Overview of Bet the Deck II
In 2004, a trademark application was filed for the name and concept behind “Bet the Deck,” a hybrid table game designed for casino play by a company known as USA Gaming Incorporated.
The original version of Bet the Deck debuted at the Golden Nugget casino in Las Vegas, Nevada a short time later, but after a trial run on the gaming floor, the first version of Bet the Deck never gained any level of traction among players or casino managers.
By 2011, the trademark on Bet the Deck was allowed to lapse, as USA Gaming Inc. apparently shut their doors, so a company called Worldwide Gaming Incorporated stepped in and filed its own trademark claim on the same name. Headquartered in Hamel, Minnesota, the company has endured as a viable enterprise, but at this point focus is limited mostly to repairing and reselling casino equipment more so than designing, manufacturing, and marketing new games.
Through a few small tweaks, tinkering with the rules and gameplay structure, Worldwide Gaming Inc. was permitted to bring the second generation of Bet the Deck to market. The game, which will be referred to here as Bet the Deck II for clarity, appeared at the Flamingo Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, hitting the casino floor just a month after Worldwide Gaming Inc. entered the fray.
Low Popularity, No Online Options
Times may have changed, but the tastes of gamblers did not, and once again a version of Bet the Deck failed to attract sufficient support from players to justify continued offerings. At this point, Bet the Deck doesn’t appear to have garnered further invitations by casino managers and reported sightings of the game have slowed to a virtual standstill.
In terms of access through online casino platforms, neither Bet the Deck nor Bet the Deck II has been adapted for the internet.
As the second version of Bet the Deck is simply an offshoot of the original game, with only a few minor changes to the rules and structure, we recommend beginning with our full Bet the Deck game page. Here you’ll find a comprehensive explanation of the game’s rules, a walkthrough on how to play, full pay table information, and even a strategy section outlining important information on the house edges offered by each bet.
With that said, starting with the main Bet the Deck page is the best way to learn exactly how to play the game. Head there first, get acquainted with how the game works on a fundamental level, before returning to this page to see how Bet the Deck II compares.
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Rules and How to Play
As discussed earlier, in order to learn the full rules for Bet the Deck II, it’s crucial to begin here with our main Bet the Deck game page. Both games share the same basic structure in terms of table layout, available wagers, dealer mechanics, and game objective, with Bet the Deck II adjusting a few rules to differentiate itself from the original.
Table Layout and Betting
Bet the Deck II is a hybrid table game pitting one or more players against a lone dealer. The table setup and layout should feel familiar to anyone who has played table games like blackjack, baccarat, Three Card Poker, or Let It Ride before.
A standard deck of 52 playing cards is used in this game, and the deck will be shuffled upon the conclusion of each hand.
Players have the option to bet on various spaces on the table, with the primary betting spaces signifying card ranks. You’ll see a grid set up with 13 spaces, one for each card found in a single suit (2 to 10, J, Q, K, and A).
In addition to these main bets, players can also wager on the LoBall bet and the All Red or All Black bets (more information on how these bets work will be included below).
Playing Bet the Deck II
Players may place a wager on a single card bet, multiple card bets at the same time, or any combination of card bets and the alternative wagers listed directly above. The card bet isn’t mandatory, and players can always opt to skip the cards altogether in favor of the riskier (but potentially more lucrative) alternative bets.
Once all players at the table have placed their wagers, the dealer will burn one card face down before dealing out the next three cards in the deck face up. These three cards are the “community cards” – a concept used in many poker games, most famously Texas Hold’em.
This provides one of the main differences between Bet the Deck II and its predecessor, as the first incarnation of the game had the dealer distribute four community cards face up. In this game, however, that fourth community card is replaced by an implied Joker card, which means during each hand all players are granted a free “wild card” which can be used to help complete hands.
In the original Bet the Deck game, players could opt to place the Joker bet, at which point they would have access to a wild card, but Bet the Deck II simply incorporates the Joker card into every hand.
