# Discount Gambling

## Knockout Baccarat

Posted in baccarat by stephenhow on February 15, 2013

I was browsing the web tonight, and saw one of the game publishers that I follow placed their new Knockout Baccarat game at a casino in the UK. It’s a variation on baccarat, where you post an Ante on the Player or Banker, then they deal the first player card face up. You then decide to 2x raise your Ante, or fold. The hand is then played out following standard drawing rules. If your hand wins, then your Ante is paid even-money, and your Raise bet is paid odds depending on the losing hand total.

Raise Paytable
Losing Total Raise Payout
6-8 2:1
4-5 1:1
0-3 1:2

I decided to analyze the game, to see if any part of it was countable. You never know, people make vulnerable games, and you might find some double-digit exploit. Well, to cut to the chase, this new game isn’t very countable. I did find the game was kind of pointless, and that the Player bet is a lot worse than with regular baccarat.

I ran the numbers, and there’s no decision. You always 2x Raise your Ante. You just pick Banker or Player before the hand begins, and that’s it. Folding is never even a close option. The Banker bet has a 4.72% house edge, and the Player bet has a 10.98% house edge. Before you roll over in shock, you should really divide these edges by 3, since you’re always 2x raising your Ante. So, the element-of-risk is 1.57% for Banker, and 3.66% for Player.

Update: Oh, I see. Sometimes you win more than even-money, sometimes you win less. That’s different, I guess. Still, that could be done without the needless extra step of the 2x raise. The raise becomes silly once everyone realises you always make it. (Even against a player 9, you still make the 2x Banker Raise. Folding is a mistake costing at least 31% of the Ante.)

Banker Outcome Net Frequency Probability Return
win vs. 8 5 55,279,842,324,480 0.011060 0.055298
win vs. 7 5 158,356,022,816,768 0.031681 0.158407
win vs. 6 5 257,091,239,776,256 0.051435 0.257174
win vs. 5 3 209,913,277,599,744 0.041996 0.125988
win vs. 4 3 248,966,126,419,968 0.049809 0.149428
win vs. 3 2 287,320,282,048,512 0.057482 0.114965
win vs. 2 2 307,130,524,108,800 0.061446 0.122892
win vs. 1 2 327,378,644,353,024 0.065497 0.130993
win vs. 0 2 440,816,606,990,336 0.088192 0.176383
lose -3 2,230,518,282,592,260 0.446247

-1.338740
push 0 475,627,426,473,216 0.095156

0.000000
total 4,998,398,275,503,360 1.000000 -0.047213
Player Outcome Net Frequency Probability Return
win vs. 8 5 55,165,968,408,576 0.011037 0.055184
win vs. 7 5 155,954,129,788,928 0.031201 0.156004
win vs. 6 5 239,782,224,326,656 0.047972 0.239859
win vs. 5 3 246,959,201,783,808 0.049408 0.148223
win vs. 4 3 267,343,809,949,696 0.053486 0.160458
win vs. 3 2 268,582,958,172,160 0.053734 0.107468
win vs. 2 2 280,469,279,004,672 0.056112 0.112224
win vs. 1 2 301,505,544,974,336 0.060320 0.120641
win vs. 0 2 414,755,166,183,424 0.082978 0.165955
lose -3 2,292,252,566,437,890 0.458597

-1.375792
push 0 475,627,426,473,216 0.095156

0.000000
total 4,998,398,275,503,360 1.000000 -0.109777

I checked the EORs for these bets, and they’re on the order of blackjack EORs relative to the Ante. So you’re not likely to overcome the 4.72% Banker Ante edge. Thus the main bets are not very countable.

There’s a bunch of side bets you can make, but they’re not very good, nor very countable. The Ideal Countability column lists the average return of a fixed bet per shoe, made using an ideal count (perfect shoe composition info), for an 8-deck shoe with 16 cards behind the cut-card.

Knockout Baccarat Sidebets
Sidebet Payout Return Ideal Countability
Player Natural Winner 4:1 -0.187055 ~1.6% bet/shoe
Banker Natural Winner 4:1 -0.187055
Winner w/ 1,2,3,4 7:1 -0.162387 ~30% bet/shoe
Winner w/ 5,6 3.5:1 -0.170433 ~8% bet/shoe
Winner w/ 7 4.5:1 -0.128165 ~16% bet/shoe
Winner w/ 8 3:1 -0.131132 ~16% bet/shoe
Winner w/ 9 2.5:1 -0.159784 ~7% bet/shoe