Majority Rules Blackjack is a variation of standard live dealer blackjack based on the Unlimited Blackjack format. It’s a two-handed game that can be played by an unlimited number of players.
The twist with this version of Blackjack is the innovative way playing decisions are made during a game round.
These two new aspects speed up the game. The other benefit (most of the time) is when lots of players are playing the single hand. A majority decision prevents bad decisions from being made.
If you’re experienced in playing the unlimited format, you’ve probably witnessed the odd player making a playing decision others wouldn’t make, which ultimately adversely affects the result – i.e the dealer would have bust with the next card, but someone chose to hit instead of standing.
However, I have noticed when the player count is only just above three, bad majority decisions can still be made.
In all other aspects, Majority Rules Blackjack is just another game of Blackjack.
Majority Blackjack is played with an eight-deck dealing shoe. The shoe is changed when half of it has been dealt.
The game is played to European Rules. i.e. the dealer takes one card on the initial deal.
Majority Rules voting applies when more than three players are playing a hand. As soon as 50% or more of players have voted for the same decision, it is locked in and the dealer takes the appropriate action. If the vote is split 50-50, 33-33-33, 25-25-25-25, Basic Strategy is applied to the hand. In the case where there is not a majority of 50%, for example Hit – 45%, Stand 40%, Split – 15% the decision with a majority vote will count.
Best Strategy is applied to a hand if less than 3 players are playing the hand. The playing decisions will following basic strategy and will be applied immediately by the dealer.
Prior to the game commencing you need to choose your playing actions for Splits and Doubles when Best Strategy is being used.
These can be changed at a later date in the playing setting tab.
The game round starts with 10 seconds of betting time.
You can place bets on one or both player hands.
Both hands include optional side bets of Perfect Pairs and 21+3 Poker.
At the end of betting time, the system calculates the number of players playing each hand and notifies you through the interface whether the hand will be Majority Vote or Best Strategy.
With betting time over, 2 cards are dealt to each of the player’s positions and one to the dealer’s hand.
The right hand requires a Majority Vote for the 3rd card.
The options are Double, Hit, and Stand. The obvious choice is Hit 15 against the dealers Ace.
The Return to Player (RTP) is quoted as 99.54% for optimal play.
The 21+3 Side Bet has an RTP of 96.25, while Perfect Pairs has 95.90%.
As Blackjack games go this is pretty good and compares well with other variants of Blackjack.
To start with I have to confess that I’m not a huge fan of One-to-Many Blackjack games. If I’m pushed to play, I’d choose Allbets or Infinite Blackjack over the other options, purely for the side bets.
The reason I steer clear of these games is the annoying play of some players – who don’t stick to the strategy and want to do their own thing. While that’s ok with their own cards, I don’t like sharing a hand with players that do that.
Majority Rules Blackjack virtually solves that problem, by ensuring the majority vote on each hand is taken. This reduces the number of times bad decisions are made, but they can still happen when the number of players on the hand is low.
Playtech doesn’t hide the fact this game is fast, the clue is in the title of course!
Betting time is short, but so is decision time.
In my opinion, it’s too fast, especially when you’re playing both hands. I’d like it a bit slower, so I could consider my decision and also take in the final decision made. Sometimes it happens too quickly, especially if the decision you made wasn’t the majority decision. You’re suddenly on the next hand before you know it, while you’re still working out what happened – then you miss the decision time on the second hand, leaving you feeling a bit cheated.
The way around this is to play one hand so you can give that all your concentration.
As for the players it’s trying to attract, I’m honestly not sure.
You can’t learn much from the game – so it’s no good for beginners who want to learn. It is however good for players that want to play Blackjack, but don’t know what they are doing and don’t care to learn. They’ll be playing and getting the benefit of good decision making most of the time. I just don’t know how many there are wanting this type of game.
Players who like the unlimited games might like it, as it removes the bad decisions. If seat 7 tables are full would I play this over another variant? – probably not, I’d suffer the odd badly played hand for a slower-paced game, as understanding and feeling part of the game is more important to me.
With a plethora of new variant blackjack games being developed, this is the first to address some of the problems of playing Unlimited games and is, therefore, a great addition for player choice with Live Dealer Blackjack. It will certainly appeal to a cross-section of players.