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Artificial Neural Network
Basic Blackjack Strategy +
Blackjack Toolpack + (This section is only available when you subscribe)';} ?>
Bonus Schemes
Casinos - How to join
House edge
Neteller Banking - Create an Account



Artificial Neural Network

What is an Artificial Neural Network?

An artificial neural network is a system (a mathematical model or computational model) that simulates biological neural networks. Artificial neural networks draw much of their inspiration from the actual processes in the biological nervous system. The key feature taken from the biological neural network is the ability to adapt to a changing environment and to learn. Most creatures and humans use a very complex network of highly specialized neurons (located in the brain) to perform the tasks of adaptation and learning. The artificial neural network likewise consists of a large interconnected group of artificial neurons that process information. One of the main advantages of using an Artificial Neural Network is that it actually adapts and can change its structure based on the information that it is fed into it. The Artificial Neural Network (as in the Blackjack Toolpack) is used to model complex relationships between data and find patterns.

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Basic Blackjack Strategy

The History of the 'Basic Blackjack Strategy

In the 1950's three men used a combination of statistics and mathematics to put together the first mathematical guide to Blackjack which was published in 1956 by Roger Baldwin and entitled 'Optimum Strategy in Blackjack'. In the 60's Baldwin's work was advanced by Edward Thorpe who published 'Beat the Dealer'. This book made such an impact that casinos had to modify the rules. However, the panic was short lived as only a few (mathematically talented) people were actually able to implement the strategy and the casinos reverted back to the traditional rules. The final piece in the jigsaw introduces computing. Julian Braun made a Blackjack computer simulation and played thousands of hands, the outcome being the 'Basic Blackjack Strategy' which is the key to reducing the house edge to an absolute minimum.


The Blackjack Basic Strategy

basic strategy
code basic strategy


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How to Use the Basic Blackjack Strategy

The Basic Strategy is simply a mathematical strategy developed over many years for the game of Blackjack to help you keep fairly even with the Casino that you are playing. More experienced players may not use or need the basic strategy, if this is the case you can simply close that component of the Toolpack.

It is very simple to play using the Basic Strategy. When you begin playing and click 'deal' at the casino you will see your two cards facing upwards together with one card of the dealers. On the Strategy chart above the dealer's cards are listed at the top of the chart and your cards are listed down the side. You simply put the two together and work along the boxes until they meet and then you take the required action. For example, if you are dealt an 8 and a 4 and the dealer is dealt a 6 you add up the total of your cards which is 12. You now look down the vertical side of the table to find 12 you then look at the dealer's hand, which is a 6, at the top of the table. The point that the vertical and horizontal boxes meet is on a yellow square marked with an 'S'. You then look at the boxes of codes and see that 'S' equals 'stand' so you stand on that hand.

On the vertical side of the table (which shows your hand) you will see every possible combination of cards that you may have and when you check the dealer's hand across the top the table tells you exactly what action to take for the best possible outcome. The choices being; Hit, Stand, Double, Split and Surrender.

When using the Basic Strategy never take 'Insurance' which the casino will offer you if the dealer has an ace showing, simply click the 'No' or 'No Thanks' button.

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Blackjack Toolpack

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Bonus Schemes

Playing Blackjack for the Bonuses

Some casinos still offer good bonuses that you can cash in or use to increase the amount you play with each session. All have conditions regarding how much you must wager before you can cash in. If in any doubt or you don't want to waste a lot of time trawling through the 'Terms and Conditions' of each casino's offer, BEFORE you play for real money simply contact the casino's online live help desk and ask to be removed from all bonuses and promotional offers immediately. If you are new to online blackjack I would recommend this as the safest option initially.

My interest in the techniques and strategies behind the game of Blackjack became serious four years ago when my brother in law started playing online Blackjack to cash in on the bonuses offered.  I decided to give it a go and made £10,000 in 3 months playing on average 3 – 4 hours a night. Sadly, most casinos have caught on to this lucrative loophole and the days of making a lot of money from the bonuses have long since passed, in fact some casinos have turned the bonus and promotional schemes around to their own advantage.

