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Lesser-known Variants and Rules of Blackjack

March 14, 2023

What are the lesser-known rules and variants of Blackjack?

It is one of the most popular games of the casino and for that reason sees numerous variations.

These variants take names often inspired by their origins, the way they are played or even a particular characteristic.

In this article we will discover what are the most played variants and what are their unusual rules that make them both unique and interesting to play.


A very interesting version of Blackjack that is mainly characterized by the absence of the 10.

The deck with which you play is not in fact made up of 52 cards, but of 48, or the same deck from which the 10 were removed.

It is not the only peculiarity of the Spanish 21, so let’s see below what are the aspects that differentiate it from its original version and why.

Unusual rules of Spanish 21
  • Cards with a value of 10 are excluded from the deck. This might seem like a penalizing rule for the player, however it is well balanced by subsequent changes;
  • The player wins if he/she reaches 21. It does not matter if the dealer also gets the same value, in this case the player will prevail over the dealer;
  • You can leave your hand at any time. Even after doubling or splitting;
  • A bonus win is up to players who reach 21 with more cards. If the player reaches 21 with 5, 6 or even 7 cards there is a bonus win given their low probability of success.

This interesting version is also called Pontoon in Australia, it respects roughly the same peculiarities with the addition of an interesting addition: the dealer does not receive the hole card thus leaving more margin of strategy to the player.


Although it may resemble an elegant version of the rubamazzo, this is a variant that really exists; and is available at both live tables and online casinos.

In Blackjack Switch the player, having two spins in hand, is authorized to exchange a card between the two plays.

Unusual Blackjack Switch Rules
  • Each player will have to play two hands at the same time;
  • both hands must have the same bet;
  • Within these two hands the player is allowed to exchange a card.

In this way you can exchange two mediocre hands for a winning one.

The main disadvantage of this version of the game lies in the push rule of 22.

In case the dealer reaches the score of 22, all other bets become push, even if you already have 21.

In this situation only the player who has made blackjack is saved.


From the same inventor of the Switch comes the Free Bet.

In this version the player who has reached the total of 9, 10 or 11, is offered the possibility of having the win doubled.

Here’s how it works in practice

Unusual Free Bet Blackjack Rules
  • The player who has reached the total score of 9, 10 or 11 is awarded an additional chip whose nominal value is equal to the initial bet;
  • At this point three scenarios can be outlined:
    • the dealer wins and the player loses his original bet;
    • the hand becomes push, the player receives back his bet and no winnings;
    • The player wins, in this case the dealer will pay the winnings plus a sum equivalent to the original bet.
  • there is also the Free Split option that generates additional scenarios:
    • it is possible only with a score of 10;
    • in case of split the original bet will remain on the first hand and will be assigned (as Free Bet) a chip of equivalent value on the second hand;
    • both hands will be played at the same time and in case of a re-split the player will be entitled to another chip as a Free Bet.
    • each winning hand, on which a Free Bet has been affixed, will be paid by the dealer with real chips.

Also in this case there is the push rule of 22, which is basically the main disadvantage of this version.

So, in case the dealer reaches the score of 22, all other bets become push, even if you already have 21.


We have deliberately left for last the wildest variant of this famous board game.

Invented by the famous player Howard Grossman who has packaged a version full of rules that leave ample room for the player.

Another peculiarity is that you play with a single deck, a peculiarity much loved by players, although many casinos offer it in the multi-deck version.

If on the one hand the Super Fun 21 offers rules with ample freedom of manoeuvre, on the other it tends to limit the winnings a little. In fact, the dealer will pay only the bets actually played, cutting on all bonuses. The only exception is the point of the dressed blackjack that will pay 2 to 1.

Unusual Super Fun 21 Rules

Here are the rules so loved by players of this version:

  • Doubling granted with any number of cards, after having already split the pairs and with the split of the aces;
  • it is allowed to leave with any number of cards and after doubling;
  • the split of the pairs is granted with any pair, including different figures that have the same value;
  • resplit is granted up to 4 hands, including ace resplit;
  • the player’s blackjack beats the dealer’s;
  • Dress blackjack pays double;

With such elastic rules, we are not surprised that it is the preferred version of experienced players.