Wizard Of Odds Weekly Update February 08, 2019

First, let me apologize to anyone who followed my Super Bowl prop bet suggestion. I know they didn't do very well. They were based on an estimated 56.5 total points scored. Little did I know the game would have 16 points only. Nevertheless, I would be taking the credit if they did better, so I have to take my lumps that they didn't. So, I am sorry.

For this week's newsletter, the topic is a new game on field Trial at the Golden Nugget called Lucky Cat Blackjack. It is by game inventor Geoff Hall who is behind the "push 22" series of games, including Blackjack Switch, Free Bet Blackjack, Zappit, and Zombie Blackjack. I interviewed Geoff for sister site Blackjackinfo.com here: Interview with Geoff Hall.

Lucky Cat Blackjack is the closest to regular blackjack in his portfolio of games. It plays like regular blackjack, except if the dealer busts with 22, then four special Lucky Cat dice are rolled to determine the player's win on any bets left standing. The dice have a Lucky Cat symbol on one side and blanks on the other five. The pay table when the dealer has 22 is as follows:

Lucky Cats Pays
4 50 to 1
3 10 to 1
2 2 to 1
1 1 to 1
0 Push

After doing the math, the average win when the dealer busts with 22 is 0.81, obviously less than the guaranteed 1 to 1 in conventional blackjack. This increases the house edge by 1.44% compared to that in blackjack under the otherwise same rules.

At the Golden Nugget here are the full rules on the game:

  • Six decks
  • Blackjack pays 3 to 2
  • Dealer hits soft 17
  • Double after split allowed
  • Re-splitting aces allowed
  • Cut card shuffle

In conventional blackjack, that game would have a house edge of 0.57%. Adding 1.44% gets Lucky Cat to a 2.01% house edge.

It should be noted that a more liberal Lucky Cat pay table is available, which hopefully we'll see on other placements, although I fear the blackjack pay will be cut to 6 to 5.

While I can't recommend the astute player play this game, at least with the Golden Nugget 1-2-10-50 Lucky Cat pay table, I do wish Geoff success with it. Every table game manager seems to complain that conventional 3 to 2 blackjack is not very profitable, so I think games like Lucky Cat, are the way of the future.

I should have a full analysis of Lucky Cat Blackjack posted on Wizard of Odds shortly.