A … is for Advantage

Previous PageNext PageTHE ENCYCLOPEDIA OF CASINO TWENTY-ONE
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W XYZ

Anatomy of a Card CounterA. 1) Acronym for ace. 2) Acronym for large bets accepted graciously.
[ 93 Wong Current Blackjack News ]

AC. Acronym for Atlantic City, NJ.

A-J bonus. The Ace and Jack of Spades is a popular bonus hand in social games and in some casinos. If the player is always paid double for this bonus he has a gain of +.042%.

Accu-Count. {PCS/L2} (c1978?) (Forest Hills, NY). See Hi-Opt II.

A 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
0 1 1 2 2 1 1 0 0 -2

BC = .91 PE = .67

[ c78? Accu-Count System for Winning BJ ]
[ 78 Casino & Sports Vol.2, 18 ]
[ c78? Rouge et Noir 12 ]

Ace of Spadesace. (A). 1) A playing card with a single pip on the face whose value counts as 1 or 11 points, as declared by the player. Aces have a critical importance in the game of twenty-one for if all the aces in a game were used up it would be impossible to receive any soft hands or blackjacks. Any card counting system that ignores aces cannot yield a very good estimate of the advantage a player has in a given situation. The ace has little effect on a player’s overall playing strategy but is critical in a player’s betting strategy. If you know your first card will be an ace, your advantage on the hand is approximately 50%. See ace-count. 2) A reference to a $1 chip.
1) [ 90 Chambliss Fundamentals of Blackjack 81 ]
1) [ http://wizardofodds.com/games/blackjack/appendix/14/ ]

ace adjustment. {CS} To adjust a player’s bet size based on the proportion of aces remaining to be played. See ace adjustment factor. See ace-count.

ace adjustment factor. {CS} A number specified by advanced card counting systems where the ace is assigned a point value of zero. A side count of aces is therefore required to determine this factor which is multiplied by the number of aces rich or aces poor, in order to adjust the running count for betting purposes.
[ 81 Uston Million Dollar Blackjack 141 ]

ace count. 1) {RCS} A strategy whereby the player keeps a count of all aces, as they are dealt, and raises or lowers his bet based on this information. 2) {CS} In more advanced card tracking systems this is a separate side count that the player keeps in addition to his regular point count. Some systems intentionally assign a point count value of zero to aces and expect the player to keep a side count.

ace-five count. {RCS} A simplified rank count strategy where the player keeps track of aces and fives only. See Uston Ace-Five Count.

ace neutral count.  {CS} A counting system which does not assign a value to the ace.  An example of an ace neutral count is the Hi-Opt I count.

ace poor. When there is a lower than average proportion of aces remaining to be played. This generally favors the house, however, players may notice greater dealer breaking activity. See poor. See ace rich.

ace reckoned count.  A counting system which assigns a value to the ace and includes them as part of the main count.  An example of an ace reckoned count is the Hi-Lo count.

ace rich. When there is a greater than average proportion of aces remaining to be played. This generally favors the player due to the higher probability of receiving a natural. Although the dealer also has the same chance of receiving a natural the player is paid at greater odds (3 to 2). See rich. See ace poor.

ace sequencing. {STS} See ace tracking.

ACE Shuffler. (c2010) A single-deck shuffler from Shuffle Master.
[ https://apheat.net/2012/07/12/the-not-so-ideal-ideal-shuffler/ ]
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PoucbKfgPOE ]

ace steering. {STS} See ace tracking.

ace tracking. {STS} A term that refers to one of the most closely guarded techniques of professional blackjack players.  Also known as sequence tracking, sequential shuffle tracking, card location, signature cards, ace steering and key-carding.
[ 1997 Morse Blackjack Reality 98 ]
[ 03 Poolside The Poolside Report: Blackjack Ace Tracking ]
[ 04 McDowell Blackjack Ace Prediction ]
[ http://www.blackjackforumonline.com/content/BJFContents.htm#spring2005 ]

