What is Punto Banco?
There are a few variations to the Baccarat game, but Punto Banco is by far the most popular and widespread version and the only version found in online casinos. It is also the easiest and most basic form of the Baccarat game. In most online casinos you will find Baccarat under the name Punto Banco instead of Baccarat. The object of the game is to bet on the hand that you think will come closest to 9, you can also bet on a tie, although this is not adviced since the chance of this happening is relatively small. The name comes from the two sides or hands that will be dealt, the player hand is the “Punto” hand and the Bank hand is the “Banco” hand.
How to Play Punto Banco
Punto Banco is played on an oval table and the number of players that can join a game may differ from casino to casino. Usually six to eight decks of cards are shuffled, with the card shoe moving from one player to another during the rounds. The player with the shoe acts as the Bank, although this role is purely ceremonial. Two sets of cards are dealt, the Punto hand and the Banco hand. The player with the highest Punto bet gets the Punto cards and turns over the cards announcing the total of the two cards.
Wen the Punto or Banco wants a third card, the Bank deals these cards when necessary, then the totals are called out. No more than three cards are dealt and tens and face cards are worth zero, aces are worth one and all other cards are worth face value. When the total of the two or three cards of a hand exceeds 10, the last digit counts. So, when the hand is for example 7 and 8, the total is 15, which equals to 5. The highest number that can be achieved is 9.
Drawing a Third Card
In both online Punto Banco as live Punto Banco both the player and the Bank may draw a third card, but only under certain conditions. The player may only draw a third card when the toal is between 0 and 5, the player stand when the total is between 6 and 9. The Bank has much more rules for drawing a third card. When the Bank has 0-2 he must draw a third card. With a 3 the bank must stand when the Punto has an 8, otherwise draw. A 4 lets the bank stand when Punto has 1,8,9. With a 5, stand when Punto has 1,2,3,8,9. Bank 6, then, stand when Punto has 1,2,3,4,5,8,9. Bank always stands with 7 or higher.