Baccarat is a high-stakes game played for big money in casino ’boutique’ rooms. The rules are simple: the object is to bet on a hand that you think will be closest to nine. In addition to player and banker bets, there’s a tie wager which pays 8-to-1. There are also sheets at the table to help players keep track of their scores.
Depending on the version, the table has seven to 14 seats for players and one area for the dealer. The two hands of cards are dealt from a shoe containing up to eight decks. Picture cards and Tens are worth 0 points; the remaining cards are valued according to their numerical values. An Ace counts as one point. When the sum of a player’s and banker’s hand reaches a double digit, only the second digit is counted. If the player and banker hand have a total of 9 or higher, the hand wins; otherwise, further cards are drawn.
Unlike some other card games, baccarat requires no technical skill, but many players feel they can gain an edge by following a few basic strategies. Among those is the importance of establishing your budget for the night and sticking to it. It’s best to play the game with cash, rather than chips, as it’s less likely you’ll get carried away. Also, it’s a good idea to keep your losses in check – the average house edge is over 1.2% on player and banker bets.