American Baccarat is one of the newer Baccarat variants. This game is the predecessor of the Mini Baccarat games you see throughout the casinos in Las Vegas and abroad. American Baccarat looks somewhat like Chemin De Fer to the casual observer because there are usually 8 to 12 players sitting around a large table passing around a 6 or 8 shoe deck.
However looks can be deceiving. American Baccarat has rules that are very different from Chemin De Fer. For example, in Chemin De Fer the player with the deck is the Banker. That player sets the table limit by posting the Bank. Other players at the table play against this person. By contrast, the casino posts the Bank in American Baccarat. The person holding the shoe will traditionally bet with the Banker, but they aren’t required to. Any player may place a Player bet or a Banker bet in American Baccarat.
In addition, there are only two hands in American Baccarat: the Player’s hand and the Banker’s hand. All Player bets are tied to a single hand as are all Banker bets. This rule is in contrast to Chemin De Fer where all active players get their own hand.
The drawing rules in American Baccarat are also different from other forms of Baccarat. For example, players of American Baccarat lose the option to choose whether they want to draw on a 5. The drawing rules in American Baccarat are automatic, condition based rules that play without any interference from the players. Here are the drawing rules for American Baccarat:
- If either the Player or the Banker has a score of 8 or 9, the game stops and the winner is paid.
- The Player must stand with a score of 6 or 7.
- The Player must draw with a score of 5 or less.
The drawing rules for the Banker are a bit more complicated. Unlike Chemin De Fer, the Banker has no option on whether or not to draw a card. Here are the rules that dictate when the Banker draws:
- The Banker must draw with a score of 2 or less.
- If the Banker scores a 3, he draws if the Player’s last card is anything other than an 8.
- If the Banker scores a 4, he draws if the Player’s last card is anything other than a 1, 8 or 9.
- If the Banker scores a 5, he draws if the Player’s last card is anything other than a 1, 2, 3, 8 or 9.
- If the Banker scores a 6, he draws if the Player’s last card is a 6 or 7.
- The Banker always stands on 7.
The reason the rules are automatic in "American Baccarat" is because there is only one Player hand and one Banker hand, but there are many people betting on them. Using automatic drawing rules avoids disputes on how a hand should be played.
American Baccarat is a newer Baccarat variation and it’s the variation closest to the Mini Baccarat games that are played in casinos. The primary benefit of this variant is that all players at the table can play because they aren’t restricted to the bet of a single Banker.