ACES. Acronym for Max Rubin’s system called Advanced Comp Equivalency Strategy, detailed in his book Comp City.  According to Rubin, “ACES enables you to walk into any Las Vegas casino armed with the most powerful gambling-vacation tool ever devised.” 
[ http://www.blackjackreview.com/wp/encyclopedia/other-books/#MaxRubin ]

achtzehn-und-drei. A German term for the game of blackjack. See Ein-und-zwanzig.
[ 66 Thorp Beat the Dealer 4 ]

act. The false personality adopted by the expert blackjack counter to help disguise from casino personnel the fact that he is a skilled player. See camouflage. See cover.
[ 8/86 Olsen Blackjack Confidential ]
[ 66 Thorp Beat the Dealer 132 ]

action. As in heavy action. The total amount of money that a player wagers over a period of time. For example, one hundred bets of $5 each is $500 in action. From a dealer’s perspective, action can also refer to games where players are betting large amounts of checks.

action player. A term often referring to a player who enjoys gambling just for the sake of gambling and not necessarily for any profit motive. High rollers and junket players would fit in this category. All casinos like to cater to action players who are often the first to be offered comps when available.

Action 10. {RWC} (1990) (A blackjack strategy developed by Steven Heller and marketed by Jerry Patterson). Not recommended.  See Clump Card Blackjack. From its advertising:

 Action 10 is a method for exploiting dealer biased games. It is an integrated approach that includes specific betting strategies, unit win goals, stop losses and signals for moving into a more aggressive betting mode… Like the TARGET method it relies on certain factors such as chips, bets and card flows. However, Action 10 differs in what the player is actually looking for.”

Action 21: Carousel of Decks. (1986) A blackjack variation offered by Harrah’s Tahoe in December 1986. Twelve single-decks were individually shuffled and stood on end in slots in a plastic carousel. Players place bets before the dealer spins the carousel. Whichever deck lands in the one “open” slot is then removed for play of one round.
[3/87 Snyder Action 21: Carousel of Decks BJF 30]

Adams Black Jack Chewing GumAdams Black Jack Chewing Gum. Made of sugar, gum base, corn syrup, natural and artificial flavoring and artificial colors (including FD&C yellow no. 6). Produced by Warner-Lambert Co., Morris Plans, NJ 07950.

adjusted running count. The running count adjusted to reflect the number of aces rich or poor. See ace adjustment factor.

 

advanced count. {CS} A general reference to any counting system beyond a level 1 count.

Advanced Point Count. (APC) {CS} {PCS} 1) A reference to Lawrence Revere’s 1973 Advanced Point Count system. 2) A general reference to any counting system beyond a level 1 count.

advantage. A notion of a player’s or casino’s expected value in a game.  The advantage that a player or casino enjoys depends on a number of factors. These factors include:

  • Rules of the game
  • Number of decks
  • Randomness of cards
  • Strategy employed
  • Penetration

Frequently Asked Question
Does Blackjack Have the Best Odds for the Player?

If a player correctly uses basic strategy in a game, his long-run advantage can range from approximately 0.1% in a single-deck game with Las Vegas strip (LVS) rules and double after splitting (DAS) allowed to a disadvantage of greater than 1% for typical double exposure type games. See player advantage. See house advantage.  See expectation.

CASINO ADVANTAGES
VS BASIC STRATEGY PLAYERS

1-dk LVS & DAS -.1%
1-dk LVS +.0%
1-dk D10 & H17 +.4%
2-dk LVS & DAS +.2%
2-dk LVS +.3%
2-dk D10 & H17 +.7%
4-dk LVS & DAS +.3%
4-dk LVS +.4%
4-dk D10 & H17 +.8%
6 / 8-dk LVS & DAS +.4%
6 / 8-dk LVS +.5%
6 / 8-dk D10 & H17 +.9%
Double Exposure (Typical) +1.1%

LVS = Las Vegas Strip rules where you can double on any two cards and the dealer stands on Soft-17.
DAS = Double After Splits allowed.
D10 = Double on 10 and 11 only

 

advantage player. (AP) Someone who uses techniques and methods to gain a theoretical advantage over the house or other players — without cheating.
[ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Advantage_gambling ]

The term advantage as in advantage player once referred to a person who cheats, usually by using altered cards or dice.
[1890 Quinn Fools of Fortune 196]

agent. A player who is working with a dealer or casino personnel to cheat a casino.

