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Ellis,

I have a quick question on NBJ card play I have been wondering about.

I know this is a really basic question, but I just make sure I’m thinking in the right way. As an example: Ok the game is clumped and you are playing First Base. The dealer up card is a 10. The cards leading up to and the 3rd base player’s second card are high – this indicates that the hole card read is high so use the variable strategy chart. The chart says to stand with 15 and 16 if highs are running, which makes perfect sense to avoid breaking. But doesn’t this hand also indicate that the dealer probably has an 18, 19, or 20 and by not hitting you are giving the dealer the win? I guess it’s just a bad situation and there is not much you can do about it to turn it into a win. I did notice while playing this scenario a bunch of times that usually the dealer did in fact have that 20 and if I hit I would have busted anyway. Is this a hand where you should surrender?

On a side note I was wondering if the WCB manual has different card play strategies or is it more for theory and polishing your NBJ game.

THANKS

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Ellis,

I have a quick question on NBJ card play I have been wondering about.

I know this is a really basic question, but I just make sure I’m thinking in the right way. As an example: Ok the game is clumped and you are playing First Base. The dealer up card is a 10. The cards leading up to and the 3rd base player’s second card are high – this indicates that the hole card read is high so use the variable strategy chart. The chart says to stand with 15 and 16 if highs are running, which makes perfect sense to avoid breaking. But doesn’t this hand also indicate that the dealer probably has an 18, 19, or 20 and by not hitting you are giving the dealer the win? I guess it’s just a bad situation and there is not much you can do about it to turn it into a win. I did notice while playing this scenario a bunch of times that usually the dealer did in fact have that 20 and if I hit I would have busted anyway. Is this a hand where you should surrender?

On a side note I was wondering if the WCB manual has different card play strategies or is it more for theory and polishing your NBJ game.

THANKS

Correct! You must hit to a pat hand in this case and give the dealer a run for her money. You might have already noted in this game that the dealer break rate is low. That would augment your decision. It is this kind of thinking that puts you ahead of the basic strategy 43% hit rate. It is possible to maintain more than a 50% hit rate with this same kind of thinking.

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I have had NBJ for the better part of a year and never noticed that the PIT chart on page 58 and the PIT chart on page 67 dont agree on the weak dealer low credibility decision.

I think it tells which to go with when they disagree but don't worry about it because this time around we won't need those charts. It is easier to figure out your play when we just have two choices, Basic Strategy or Dealer Strategy. I'll teach you how to know when to play which. That is easier than memorizing a chart.

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Correct! You must hit to a pat hand in this case and give the dealer a run for her money. You might have already noted in this game that the dealer break rate is low. That would augment your decision. It is this kind of thinking that puts you ahead of the basic strategy 43% hit rate. It is possible to maintain more than a 50% hit rate with this same kind of thinking.

Would this depend on the dealer break ratio in the game? Also, after noticing this situation, does the dealer in fact, have the high in the hole or a low? If you see that the dealer is low the majority of the time, would you stand? If you are sure you are getting a ten, why not save the ten for the next round? Just thinking out loud....

"If you don't think too good, don't think too much!!"

-----------------------

John

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Actually I meant there is a typo (one says hit 13 or more and the other says hit 13 or less). But your answer makes me wonder, Are you saying we should be using Tripoint?

I made a typo in 1993? Ha, I think it's a little too late to fix it now.

Yes, we should be using tripoint for NBJ First Base only meaning that we should go principally by the last 3 cards dealt in the prior round. When they favor low, we should be playing Dealer Strategy (hit to 17 or better). When they favor high, we should hit if we need a high but if we are stiff and the last 3 cards were tens that is the time to stand stiff, betting the dealer will break. (Because you are most likely to get a breaking high if you hit) Yes, it's a bad bet but it is our best bet under the circumstances we face.

Now, for NBJ 3rd base, forget tripoint. We are best off with Basic Strategy because the only reason we are playing 3rd base is because the cards are random and BS is the mathematically best solution for random cards.

