Baccarat - Your grandmother’s French crystal or the popular casino game? Let’s tackle this live casino game in this blog post! We’ll take you through the ins and outs of this classic game with a simple and thorough guide on how to play online baccarat for beginners. Scroll down and you’ll be ready to play in no time!
Although baccarat may seem as difficult to understand as it is to pronounce (it’s BA-KUH-RAA, in case you were wondering), this live casino game is much less complex than you might think! Each game has a number of rounds where players start by placing their bets. A player can bet one of the following:
For beginners trying to understand the mechanics of the game, these terms may be confusing. There are no individual hands in baccarat online - anyone at the table can bet on either of two hands; the Player’s Hand and the Banker’s Hand.
Once all bets have been placed, four cards are drawn by the dealer; two cards go to the Player’s Hand and another two to the Banker’s Hand. If the Player’s Hand value ranges anywhere between 0 and 5, then a third card is drawn for the Player’s Hand by the dealer (this is determined by Third Card Rules, which we’ll explore further on).
The drawn card serves to determine whether another card is drawn for the Banker’s Hand. However, if the Player’s Hand is 6 or 7, no more cards are drawn for either hand. The rules of the game state that up to three cards can be drawn for either the Player or Banker’s Hand.
Did you know? The modern version of Baccarat is thought to have originated in 15th century Italy, with the first official set of rules being devised by a man named Felix Falguiere. Falguire played the original game with a deck of Tarot cards.
When playing Baccarat, once the dealer has drawn two cards to the Player’s Hand and two cards to the Banker’s Hand, if neither of the pair totals at eight or nine, then a third card may be dealt - subject to the total value of the Player’s Hand. Scenarios where a third card may be dealt are referred to as third card rules - understanding these scenarios will give you a better grasp on how baccarat is played.
When the Player’s Hand stays at two cards, the Banker’s Hand follows the same rules: if the hand value ranges from 0-5 then a third card is required, if the hand value is at 6 or 7 then it will stand. This is best illustrated in the baccarat chart:
First, the dealer locates the player’s third card in the top row of the above chart. After that, the dealer needs to determine the Banker’s Hand with the left column. From here the dealer uses the left column and top right row to decide whether to draw or stand, represented in our chart by D and S.
If the chart tells the dealer to Draw, then a third card will be drawn for the Banker’s Hand. However if the chart reveals a Stand, then no more cards are required.
Baccarat uses four, six or eight decks of cards - where each card has a different value. It’s important to know the card values in this popular card game, as this can help you become more familiar and play to win.
As with most card games, baccarat uses a series of card decks of 52 cards that are shuffled numerous times. Every deck of 52 cards is split into four suits as follows:
Each suit of cards contains an Ace, King, Queen, Jack, and numbered cards from 2 to 10. In baccarat the cards are valued as follows:
If you’re new to baccarat, you may find the way hand values are worked out somewhat unusually, however, once you grasp this you’ll find it’s actually quite simple. By referring to the above table, you’ll notice some hands are valued at 0. This is common if a hand holds Kings, Queens, Jacks or 10s. However, the main reason for this would be a hand value that exceeds 9.
What’s more is that, when the hand value surpasses 9, the first digit of the number is dropped. Let’s illustrate this with an example:
A hand is made up of a Queen (0), a Nine of Hearts (9), and an Ace (1) - the card values add up to 10, however, since the first digit is dropped we are left with a hand value of 0.
Did you know? The name Baccarat is believed to originate from the old italian word for zero, “baccara” - hence the game being named after the worst hand you could be dealt.
So we’ve poured over the basics, but if you’re here chances are there’s one particular question on your mind and that is: How to win in Baccarat?
When playing to win in baccarat, it is important to bet on the hand you believe will get closest to a value of 9 - values of 8 and 9 being known as a natural, meaning they naturally lead to a win (see what we did there?).
When placing your bet on one hand or the other, you should also be aware that the two hands provide different payouts. Although the Banker’s Hand and the Player’s Hand both pay even money (1:1), a 5% commission is charged by the Banker’s Hand that goes to the house - meaning that the payout from either hand is 0.95:1.
There is an additional betting option available for the brave - Tie. This plays out when a bet is placed on both hands equaling the same values, and pays 8:1.
Did you know? Baccarat has 4 main variants. These are Mini Baccarat, Chemin De Fer, Baccarat Banque, and Punto Banco. As the game grew in popularity, it also travelled to different countries, each one leaving its own contribution. Once baccarat made its way into the online forum, more variants were added such as Speed Live Baccarat, Live Baccarat Squeeze and Live Lightning Baccarat.
If you’ve played live casino games before, you’ll know that chips are used to reflect your stake. These can be seen on the bottom of your screen and have specific colours to represent a monetary value. These may vary from one casino provider to another, so clarifying your chip values before placing any bets is a good rule of thumb. As a game, Baccarat provides a relatively low chip value ranging from as low as $1 to $50.
You’ve read the guide, now it’s time to take your knowledge and apply to the real world - or shall we say virtual world? Playing in a Live Casino gives you the benefit of enjoying games from the comfort (and safety) of your own home! What’s more, online casinos provide a beginner-friendly environment where you can hone your skills without the added pressure of rowdy gamblers and noisy machines.
At LeoVegas, we take pride in providing players with the greatest gaming experience - ensuring engaging and dynamic games. Our live baccarat tables follow this rule with exciting in-game features and top tier live dealers!
This one’s for our strategic players and comes in handy if you like to plan ahead! Scorecards record previous round outcomes, which may be helpful when deciding which hand to place your bet on. You can find them at the bottom of the baccarat table, sorted by colour:
Scorecards are split into two categories, Bead Road and Big Road, which can be viewed on the left and right of your screen respectively.
The Bead Road is displayed on the top left corner and lists the earliest win, with each recent result following within the same column.
The Big Road can be seen on the right and lists winning streaks, whereby each column reflects successive wins from a placed bet.
Did you know? Players in land-based casinos track their gameplay themselves, using good old-fashioned pen and paper to mark down results. Lucky for us online casinos do all the work for you with Scorecards!
LeoVegas works hard to provide an environment where players can interact with each other like one big pride! Our Chat feature allows players to engage with the game and socialize as they would in a land-based casino. Lively dealers and other players are a click away - simply select the button at the bottom right corner of your screen to start a chat!
You’ve made it to the end of this beginner’s guide to online baccarat. Congratulations! You’re ready to have a seat at the LeoVegas Live Casino table and test your skills.
(Evolution games are unavailable in British Columbia, Quebec and Manitoba.)
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