What is a Joker in Blackjack?
Blackjack is a card game where the object is to beat the dealer with a total of 21 points or higher. A player may also choose to surrender or double down. Some games allow players to place additional side bets, such as insurance and “Dealer Match” which pays when the player’s cards match those of the dealer’s face-up card. A player who makes a total of 21 on the first two cards is said to have a “blackjack,” and wins immediately unless the dealer has a blackjack, in which case the hand ties.
A joker in blackjack is a wild card that can substitute for any other card in a hand. A joker can also be used to complete a straight or flush in pai gow poker. There are several variations of the joker in blackjack, including the traditional 52-card pack, a 53-card pack, and a 62-card deck with one joker. Each variation has different rules and payouts.
The history of blackjack can be traced back to a game called veintiuna (Spanish for twenty-one), which was played with a Spanish baraja deck. This game was likely invented in the 16th century and has a number of variations. The French and German variants, Vingt-et-un and Siebzehn und Vierzehn, don’t include splitting, and the ace is worth either 1 or 11 as the holder wishes. A hand scored with an ace valued at 11 is called a soft hand, because it can’t bust if another card is drawn.
In casinos, a blackjack is often paid out at odds of 3:2 or 2:1, depending on the type of table. Generally, a player will be given the option of splitting aces, and doubling down after splitting is allowed. Some casinos limit the splits to hands with a rank of 10 or higher, and some don’t allow re-splitting aces after doubling. Some tables also have restrictions on what combinations of cards can be split, and some only allow splitting pairs of the same rank.
Anita Wdowiak lives with her husband Don in Cairns Far North Queensland, Australia. She began formulating the Black Jack Joker game during the Covid-19 lockdown in early 2020. It took eighteen months to develop. The first release consists of 100 games, each individually numbered and priced and with a Certificate of Authenticity personally signed by the creator.
The second release of Black Jack Joker consists of 300 games. These are identified with a gold sticker on the box and have a Certificate of Authenticity, also personally signed by the creator. Anita is a teacher and author of a children’s musical called Katy the Magic Kangaroo. She has written other books and plays, and is passionate about health. She has a particular interest in the effects of stress on physical and mental wellbeing. She has also created a card game, The Jesters’ Quest, which takes the Jesters on a journey to find the Golden Token mines ruled over by Black Jack.