Double Attach Blackjack retains the standard card values, i.e. Aces are worth either 1 or 11 whilst face cards are worth 10. As usual, the strongest hand is Blackjack and it is formed with an Ace and a face card.
A round starts with the player placing their bet and any side bets they are interested in. Once the bets have been placed, the dealer deals one face-up card to each player and one to the dealer. After receiving their first card, players may choose to triple their bet by placing another wager worth double their initial stake. This is known as Double Attack.
Once players have either doubled their bets or chosen not to, the dealer will deal the second face-up card and receive one facedown card themselves. If the dealer shows an Ace, players may choose to place an insurance bet. This costs half their initial bet and will pay 5:2 if the dealer has Blackjack. The 5:2 payout is larger than in other blackjack variants because of the missing 10s.
If the dealer has Blackjack, the round is over with all players losing. Unless a player has blackjack, in which case the hand results in a push. If the dealer does not have blackjack, the gameplay continues as usual.
A player will have the choice to either Hit, Stand, Double Down, Surrender or Split for each hand.
- Hit: The player will take an additional card.
- Stand: The player’s hand remains as it is.
- Double Down: The player doubles their bet but will only receive one more card. Unlike in other types of blackjack, a player can choose to Double Down at any point, not only after their first two cards.
- Surrender: The player chooses to forfeit their hand in exchange for half of their bet. In Double Attack Blackjack, a player can choose to Surrender at any time, even after Doubling Down.
- Split: The player chooses to split their cards into two separate hands if they have two cards with the same value. In the case of face cards, the two cards must be the same. Splitting doubles the player’s bet. Split hands can be both Doubled and Surrendered.
In Double Attack Blackjack, the dealer will stand on 17 or higher. If they have 16 or lower, they will hit until they reach at least 17.
Due to the rule changes in Double Attack Blackjack, all winning hands pay at 1:1, even those containing blackjack.
Many versions of Double Attack Blackjack offer a few side bets. The most common is the Bust It side bet which wins when the dealer goes bust upon receiving a third card. It pays as follows:
- If the dealer’s third card is a 10-value card, it pays 3:1.
- If the dealer’s third card is a 9, it pays 6:1.
- If the dealer’s third card is an 8, it pays 8:1.
- If the dealer’s third card is a seven, it pays 10:1.
- If the dealer’s third card is a six, it pays 15:1.
The Bust It side bet becomes even more exciting if the dealer has an 8 and busts with another 8 of the same colour or suit. Here is how it works:
- If the dealer busts with a second same colour 8 it pays 50:1
- If the dealer busts with a same suited 8 it pays 200:1.
Basic Double Attack Blackjack Strategy
Double Attack Blackjack may seem quite tricky to grasp at first, but it is not as hard as it sounds. The main ingredient needed to win is knowledge of when to try and place a Double Attack bet. The rule of thumb here is simple:
- If the dealer’s face-up card is anything from a 2 to an 8, you should double your bet.
When breaking down the strategy further, you should know how to play your hand depending on whether you are holding a hard hand, a soft hand, or a pair.
If you have a hard hand – anything that does not contain an Ace – you should follow these rules:
- Always hit if your hand is worth 4 to 8.
- Double Down if your hand is worth 9 and the dealer reveals a 9, otherwise Hit.
- Double Down if your hand is 10 and the dealer shows anything from 2 to 8, otherwise Hit
- Always Double Down if your hand is 11
- Always Hit if your hand is 12 or 13
- Stand if your hand is 14 and the dealer shows 4, 5 or 6, otherwise, Hit
- Stand if your hand is 15 or 16 and the dealer shows 2 to 6, otherwise, Hit
- Surrender if your hand is 17 and the dealer shows an Ace, otherwise, Hit
- Always stand on 18 or more.
If you have a soft hand – a hand that does contain an Ace – you should follow these rules:
- Always Hit if your hand is a soft 13, 14 or 15.
- Double Down if your hand is a soft 16 but the dealer is showing a 6, otherwise, Hit
- Double Down if your hand is a soft 17 and the dealer is showing a 4 to 6, otherwise, Hit
- Double Down if your hand is a soft 18 and the dealer is showing 5 or 6. Hit if the dealer has a 9, 10 or Ace, otherwise, Stand.
- Always Stand if your soft hand is worth 19 or 20.
If you have a pair – two cards that have the same value and can be split – you should follow these rules:
- Split a pair of 2s if the dealer is showing a 3 to 6, otherwise Hit
- Split a pair of 3s if the dealer is showing a 3 to 8, otherwise, Hit
- Always Hit a pair of 4s.
- Double Down on a pair of 5s if the dealer is showing a 2 to 8, otherwise, Hit
- Split a pair of 6s if the dealer is showing a 4 to 6, otherwise Hit
- Split a pair of 7s if the dealer is showing 2 to 7, otherwise, Hit
- Always Split a pair of 8s.
- Split a pair of 9s if the dealer is showing 4, 5, 6, 8 or 9, otherwise Stand.
- Always Stand on a pair of 10 value cards
- Always split a pair of Aces
By taking on board the basic Double Attack Blackjack strategy above, you will reduce the house edge and enhance your chances of winning. While it may seem like a lot to remember, you can keep the rules to hand as you play, and they will soon become second nature.