Getting a Winning Hand
The objective of Bet the Deck II is to form the best possible five-card poker hand, using your “hole card” (or the card rank you’ve wagered on), the implied Joker card, and the three community cards. The higher your hand according to the traditional poker hand hierarchy, the higher your subsequent payout will be (full pay table information coming up).
When you bet on the 9, for example, a community card run out of 9 A A would create a powerful hand as your nine combined with three aces (the two on board and your implied Joker card) form a full house. Should the community cards look something like 5 7 8, you would use your nine while turning the Joker card into a six to complete a 5 6 7 8 9 straight.
Another way to win when not making the card rank bets is to guess the composition of the three community cards. When making the LoBall bet, for example, players win when the three community card are all ranked as 8 or lower. For the purposes of this bet, Aces are considered to be low cards, so community boards like 2 4 8 or A 3 5 would produce winning LoBall bets.
Betting on All Red or All Black is simple enough, as you’ll be looking for all three of the community cards to appear in the same color (hearts and / or diamonds; clubs and / or spades).
When it comes to the pay table used in Bet the Deck, the minimum hand you’ll need to qualify for a payout stands at three of a kind. Because the Joker card makes forming high poker hands that much easier, basic hands like one pair and two pairs simply don’t pass muster.
Bet the Deck II Paytable
The full pay table for card rank bets can be found below:
The minimum qualifying hand of three of a kind pays out at even money, a flush escalates to a 3 to 1 payout, and so on up the ladder. The highest possible hand in Bet the Deck II is five of kind, which can be made whenever the three community cards are all identical and you have a card rank bet placed on that card. By using your Joker card, this completes five of a kind.
When it comes to the LoBall bet, winning wagers will be paid out at 6 to 1, while winning wagers on either the All Red or All Black bet will pay out at 16 to 1.
As soon as the dealer has evaluated all pending wagers and dispensed the appropriate payouts, the deck will be reshuffled and a new hand will begin.
Best Places to Play Bet the Deck
The bad news first: both Bet the Deck and Bet the Deck II are essentially obsolete game concepts in 2016. After each game was given a trial run in a popular Las Vegas casino property, neither was able to generate the level of player support needed to be added to the full-time menu of table games.
Searching online reveals that players have, for all intents and purposes, ceased reporting live sightings of any Bet the Deck or Bet the Deck II tables in a brick and mortar casino.
With that said, it’s never a bad idea phone up your local casino and ask to speak with the table games manager. Simply asking about the game’s status doesn’t cost a thing, and with fortune on your side, you may even happen to locate a Bet the Deck II table out there somewhere.
Strategic Considerations for Bet the Deck II
The basic strategy for a hybrid table game like Bet the Deck II, in which players have no decisions to make which might affect the eventual outcome, is simply to avoid making the “sucker bets” on the table.
With numerous betting options at your disposal, the casino is counting on you to put your money in bad, or to place wagers on the bets which offer the highest house edge. If you can limit your action to the game’s most favorable wagers, from the player’s perspective, you’ll automatically put yourself on the right side of variance when compared to uninformed bettors.
Betting the House Edge
Basic Card Bets
When you bet on the basic card rank spaces, the house edge against you equates to 3.14 percent. In terms of table games, this is actually quite reasonable, with double zero roulette wheels offering a much steeper 5.26 percent house edge by comparison. Still, with games like blackjack and baccarat offering house edges under 1.25 percent (and in the case of optimal strategy blackjack, under 0.50 percent), playing Bet the Deck II still represents a bit of a gamble.
All Red / All Black Bets
Both the All Red and All Black bets offer the same house edge of 6.12 percent. This number isn’t very player friendly, and making alternative wagers like this on a regular basis can be the kiss of death for your bankroll.
Finally, the LoBall bet carries a house edge of 7.02 percent, once again falling into the range of wagers which are simply not sustainable from a money management perspective.
Avoid Alternate Wagers
With these numbers in mind, clearly the best strategy when playing Bet the Deck II is to avoid the alternative wagers at all costs while sticking to the card rank bets at all times. By doing so, you’ll immediately shave the house edge against you by nearly half, without sacrificing any of the game’s fundamental appeal.