Golden Nugget 64 - Gambling Strategies FAQ written by PyroFalkon ([email protected]) Version 1.0a Last update: 18 August 2000 === --REVISION HISTORY-- v1.0a (18 August 2000) - Fixed some minor errors and added absolutely no information. v1.0 (17 August 2000) - First release, unfinished. === --OPENING BLURB-- This FAQ is simply general strategies on how to get rich. A lot of this information can be found in greater detail around the Internet, since gambling has been in existence for eons. But this FAQ is short, to the point, and without flowery crap. Also, at the end list are three glitches in the game you can use to get rich quicker, which is obviously the entire point. I'm going to assume you know how to play every game out there. This will save time and space, so the whole FAQ contains the meat of information. All right, enough introductions. I'll go over every game, including the ones that don't need strategies. === --BLACKJACK-- Ah, a classic game. This is one of the most well-known card games in existence, and also one of the most technical. In other words, easy to beat the house at, if you know the secrets. Okay, unlike VERY old casinos, the Golden Nugget does not contain the "five-card Charlie" rule, which was one of the stupidest things in existence. It stated that if you had five cards, you automatically won. I haven't seen it in the past 10 years, but for some reason some people still think it exists. THE THREE RULES There are three main rules to this strategy. Follow them (I'll go into detail about them, don't worry), and you'll win. Rule 1) If the dealer's face-up card is an ace, DON'T BUY INSURANCE!!! FORGET THE WHOLE CONCEPT OF IT!!! NEVER BUY INSURANCE FOR THE REST OF YOUR BLACKJACK DAYS!!! Rule 2) If the dealer's face-up card isn't an ace, assume the face-down card is worth 10. Rule 3) Stand on 17 or higher. Always. Okay, now the details... The first rule. Simply put, the odds are against the dealer getting blackjack. If he doesn't have it, whether you win or lose the hand you're out a good chunk of money. Let's say you bet $1000, and the dealer has an up-card of an ace. If you buy insurance, it'll cost you $500 (half your original bet). Let's assume he doesn't have blackjack. That means you're already out $500. If you win the hand, you gain $1000 for the win, but since you lost $500, you only gain $500 total. Math: 1000 (starting bet) - 500 (insurance) + 1000 (winnings) = 1500 If you lose the hand, you're out $1500 total. If you don't bet insurance at all and lose the hand, you're only out $1000. If you don't bet insurance and win the hand, you gain $1000 instead of $500. Bottom line: don't buy insurance, it's not worth it. Now for the second rule. Ten cards are pretty common in the decks. If you assume the dealer has a 10 as his other card, that dictates whether you hit or stand. Example 1: Your hand: 8, 7 (15 total) Dealer's hand: 4, hidden card (assume it's 14 total) In the above example, you should stand. If he has 14, he has a very good chance of busting because he has to hit with less than 17. Example 2: Your hand: 10, 6 (16 total) Dealer's hand: 8, hidden card (assume it's 18 total) In this example, you should hit. Obviously, you stand a good chance of busting, but if he has a 10 card, you've lost anyway. Bottom line: assume the dealer has a 10 card and hit or stand on that alone. If your total is higher than or equal to his up-card +10, stand. If your total is less than his up-card +10, hit. Okay, the third rule overrides the second. If you have 17 or higher, EVEN IF YOU HAVE AN ACE ACTING LIKE AN 11, stand. Example 1: Your hand: 9, 10 (19 total) Dealer's hand: 10, hidden card (assume it's 20 total) Even though you're technically behind, hitting would be suicidal. It's insanely low odds that the next card is a 2 or ace. Don't risk it. Example 2: Your hand: ace, 6 (17 total) Dealer's hand: 7, hidden card (assume it's 17 total) Most people would think, "Well, since we tie if it's 17, I'll draw again and hope for a 3 or 4." Nice logic, but your card may be an 8. Since that would normally bust you, the ace converts to a 1. That means 1 + 6 + 8, or 15. 15 is bad, very very bad. Here's another stupid thing most people do: splitting 10s. Why people do this is beyond me. I think they assume they can get two blackjacks or two 20s or something. It's nuts, I tell you. Here's the logic: Why would you give up the second-most powerful hand in game for the risk of getting two crappy hands? If you split 10s, you could wind up with a 13 and 16. Or a 14 and 12. Or a 15 and a 14. Or two 16s. There is never a reason to split 10s. Bottom line: If you have 17 or more, do not hit. DOUBLING DOWN I'm going to assume you know how doubling down works. Keep two things in mind if you decide to double down. Firstly, assume the dealer has a 10 card as his hidden card (I can't stress that enough). Secondly, remember that he has to hit on 16 or below. If your total is 9: double down if the