by Norm Wattenberger

First Two Cards Win Rates

What Blackjack hands get the money?

First we looked at how often we receive each hand. Then at the advantage of each hand. Now we look at the overall win rate or gain from each hand. What's the difference between advantage and win rate? Well a hand may have a high advantage when we get it. But if we don't get it very often, it's overall value is less. Win rate is advantage times frequency and tells us the overall money won or lost for each possible hand. This chart looks somewhat like the Advantage chart. Blackjacks are still the most valuable hands. However, pairs and soft hands now show a very small gain or loss due to their low frequency. (Note to card counters — this is why newer counting strategies usually don't bother with indexes for these hands.) Ten, Ten is very important not only because it is a good hand but because it occurs so frequently. The Advantage chart showed 16 to be the worst hand. Not surprising as you will probably lose when you get it. But this chart shows 13 and 15 as the worst hands for overall results because you will still probably lose them, but they occur a bit more often.


What about single-deck Blackjack?

The differences between the win rates in six decks and single-deck look quite different from the differences in advantage. Wherever you see a bar pointing upward, that hand is responsible for more gain in single-deck than in six decks. Here we see that Blackjacks are more valuable in single-deck, because they occur at a slightly higher frequency and are less likely to tie with a dealer Blackjack in single-deck. All Pairs occur less often in single-deck than in six decks. This doesn't matter much for pairs or Aces through nines as they don't occur often. But pairs of Tens are very common. Therefore we see that six-deck games enjoy substantially more gain from Ten, Ten since the frequency of those hands increases with six decks. Single-deck sees a higher win rate in hands 9, 10 and 11 because both the frequency and advantage is higher in single-deck.


Sim details

  • Six decks, S17, DAS, LS, Heads-Up, Basic Strategy, 75% Penetration
  • Single-deck, H17, nDAS, Heads-Up, Basic Strategy, Six Rounds
  • Ten billion rounds each


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