2 Reasons You Should Play Poker Over Blackjack

A Poker Hand Overlapping a Blackjack Hand With a Sparkling Background

Poker and blackjack both are two popular and sought after games that players can spend hours upon hours playing at casinos worldwide. Although both games are popular, there are reasons that make poker the top dog over blackjack.

There are some obvious reasons. With poker, a player isn’t playing against the house edge. The house edge is a system of rules that have been put in place that make the casino almost always have the advantage over players at casinos.

When playing blackjack, it’s just the player against the house. Unless you are a skilled card counter, which can arouse all sorts of risks for the player, then your chances of winning at blackjack are not going to be high.

With poker, you have the advantage of being able to play against other players with no house edge in place. This creates az lot more opportunities for winning streaks and for players getting to walk away from the table happy.

Poker Table Scene Zoomed Into Players Hands

Those are the obvious reasons, and then there are also some not-so-obvious reasons that make poker a better game. I am going to go over a couple of reasons why poker is better than blackjack.

1- In Poker, You Get to Pick Your Opponents

When a skilled blackjack player walks into a casino to play, they are going to browse the casino for tables that have good rules. In reality, especially nowadays, there are only going to be so many options for blackjack players.

What I mean when I say that is that the rules concerning how much a player wins with certain types of bets or plays makes a huge difference in the profitability of that game for the player. For example, if the house rule is that a blackjack (a face card and an ace) pays out 3 to 2, the odds of the player doing better over time are significantly better than if it pays out 6 to 5.

The reason for this is simple. If you are playing many hands over time, you’re going to win back a larger percentage of money for every blackjack you hit if you’re paying 3:2 blackjack. Basically, it’s all about playing the right table when it comes to blackjack and has nothing to do with the other people at the table.

If a player does happen to find a decent table, if they want to win, they are going to have to play consistently with good strategy and have the skills that can allow them to count cards. And that’s being able to do so without getting caught. Many casinos frown heavily on card counting and will ban you from their casino if they don’t like what they’re seeing, which is something you can’t do anything about.

For poker players, the rules of the poker tables are all very similar, but when it comes to the player’s opponents, they are always different, and this is where a poker player can get a huge advantage over a blackjack player.

If the poker player is skilled and knows what kind of traits to look for in other players, this can be extremely advantageous for the skilled player. If a skilled player spots a table and can tell the other players are stumbling drunk, the skilled player can join and typically completely dominate the poker table.

This is one of many examples, but an obvious one. Blackjack tables do not have this option. A poker player can walk into a room and spot two tables: a table with skilled players, and next to it, a table of not-so-skilled players. A skilled poker player will obviously sit with the not-so-skilled players, and then it’s all downhill from there (for the unskilled players!).

Alternatively, an unskilled player has the option to choose to sit with more skilled players for the sake of being able to help improve their game, which is an option that isn’t available for blackjack players because blackjack players are just playing against the house, which has a specific set of rules that govern how the dealer has to play.

When you play blackjack, the dealer is required to make certain plays depending on the cards that come up. They might be required to always hit at a 16 or higher, for example. In poker, there’s none of this nonsense. It’s all up to the players how they want to play (or are able to play).

Many people might ask the question: how does a person spot poor poker players? The answer is that you have to simply just pay attention, stay mindful, and be aware of every single person at the poker table that you are playing against.

If you have sat down at a poker table once or twice, it really isn’t all that difficult to tell the good from the poor. If you can’t seem to place your finger on an opponents skill level, just keep playing. The more you play, the more that you are going to inevitably learn.

If you are playing blackjack, again, none of these options are possible, making it difficult to feel like you really have a choice in who you are playing against. Of course with poker, if you only play at casinos and poker rooms, there still is the chance of having a limited selection in choosing your opponents.

There will always be good and bad tables, but keep in mind that there is a way to always have a good table. How can one achieve this miraculous event? Host a poker tournament, and while doing so, only invite players over that you know have a skill level less than yours!

2- Online Poker

So before I say anything else on this note, it is possible to play both blackjack and poker in US online casinos. Both are typically available, free of charge, where you can play for real money. They are as easy to access as typing in a URL on your web browser.

There is a major downfall however when it comes to trying to play blackjack online, and that is that the software used for online blackjack play prevents all players from being able to have the capacity to count cards.

For a skilled blackjack player, one that has the capacity to be able to hit a winning streak, more often than not their capacity to do so depends on how well they can count cards. So when playing online, unlike real blackjack at a casino, the computer will often times shuffle all the cards, or shoe, after every single hand. So trying to count cards online just becomes a waste of time.

Closeup of a Blackjack Hand and Casino Chip

How does card counting work in helping a player win? A good card counter will keep track of the ratio of high cards and low cards remaining in the shoe. Once the ratio of high cards to low cards gets so high, a player can actually play blackjack with a mathematical advantage against the house.

If the cards get shuffled, it completely eliminates the ability for a player to be able to do any of this. When it comes to playing poker online, it is no different really than playing at a casino or with friends. The deck of cards is shuffled after every single deal in real life as well as online, so your chances of winning or losing are the same online as they are at a casino.

You can also play poker for free online or by using free poker apps if you’re a beginner and are just wanting to improve your skills. If you do decide to try and play at a free money table, a free poker game online, just be aware that nearly every single player that you play against is absolutely terrible (or is playing like a crazy person).

I say this because if you are really trying to learn the game, playing with terrible players might not be the best option for you. You want to play with people that have a higher skill level if you want to get better, which means you need to play for money.

Another option to get better is to read books or watch instructional videos. There are plenty of free tutorial videos on YouTube that are actually very beneficial, even for a skilled player.

You can make more money playing poker online than you can blackjack. The downside for both games, if you decide to play online, is that you miss out on getting to see the facial reactions from the other players during a live poker situation.

Getting to understand facial recognition is a very, very valuable skill to have if you are wanting to become a more advanced poker player.

Do you have other reasons why poker is better than blackjack that I have missed? Or do you disagree and think blackjack is the better game of the two? Let me know your thoughts in the comment section below!