Once you understand and get good at this, you'll see that there are some rare exceptions:

You'll sometimes get otherwise "random" cards that contain a run (tens or high card clump) or maybe two. You are correctly playing 3rd base but you need to watch for these runs because the shuffle will not usually dissipate them. You play the run as if you were playing First Base - go by the last 3 cards dealt. This usually last for only one or two plays and then you go right back to BS. This is important to get your hands won rate as high as possible.

The reverse is also true: You may be correctly playing First Base but you have noted a random section in prior shoes. Watch for it and play Basic Strategy during the duration of the random section.

Playing First Base in clumped games but also playing 3rd base in random games (especially new cards) you will find that you can get your hands won rate much higher than Basic Strategy's mathematical 43%. Maybe 48% or thereabouts. THEN, playing the exceptions that I have noted, you can surpass 50%.

This is important because in BJ, hands won rate is EVERYTHING. BS players and card counters are confined to their mathematical 43% HWR. How the hell do you win long term with that handicap. But NBJ players are free to break those bonds and achieve much higher HWR (hands won rate). Some of our best players such as Mad Dog or Aegis have another little very professional trick they deploy:

It works much like an early warning system for tornados: When they note they have a high clump in otherwise random cards they will note the actual cards preceding the clump, like the 3 of hearts, 7 of spades and 4 of diamonds. Then in the next shoe they watch for this combination of cards to fall. When it does, they KNOW that the high clump is about to fall and they bet accordingly. Now I don't mean to scare you with this highly advanced stuff. I'm just giving you an idea of how good you can get at this game through observation alone. That is why I really don't want NBJ players counting. Yes, the count gives you a LITTLE added information. BUT, what did you fail to observe because you were too busy counting???

You can join the very exclusive ranks of winning players by learning NBJ basics. But the fact is, you can get better and better at this FOREVER!

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Would this depend on the dealer break ratio in the game? Also, after noticing this situation, does the dealer in fact, have the high in the hole or a low? If you see that the dealer is low the majority of the time, would you stand? If you are sure you are getting a ten, why not save the ten for the next round? Just thinking out loud....

Absolutely! The more clumped the cards are the better our read on the dealer's hole card. Many games we see that we have a very good hole card read. All we have to know is if it is high or low. That tells us our play. So if we know the dealer's hole card with a historic degree of accuracy, that information obviously takes precedence over everything else.

There was a casino experiment at Foxwood. At a couple of tables they dealt the dealer second card up. In other words you are looking at both dealer cards before you make your play decision. Guess what! The casino was right. The players STILL lost because they STILL played Basic Strategy. Then I came along. And that was the end of that.

If you know it's a ten, save it for the next hand? Sure, if you are playing head to head. And then put your high bet out to boot!

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Yes, we should be using tripoint for NBJ First Base only meaning that we should go principally by the last 3 cards dealt in the prior round. When they favor low, we should be playing Dealer Strategy (hit to 17 or better).

Hmm so we’re not using the PIT chart or worrying about the hole card anymore, unless it’s highly credible?

Tripoint – so is that following the same basic guidelines as the Big Player play in the Team Play Manual… hit on a stiff hand if the last 3 cards dealt favored lows and stand if they favored highs?

Does it matter what the dealer up card is on our decision to hit or stand on a stiff hand? In my last post I had the example of a dealer with a 10 up card with highs running and you recommended hitting. But the general rule would be to stand… “When they favor high, we should hit if we need a high but if we are stiff and the last 3 cards were tens that is the time to stand stiff, betting the dealer will break. (Because you are most likely to get a breaking high if you hit) Yes, it's a bad bet but it is our best bet under the circumstances we face.â€

I think I understand NBJ pretty well at this point, but my only real question/concern is what to do if you have a stiff hand and you think the dealer has a pat hand but highs are running. Reading through the posts on the forum some favor hitting while some favor standing.

Sorry if I’m repeating the same questions… it’s hard for me to get across what I want to say sometimes through writing. Thanks again for your support.

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I think I understand NBJ pretty well at this point, but my only real question/concern is what to do if you have a stiff hand and you think the dealer has a pat hand but highs are running. Reading through the posts on the forum some favor hitting while some favor standing.

Sorry if I’m repeating the same questions… it’s hard for me to get across what I want to say sometimes through writing. Thanks again for your support.

