Baccarat Basics

Baccarat is a casino game in which players wager on which hand will win. Two cards are dealt to each player and the Banker, and the game is won by whoever has a total closest to 9. Winning bets are paid even money. The game is played on a large table with boxes to place chips. Eight decks of cards are shuffled together and dealt by the dealer (croupier) from a dealing box known as a shoe. Baccarat is similar to Chemin de Fer but is less complex and has a lower house edge.

The game is played by a group of players sitting around a large table with green felt and numbered areas where the players place their bets, called spots. A croupier or dealer manages the game, but does not bet. Each player has the choice of betting on the Player, the Banker or a Tie bet. If a player bets on the Player and the Banker, each card is dealt to a spot on the table. A third card may be drawn in cases of a tie or if the Banker is holding an Ace.

After the bets are placed, the croupier deals two cards to the Player and one to the Banker. The point count is determined by adding the value of each card. A nine wins, while an 8 or a 7 is the second highest score and wins by default. If either the Banker or the Player has an 8 or a 9, no further cards are drawn, which is known as a Natural.

In the event that neither the Player nor the Banker has an 8 or a 9, the banker draws a third card if the player’s hand was a 5. The croupier then announces the result of the coup: a Player win, a Banker win or a Tie. Winning bets are collected and winning side bets are paid out. Cards numbered 2 through 9 are worth their face value, while 10s and Face cards (Kings, Queens, Jacks) count as zero points.

Any player may choose to “go bank,” which means they bets half the bank. They may continue to go bank until they lose or until they have won for three consecutive hands. The game also allows players to play as a pair, in which case they bet on each hand separately. A pair bet pays 8-1 on a $20 bet, while a Banker or Player bet pays 9-to-1. Tie bets pay a higher payout, but are much harder to hit. This is why the game is so popular in casinos, especially in Asia. The game is also featured in several movies and television shows. In the 2007 film Rush Hour 3, main characters James Carter and Genevieve first meet at a baccarat table. The game is also featured in the 1956 French heist film Bob le Flambeur, in which it is played by the protagonist who encounters extraordinary luck in gambling.