Three Hand Blackjack
Blackjack is the world's most popular casino game, allowing you to play head-to-head against the Dealer. The hand with the card value total closest to 21 without going over, wins. You often have a wide range of choices. You can take extra cards, split two cards of the same value into two hands, or double-down.
How to Play Online Blackjack
On the table there are three betting circles to place your bets. Each circle is the betting area for a hand of Blackjack. Choose between one and three hands to play.
- Select your stake: Click on a chip on the bottom right of the screen.
- Place your bet: On the table, there are three betting circles allowing you to play up to three hands. When the mouse pointer is moved inside a circle it becomes highlighted in gold; click in a circle to place a chip at the value selected. Each consecutive click increases the bet in increments of the chip value selected, e.g. 3 clicks in total, 5+5+5 = £15 bet. Use the CLEAR button to remove all chips from the table.
- Deal: When happy with your bet choices, hit DEAL!
Each of your hands is played in turn from the right until all of your hands are finalised.
Two cards will be dealt to each hand you are playing. The first of the dealer's cards is placed face down , the second is placed face up showing its value. If the dealer's upcard is an ace, you have the option of taking Insurance (see later). Both cards in each of the hands you are playing are placed face up.
The value of your hand will appear alongside your cards. At this stage, if you have two cards of identical value you will be given the option to split them (see later).
Should you have a two-card hand totalling 21 (Blackjack), the dealer will show their hand after the other hands are played. If the dealer does not have Blackjack, you win 3:2 on your stake. If the dealer does have Blackjack, your original stake is returned to you and the game ends (a 'push').
The dealer will then turn over the hole card. Whether the dealer can now draw any more cards depends on the total of their hand. If the dealer has fewer than 17, they must draw another card. If the dealer's hand equals 17 or over, they may not draw any more cards. This also applies if the dealer has a soft 17 (an ace card and a six).
If you do not have 21, you can either take more cards ('hit') or remain at your current total (a 'stand' ). You may then continue to take more cards, one by one, by clicking the HIT button, until you have either gone over 21 ('bust') or you are satisfied with your card total and call a STAND. For example, you may choose to stand at 19 or 20. You may also be offered options to DOUBLE or SPLIT your hand - these are covered in more detail later.
Winning or losing the game
- If the dealer busts, you win the game.
- If your hand is higher than the dealers, without going over 21, you win.
- If the dealer's hand is higher than yours, without going over 21, the dealer wins.
- If you bust, a message will be displayed alongside your cards and you immediately lose the game, plus your bet.
- If your hand matches the dealers, it is a 'push' and your stake is returned to you. If your winning hand is a split hand, you win evens on your original stake. Blackjack cannot be called on a winning hand.
Special plays will appear as buttons during the course of the game, when you have the option to play them. Three special plays are featured in BlackJack:
If the dealer's second card or upcard is an ace, you are given the option to accept Insurance before the dealer views the hole card (the dealer's first card, dealt face down). If you accept Insurance, the dealer will check ('peek') at their hole card for Blackjack.
Insurance is effectively a side-bet of half the amount of your original stake, paid at 2:1. This means that if the dealer has a natural 21 or Blackjack, you lose your original bet, but win back half its value - the insurance bet - thereby limiting your loss.
Note: No Insurance will be offered if you have Blackjack
Splitting in Blackjack
If your first two cards are of identical value, you may split them and place an additional bet (equal to your original bet) to play two hands instead of one. Each of the cards then becomes the start of a new hand. Splitting is only allowed once, at the start of the game. No further splitting (resplitting) can be carried out. Note: Ten, Jack, Queen and King have identical value; any combination of these cards may be split (in addition to pairs).
If either of your hands beats the dealer, you are paid evens on your original stake. If you split a hand, Blackjack (3:2) cannot be called on that hand - a winning hand in this situation will be paid at evens.
When splitting two aces, only one further card can be drawn for each hand in the split.
Doubling up in Blackjack
This option enables you to double your bet, but receive just one more card (forfeiting the opportunity to hit further). The double down option is only available if the total of 2 cards is 9, 10 and 11.
