Baccarat has always been a game associated with money, wealth, glamour, and flamboyance. This game has been around for a really long time, and most people believe it traveled from Italy to France during the time of Charles III, who ruled France between 1483 and 1498 A.D. Popular belief has the year 1490 as the actual year in which the game came into France.
Over time, baccarat has evolved in form and popularity, and today there are three main forms of the game:
–Baccarat Chemin de Fer
Punto Banco is also called North American Baccarat. As the name suggests, this form of the game is played extensively in North America.
A number of factors make this gambling game extremely popular among players. For starters, the game has rules that are not too complex. The game itself is simple and easy to grasp. Another key factor for the popularity of baccarat is the house edge. This is extremely low in baccarat, standing at approximately 1.06%.
The first thing to know about baccarat is that the game involves three dealers per table, with a maximum of 14 players at a table. The dealer deals just two hands regardless of the number of players involved – the player hand and the banker hand. The players involved place bets on two scenarios – which of the two hands is likely to win, or if the outcome will be a tie.
There is variation in the values of the cards in baccarat. Cards between a deuce and a nine are valued at face, i.e. on their face value. There is no weight given to cards with values of 10, Jack, Queen, or King, while the ace has a value of one point. The maximum total value of a player’s cards in baccarat should be nine. One of the ironies of the game is that it is named after a losing hand – baccarat is what you have if you have a hand that is, say, 10, which has a value of zero.
In baccarat, players need to place their bets before the game commences. They need to bet on which of the two hands dealt will be closer to two. A player can bet on any one of three possible results – the player winning, the banker winning, or a tie.
As mentioned earlier, in baccarat, the hand that adds up to 9 or the closest number to 9 is the winner. Such a hand is called a natural. If both the hands are naturals, the winner is the hands with the higher denomination. There may be a situation where both the hands are naturals with the same value. In that case the players get their bets back. In case none of the two hands is a natural, the dealer deals an additional card each.
So how do the players decide who goes first? A simple and effective way that is followed in baccarat is to let the player with the highest bet go first. Once a player’s turn comes, he gets two cards from the dealer after the dealer has dealt two cards face down for the banker’s hand. Once the player gets his cards, he sees them and hand them back to the dealer, who then announces the winning hand.
Baccarat is basically fun to play because the rules are simple and make the game fast and exciting.