This complete baccarat tutorial will make you play like a pro!

You don't need a lot in order to learn how to play baccarat. It is quite simple and luck plays a bigger part than skill. It has become very popular among gamblers worldwide because it's uncomplicated and easy to learn. The rules are fuss-free and easy to understand. All you need is to form a hand that totals to as close to 9. Previously, baccarat was only played by royalty but it has evolved over the past decades and has now become a game for the masses.

Compared to other games which put great value to kings, queens, jacks and aces, these cards have no value in baccarat. In fact, the ace has the lowest value at 1 point. Cards from two until nine are taken at face value. The only thing important in this match is the card's numeric value regardless of its suit. A 5 card whether a heart, diamond, spade or club is still valued at 5 and so is the case for the others.

In casinos, a card dealer is involved but if it is played elsewhere, it is only between two people - the banker (banco) and the player (punto). If there is no card dealer, players can alternately distribute the cards between the two of them. There will also be instances when there is a third player, who is called a standoff. This is totally optional and you can still enjoy the game even if it is only between you and your friend.

As said earlier, the main goal is to get a hand that has a value that's close to 9. The hand with the total nearest to nine wins. If a player gets a total of eight or nine at the start of the game, it is known as a "natural" and he automatically wins. If this doesn't happen, both players get one more card. The game uses six up to eight card decks. The cards face down initially and are only flipped when the bets have been placed. If you happen to play in casinos, taxes may be imposed on the banco and punto's pools. All cards must not exceed a total of 10. When the total is a 2-digit sum, only the right digit is counted. For example, if a player has a deck that totals to 14, his score is only 4. Another card will be drawn and its value will be added to the initial value of the hand, i.e., if he gets another card and it is a 5, his total now becomes a 9. If it exceeds 10 again, then only the right digit will be considered again.