There are more blackjack games in casinos than any other. Depending on the casino if you add up every other table game there may still be more blackjack tables. According to UNLV Center For Gaming Research, 52.7% of Nevada’s table games were blackjack in 2020.
The percentage of blackjack tables can be a bit deceptive. While it’s true there are more blackjack games than others, it’s not as dominant as they used to be. Overall, the percentage of blackjack games in Nevada casinos has fallen every decade UNLV has on file. Take a look:
- 1985: 80.66%
- 1990: 76.05%
- 2000: 64.44%
- 2010: 56.27%
- 2020: 52.7%
It may not be best to look at 2020 numbers as casinos adjusted their tables due to the coronavirus pandemic. Less than 5% of table games in Nevada were “other” games like War and High Card Flush. This was an atypical year for table game allotments in casinos.
Look at the “Others”
2019 was the last year Nevada casinos had all table games available prior to coronavirus limiting capacity on the gaming floor. Let’s look at the breakdown of different Nevada table games in 2019:
- Blackjack: 53.94%
- Other: 19.71%
- Roulette: 10.11%
- Craps: 8.11%
- Baccarat: 8.13%
Similar to blackjack variants, plenty of new “other” table games shuffle in and out of casinos over the years. Casino operators are always looking for new entertainment options for their guests.
Blackjack, baccarat, craps, and roulette are the most popular games in casinos. However, games like 3 Card Poker are becoming staples in casinos today.
In recent years, 3 Card Poker has become as ubiquitous as those games. The new Mohegan Sun Casino website even touts 3 Card Poker with the others:
“From Blackjack and Baccarat to Craps, Roulette, and Three-Card-Poker, our 50+ tables are always set for a good time.”
3 Card Poker and most “other” games are attractive to casinos because they typically have a larger house edge than the worst blackjack games. Nowadays jackpot wins are popular in casinos. You can see this in table games and slot machines. Volatility and skill be damned, eventually, those progressive jackpots will hit!
Is the entertainment value playing games that involve no skill more popular than games where a player needs to think a little?
Blackjack is a game of skill
One of the reasons so many people love blackjack is that it always involves some kind of skill. Half the fun of playing blackjack is being able to outplay the dealer.
A recreational player may learn basic plays so they look as though they know what they’re doing. Intermediate players try to master basic strategy to maximize their returns playing blackjack. Experienced blackjack players typically learn how to count cards and properly adjust their bets to swing the house edge in their favor.
Blackjack is one of the few games of skill inside casinos. The majority of gambling options inside casinos are more like games of chance. There’s little to no skill involved with most other casino games. Live and video poker are two exceptions.
“Other” games are becoming popular in part because they’re easy games to play that don’t involve much thinking and have the potential for large jackpots. Having said that, blackjack remains the most popular game in the casino because there are still people who like to think a little.
Even recreational players looking for fun in between complimentary cocktails like using their brain (for better or worse) to play blackjack.