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The Casino Bonus Bonanza: How it worked

Very briefly, I registered with a few casinos and played for real money using the Basic Blackjack Strategy. Playing strictly by the Strategy reduces the house edge to an absolute minimum.  Each casino usually offers a bonus, sometimes this is a one off upon signing up but often it is awarded on a monthly basis.  In order to qualify for the bonus you would have to meet with certain wagering requirements.

Real Play Example of the Casino Bonus Bonanza (taken from playing Blackjack four years ago at a well known online casino)

 I paid £50.00 to the casino and must play 250 games (or hands) to qualify for the bonus.  I wagered the minimum bet on each hand (usually £1.00 - £2.00) and played strictly according to the Basic Blackjack Strategy.  After the wagering requirement (250 games or hands) I would be roughly equal with the house (sometimes a little up say £60.00 and sometimes a little down say £40.00).  At this point the casino awards me their bonus, in this case £30.00.  I immediately stop play and cash in.  As you can see, even if I was down to £40.00 with the bonus added I still made £20.00.  If I am up say to £60.00 when I have met the wagering requirements and the bonus is awarded, my profit increases to £40.00.  The game in the above example took half an hour to complete.

As illustrated above a lot of people, including myself, made very good money from playing Blackjack online for the house bonuses.  Sadly, the online casinos soon caught on to the loophole in the bonus scheme and either upped the wagering requirements to such a degree that it’s not worth the time, or have eliminated various card games (including Blackjack) from the bonus schemes.  Thus, if a bonus is awarded whilst playing Blackjack you cannot cash in until you have played 1,500 times the value of the bonus plus your initial deposit on the slot machines.  Absolutely pointless!

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The Downside of the Bonus Schemes

Nearly all online casinos will offer bonuses or promotional offers, sometimes as a one off upon signing up and also on a monthly basis.  These vary from casino to casino. For example, if you paid in £50 to play at an online casino they will award you a bonus of £25 immediately. However, in order to qualify for this bonus you will have to meet with certain wagering requirements. Be very careful as a lot of casinos nowadays have ruled out playing Blackjack altogether from their bonus schemes therefore you could find yourself in a position whereby you have paid a deposit and made some winnings at a casino playing Blackjack but because you were awarded a bonus you cannot cash in any money and are forced to lose it all on the slot machines.

To illustrate, just the other day I joined a new casino and deposited £50.00. Using the Blackjack Toolpack my winnings were soon up to £80.00 at which point I decided that I wanted to cash in. The problem was that because I was a new player at this particular casino I had been automatically awarded a bonus of £25.00. Now I realise that the bonuses at this casino are awarded for wagering purposes only and cannot be cashed in. However when I tried to cash in £80.00 (my actual deposit and winnings minus the bonus) the casino refused and sent me the following letter:-



After a long conversation with an online helper, it was explained to me that I had not met with the wagering requirements of the casino. I had to click on the bonus and promotional schemes button and read the 'Terms and Conditions' which are detailed below:-



The first point is that at this casino you cannot withdraw your bonus. It is the information in the third and fourth paragraphs that caught me out this time. Because I was playing in £'s you can see from the third paragraph that I must wager or bet 20 times my original deposit + bonus. Thus I deposited £50 and was awarded automatically a £25.00 bonus:

50 + 25 = 75 (I must now wager this amount 20 times) 75 x 20 = 1500. Thus we can see that I must play 1500 hands of Blackjack at £1.00 a bet or wager £1500 worth if I am to be able to cash in my deposit and winnings. Not a problem, I thought, as the Toolpack counts the games and I can just continue playing and earn more money before I cash in.

Now came the real rub. If you look at the fourth paragraph carefully you can see that,

"bets placed in the games of Blackjack (all varieties of Blackjack including Pontoon).....do not fulfill players obligations with regards to the minimum wagering requirements".

After a long on-line chat with the casino's support it turned out that the only way I could reclaim my initial deposit of £50 and my winnings of £30 was to play 1500 pounds worth on the slot machines. This was obviously not good as I ended up losing the whole lot. This example is a warning to be very careful regarding online Casino's bonus and promotional schemes. Always read the bonus and promotional offers and especially the 'Terms and Conditions' of any bonus and promotional schemes very carefully. If in any doubt simply opt out of the bonus scheme by contacting the live Help operator at the casino before depositing any money.

