The Archer Method
THIS PAGE IS NOT COMPLETED! Shy will get around to it eventually.
Follow the method logic in sequence. That is, see if you should
split first. If not, then see if you should surrender. If not,
then see if you should double down. If not, then see if you
should draw a card. The method below works with single-deck
- The BASIC Method
- Decline insurance.
- Splitting Pairs
- Always split aces and eights
- Never split tens, fives, or fours
- Split nines when the dealer's up card is a two, three, four,
five, six, eight, or nine.
- Split twos, threes, sixes, and sevens when the dealer's up
card is two, three, four, five, six, or seven.
- Surrender if you have a hard fifteen or hard sixteen, and
the dealer's up card shows a card with the value of ten.
- Doubling Down
- Hard Hands
- Always double down with eleven
- Double with ten, when the dealer's up card is two, three, four,
five, six, seven, eight, or nine
- Double with nine, when the dealer's up card is two, three, four,
five, or six
- Do not double down with any other hand
- Soft Hands
- Double down with soft thirteen, fourteen, fifteen, or sixteen,
when the dealer's up card is four, five, or six
- Double down with soft seventeen and soft eighteen, when the
dealer's up card is three, four, five, or six.
- Do not double down with any other soft hand
- Hard Hand
- Stand on seventeen or above
- Draw to twelve, if the dealer's up card is two or three
- Stand with twelve, thirteen, fourteen, fifteen, and sixteen,
when the dealer's up card is two, three, four, five, or six
- Draw to less than twelve
- Soft Hand
- Stand on nineteen or above
- Draw to soft eighteen, when the dealer's up card is a nine
or valued at ten
- Stand on soft eighteen, when the dealer's card is NOT a
nine or valued at ten
- Draw to soft seventeen or less
- Advanced Archer Method
- Keep a count of the deck's "weight," by adding "1" for all
cards dealt that do not have a value of ten, and subtracting "2"
for all cards dealt that have a value of ten. With a freshly
shuffled deck, make the count zero, and then add the weight for
the cards that may be visible on the table. Deck weight less
than four is favorable to the dealer. Deck weight greater than
four is favorable to the player (there are exceptions, such as
if the deck is full or depleated in the course of the game). It
is easier to make this count at the end of a deal, when all cards
are face up. YOU MUST PRACTICE THIS! Confused? Get
the book. You must make the count during the deal, taking
the dealer's up card, the cards in your hand, and all of the
other player's cards you see. When playing at a table with other
players, sit in the last chair to be delt to--- sit to every
other player's left (EXCEPT ONE IF THE TABLE IS FULL OF
PLAYERS, i.e. sit at chair 5), so you may count the cards
they draw. Wait to see what the other players draw, if they
draw, before you make your decision, based upon the deck's weight,
to stand, draw, or double-down with the additional rules below.
Still confused? Get the book.
- Vary your wager based upon the deck's weight. When the deck's
weight is four or less, bet the minimum allowed. When the deck's
weight is greater than four, bet in porportion to the weight. That
is, bet more if the weight is ten than if it is six. If the deck's
weight is fifteen, bet more than if it's ten.
- Don't be greedy all the time. Dealer's will spot casers. Do not
bet large amounts every time the deck is in your favor: dealers will
spot this and shuffle the deck on you, resetting your count of the
deck's weight. If this happens, go to another casino.
- Ignore hunches. Luck does not exist. It is ALL mathematics
and statistics. Only fools have hunches in casinos.
- When the deck's weight is four or higher
- Stand when you have hard fifteen or hard sixteen, and the
dealer's up card has the value of ten.
- Stand when you have hard twelve and the dealer's up card is
two, three, four, five, or six. If your hard twelve is two sixes,
split as in the Basic Method.
- Double down when you have hard nine, and the dealer's up card
is two, three, four, five, six, or seven.
- Double down when you have hard eight, and the dealer's up card
is five or six.
- Double down when you have soft nineteen, and the dealer's
up card is five or six.
- Double down when you have soft eighteen, and the dealer's
up card is two, three, four, five, or six.
- Double down when you have soft seventeen, and the dealer's
up card is two, three, four, five, or six.
- Count cards, for the deck weight, that you cannot see but can
- If the Dealer's up card is an ace, and he does not turn over his
hole card, that card is a non-ten. Add "1" to your deck weight count.
- If another player draws a card with the value of ten but he or
she does not bust, both of that player's cards must be non-ten cards.
Add NOTHING for these cards, because the sum of two non-ten
cards ("+1" each) and one ten-valued card ("-2") equals zero.
- If a player draws a ten-value card, and then another small card,
and does not go bust, you know that player's hole cards must both
be non-tens. Add "1" to the total: three non-ten cards ("+1" each)
and one ten-value card ("-2") equals "+1" every time.
- If a play stands pat on her or his initial two cards, chances
are good that she or he has one non-ten card and one ten-value
card. Count all pat hands (hands with two cards only!) as "-1,"
that is, subtract "1" from your deck weight count.
- Count the burn card, if possible. Most dealers will take a card
from the top of the deck (after shuffling) and put it face-up on the
bottom of the deck. If you see what card was burned--- non-ten or a
ten-value card--- start your deck weight count from that value. Most
dealers will hide this card from your sight. Don't look too
intently: you don't want to draw attention to yourself.
- Try to see the bottom card when the deck is cut. Don't make
a show of doing so!
- Look at your neighbors' cards if possible, but again don't
make a show of it. Remember you're all playing against the house
and not each other. Let your neighbors casually see your cards:
it doesn't harm you, and it may help them and perhaps they will
casually show their cards to you.
- Correct your inferred count after you have made your
decisions and the dealer's showdown is complete. That is, if you
inferred that a player who stood pat with her or his original two
cards had 1 non-ten card and 1 ten-value card (yielding "-1" added
to the deck weight count), revide the count when this player
turns both cards over for the dealer to see. The count on inferred
cards is provisional, and should be revised when possible.
- If a dealer starts to shuffle too often, or turns over player's
hands at the showdown (to pay off or collect the wager) in such a
way that you can no longer count the discarded cards, find another
table or another casino: the dealer knows you're casing the deck.
- Play with as few other players as possible. Just you against
the dealer is optimum. It helps you keep count, and you may play
more hands in a period of time.
- More Advanced Archer Method
- When the deck weight count is five or higher, take insurance
if the dealer has an Ace and offers insurance. The higher the
weight count, the more ten-value cards in the deck, and the
more likely the dealer has a ten-value card in the hole: Twenty-One.
to Shy David's Archer Method Page.