Counting cards in blackjack is a popular strategy used by many serious gamblers to gain an advantage over the casino

04 oktober 2023 Peter Mortensen

This technique involves keeping track of the cards that have been dealt in order to determine the likelihood of certain cards being drawn, and adjusting betting strategies accordingly. In this comprehensive article, we will explore the ins and outs of counting cards in blackjack, from its history to its practical applications.

Introduction to Counting Cards in Blackjack

For those interested in casino games, blackjack is often seen as one of the most exciting and strategic options available. With its origins dating back to the 18th century, blackjack has captivated players for centuries. Counting cards takes this game to a whole new level, allowing players to increase their chances of winning by making informed decisions based on the cards they have seen.

Counting cards is not an illegal practice, but casinos frown upon it and will take measures to discourage it. However, if done discreetly and skillfully, it can give players an edge over the house, making it a popular technique among professional gamblers.

The Evolution of Counting Cards in Blackjack


The concept of counting cards in blackjack has evolved greatly over time. It was not until the 1960s that mathematicians and professional gamblers began developing different counting systems to improve their odds at the blackjack table.

Edward O. Thorp, a mathematician and author, played a crucial role in revolutionizing the world of card counting. In his 1962 book “Beat the Dealer,” Thorp introduced the Ten-Count system, which was the first mathematically proven technique for counting cards in blackjack. This groundbreaking work laid the foundation for future counting systems and sparked widespread interest in the strategy.

Since Thorp’s initial breakthrough, numerous counting systems have been developed, each with its own level of complexity and effectiveness. Some popular systems include the Hi-Lo Count, the KO Count, and the Omega II Count. These systems assign values to each card, allowing players to keep track of the remaining high and low cards in the deck. By doing so, players can adjust their bets and playing decisions based on the favorable or unfavorable composition of the remaining cards.

The Importance of Counting Cards in Blackjack

Counting cards in blackjack is a skill that requires practice and a deep understanding of the game. It enables players to make more accurate predictions about the likelihood of certain outcomes, such as hitting a blackjack or busting. By keeping track of the cards that have been played, players can estimate the probability of receiving a high-value card and adjust their betting accordingly.

One of the most significant advantages of counting cards is the ability to identify favorable situations for increasing bets. When the deck has a higher proportion of high-value cards left, such as face cards and aces, the player’s chances of getting strong hands, like blackjack, increase. In these scenarios, players can confidently increase their bets, maximizing their potential winnings.

However, counting cards is not a guaranteed path to riches. It requires discipline, patience, and a keen eye for detail. Casinos are vigilant in detecting card counters and may take various measures to discourage or exclude them from their establishments. Professional card counters must constantly refine their techniques and camouflage their actions to avoid detection.

In Conclusion

Counting cards in blackjack is a strategic technique that can give players an edge over the casino. It requires skill, practice, and a deep understanding of the game. From its humble origins to its modern-day applications, counting cards has evolved significantly, with various counting systems offering different levels of effectiveness. However, it is important to remember that casinos are constantly on the lookout for card counters, and players must exercise caution when applying this strategy.

Overall, counting cards in blackjack remains a fascinating topic for enthusiasts of casino games. While it may not be suitable for casual players, those who are willing to put in the time and effort to master this skill can potentially increase their chances of winning big at the blackjack table.


Can anyone count cards in blackjack?

Counting cards requires practice, skill, and a deep understanding of the game. While anyone can learn the technique, it takes discipline and keen observation to effectively implement card counting strategies.

Is counting cards illegal?

No, counting cards is not illegal. However, casinos often discourage and may take measures to exclude card counters from their establishments.

What is the history of counting cards in blackjack?

Counting cards in blackjack gained popularity in the 1960s with the publication of Edward O. Thorp's book, 'Beat the Dealer.' Since then, various counting systems have been developed, revolutionizing the strategy of the game.

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