Progressive Blackjack

With the emergence of online casinos, gambling buffs have the chance to win themselves huge progressive jackpots without stepping out of their homes. Back in the day when the first virtual casinos went online, progressive jackpots were reserved exclusively for slot fans. This is no longer the case thanks to leading casino software studios like Playtech, WGS Technology, and Microgaming that have launched online blackjack variants with progressives pots just waiting to be won.

These enormous prizes give the traditional game of blackjack an exciting twist and are available across many prominent casinos on the internet that use the platforms of the above-mentioned software suppliers. All you have to do is create a real-money account, make a deposit, and take your chances at winning the progressive prize. In this article, we explain how progressive blackjack works and introduce you to three of the most popular variants of 21 where you can win yourself a nice jackpot.

Progressive Blackjack – How Does It Work?

Progressive BlackjackProgressive blackjack games follow the same rules as the standard variations of the classic card game. The players’ objective is again to obtain a hand total higher than the dealer’s. The only difference here is these blackjack games are linked to a progressive jackpot network. All participating players can contribute to the growing pot with optional side bets so the prize keeps increasing until someone is lucky enough to bag it.

Once the progressive jackpot is won, it resets and starts accumulating all over again, usually from a fixed amount called a seed. This seed amount is normally provided by the game’s software supplier and serves as an incentive for players to start betting again after the jackpot is won. Some online progressive blackjack games start seeding at $10,000, others at $50,000. The interface of each progressive game features a jackpot meter where the current amount of the jackpot is displayed.

Main Bets and Side Bets in Progressive Blackjack Games

Main Bets and Side BetsDepending on the software developer supplying the game, players may be required to post a side bet to qualify for potentially winning the progressive prize. This bet is in no way linked to their main bet and has no effect on the odds of them winning a hand. Each time a player posts the side bet, it is added to the pot so that it keeps on growing until somebody wins.

The side bet is small in size, usually no more than $1 or the equivalent in the currency the player uses. It pays out for certain combinations of cards but the exact combination again depends on the software supplier. In Microgaming’s version of progressive blackjack, the pot hits when you obtain a specific hand of 7s whereas Playtech’s variation awards a portion of the pot or the whole pot for given combinations of suited and unsuited Aces.

Best Online Blackjack Games with Progressive Pots

jackpotUnlike reel spinners, blackjack mavens do not have as many options when it comes to playing progressive variations of their favorite game. There are but a few blackjack games attached to progressive networks at the moment and we have hand-picked the three that offer the best playing experience and decent enough rules.

Progressive Blackjack by Playtech

progressive blackjack playtechPlaytech’s is easily our favorite progressive blackjack variation particularly in terms of visual presentation and gameplay. Its appeal is further boosted by the fact it yields an average progressive prize of more than $170,000. This is an S17 hole-card game which plays with six standard decks.

Players can double on any two-card total after the initial deal and split any pair of identically ranked cards. Doubling down after you split is possible but re-splitting is not permitted. The virtual dealer peeks and offers insurance against an exposed Ace at the usual odds of 2 to 1.

Real-money players qualify for winning the progressive jackpot after placing the $1 side bet. The side bet is successful when you get dealt one or more Aces. You can see the progressive payouts listed below:

  • One Ace pays 5x the initial bet
  • Two unsuited Aces pay 50x the initial bet
  • Two suited Aces pay 100x the original bet
  • Three unsuited Aces pay 250x the initial stake
  • Four unsuited Aces pay 2,500 the initial stake
  • Three suited Aces pay 5,000x your original bet
  • Four suited Aces award the full progressive jackpot amount

Note that these prizes are awarded only of the Aces are dealt consecutively on a given hand. Players who are eyeing the progressive pot should adjust their strategy a little bit and refrain from splitting Aces when they post the side bet. The odds of receiving four suited Aces in a six-deck game are not in your favor, though. The likelihood of this happening stands at 1 in 6.45 million. The side bet offers positive expectation after the pot exceeds the amount of $581,000.

