Baccarat is often portrayed as a sophisticated and elegant casino game – James Bond plays it, after all – but it’s actually a simple guessing game. Bets are placed on either the Player, Banker or a Tie hand, and whichever one is closest to 9 wins. The game is regulated by strict rules, but it is simple to learn and requires no strategy.
Cards are dealt from a shoe, and two cards are given to the Player hand and the Banker hand. A third card is sometimes dealt to either hand depending on the situation. The hand that gets the highest total is the winner. The Player and Banker hands never get more than three cards. In a tie, both hands get the same value. There are also standard house rules determining when the Player hand or the Banker hand will require a third card.
All tens and face cards are worth 0 points, and the ace equals one point. When the points go over nine or enter double digits, the second digit becomes the new total.
In addition to the original Player and Banker bets, players can place side bets on Super Six or Pairs in baccarat. In the event of a tie, a side bet is paid out at 8:1 while a pair bet pays out at 9:1. Baccarat is played on large tables and the croupier uses a palette at larger tables to move the cards with ease. Players should always tip the croupier after winning on a tie, a Super Six bet or a pair bet.