Tip: Doubling, or Doubling down is most effective when you have an edge on the dealer, for example, when the dealer's hand shows a weak or low card like a Four, Five or Six. A double can be played your first two cards when the Double button is displayed.
Once you have split your identical value cards into two hands and received a second card for each, you have the option to double down on those two hands. Each hand is played out separately and you can choose to double down on one, or both hands.
Doubling down after splitting (on two hands) is the same principle as doubling down on a single hand and returns the same odds - double your stake - for each hand you win.
Unlike some other variants of Blackjack, if your first two cards are aces, you do not win the hand. Instead, it forms a total hand of either 12 or 2, but since aces are strong cards, you do have the option to split them.
This is displayed alongside an ace card when your hand is low enough for the ace card to be assigned its higher value of 11 without going bust. For instance, where an ace is the first or second card to be drawn. You can always draw at least one card to a soft hand without busting.
The number of decks used is 5. Decks are shuffled on each new game. Each deck consists of a standard 52-card deck (no Jokers).
Payout for winning hand
Winning hand (excluding Blackjack or special plays)
Push (a draw)
Returns the original stake
Forfeits your stake
Double or Double-down
2:1 on the original stake
2:1 on the original stake on each winning (split) hand
- The long-term, average expected Return to Player % is 99.18% based on good playing strategy.
- System malfunction voids all pays and plays.
- For additional tips for play, read our Blackjack Guide
Average Rating: 23456 Based on 2065 ratings Login to write a review
23456 SS commented on 08-Feb-2011 10:32 AM
Good game, easy to play.
23456 LS commented on 24-Nov-2010 10:10 AM
Very addictive and rewarding.
23456 JC commented on 23-Nov-2010 3:04 PM
Just like Vegas
23456 GH commented on 23-Nov-2010 3:03 PM
Quick and easy to play, no need to follow detailed instructions, good graphics, choice of stakes
23456 CK commented on 23-Nov-2010 3:03 PM
Played quite a few games now and seems to be rigged as havn't won a single hand yet
23456 GG commented on 23-Nov-2010 2:59 PM
Plays well & at fast speed but seems to be a lot less 10's & picture cards dealt than live casino BJ
23456 CN commented on 06-Oct-2010 8:03 AM
It's a classic.
Who am I betting with?
You are betting with Paddy Power bookmaker. We are the bookmaker laying the odds for you, the punter, to take. If you lose your bet, we keep your money. If you win your bet, we pay you your winnings.
Is BlackJack fair?
This game of chance is entirely fair and you are just as likely to win in any one game as you are in any other. The deck is shuffled after every game. Each game is generated in isolation and the odds of getting any particular outcome are exactly the same. Therefore if you have won money on the last five games there is nothing to say you will be less likely to win on the next just because you are on a winning streak.
Can I try the game for free?
Yes. There is an option whereby you can play for fun, and this is well worth doing if you wish to develop a feel for the game before depositing your hard-earned cash!
What is the minimum/maximum I can bet?
£/€1 is the smallest bet that you can place on any one outcome. The maximum bet you can place is £/€5,000. Of course, the maximum amount you are allowed to stake within this framework will ultimately be dictated by the available funds that you have in your account at the time.
The game does not download/load properly. Why is this?
This problem can be broken down into two more specific complaints, which are as follows:
- The game is not displaying properly- This will be due to your screen resolution being too small. The game works on a minimum screen resolution of 800 by 600 pixels. To change your screen resolution simply go to your desktop and click on the right-hand mouse button. A menu will pop up and you will need to select 'Properties'. Another box will pop up and you will need to select 'Settings' from the tabs running along the top of the box. From here you will be able to alter your screen resolution.
- The game is simply not working at all - This may be because you need to download the latest version of Flash Player. After loading the game, you will have received a screen prompt asking you whether you wanted to download the latest version of Flash Player. Downloading this will ensure that you will be able to play the game without any problems. If you ignored or switched the prompt off, you can go to the Macromedia website and download Flash Player from there.
The game seems to be running very slowly. Is there anything I can do about this?
Unfortunately not. Our game relies upon your machine, and will run as quickly or slowly as your machine allows. Other than upgrading your computer and its facilities, there is little that can be done with regards to improving the speed of the game on any one machine.
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