dealer's card is 3 through 6. Remember, you want to assume that he's got a 10 for the hidden card, so if he's got 13 through 16, he'll probably bust. If he's got 12, then it'll be too easy for him not to bust. If your total is 10: double down if the dealer's card is 9 or less. If your total is 11: ALWAYS double down. ALWAYS. It doesn't matter what the dealer's up-card is. ALWAYS DOUBLE DOWN ON 11! SPLITTING One mistake a lot of people make is during splitting. They tend to split pairs that shouldn't be or not split things that should be. It's horrible. And what's even worse is that this is the most complex thing out there. Remember, assume the dealer's hidden card is a 10 (have I said that enough?). Here are the rules, with an explanation: If you have a pair of 2s: split if the dealer's up-card is 3 through 6 (making his total 13 through 16); hit otherwise. If you have a pair of 3s: split if the dealer's up-card is 3 through 6 (making his total 13 through 16); hit otherwise. Yes, it's the same rules as 2s. If you have a pair of 4s: never split 4s. As an 8, you can hit and hope for a 10 to get 18. If you split them, then all kinds of bad hands can occur. If you have a pair of 5s: then you have a 10, in which case you should either double down (using the above rules) or hit. Never split 5s. If you have a pair of 6s: split if the dealer's up-card is 3 through 6 (making his total 13 through 16); hit otherwise. Yes, it's the same rules as 2s and 3s. If you have a pair of 7s: split if the dealer's up-card is 2 through 6 (making his total 12 through 16); hit otherwise. The reason for adding the 2 in there instead of leaving the rules the same as 2s, 3s, and 6s is because 14 is a hideous number. You don't want it hindering you, and it's too easy for the dealer to save himself with your low total. If you have a pair of 8s: ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS SPLIT!!! 16 is the worst number in blackjack, and you stand a decent chance of getting two 18s. Always split 8s. If you have a pair of 9s: never split, just stand. If you split, you're running too much of a chance of getting 16s or less, and you have 18 anyway, which is over 17. If you have a pair of 10s: never split, just stand. You have a 20, the second-best hand in the game. Keep it, don't risk getting a 16 or less. If you have a pair of aces: ALWAYS split. Here's why: You can't lose (figuratively) in this situation. If you split, you run a decent chance of getting a 6 or higher, giving you a total of 17 or more. You run a chance of getting a 5 or lower, making your total 16 or lower, but you can HIT AGAIN since you have the ace and won't bust. And if you get another ace, you can re-split them! WHEN TO HIT AND WHEN TO STAND This covers all the times you don't have a split, can't double, and have less than 17. Remember, assume the dealer's hidden card is a 10. If your total is 8 or less: hit. You're safe, you can't bust with one card. Hit. If your total is 9 through 11: double if you can, otherwise hit. Again, you're safe and can't bust with one card. Double (using the rules far above) or hit if you're short on cash. If your total is 12: stand if the dealer's up-card is 4 through 6 (making his total 14 through 16). If his card is outside this range, his total is either too high or too easy for him to recover from. Therefore, take the risk and hit. If your total is 13 through 16: stand if the dealer's up-card is 6 or less (making his total 16 or lower) since chances are that he'll bust. Anything higher than 6 means that you have nothing to lose, so hit. If your total is 17 or higher: stand. Always stand. Whew, that concludes the blackjack lesson. If you have a specific situation you need help with, e-mail me. Just remember, these rules won't guarentee you a win, they'll simply imporve your game. === --CRAPS-- I use one system that I picked up somewhere. I'll just straight up tell you the steps to do it instead of going into the math and logic, mostly because I *forget* the math and logic. Step 1) Place any bet you want on the Pass Line, then roll. Step 2a) If the come-out roll was a 2, 3, 7, 11, or 12, go back to Step 1. Step 2b) If the come-out roll established a point, proceed to step 3. Step 3) Place as much as you can on Free Odds for the Pass Line. Step 4a) If you have 2 or less bets on Come, place the same amount of your original bet on Come, then roll. Step 4b) If you have 2 bets on Come, don't make any additional bets, just roll. Step 5a) If the point or a 7 is rolled, go back to Step 1. Step 5b) If the number rolled is anything else, go back to step 4. It's that simple. Eventually, you WILL lose. But the purpose is that you have three numbers working for you (the point and the two Come bets). Normally, by the time you DO lose, you'll have made a sizable profit. This system has only failed me once. I've tried it a good 30 times, and 29 times I made a huge profit after playing an hour or two. === --5 Card