all. Acronym for lose all on doubles or splits if dealer has blackjack.
[ Wong Current Blackjack News ]

amateur shuffle. {STS} A shuffle operation that divides the deck approximately into two groups of n cards and interleaves them singly or in clusters of 2,3, or 4 according to some probability distribution.
[ 77 Epstein Theory of Gambling & Stat. Logic 161 ]

anatomy of a card counter. A reference to the graphic drawn by Michael Dalton in the Spring 1996 issue of Blackjack Review magazine.  This graphic summarizes many of the tricks of the trade for card counters.
[ Spr 96 Dalton Blackjack Review ]

anchorman. Also shortened to anchor. The player to the right of the dealer, who is the last to act on the hand before the dealer. As far as the basic strategy of the game is concerned, this position is often erroneously considered to be highly important as to the success or failure of the other players.  See third base.
[ 66 Thorp Beat the Dealer 158 ]

The anchorman can also be used as an accomplice to a cheating dealer. The anchorman can hit or stand according to signals from the dealer, thus taking undesirable cards off the top of the deck.

Ian Andersen

Andersen, Ian. (1943 – ) aka Rusty Kent London.  Author of the classic texts Turning the Tables on Las Vegas and Burning the Tables on Las Vegas.   Ian Andersen is believed to have been born Irving Louis Lobsenz in Jersey City in 1943, but according to court records, has changed his name at least twice.   Andersen has been a professional player for at least 20 years and was considered by many to be, at the time, the world’s best active player. He has also written two other books – The Big Night in 1979 (a novel) and Making Money in 1978.  A 2012 member of the Blackjack Hall of Fame.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blackjack_Hall_of_Fame ]
[ http://www.nytimes.com/1987/06/22/us/wedtech-investigation-spreads-3-californians-come-under-scrutiny-kent-london-big.html?pagewanted=all ]
[ Photo credit: Ian Andersen interview from The Hot Shoe ]

Andersen Count. {PCS/L2} (Ian Andersen). See Reppert Count.

A 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
-2 1 1 1 2 1 1 0 -1 -1

BC = .97 PE = .45

[ 76 Andersen Turning the Tables on Las Vegas ]

Angel EyeAngel Eye.   (c2009) An electronic casino security system. From the advertising: “The Angel Eye system supports the integrity of the baccarat game.  Reduces the possibility of cheating.  Proprietary and unique “code” printed on each card minimizes the possibility of foreign cards to be introduced into the system.  Prevents dealer mistakes. The industry standard, there have been more than 5,000 Angel Eye systems sold and implemented in the global market.”  Basically, if a player attempts to switch a card, Angel Eye will detect it.  I can’t see why this wouldn’t work in a blackjack game as well?
[ http://www.tested.com/tech/455527-technologies-casinos-use-catch-cheaters/item/angel-eye/ ]
[ http://www.angelplayingcards.com/en_casino/engineering1.php ]

AOII. Acronym for the Advanced Omega II card counting system.  See Omega II

AP. Acronym for Advantage Player.
[ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Advantage_gambling ]

APC. {CS} {PCS} Acronym for Advanced Point Count. See point count system.

apron. The cloth band worn around the waist by casino dealers. Aprons are worn by many dealers and are usually fastened by an elastic band in back. The casino logo and/or name is usually imprinted on the apron.
[ 80 Solkey Dummy Up and Deal 107 ]

Mike AponteAponte, Mike. aka MIT Mike.  (Born 1972) Former member of the MIT Blackjack Team.  From Mike Aponte’s site: “Since my senior year in college, blackjack and mathematics have been a focal point of my life in one form or another. If you’ve read the bestselling book, Bringing Down The House, you may know me as “Jason Fisher”, one of the leaders of the MIT Blackjack Team. We were a group of MIT students that used mathematics to legally beat the house at blackjack for millions. You may have also seen our team’s story depicted on the big screen in the major motion picture, 21.” Mike won the 2004 World Series of Blackjack and co-founded the Blackjack Institute.
[ https://mikeaponte.com/about_mike/ ]
[ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mike_Aponte ]
[ http://blackjackpersonalities.com/mike-aponte.htm ]

Archer System. {TCS}.

