try and play with a higher table limit to reduce the odds of losing your money. This is especially true if you are betting on the Banker and avoiding the Tie bet.