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Laying on the Line

Gambling Times welcomes letters from its readers expressing a wide range of views. Letters should be kept as brief as possible and must be signed. Names will be withheld upon request, and Gambling Times reserves the right to edit letters when necessary. Please and your letters to: Laying it on the Line, Gambling Times Magazine, 839 N. Highland Ave., Hollywood, CA 90038.

Blackjack at Caesars

I had the opportunity to play blackjack at the new Caesars Regency Casino in Atlantic City and found that they deal a slightly different game from Resorts International Casino.

Caesars uses mostly six decks (Resorts four and six), and the burned card at the start of a shoe and when there is a change of dealers during a shoe is not faced (at Resorts it is). In both casinos, the dealer does not look at his hole card until all player hands are completed. At Caesars, on all dealers' 10 or ace upcard, the dealer will momentarily stop and ask all players if they want to surrender (similar to the insurance announcement). If you don't surrender when this announcement is made, they won't let you when your turn comes. An exception is if dealer shows a nine (or less) as an upcard. Then the house will allow you to surrender on your turn. If dealer shows an ace after the surrender announcement, the dealer will announce insurance. If you happen to surrender your hand, then you can't take insurance. At Resorts, no mention is made of surrender by the dealerit's up to the player to surrender when his turn comes. When I questioned a Caesars pitboss about this rule, his answer was "it emphasizes the surrender rule and makes more money for the house."

Henry J. Tamburin, Toms River, NJ

September Issue Comments

Your September issue was beautiful-if one is interested in a sure loser, slots. Any game or device that "guarantees" an 80 or 90 percent return on your money is not for me or anybody else I associate with.

Maybe there are some serious gamblers who play the slots, but I know of none. As a former resident of Las Vegas for over four years, the only consistent electronic device players I've seen are mostly women and tourists who wouldn't know the odds on a crap table or the rules of baccarat if you drew them a diagram.

I am a serious and heavy bettor in just about any game where I think I might have an edge. To see nearly a complete issue of your fine magazine devoted to the losers was very disappointing.

Now that football season is underway, I was hoping for a rundown on the teams. Hopefully, you will have this information real soon.

Wayne B. Redmond Steilacoom, WA

Likes Huey's Approach

Huey Mahl's article "The Baccarat Caper" (May 1979) was terrific. I am interested in trying this approach and plan to visit Las Vegas this winter. Could you give me the names of two or three casinos on the Strip and downtown which offer mini-baccarat with $2-$500 limits?

I would also like to know if any of the casinos offer less than a $2 minimum bet for baccarat.

Ronald Kennedy, Pompton Lakes, NJ

A number of casinos offer minibaccarat-The Golden Nugget downtown and the Sahara on the Strip, to name two. The minimum bet is $2. -Ed


I have been a reader for a number of years, and I have a few questions about blackjack strategy.

First, is it to the dealer's or the player's advantage when the dealer has to hit soft 17? Also, what do I do in the following situations: dealer holds 6, 1 have 4,4; dealer holds 10, 1 have 16; dealer holds 3, 1 have 12; dealer holds 7, 1 hold soft 18; and dealer holds 8, 1 hold soft 18?

Dick Strasburger Miami, FL

We'll take your questions in order to simplify the answer. First, it's to the dealer's advantage to hit a soft 17 On the rest of your questions, assume Las Vegas rules, single-deck game with surrender permitted No doubling after splitting a pair. Against a dealer's 6 with the player holding 4,4, double down; with the dealer holding 10 and player holding 16, surrender, except for 8,8 (split) and 10,6 (hit); dealer holds 3, player holds 12, hit, dealer holds 7, player holds soft 18, stand; dealer holds 8, player holds soft 18, stand.-Ed

Hold 'em

For as long as I have been a subscriber to your magazine, I have never seen any articles with tips, concepts and basic strategy for hold 'em poker. Do you have any articles scheduled in the near future for hold 'em? If not, then can you recommend a book (other than Sklansky's, which I already have)?

I play cards across the river in the card rooms of Vancouver, and hold 'em is the big game there. I like the fast action of this game and am always on the hunt for more knowledge, thus gaining an edge. That's why I subscribe to Gambling Times.

J. Wreath Portland, OR

We have made a contractual agreement with one of our poker writers and hope to begin a series on hold 'em poker within the next few issues. Keep reading.-Ed.

Room Service

I went to Las Vegas for the first time in April, and the casino people said I did something there that was never done before. I thought your readers would be interested. My wife and I stayed at the MGM. The room key at the MGM has a base that is the exact size of the silver dollar. I noticed this immediately.

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