Count Cards in Blackjack – Master the Art and Increase Your Winning Chances

04 oktober 2023
Peter Mortensen


In the world of casino games, blackjack stands tall as one of the most popular and exciting options. Its simple rules yet strategic gameplay make it a favorite among gamblers. One of the strategies that has caught the attention of players worldwide is “counting cards in blackjack.” This technique involves keeping track of the cards that have been dealt to gain an edge over the house. In this comprehensive article, we will delve into the ins and outs of counting cards, providing valuable information for enthusiasts of casino games.

Historical Background:


The concept of counting cards in blackjack dates back to the 1960s when a group of mathematicians and statisticians realized the inherent advantage it offered. However, it wasn’t until the publication of Edward O. Thorp’s book, “Beat the Dealer,” in 1962 that the strategy gained widespread attention. Thorp’s work provided a mathematical framework to successfully count cards and beat the casino. Since then, the technique has evolved, with players continuously refining their methods to stay ahead of the casinos’ countermeasures.

Understanding Counting Cards in Blackjack:

Counting cards is essentially a way to keep track of the ratio between high-value cards (such as tens and aces) and low-value cards (like twos and threes) that remain in the deck. As the odds change based on these ratios, counting cards enables players to make more informed betting decisions, ultimately increasing their chances of winning.

However, it’s essential to note that card counting is not illegal, but it is often frowned upon by casinos. While casinos have the right to refuse service to players who employ this technique, it is not an illegal act, as players are not using devices or manipulating the game in any way.

Types of Card Counting Methods:

Several card counting methods have been developed over the years, each with its own complexities and advantages. Here are some popular ones:

1. Hi-Lo Count:

The Hi-Lo Count is the most widely used card counting method. Players assign a value to each card dealt – low cards (+1), high cards (-1), and neutral cards (0). By keeping a running count based on these values, players can determine the ratio of high to low cards remaining in the deck.

2. KO Count:

The Knock-Out (KO) Count is a simplified version of the Hi-Lo Count. It eliminates the need to convert the running count into a true count, making it easier for players to use. Though not as accurate, it still provides valuable insights into the game.

3. Omega II Count:

The Omega II Count is a more complex system, assigning different values to cards based on their rank. This method accounts for the precise composition of the deck, allowing players to make even more accurate predictions.

Implementing Card Counting Strategies:

To effectively count cards in blackjack, players must hone their skills through practice. The following steps can help enthusiasts improve their card counting abilities:

1. Learn Basic Strategy:

Mastering the basic strategy is crucial before attempting card counting. Becoming well-versed in the optimal plays in different blackjack scenarios provides a solid foundation for successful card counting.

2. Start with the Hi-Lo Count:

Beginners should start with the Hi-Lo Count, as it is comparatively simpler to learn and implement. Practice keeping a running count while playing with friends or using online resources to simulate real casino scenarios.

3. Refine Your Skills:

As proficiency grows, players can move on to more advanced counting methods like the Omega II Count. Practice regularly to improve speed and accuracy in maintaining the running count.

4. Avoid Detection:

Casinos are on the lookout for card counters, so it’s crucial to employ tactics to stay under the radar. These include varying bet sizes, acting as a casual player, and avoiding suspicious behavior.



Counting cards in blackjack offers players a way to tilt the odds in their favor, making it a highly appealing strategy for those looking to increase their chances of winning. However, it is essential to understand that success in card counting requires dedication and practice. Aspiring blackjack enthusiasts must invest time and effort into learning the various counting methods and perfecting their skills. Remember, casinos may frown upon card counting, but it remains a legal and legitimate technique used by adept players in their quest for success on the blackjack tables. So, why not give it a shot and experience the thrill of outsmarting the casino with your newfound prowess in counting cards?


How can I avoid being detected while counting cards?

To avoid detection, it is advised to vary bet sizes, act like a casual player, and avoid any behavior that may raise suspicion. It is important to remember that casinos are vigilant about spotting card counters, so caution is necessary.

Is card counting illegal?

No, card counting is not illegal. While casinos may not appreciate players using this technique, it is a legitimate strategy that involves keeping track of cards without manipulating the game.

Which card counting method is the easiest to learn?

The Hi-Lo Count is considered the easiest card counting method to learn and implement. It assigns values to each card and involves keeping a running count based on those values.

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