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I'm playing a black jack game that does not allow splitting. My question is, do I play A/A as a soft 12 or hard 2? If I play it as a soft 12, do I follow the same hit/stand procedures as say a soft 13 (in other words, double if the dealer shows 5 or 6). Recommendations? Should I ALWAYS play it as soft until it becomes a hard number (provided I'm not at 18 through 21)??

Thanks for your input

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3 Answers 3

up vote 5 down vote accepted

I am no expert but this would be my answer.

I would play it as a soft 12, like a soft 13, and hold on to a good position (18 to 21) unless it becomes a hard number. This seems to be the most practical solution I could think of.

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Welcome to the site. An upvote to get you going. –  Tom Au Sep 9 '12 at 0:45

You're obviously going to hit, so the only question is whether to double or not. Since you have about a 70% chance of ending at something 16 or lower on a double, you really have to be looking for the dealer to bust. There's no chance of you busting, so if the dealer is showing a lousy card like a 5 or a 6, doubling seems to make sense. Otherwise, I'd just take a hit and proceed from there.

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It's hard to say for sure, because there aren't a lot of places that prevent you from splitting aces, so there isn't a lot of strategy available that I could find about a soft 12 that says anything other than "split them, duh." From what I could find, it looks to me like the consensus is to play a soft 12 just a bit more conservatively than a soft 13.

One site I found recommends playing a soft 12 as a soft 13 unless the dealer has a 5 or 6 showing; in that case, he mentions doubling down on 13 through 18, but does not mention 12. That could be an oversight, or it could mean he would just hit a soft 12 ... he does mention a soft 12 in other situations. (I have seen this mentioned other places too ... not sure who posted it first.)

Another one plays them the same except for a 6, where you would double down with 13 but not with 12. That site specifically mentions a soft 12 separately from A-A (so you know to split aces if you can and hit if you can't - he does not recommend doubling down with soft 12 against anything.

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