Give Pontoon a Go Sometime
There are two reasons why blackjack is one of the most popular casino card games in the world: the rules of the game are simple to grasp, and a player who understands the odds and can count cards can actually tip the game’s edge in their favour, making them sure-fire winners in the long run. That’s why casinos hate expert card counters, but the practice itself is not illegal. Blackjack, of course, is a variation of the French game vingt-et-un.
The British version of this casino classic is called pontoon, and it offers a similar advantage to players who know what they’re doing. As in blackjack, the object of pontoon is to get as close to 21 in card values without busting. It differs from blackjack in two important respects: firstly, both the dealer’s cards are dealt face-down in pontoon, whereas in blackjack one of the dealer’s cards will be dealt face-up, allowing players to better calculate the overall odds. The other difference is that if a player manages a five-card trick, being dealt five cards without busting, they are paid 2-1 in pontoon, as opposed to 1.5-1 on blackjack games that offer a five-card trick payout. From the player’s perspective, the first difference is a disadvantage, but the second is an advantage. What you lose on the swings, you gain on the roundabouts…
Online Pontoon Lets you Play at Will
The boom in online and mobile casinos means that online pontoon is now an option readily available to all casino games enthusiasts. Players no longer have to find an actual physical casino to try their luck; they can simply find an online pontoon game at one of the hundreds of online casinos now operating. It also means less of a commitment; instead of spending an entire evening in a casino and carrying a bankroll big enough to last the night, online pontoon players get to spend a few minutes at the table whenever they feel like it, as long as they have an Internet connection. Online pontoon players decide for themselves how much or how little they would like to wager; or can even play for nothing at all.
For Real Money, or for Free
Some people enjoy playing online pontoon purely for the rush of reading the cards and beating the dealer, without wanting to risk any money, and they will find more than enough free casinos that let them play online pontoon as long as they like, for credits only. Other players prefer to risk actual money, because that means they can win real money in return, and there are just as many real-money casinos catering to them. In fact, players who amass enough credits at free casinos are also entered in lucky draws, in which they can win money or other real-value prizes. And real-money casinos also offer frequent free-play bonuses, allowing players to bet for free but still keep any money they win (subject to certain terms and conditions). So the distinction between online pontoon for free and online pontoon for money is a vague one. The bottom line is that the player gets to decide whether they want to risk anything or not; but whichever option they choose, online pontoon lets them join in the fun anytime they feel like it.