Draw-- I'm going to assume you know what all the hands are. For now, I've just got some tips for this. The computer seldom bluffs, so if your opponents raise by the table maximum and you don't have at least a three of a kind of 7s, fold. Never fold on the initial five cards, no matter what you have. The computer does fall for bluffs, though the higher ranked they are (the number of gems by their cash), the less they do. I managed to beat the computer with a no pair, 9-high. They were all betting the table minimum, so I raised to the table maximum, and they all folded. I didn't get much for it, but at least I didn't lose. === --7 Card Stud-- Again, I'm going to assume you know what all the hands are. Also again, I just have a few tips to share. Never fold until your sixth card (which is the last face-up card). If you have 6 cards, and someone else has a better hand than you simply by their four up-cards, then you should fold if you can't beat them with one card. (For the examples, I'm going to use the letters A, B, C, and D to represent suits.) Example 1: Your hand: 3A, 6B, 4C, 5D, JA, 8D Opponent's hand: ??, ??, AA, AB, 6D, 4A You have nothing but a jack of A as the highest thing, and you can tell that your opponent has a pair of aces, already beating you. However, you can get a straight with a 2 or 7, so stay in unless the bidding gets too high. Example 2: Your hand: 2A, 7B, 10C, KD, 4A, AB Opponent's hand: ??, ??, 10B, 9C, 10C, 5A You have nothing but an ace of B as the highest card, and you can tell that your opponent is beating you with a pair of 10s. The best you can do is get another ace to make it a pair, but that's a low chance. And besides, he may have other cards to make a better hand. Quit while you're not too poor to afford a plane ticket home. === --Video Poker-- Since you're not against anyone, this is not the time to play cautiously. Video Poker has nothing to do with skill. This is luck, plain and simple. Therefore, play for the biggest hand possible with what you've got. Example 1: Your hand: KB, KC, 10A, 5B, 4A This one is obvious; keep the kings and drop the rest. Let's go onto something more complex. Example 2: Your hand: 3A, 3B, 5C, 6C, 7D You *could* keep the 3s and go for a three of a kind, but you get a bigger payoff on a straight. So, dump one 3 and keep the rest. Hope for a 4 to make a 3 through 7 straight. Bottom line: always go for the higehst-valued hand. === --TEXAS HOLD 'EM-- You need to use a strategy that combines 5 Card Draw with 7 Card Stud. Don't fold until you have 6 cards total. Then, watch your opponents as they bet. If the betting exceeds 90% of the table maximum and you don't have at least a three of a kind of 7s or can't get it within one card, fold. Example 1: Your hand: 2, 5 Common cards: 4, 8, 10, J Betting is exceeding 90% of table max You don't have much here. Fold before you're screwed out of too much cash. Example 2: Your hand: 3, 8 Common cards: 4, 8, 6, K Betting is exceeding 90% of table max You don't have much, but if the last card is a 8, you've got three of a kind. Stay in, and if the seventh card is bad, you can fold then. Example 3: Your hand: 4, 5 Common cards: 2, 8, 10, Q Betting is less than 90% You don't have much and can't get three of a kind with only one additional card. Even though the betting is low, The best you could get is a pair of queens, but everyone would have it. Fold. Example 4: Your hand: 6, 10 Common cards: 4, 6, K, J, 6 You have three 6s, so watch the betting. If someone exceeds 90%, fold. Chances are, they've got a better hand then you, especially considering everyone's got a pair of 6s anyway. === --ROULETTE-- People say there's a system to this one. That's one of the most incorrect statements in the universe. The outcome of one spin has no effect on the next, or the one after, or the one after, or the one after... If you want to play it safe, bet the hit-or-miss bets. That is, even/odd, high/low, red/black. If you want to play it safe but want a decent profit, bet on dozens or columns. If you have money to burn, bet single rows, double rows, or 4-ways. Try to avoid betting on pairs or singles, because your chances are really low. Don't bet on more than one column or dozen. Betting on one of each is fine, but more than one in the same spin isn't worth it. Your losses will be twice as bad or your winnings will only be half as good. Example 1, the right way: -You bet $100 on first dozen. -If you win, you gain $200 (the odds are 2:1). -If you lose, you're out $100. Example 2, the wrong way: -You bet $100 on the first dozen and $100 on the second dozen. -If you win, you gain only $100. This is because while you won $200 for being right, you lose $100 for being wrong on the other. Math: 200 (winning bet) - 100 (losing bet) = 100 gained -If you lose, you're out $200. === --BIG SIX-- This game is stupid, and it's all luck. If you insist on playing it, I recommend that you bet on $5, $10, or $20. Anything else either