Spanish 21, played with a shoe of 8 Spanish card decks, is basically standard blackjack with one major twist: Spanish decks do not contain 10s, skewing the deal further against the player. At first glance, this seems like it wouldn’t be worth playing due to the decreased odds, but Spanish 21 draws players in by offering bonuses for other combinations.
Without further ado, here is our in-depth play guide for Spanish 21, a popular blackjack variation:
First, a quick rundown of the rules of the game, which are fairly standard. Some highlights:
The objective, like most blackjack games is to reach 21 or have a higher card combination than the dealer without exceeding 21.
This is where Spanish 21 makes up for the seeming disadvantage to players. With the different bonus rules, the game ends up being one of the better bets compared to blackjack and its many other variations. Here is a rundown of the bonus combinations (which are not applicable after doubling down):
Because of the game’s lack of 10s, it changes the dynamics of logic that we have come to know for many different blackjack games and their variations. Hitting on a 15, for example, comes with a slightly lower risk. On the other side of the coin, it is harder to hit a blackjack for players and the dealer.
Since one of the highest value cards is removed from Spanish 21 completely, players are forced to rethink decisions that come to be instinctive in standard blackjack. Lower cards are more common, bringing the unlimited double down rules into play.
There can also be three splits per hand (many blackjack games cap splits after one) so there is an increased potential for big wins here, as well as in all the bonus combinations.
Spanish 21 does throw a curve ball when compared to standard blackjack mechanics, and thus does provide a change in pace to true blackjack enthusiasts looking for a new challenge