|Manufacturer:||Net Entertainment||Bet Per Spin:||£0.10 – £5.00|
|Bonus Features:||n/a||Free Spins:||n/a|
|RTP:||99.66%||Game Type:||Table Game|
For those unfamiliar with the name, Pontoon is often though of as the British version of Blackjack but while there are some similarities there are also plenty of differences. Historically it’s derived from Blackjack and a lack of formal rules means there are some variations. This good-looking version of from Net Entertainment and a pretty close representation of what we regard as Pontoon.
The aim of the game is to create a hand higher then the dealer’s but not greater then 21. A Pontoon comprises an Ace and a card worth ten points (i.e. 10, J, Q, K or A). A player’s Pontoon beats a dealer’s Pontoon and a five card hand always wins. An Ace can be valued as one or eleven.
How To Play Pontoon
The table on which the game is played is certainly similar to a Blackjack layout; the dealer’s hand is at the top of the screen and the player can play up to three separate hands marked out on the table.
The first thing to do is choose a chip side and place that amount on each hand you wish to play. Now click ‘Deal’ and you will receive two cards per hand.
You now have up to four options per hand:
- Stick – If your cards total 15 or more you can hold this hand and hope it beats the dealer.
- Twist – Get a free card; you can repeat this until you have five cards or have ‘bust’ (gone over 21).
- Buy – Double the wager for that hand and take another card; this is a common move if your starting total is low.
- Split – If two cards have the same value you can turn them into two separate hands and play them individually. One more split per hand is also possible.
When you’ve finished with the above options the dealer will reveal his cards. If he has a Pontoon and you don’t, you will lose without getting to play your hands. The dealer will also win any tied hands.
The dealer must twist on 16 and soft 17 (where an Ace counts as 11) and stick on a hard 17 (a hand with no Ace or where Ace is worth 1) so dealer busts are relatively common.
Player pontoons and five card hands are paid at 2/1, other wins 1/1.
Pontoon strategy is more complicated than Blackjack strategy but if you follow it correctly you can narrow the house edge to a tempting 0.34%.
This is a decent introduction to Pontoon; it’s simple to play and easy to learn. A great RTP of 99.66% means this is well worth getting to grips with.