It all depends on the game... Did you sit down to a game that people were winning at? Then it is a BS/dealer breaking game. You need to see what it is and go with that information. No play in WCB can be made outside the context of a particular game. That is what WCB is all about, not so much memorization and strick card play for every game. But adjust your game to the game you are playing.

Ellis, is this correct?

Thanks

John

"If you don't think too good, don't think too much!!"

-----------------------

John

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Hmm so we’re not using the PIT chart or worrying about the hole card anymore, unless it’s highly credible?

Tripoint – so is that following the same basic guidelines as the Big Player play in the Team Play Manual… hit on a stiff hand if the last 3 cards dealt favored lows and stand if they favored highs?

Does it matter what the dealer up card is on our decision to hit or stand on a stiff hand? In my last post I had the example of a dealer with a 10 up card with highs running and you recommended hitting. But the general rule would be to stand… “When they favor high, we should hit if we need a high but if we are stiff and the last 3 cards were tens that is the time to stand stiff, betting the dealer will break. (Because you are most likely to get a breaking high if you hit) Yes, it's a bad bet but it is our best bet under the circumstances we face.”

I think I understand NBJ pretty well at this point, but my only real question/concern is what to do if you have a stiff hand and you think the dealer has a pat hand but highs are running. Reading through the posts on the forum some favor hitting while some favor standing.

Sorry if I’m repeating the same questions… it’s hard for me to get across what I want to say sometimes through writing. Thanks again for your support.

Correct, that is how I explained it for Team Play. But remember, Team Play was not so much aimed at experienced NBJ players. It was meant to include beginners. Hopefully they would have an experienced NBJ player for First Base but I didn't want to make that a requirement.

Now we are talking professional level NBJ and more thought needs to be put into our decision making. For each NBJ decision, particularly for First Base NBJ, we are looking at 4 factors:

1. our hand,

2. the dealer's up card,

3. our dealer hole card read and

4. what is running. (our hit card read)

Our hand and the dealer up card are knowns.

What is running is a known: It can be highs, lows or random in clumped shoes that have random sections.

The dealer hole card is an educated guess.

So we are dealing with credibility. In some First Base games, our hole card read and our hit card read are highly credible almost to the point of assured. That makes our decision relatively simple. But we don't always have that degree of clumping in every part of the shoe. Usually the credibility of our hit and hole reads go hand in hand. Often they are credible and sometimes they are not and sometimes they disagree with each other.

Now, watch my lips: When we don't have reliable reads, our best play is Basic Strategy.

Example: I made a careless mistake (very unusual for me) in the Flamingo games: I was correctly playing 3rd base NBJ head to head against new RANDOM cards. I doubled an 8 against a 7 with tens running. This is a great play in clumped cards where you have good credibility of both the dealer hole card and your hit card. In that case BOTH are very likely to be tens in which case you win. But in random cards NOTHING is running and you have no idea of the dealer hole card. The cards are random for crying out loud. Good play in clumped cards but bad play in random cards. It cost me an additional $100. I got too cute in a random game.

Now, yes, sometimes you get a reliable clump in a random game that you must play accordingly. BUT, I confess, this wasn't the case here. This was pure carelessness. I'm usually playing clumped cards and I got a little carried away.

Which brings up another point: We are ALL usually playing clumped cards unless we are fortunate enough to be there when they bring out new cards in the morning. Even then, we need to verify. Casinos have their tricks.

I know I'm making it SOUND harder than it actually is. But practice and experience make everything I have said second nature very quickly. When your hole card and hit card read are coming out wrong half the time they have no credibility. Maybe you should be playing 3rd base instead of first. Correct your mistake or get out. Not all games are beatable. 90% of BJ is knowing which games are beatable and which aren't BEFORE you sit down.

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It all depends on the game... Did you sit down to a game that people were winning at? Then it is a BS/dealer breaking game. You need to see what it is and go with that information. No play in WCB can be made outside the context of a particular game. That is what WCB is all about, not so much memorization and strick card play for every game. But adjust your game to the game you are playing.

Ellis, is this correct?

Thanks

John

Yes, well said John!

