Blackjack is an exciting, timeless game and a staple in any casino worth its salt. With your fate determined by a draw of randomly shuffled cards, it is a wonderful game not only for introducing beginners into the thrilling world of gambling, but also for players of all levels of experience seeking new games. It is a game that is hugely popular in all types of casinos including online, where millions of people regularly look for the latest casino bonuses online to be had. For many, along with playing slots and poker, Blackjack will be a staple of their gambling for many years.
Whilst at a first glance Blackjack may seem like it is predominantly down to pure luck of the draw, all forms of Blackjack involve players needing to manipulate various different factors to ensure the best possible outcome to their game.
One of these factors, that can affect a player’s experience around a Blackjack table significantly, is choosing a place to sit whilst playing the game. Whilst a seemingly small component with no proven mathematical advantage, choosing where to sit can be crucial for all players from professional gamblers, to card counters and new players alike.
What Are the Seating Positions in Blackjack?
Before discussing where the best seat around a Blackjack table is, what must first be established is the different types of seats within the game itself. Although most brick and mortar casinos can offer up to seven seats for players, there are only three main seats you really need to know about, with only two of these three being discussed more frequently. The three main seats in Blackjack are as follows:
- Blackjack First Base
- Blackjack Third Base
- Shortstop Position
What is Blackjack First Base?
As the name suggests, Blackjack First Base is the first seat on the far left from the dealer’s perspective. This position is called the ‘First Base’ as it is the seat the cards are first dealt to by the dealer, in addition to being the first player able to stand, hit, double down, split or surrender a hand.
Where is Blackjack Third Base?
Although the name may lead people to think this seat is in the middle of or perhaps the third seat around a Blackjack table, this is incorrect. The Third Base is rather the first seat on the far right from the dealer’s perspective, often called the anchor. This position allows you to see all the other players’ cards dealt, in addition to being the last to decide whether to hit, double down, split or surrender a hand.
The Shortstop Position in Blackjack
The Shortstop Position is the least commonly mentioned seat of the three, and is positioned in the middle of the table, having the power to prevent other potential players on their left from joining your game of Blackjack.
Other Seats Around the Blackjack Table
Whilst those listed above are the main and most commonly mentioned seats around a Blackjack table, there are in fact up to seven different seats, named in correspondence to their position. For example, the Fourth Seat is the seat to the right of the Shortstop position (from the dealer’s perspective.) These seats whilst not often mentioned can offer great benefits to those wanting a less pressured game, such as beginners.
Where is the Best Place to Sit in Blackjack?
Whilst statistically it does not matter where you sit around a Blackjack table, there are other advantages external to the main focus of odds in the game that could benefit a player greatly.
Although proven to be mathematically incorrect, there is a myth that the player at Third Base around a Blackjack table has the ability to determine if the whole table wins or loses, as the third player is the one to act on their hand immediately before the dealer. If a player at Third Base hits rather than stays against basic recommended strategy, other players may blame them for a bad outcome.
Therefore, it is not recommended for those who are new to the game of Blackjack, and have not yet got to grips with the basic strategy of the game, to sit in this position as it could provide them with negative first experiences of this otherwise very exciting and enjoyable game.
Where Should Beginners Sit?
Understanding casino games when you are new is key and so Blackjack beginners should not sit on the First Base position of a Blackjack table, as this seat is the next position that players like to blame for the table losing. This is due to the fact that those on First Base, with experience, have the ability to watch the cards that have been drawn and determine what’s to come.
The Shortstop position, whilst giving a fairly decent view of the table, does not compare to those provided with both seats first and third. However, this position does stop additional players from entering the game at Third Base if open, which gives you the chance to put on extra bets.
Dependent upon the number of players in any given game of Blackjack, there are other seat positions that could also provide you with a good view of the competing players and the moves they make. The fourth position, which is the seat to the right (from the dealer’s perspective) of the Shortstop, can offer players this without giving them the responsibility of either the First or Third Base.
Statistically though, the other players’ moves will not affect much of your own gameplay, looking out for the various strategies of those who are winning at Blackjack and incorporating these features into your own methods could help to improve your success rate.
Another position that is not commonly mentioned in the list of Blackjack seats would be the second seat. This seat is located to the right of the First Base seat (from the dealer’s perspective) and is perfect for beginners or those who do not want the responsibility of First or Third base.
So, Where Should You Sit When Playing Black?
The answer to this question will be entirely dependent upon both your experience and game strategy of Blackjack. By reading up on the various different advantages and disadvantages of all seats available, you can learn where best to sit, further ensuring an optimal environment to your gaming strategy.