How to Play Lucky Nine
At the beginning of the game, the dealer prepares the cards by thoroughly shuffling them and, after the cards are cut by a player, places them inside the shoe.
Then, each player must place their bet in the betting area of the Lucky Nine table. When all bets are placed, the dealer, starting on the player to his right, distributes two cards face down to each player who placed a bet and to himself.
The players and the banker then get to peak at their respective hands. Hands that have a total of 9 are called “naturals.” For example, a hand that has two of spades and seven of hearts has a total of nine; the hand is therefore called a natural.
If a player gets a natural, he should immediately show his hand to the dealer. The dealer then announces the total, and the hand is placed in front of the player. If the dealer does not have a natural, the player wins, and his bet is paid out. However, if the dealer also has a natural, it is considered a stand-off or a tie and the player gets his bet back.
If the dealer has a natural, and no other player has a natural, the dealer wins. The dealer then collects all of the players’ bets and another betting round is started.
If neither the players nor the dealer draws a natural, they can either “stand” or make a “hit” (draw a third card). This is where strategy comes to play, and where the fun and excitement in Lucky Nine starts. Unlike Baccarat, Lucky Nine does not have strict rules for drawing a third card. It’s entirely up to the players and the dealer whether they’ll “hit” or “stand”.
Bear in mind that a hand can become much less favorable after a “hit”. For example, if your first two cards have a total of five and the third card you draw is the seven of diamonds, your hand total becomes 12. Since the hand exceeds nine, the value is adjusted by subtracting 10 from the total. Therefore, your hand value is reduced to two.
The player on the dealer’s right gets to decide first whether he’ll “stand” or “hit”; followed by the player to his right, and so on and so forth. Then when all the players have made their decision, it’s the dealer’s turn to choose whether he’ll “stand” or “hit”. The dealer then asks the players to reveal their hands and then shows his own hand.
The total of each of the players’ hand is compared to the total of the dealer’s hand. If the total of a player’s hand is closer to nine than that of the dealer’s, the player wins and his bet is paid out. However, if the dealer’s hand is closer to nine than that of the player’s, the dealer wins, and the dealer then collects the player’s bet.
If a player and the dealer has the same hand total, it is considered a stand-off or a tie and the player gets his bet back.
After all bets are settled, another round is started.
Learn how to play Lucky Nine at LuckyNine.com, your comprehensive online guide to Lucky Nine.