What is baccarat?
Baccarat originated in France and Italy back in the 1400s. It’s a simple luck-based card game that is played between the dealer and a single player only — though multiple players can sit at the same table, they’re just not competing against one another.
Although the game has evolved over the years, and there are several different variants available, the main goals and rules have remained the same.
How to play baccarat?
Playing baccarat is relatively straightforward. The main aim of the game is to guess the value of a hand. There’s the Player’s hand and the Banker’s hand. Each hand starts with just two cards dealt to both players. The aim is to bet on the hand that has the value closest to 9. So, you can bet on the Player’s Hand (your own), the Banker’s, or on a tie.
The difference between baccarat and other games comes in the scoring of the hands. All single-digit cards are scored with the same value as the one on their face. Any double-digit cards only count the second digit, so a 10 is worth 0. Face cards are also worth 0, with the exception of the Ace which is worth 1. If a hand has a value that’s in the double digits, again, only the second digit is counted. So a hand made up of a 7 and 6 is 13, but will score as 3.
Where can I play baccarat?
As baccarat is growing in popularity, there are a number of places where you can play this game online. In fact, most online casinos will offer some versions of baccarat for you to enjoy. When choosing the casino to play at though, make sure it is licensed and regulated in your state. Take a look at our top-rated baccarat casinos in the US right here.
What different kinds of baccarat are there?
There are three main versions of baccarat available. The most common of these is Punto Banco. This is the most straightforward of the three options and just has three main bets (though there are side bets available too).
Chemin de Fer sees the player take the role of the banker. In this game, players actually take turns being the banker, and place bankers in the hot seat. It also means that as the banker, the player has the power to choose who can get a third card in their hand. This is a more social game and is, therefore, more popular at land-based casinos than online ones.
The final variant is Baccarat Banque. This is played with just three card decks instead of the usual six or eight. Cards are dealt one to each player rather than two to the player then two to the dealer.
Baccarat online vs in a land-based casino
While baccarat is very popular in land-based venues, it has made the jump to the online platform with ease. For players trying to decide where to play, there are several things to consider when deciding which option to choose.
For instance, online baccarat is more convenient, you don’t have to travel to play. Online virtual baccarat games can also be played more quickly or slowly as you can set the computer’s speed. You’ll also usually have a range of different baccarat options to choose from.
However, land-based baccarat games do bring a social element, plus it’s often more exciting playing directly against a real person.
Baccarat on mobile phones
Players can also enjoy virtual baccarat on their mobile phones. Most providers offering baccarat games have made sure that their games are fully compatible across both Android and iOS devices. Depending on the casino you’re playing at, you’ll be able to play baccarat on an app or the mobile browser version of the site with all the same features and gameplay options as the desktop version.