Rules and Hose Edge of Progressive Blackjack by Playtech
Decks 6
Dealer Stands Dealer stands on all 17
Double Down Allowed only on totals of 9, 10, or 11
Split Allowed once
Double After a Split Yes
Dealer Peeks Yes
Surrender Yes
Blackjack Payout 3 to 2
Insurance Yes
Insurance Payout 2 to 1

Progressive Triple Sevens Blackjack by Microgaming

triple sevens blackjackMicrogaming is one of the oldest developers of quality casino content in this industry, so it makes sense it was also the first studio to introduce a progressive blackjack game to the online gambling community. The game in question is called Triple Sevens Blackjack, uses five decks of cards, and requires the dealer to stand on soft 17. You can split only once and double down on initial totals of 9 through 11 but doubling after a split is not an option.

The progressive jackpot is again triggered with the help of a small ($1) optional side bet. To win the whole prize or a portion of it, the player must receive one of the qualifying combinations of 7s. Here are the progressive payouts for this game:

  • Any 7 awards $5
  • Two unsuited 7s award $25
  • Two suited 7s award $50
  • Three consecutive unsuited 7s return a payout of $250
  • Three 7s of spades, clubs or hearts award $1,000
  • Three 7s of diamonds award the full progressive jackpot

More experienced blackjack players probably know that basic strategy stipulates they must split a pair of 7s against small dealer upcards like 4, 5, or 6. Splitting your 7s, however, is counterproductive in this progressive blackjack variant, particularly when you post the side bet. This pair automatically rewards you either with a $25 payout for off-suit 7s or with a $50 payout for suited 7s. So you will have to deviate from basic strategy if you are shooting for the progressive pot.

This Microgaming creation awards an average win of nearly $74,000 which drops roughly once every fourteen months. The side bet gives you positive expectation once the progressive prize exceeds $109,000.

Rules and House Edge of Progressive Triple Sevens Blackjack by Microgaming
House Edge 16.2% for the progressive side bet
Dealer Stands Dealer stands on all 17s
Double Down Allowed only on totals of 9, 10, or 11
Split Allowed once on any pair
Double After a Split No
Re-Hit Split Aces Yes
Blackjack Payout 3 to 2
Insurance Yes
Insurnace Payouts 2 to 1

Progressive Blackjack by WGS Technology

progressive blackjack wgsWGS Technology (formerly Vegas Technology) may not be as big as suppliers the likes of Microgaming and Playtech, but it still delivers an incredibly playable progressive blackjack variation where you can win big. This S17 game is available in demo mode in some casinos that use the WGS software so you can easily test it in advance before you try to take the big pot down with real bets.

It uses four decks and features an elegant visual design which further increases the enjoyment of playing it. To stand a chance of winning the progressive prize, you must place a $1 chip as a side bet alongside your main wager. The jackpot is again triggered when the player is dealt several consecutive Aces. Check the payouts below:

  • Two unsuited Aces pay out $25
  • Two suited Aces pay out $50
  • Three unsuited Aces award a payout of $250
  • Three suited Aces return a payout of $2,500
  • Four unsuited Aces award 10% of the progressive prize
  • Four suited Aces award the full progressive jackpot amount

Of course, placing the side bet is not obligatory, you can choose to play WGS’ progressive blackjack as a regular game of 21. Underbankrolled players can start experimenting with the side bet when it approaches positive expectation, which happens when the pot reaches $285,000 or so.

Rules and House Edge of Progressive Blackjack by WGS
House Edge 0.57% for base game; 4.9% for the progressive side bet
Decks 4
Dealer Stands Dealer stands on all 17s
Double Down Allowed only on totals of 9, 10, or 11
Split Allowed once
Hit Split Aces No
Blackjack Payout 3 to 2
Insurance Yes
Insurance Payout 2 to 1

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Find the answers of questions people asked so far:

Dan Tiffany

Do I need to deviate from the basic blackjack strategy when I am playing progressive blackjack?

Asked by: Tiffany | Asked on: 2023-06-18
Answered by: Dan | Answered on: 2023-06-18

It depends on the variant of progressive blackjack that you play. When you are playing a regular blackjack game, to ensure that you are always making the optimal decision, you are recommended to follow the basic blackjack strategy. However, when you are playing progressive blackjack, you qualify for the massive jackpot prize by getting certain combinations of the player’s and the dealer’s cards. In that case, you must deviate from the basic strategy and make decisions that may increase your chances of getting the jackpot hand. Naturally, as you make a side bet to participate in the jackpot play, you are playing mainly for the big prize. That is why, when playing progressive blackjack games, you must deviate sometimes from the basic strategy and go for decisions that would not be optimal in the case of regular blackjack play.