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Cool thanks for advice guys. I’m really taking learning and playing NBJ seriously. I am tired of clumsily playing and just hoping for the best.

I know that top performers in any aspect of life realize that mastery is a journey not a destination. I know I have to practice and just reading or listening to people talk about how to do something won’t make me better at it :-)

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Cool thanks for advice guys. I’m really taking learning and playing NBJ seriously. I am tired of clumsily playing and just hoping for the best.

I know that top performers in any aspect of life realize that mastery is a journey not a destination. I know I have to practice and just reading or listening to people talk about how to do something won’t make me better at it :-)

"Mastery is a journey not a destination" An excellent proverb for the task at hand.

Watching someone else do it won't help you do it either. BUT it will confirm that your goal is achievable.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Just have a quick question on card fall. I know that I need to augment my decision making based on the overall shoe. But I just wanted to ask a general question on lows vs. highs.

Which ones exactly are considered low… Is that 2-7? And Highs are 8-10? Aces swing.

Following the Tri Point the last three cards – what exactly does constitutes favoring one or the other… is it simply 2 out of the 3? Or does it matter the order the fall? If the last two were either both high or both low then the answer is obvious. But what if it falls high low high… is that considered random or is it high since two out of three are high AND the last one was high?

THANKS

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Just have a quick question on card fall. I know that I need to augment my decision making based on the overall shoe. But I just wanted to ask a general question on lows vs. highs.

Which ones exactly are considered low… Is that 2-7? And Highs are 8-10? Aces swing.

Following the Tri Point the last three cards – what exactly does constitutes favoring one or the other… is it simply 2 out of the 3? Or does it matter the order the fall? If the last two were either both high or both low then the answer is obvious. But what if it falls high low high… is that considered random or is it high since two out of three are high AND the last one was high?

THANKS

2-6 low 7,8 neutral 9-10 high and aces are swingers as I play it.

Last three cards H-L-H I look at the table, is it a high round? Was the last round High also? Both yes - then you are looking at a possible low round start or a zipper start. If you had a low round and this round is high, you still having highs running. Look at the last four cards too! Practice, Practice, Practice will give you a feel for these on a shoe by shoe basis. Every game is different and if you have two shoes at a table they will be different. Be aware of the game you are playing, game signature will guide you to the correct answers to your play questions.

Hope this makes sense and helps.

Hope to see you down in AC this weekend

John

"If you don't think too good, don't think too much!!"

-----------------------

John

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Hello everyone i am new here... before 2 h i was in casino... playing BJ and this time i lost... first i was just standing and watching game... there was 4 ppl on the table and the cards looks pretty random with some small clumps of max 4 high or small but not often...so i sit down and play 3 rd base.. at the begining if was lets say good, but later was very bad... many times i had 10 , 6 or 7 and dealer 5 or 6 and round is random nothing running... and dealer gets 10 so she had 15, then 6 and it is 21... next time same thing i have 18 or 19 and dealer 4 then 10 and 7 so it is 21 and you cant belive how many times this happens.... so is this just a very bad game or there is things that i can do ... or maybe not be random at all.... but every 3rd hand was 20 or 21.... so annoying...

This was a heavily dealer biased game. Major change in player number might have an effect on the game. But why beat your head against the wall, when there are other games. These games could probably not be beaten dealt face up. Don't worry about it, game selection is indeed part of being a professional player.

"If you don't think too good, don't think too much!!"

-----------------------

John

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Just have a quick question on card fall. I know that I need to augment my decision making based on the overall shoe. But I just wanted to ask a general question on lows vs. highs.

Which ones exactly are considered low… Is that 2-7? And Highs are 8-10? Aces swing.

Following the Tri Point the last three cards – what exactly does constitutes favoring one or the other… is it simply 2 out of the 3? Or does it matter the order the fall? If the last two were either both high or both low then the answer is obvious. But what if it falls high low high… is that considered random or is it high since two out of three are high AND the last one was high?

THANKS

Tripoint is an over simplification for the purpose of simplification. Don't limit yourself to 3 cards. The last card is the most important and can change your play decision.

