Blackjack is one of the most popular casino games and apart from being very exciting to play one of the most interesting aspects of the game is the math involved with the probability of certain outcomes.
Now blackjack might look like a simple game to play, but once you start to dig deeper into finding the probability of a certain outcome, it evolves into one of the most complicated games. In most cases, analyzing the probability isn’t an option for the average player since it is easier for computer programs to analyze it by running billions of simulated hands for every possible outcome.
With that said, the probability of certain outcomes in the game can help you make better decisions and eventually help you make some profits. So, whether you are playing online blackjack or going to the local casino, getting familiar with blackjack’s probability is a great way to increase your winning chances.
What is the Probability of Blackjack?
In simple terms, probability in blackjack is a branch of mathematical equations that analyzes the likelihood of certain outcomes. Probabilities are everywhere around us. For example, a weather forecast, when the meteorologist estimates that there is a 20% chance of rain, is also based on math.
Probability is also a math branch that the entire gambling industry is based on. Since games like blackjack have many different outcomes based on the cards on the table, every outcome comes with a different probability, which means that some events will happen more than others over a long period of time.
How to Calculate Probability in Blackjack?
Even though involving math to predict certain outcomes in the game might be too overwhelming for some players, the probability formula is quite simple to understand. Basically, you need to divide the number of ways something can happen, by the total possible number of events.
For example, if we take a coin flip and calculate the probability, we can see that there are two possible outcomes (heads or tails) and one way of getting each outcome. So, the probability will be ½ or 50%.
The probability is always a number from 0-1, and getting 1 is a probability that will always happen.
Since we are talking about a fairly complex game with many different outcomes, the calculated probability used data cannot be used to predict the exact outcome. The number will eventually show how many times will a certain outcome happen over the long term.
Understanding Probabilities in Blackjack
There is a common misconception about odds and probabilities as two interchangeable terms, but there is a big difference between the two. Probability is a separate branch of mathematics that involves calculating the likelihood of different events.
There are two different ways of calculating probability and they depend on which case it is calculated. For example, there are independent and dependent trials. An independent event has no impact on another event’s probability of occurring.
However, unlike other casino games like Roulette or Dice, blackjack is a game of dependent trials, where each cart dealt on the table changes the composition of the remaining deck. This means that the action influenced the likelihood of specific hands on the next round.
Calculating the probability of blackjack’s certain events is very difficult just because there are many different combinations that need to be analyzed. That is why in most cases, it is best to use computer software that runs millions of trials to find the probability of every event.
Let’s calculate the probability of obtaining a Blackjack for example, which is the strongest hand you can have in the game.
The first thing that you need to know to calculate the probability is the number of decks used in the process. Every casino uses a different number of decks for blackjack which makes it difficult to calculate the probability of certain events.
In order to calculate getting a Blackjack (21), we need to multiply the probability of pulling an Ace by the probability of pulling ten-valued cards like J, Q, K, and 10. It is also crucial to multiply the result by two just because there are two possible permutations of cards in a hand.
Drawing an Ace from a single deck of cards is 4/52, and drawing a ten-valued card is 16/51. This comes down to a 4.82% chance of getting a blackjack in a single-deck blackjack game. The probability of getting certain cards will be the same if there are more decks in the process just because there will be more cards divided by the total number of cards, which eventually is the same.
Calculating blackjack probabilities is a very difficult thing to do just because of the nature and complexity of the game. With so many different outcomes, it is almost impossible for an average human being to calculate the probability of certain events based on their hand.With that said, knowing your chances is always a good way to improve your blackjack skills and develop a blackjack strategy based on the chances for each hand.. You can always use a blackjack calculator or try to do the math on your own. Remember, probabilities will only give you the chance of certain events happening, and will not guarantee an outcome.