has too low of a payoff or too low of a chance. === --MINI BACCARAT-- This game is stupid too. Too much luck is involved and there's no real way to predict the winner. Nothing can possibly help you. Plunk down some chips and pray. Just don't bet on "tie" because there's a very low chance you'll win. === --SLOTS-- Step 1) Insert coins. Step 2) Pull handle. Step 3a) If you win, jump up and down and cheer like a madman. Step 3b) If you lose, cuss out the machine and blame the loss on the annoying old woman who's playing the machine next to you (I know it's a game, but it's a sim, right?). Step 4) Go back to Step 1 as if nothing happened. === --GENERAL TIPS FOR ALL GAMES-- I have personally tested all these out, and they all help. Only do this one if you have a good imagination: Set the mood for the game. Do this by playing in the evening or at night after you've had a healthy meal. Keep a drink nearby; it doesn't matter what the drink is, but try to have it in a tall glass or wine glass. I perfer Mountain Dew or cream soda; the former to stay awake and play longer, the latter to simulate clear wine (not in taste, obviously). This may calm you and cause you to think better, especially when playing the technical game of blackjack. Quit while you're ahead. If you see that your account has risen a few thousand, stop playing. The goal is to increase your money in long run, not to watch it rise only to fall to rock bottom. Relax. Don't have your heart pounding out of your chest even if you bet a million dollars on red 32. Chill, take a cool drink of whatever if you're getting stressed or hot. Avoid the "luck only" games if you can. This includes video poker and roulette, but at least those have a very decent chance of winning. Avoid Mini Baccarat, Big Six, and Slots like the plague. Multiple players are good to have around. They can help you relax and provide something to do during the games. You can talk to them, laugh at them when they lose, cuss them out when they win, "accidently" pour your drink in their laps... (yes, I tested that out. I nearly got thrown through a window, too. ^_^) Always assume the dealer's hidden card is a 10. Even if you're playing slots, assume the dealer has a down card of 10. ALWAYS! If you're playing a game with computer opponents (all the poker games, for example), watch their payrolls. I've noticed that the computer tends to streak. That is, they'll win a bunch, then lose a bunch. If one of their amounts are really high or really low when compared to the rest, they may lose or win accordingly. === --HOW TO CHEAT THE SYSTEM-- Face it, in real Vegas you can't get away with much dishonesty. But since this is a game, little things can be exploited for profit. I only know of three right now, and I haven't tested out the first one yet. THE "EASY MONEY" METHOD Play all your money in the "Catch Of The Day" slot machine. During the spin, pause the game and change the player name to reset the purse. Your character will receive $1000 for resetting the purse, minus the $300 maximum bet allowing $700 to be made each time this is done. THE "JUMP START CASH" METHOD Start a new game and go into Roulette. Bet all your $1000 on your favourite number (yes, completely ignore the strategy I posted above). If you lose, just choose "continue" from the game over screen. You'll remain at the table WITH YOUR $1000 BACK!!! Just repeat this until you win. When you finally do, you'll have $35000 to play with, quite a nice way to start. A warning: it WILL take awhile! Only do this if you have extreme patience! THE "REWRITE HISTORY" METHOD You'll need to have a decent amount of cash, so you may want to perform the trick above. Then, enter your favourite poker game (I like 7 Card Stud, but that's just me). Choose your table amount, then take a seat at the table. As soon as you sit down and the game initiates, pull out the controller pak. It'll give you a message that the pak was removed, but just choose "Play without saving." Play your best. When you're done, try to exit the game and it will remind you that you need the controller pak to save. If you won, plug it in and save your profit. If you lost, say "cancel" or whatever (I forget what the option is), and reset the game, THEN YOUR MONEY WILL BE INTACT!!! Another warning though, and this one is HUGE... doing this MIGHT corrupt your save file! It's rare, but it happens, and it happened to my million-dollar account. Just make sure you pull out the pak when the game isn't reading it or saving to it. === --FINAL BLURBS AND LEGAL CRAP-- This is my first FAQ, I hope it helps your gaming. If you need further help or just want to chat about gaming in general, e-mail me at [email protected] I need to thank my friend Chris E., who provided me with the first cheat. This document is copyright 2000 of PyroFalkon. You may distribute this freely online without my permission. Just give me credit and don't take any money for it, and I don't really mind.