Correct, 2-7 is low. 8- 10 is high giving you a balanced count because aces swing. Far more accurate than the count counters use. As the cards fall, say high or low to yourself. This gives you a feel for the wave length in the cards at hand. Mature cards tend to have a huge wave length caused by huge clumps - sometimes only 2 or 3 for an entire shoe. While 2 hour old cards tend to have short wave lengths like 5 or 6 cards per clump with some random in between. The key to your hit card read accuracy is what are the cards doing in this shoe right now. The same game of BJ has never been dealt twice. This takes practice and observation together with common sense. You won't be right every time but the object is to be right most of the time.

Recognize that hit and hole card reads are mostly for NBJ First Base and clumped cards. Do not try to read anything into random cards - just play BS from 3rd base with your 3 bet prog. Yet sometimes you CAN get a read from 3rd base when you have a clump or two in mostly random cards. Alert play can improve your overall hands won rate, the key to everything.

High low high low etc we call a "zipper". This occurs when a high clump gets shuffled together with a low card clump. This can give you a very accurate read on both the hole card and your hit card - an important observation.

All of the above tends to come together through practice and low stakes play. Just remember, low stakes is the hardest games to beat so you want to move up the ladder as soon as you get the feel of it.

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The last card is the most important and can change your play decision.

Yea now I notice why the Key Card is accurate and why it is not accurate and when to use it as a play decision based the other factors in the round.

I'm still practicing and I feel like I'm getting better than most anyone since they all play by the book. Its funny when you watch a person and you know exactly what they are going to do no matter what the circumstances are simply because that's what they think they are supposed to do. Geeze that used to be me... doubling down on an 11 at third base with lows running. Haha crazy.

I would love to make the high stakes seminar coming up, but I know deep down that I am still not ready. Do you think there will be any NBJ seminars in the future or did I miss the boat on that one?

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  • 5 months later...

Hi,

I have both the NBJ and WCB manuals. I have noted the WCB tripoint strategy which is based on the last 5 cards seen.

I do not recall a tripoint strategy previous to WCB based on the last 3 cards. Could anyone give me an idea what part

of the NBJ manual I should find a reference or is this a post WCB strategy ?

Thanks in advance.

Is my memory failing me ?

Thanks in advance

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  • 7 months later...

i have a question, how to play head to head clumped cards when you want to double up...lets say you have 9 and dealer 7...with 10running this is good play to double up...but head to head how can u you see whats running when you have 5 and 4 and dealer 7 thats all low cards...is this good whey of doubling just when there is more play cause then you can see whats running

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BJplayer, the trick to ploaying head to head, my favorite, is to play fast - very fast. That way the last several cards dealt

stay imprinted on your brain.

Yes, in clumped cards with highs running, 9 vs 7 is a great double - even 8 vs 7. They aren't in the book because the book

doesn't note what is running - dumb bastards.

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BJplayer, the trick to ploaying head to head, my favorite, is to play fast - very fast. That way the last several cards dealt

stay imprinted on your brain.

Yes, in clumped cards with highs running, 9 vs 7 is a great double - even 8 vs 7. They aren't in the book because the book

doesn't note what is running - dumb bastards.

Yes, but lets say cards in last hand was high, and then dealer deals you 3 and 6 and dealer have 7... cards was high in last round but now they are all low..that means that low cards running and you cant double..i dont see how can you double in head to head..can you pls give me some example

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  • 1 month later...

Hi Ellis,

I am interested in the webinar you just had and I am making a trip to LV next week. Do you know how soon you will have it available?

Also, I am not sure if I understand, but if the cards are random, how does that give a BS player the advantage?

And if there is an advantage, why wouldn't you just flat bet the max your bankroll can withstand every hand?

Thanks,

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  • 4 months later...

Wanna get refund of PBJ ,

Asked refund for weeks , but no body give me a feedback

Open an case on paypal , waiting for decision

I think i have my rights to get refund , since i feel this manual is not worth U$ 149.95 , it s all about betting procedures and i think they do not work at CSM shuffling machines

As begginer on blackjack i made the wrong decision on purchase this manual

There are absolute nearly 400 pages talking about betting schemes only

I am sorry i am not satisfied with the product

I wanna get my refund please

Cheers

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