A 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 -2

BC = .72 PE = .61

(Unbalanced converted 10 count)

Arizona.  In 2016, the state of Arizona had 18 casinos with 229 blackjack tables.
[ https://www.qfit.com/maps.shtml ]
[ 88 Arizona Legalizes Gambling BJF ]

Arizona rules.  <<< HISTORIC LINK ONLY

Arkansas.  In 2016, the state of Arkansas had 1 casino with 10 blackjack tables.
[ https://www.qfit.com/maps.shtml ]

Aruba. An island in the Caribbean just off of Venezuela. Along with Curacao and Bonaire of the Netherland Antilles, these islands have several casinos that offer casino blackjack.  These casinos have included the Alhambra, Americana, Concorde, Crystal, Golden Tulip, Holiday Inn, Hyatt and Palm Beach.
[ 2/90 Cohen Playing Smart in Aruba BJC ]
[ 7/91 Tarantino ARUBA! BJC ]
[ https://wwwdotapheatdotnet.files.wordpress.com/2012/09/twentyone_news_v1n2.pdf ]

Aruba rules. <<< HISTORIC LINK ONLY.  Typical blackjack rules (c2000) on the island of Aruba and Netherland Antilles have included: All 6-deck games, dealer hits on soft-17, double on 10 or 11 only and European type no hole-card rules in some casinos.  Se ENHC.
[ http://www.blackjackforumonline.com/content/aruba_no_hole_card_blackjack.htm ]

ash tray. {RWC} What players use at a blackjack table to dispose of cigarette ashes.1)As if you didn’t know already! A player may be able to estimate how long a smoking player has been playing by noticing how many cigarette butts are in his ash tray. Some have estimated about 10 minutes per butt. Of course if they empty the tray….????  One of many factors used in the TARGET method.

Asia. Many countries throughout Asia have legal casinos that offer blackjack. These countries have included the following:

  • Korea
  • Macau (near Hong Kong)
  • Malaysia
  • Philippines (Manila, Baguio, Cebu, Zamboanga)
  • Sri Lanka
  • and others

[ Wong …of Macau C&S Vol.3, 41 ]
[ Wong Korean Casinos Use 4 Decks C&S Vol.4, 12 ]
[ Wong Manila Winner Problem C&S Vol.6, 68 ]
[ 77 Macau C&S Vol.1,33 ]
[ 4/86 Blackjack Confidential ]
[ 9/89 Brahms Blackjack in Asia BJF ]
[ 3/90 Brahms Blackjack in Asia Update BJF ]
[ 90 Patterson Blackjack: A Winner’s Handbook 202 ]
[ 12/90 Pell Blackjack in Japan BJF 17 ]

Asian Assassins.  A blackjack card counting team.  TBD

Asia rules. Rules vary throughout Asia where you may find unusual and sometimes very advantageous games. You should always keep you eyes open for opportunities that include inexperienced dealers, early surrender, resplitting of aces, etc. 
[ 8/89 Wong Instant Update CBN ]
[ Fall 93 Blackjack in Korea BJR ]

ASM. See Automatic Shuffling Machine.

Astrada. An individual with this name advertised two models of a Concealed Blackjack Computer around 1997.  These models were called Polo, which was reported as a card counting credit card computer and Astras, which reportedly added shuffle tracking capabilities.  It is unknown if this was a scam or a real product.
[ 97 Blackjack Review 6.4 ]