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How to Join an Online Casino

The process of signing up with online casinos is very easy and most have online live support to help if you have any questions or difficulties. Simply press on the 'Find a Casino' button on the navigation bar of the Blackjack Toolpack web site. Then choose a casino to register with. As an example we will choose 'bodog.com'. Click on the link and a screen (as below) will appear. You can see a large red box saying 'JOIN NOW'



Click on the red 'JOIN NOW' box and a new screen will appear for you to actually register your details and create an account. This process and the registration forms are fairly similar for most online casinos. For this casino (bodog) the form looks exactly like the one shown below:-



Fill in this form. The top part is very straightforward; you must choose your country of residence and give your name, surname, address, telephone number, date of birth and e-mail details. You can see by the bottom section of the form shown above that you must choose a password. Mother's maiden name and city of birth are security questions in case you forget your password so make sure that you write them down somewhere safe.

Do not worry about giving your personal details to the casino. Large online casinos such as bodog are huge businesses and have no need to sell people's personal details and thus damage their reputation. If you do not wish to receive promotional offers and e-mails from this casino simply un-tick the box. You must tick the second box saying that you agree to the terms and conditions of the casino and that you are over 18. Click the blue 'Open My Account button' and you will then get the following screen:-




Congratulations you have now registered. You will be given an account ID number. You can now proceed to put some money into your casino account by pressing the 'Deposit Now' button. Do not deposit any money unless you have read the section on Bonuses and Promotions. You can 'Sign Out' (top right on the navigation bar) for now and when you sign back in you simply enter your ID number or your e-mail and the password that you chose in the boxes provided.

Do not forget to write down your username, password and security number together with the name and the web address of the Casino. If you are familiar with Microsoft Excel I recommend creating a spreadsheet with all your details for each casino. This way you can also monitor when you play each casino together with your winnings. If not you can use a Word document or notepad document or a simple pen and paper - just don't forget to keep a record as once you are using the Blackjack Toolpack and playing at a lot of casinos it can become a bit confusing unless you keep good records of all your Usernames, passwords and security information.

You will then be taken to the screen below:-




You now need to go to the blue panel and click on the 'Play Casino' box. This will take you to another screen:-




You can now select whether to 'Play for Real' or 'Practice Now'. If you are new to Blackjack I recommend a few practice rounds to get to grips with the whole game and online play. Before you deposit any real money it is hugely important to take a look at each casinos promotion and bonus schemes.

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The House Edge

What is the House Edge?

Basically, each single bet that you make has a probability of either winning or losing. For example, if you bet on heads or tails in the game of 'toss a coin', the probability of the coin landing on heads or tails is 50-50 (known as an even money bet). If you bet £1.00 on either heads or tails and the casino pays you £1.00 when you won this would be 'True Odds'. The casinos however, only pay for example, 95p instead of a £1.00 on a winning bet. This makes the house edge for 'toss a coin' 2.5%. The House Edge is the difference between the true odds and the odds that a casino actually pays when you win.

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Create a Neteller account

I fully recommend creating a Neteller account for playing online casinos. You can pay and receive your winnings back on a normal debit or credit card but at some online casinos this often involves a lengthy process of sending copies of your passport and/or proof of address via e-mail to the casino. Some casinos will offer to pay you by cheque but this can involve a lengthy wait for the post and obviously you want your winnings straight away so that you can increase your bankroll and make more money from the Blackjack Toolpack. If you open a Neteller account you can simply transfer the amount of money that you wish to play with (the bankroll) from your normal account or credit card and your winnings will immediately be transferred back to your Neteller account with no hassle. Hence you can control how much you wish to play with (in the interest of safe play this amount should be what you can afford to lose - no system is infallible!).

Simply click on this link to Neteller (or click on the 'Find a Casino' tab on the top toolbar and click on the Neteller link there) and fill in your details as below:-



Make sure that you keep your new Neteller account details in a safe place.