Blackjack that is played in online casinos can be played in 2 different variants: video blackjack or live blackjack. The main difference is that video blackjack uses cards randomly generated by a computer. When playing against a real dealer, real cards are dealt and shuffled manually after dealing.
Blackjack has several different styles, e.g. American and European style. In the American blackjack, the dealer draws 2 cards, one face up and one face down which shall be checked in case the one face up is an ace. In European blackjack, the dealer receives only one card face up and draws only after the player has completed his hand.
There are many other variations of blackjack. These can differ from each other by rules concerning the dealer and sometimes the player. However, in practice the rules are always set so as to favour the casino.
The most common types of blackjack involve the following:
- Blackjack switch - The player plays two combinations with two cards simultaneously. The player is allowed to swap his second card between his two combinations. If the dealer reaches 22, the player gets his bet back. It means he does not win, as would be the case under standard rules. Also the player is paid a reward for blackjack only in the ratio 1:1.
- Vegas strip - This is played with four decks of cards. The player may split two aces only once, but at the same time he can double his bet on any two cards. The player also loses the insurance provided that he splits his cards. After splitting, he can double the bet only if the cards that were split were two aces. If he gets the total of 21 after splitting, it is not considered to be blackjack and if he splits the aces, he will receive only one more extra card.
- Double exposure blackjack - The dealer´s cards are both face up. As the player´s advantage thus increases, the other rules serve as a compensation for such advantage. The dealer wins the game except for the situation when the player has blackjack. Blackjack is paid only to the ratio of 1:1 and the player is allowed to split his cards only once.
- Perfect pairs - The standard game is enriched by the option to place a side bet on the "perfect pair". The player wins the bet only if his first two cards form a pair (e.g. two sevens). The winning amount is higher if the pair is of the same colour and the highest if these cards are of an identical symbol.
There are other variations of blackjack where you play basically two games simultaneously, except for the blackjack; you gain rewards in return for the cards you receive. In a version of blackjack called "Triple sevens" you can win the accumulated jackpot if you get three sevens of diamonds. In Caribbean blackjack , the winning amounts depend on what poker combinations you create with your cards. These side winnings can be obtained only after making a sidebet, which is played separately from the bets placed in blackjack.