NJ Casino Control CommissionAtlantic City. In 2016, Atlantic city had 8 casinos with over 400 blackjack tables. At one time, Atlantic City had the largest concentration of legalized gambling in the northeastern United States. Located in southeast New Jersey on the Atlantic coast. The rules for blackjack in Atlantic City are specified by the New Jersey Casino Control Commission (NJCCC). The first casino, Resorts International, opened its doors to the public on May 26, 1978. Atlantic City had some of the best blackjack rules in the world which included early surrender. In the 1990’s, Atlantic City’s 12 casinos offered players over 700 blackjack tables to choose from. On Dec 5, 1983, New Jersey became the first jurisdiction in the U.S. to create a rule prohibiting predictive devices – such as concealed blackjack computers.
[ https://www.qfit.com/maps.shtml ]
[ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_casinos_in_New_Jersey ]
[ 81 Chambliss Playing Blackjack in Atlantic City ]
[ 83 Griffin Breaking Even in A.C. C&S Vol.24,28 ]
[ 83 Yoder How to Play A.C. Blackjack ]
[ 90 Gaffney Winning BJ in Atlantic City and… ]
[ 3/90 Wong Risk in Atlantic City BJF 13 ]
[ 91 Brown Blackjack: Atlantic City Style ]
[ Sum 93 Banker Blackjack Review ]

Atlantic City rules. <<< HISTORIC LINK ONLY.  Atlantic City games have used 4, 6 or 8 decks face up with the majority being 6 and 8 decks. The most significant change in Atlantic City rules since 1978, was the abolition of early surrender in 1981.
[ Wong Current Blackjack News ]
[ 90 Olsen Blackjack Confidential ]
[ 90 Chambliss Fundamentals of Blackjack 35,54 ]
[ 90 Snyder Blackjack Forum ]
[ 11/90 Olsen Atlantic City Floor Instructions BJC 23 ]
[ 11/90 Olsen 5-Card 21 & 8-5 Odds In A.C. BJC ]
[ Sum 93 Dalton Blackjack Review ]

Casinos have experimented with double-deck games, late surrender, Progressive 21 and side bets such as Five Card-21 and Over/Under 13 at selected tables. Increased competition with Indian reservations and riverboat gambling has been tough on the AC casinos. The Casino Control Act was modified in 1991 allowing 24 hour gambling in Atlantic City. Also, poker was introduced at several casinos in 1993.

 Atvada Proven Method of Play. {BS} (Atvada Associates, San Francisco, CA)
[ 81 Uston Million Dollar Blackjack 325 ]

Aus the Boss. {PCS/L1}. (Computerized Systems Institute, East Century City, CA).
[ 81 Uston Million Dollar Blackjack 325 ]

Auston, John.  Author of Blackjack Risk Manager software and the World’s Greatest Blackjack Simulation guides.

Austin’s Starter. {PCS/L1}. (Austin). See Hi-Opt I and Einstein counts.

A 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
0 0 1 1 1 1 0 0 0 -1

BC = .88 PE = .61

[ 7/77 Austin’s Starter System for BJ GT ]

Australia. Casinos offering blackjack have been found in Adelaide, Alice Springs, Broadbeach, Darwin, Hobart, Launceston, Perth, and Townsville, Sydney and Melbourne.
[ 1/92 Olsen Blackjack Confidential 19 ]
[ Winter 92 Humble Int. Blackjack Club Newsletter ]
[ https://wizardofodds.com/games/australian-blackjack/ ]

Australia rules.  <<< HISTORIC LINK ONLY.  In the past, blackjack rules have included 6 or 8 decks, doubling on 9 to 11 only, DAS, dealer hits or stands on soft 17.  The dealer does not take a hole card.  If the player doubles and/or splits, and the dealer gets a blackjack, then, there is a possibility that you can lose bets from doubling or splitting pairs.  In this case, do not double or split any hand versus a dealer 10 or Ace. The only exception is to split Aces versus a dealer 10.
[ https://wizardofodds.com/games/blackjack/strategy/european/ ]

Australian Syndicate TeamA blackjack card counting team. TBD

automatic shuffling machine. (ASM) Mechanical devices that automatically shuffle the cards for the dealer. A number of different devices have been used in casinos in the past few decades. See CSM. See shuffle machine.
[ 2/88, 7/89 Olsen Blackjack Confidential ]
[ 2/90 Rand Nicoletti Automatic Shuffler BJC 26 ]
[ 11/91 Olsen Breeding’s Single-Deck Shuffler… BJC ]

AWK Count. {PCS/L2}

A 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
-2 1 1 1 2 1 0 0 0 -1

BC = .96 PE = .41

[ 88 Watson Beating Casino’s Blackjack 124 ]

Footnotes   [ + ]

1.As if you didn’t know already!
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