9 Dec

Playtech Live’s Unlimited Blackjack w/ Bet Behind

How to play Unlimited Blackjack, Playtech’s live dealer 21 featuring endless Bet Behind seating.

How to Play Unlimited Blackjack, Playtech’s Live 21 with Endless Bet Behind

The Playtech Live edition of Unlimited Blackjack (not to be confused with Ezugi’s same-name Live Unlimited Blackjack) is nothing unique to the live dealer casino realm. It is just another live 21 table featuring five player seats and an endless number of eligible Bet Behind bettors. The “Unlimited” term in the title points to the unlimited number of players capable of betting behind those who are actually playing a hand.

In most other regards, this is your standard, every day game of blackjack. The house rules are fairly common for an online blackjack game, resulting in a return to player (RTP) of 99.50% (house edge 0.50%). A pair of side bets are available as well, discussed at length below.

How to Play Unlimited Blackjack Live (Playtech)

As far as the house rules go, everything comes standard except for two things. First off, the house gains a sizeable advantage by neglecting to peek for blackjack. If the dealer has a 10 showing and ends up with a blackjack after the player has bet anything more than the original wager (double / split bet), only the original wager is lost. The excess is returned. If, however, the dealer has an Ace showing that results in a blackjack, the player loses their total bet; original plus any doubles or splits.

The second oddball rule is a 10-Card Charlie. If the player manages to receive a 10-card hand without busting (which is insanely rare), the player’s hand automatically wins. There’s no bonus payout – just the usual 1 to 1 for a win – but there is an exception. If the dealer ends up having blackjack, the player loses, even with 10 cards.

By these and the complete list of house rules below, Unlimited Blackjack Live is actually the worst paying game of 21 on the whole Playtech menu; live or otherwise.

Specific Rules of Play

  • Decks: 8
  • Soft 17: Dealer Stands
  • Doubling: Yes, on any 2 cards
  • Splitting: Yes, 1x only
  • Double after Split: Yes
  • Resplit Aces: No
  • Draw to Split Aces: No
  • Surrender: No
  • Dealer Checks for Blackjack: No
  • 10-Card Charlie: Player wins 1 to 1; loses to dealer blackjack
  • Blackjack Pays: 3 to 2

Bet Behind

The Bet Behind feature is common with some live dealer blackjack games. The idea is that a table can accommodate an unlimited number of players, even though there are only 5 playable hands on the table. If anyone beyond that number wants to play, they can place a bet on the outcome of any of the five active hands (but not the dealer’s hand). To do so is known as ‘betting behind’ a player.

Bet Behind wagers are not doubled if the active player chooses to double or split. It is only a flat bet that the player will win their original hand against the dealer’s (the original hand being the first hand, as opposed to a second hand following a split).

If the active player’s original hand wins, the Bet Behind bet wins even money. If the original hand loses, the bet behind bettor loses as well.

Unlimited 21 Live Side Bets

Playtech has infused its Unlimited Blackjack tables with two optional side bets. They are the two most common side bets in blackjack, known as 21+3 and Perfect Pairs. Their rules, winning conditions, pay tables and house edges are detailed in the tables below.

21+3 Side Bet

This is an optional wager that the player’s original two cards, combined with the dealer’s face-up card, will make any of the three-card poker hands listed in the pay table below.

Player’s 2 Cards + Dealer’s Up-Card are… Pays
3 of a Kind, Same Suits 100 to 1
3-Card Straight Flush 40 to 1
3 of a Kind 30 to 1
3-Card Straight 10 to 1
3-Card Flush 5 to 1
House Edge = 3.70%

Perfect Pairs Side Bet

This is another optional wager in which the player is betting that their first two, original cards (prior to any splits) will be pairs. If the pairs are the same color, or better yet, the same suit, the payouts grow larger.

Player’s First Two Cards are… Pays
Pair, Same Suits 25 to 1
Pair, Same Colors 12 to 1
Pair, Mixed Suits 6 to 1
House Edge = 4.10%

Unlimited Blackjack Strategy

There are three separate charts below; one for each of the three types of player hands – hard hand, soft hand or pairs. Please refer to the appropriate chart for the hand you’re dealt. Next, choose the value of your current hand from the totals in the left column. Then, choose the proper decision that corresponds wit the dealer’s face-up card.

How to Decide a Hard Hand

Hard Total Correct Action by Situation
8 & Under Hit
9 Double against Dealer’s 3-6; otherwise Hit
10-11 Double against Dealer’s 2-9; otherwise Hit
12 Stand against Dealer’s 4-6; otherwise Hit
13-16 Stand against Dealer’s 2-6; otherwise Hit
17-21 Stand

How to Decide a Soft Hand

Soft Total Correct Action by Situation
13-14 Double against Dealer’s 5-6; otherwise Hit
15-16 Double against Dealer’s 4-6; otherwise Hit
17 Double against Dealer’s 3-6; otherwise Hit
18 Double against Dealer’s 3-6; Hit against 9-A; otherwise Stand
19-21 Stand

Conditions for Splitting Pairs

It’s important to take advantage of splitting pairs when the right opportunities arise, giving you the maximum theoretical return (99.5%) on your wagering investments. This last chart describes how to play Unlimited Blackjack anytime you’re faced with a splittable hand. Note that you can only split a hand one time. If you split, and are dealt another splittable hand, you won’t be able to split it again, even if this strategy chart recommends doing so. In such cases, please refer to the hard/soft hand tables above for the correct move.

Pair Correct Action by Situation
Ace-Ace Split against dealer’s 2-10; Hit against Ace
2-2 Split against dealer’s 2-7; otherwise Hit
3-3 Split against dealer’s 2-7; otherwise Hit
4-4 Split against dealer’s 5-6; otherwise Hit
5-5 Double against dealer’s 2-9; otherwise Hit
6-6 Split against dealer’s 2-6; otherwise Hit
7-7 Split against dealer’s 2-7; otherwise Hit
8-8 Split against dealer’s 2-9; otherwise Hit
9-9 Split against dealer’s 2-6 or 8-9; otherwise Stand
10-10 Stand

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