"Best Software and Training for Blackjack Enthusiasts!"
Version: Casino Verite Blackjack 5.6
Configuration of every aspect of play
Most popular and less well-known counting systems built-in
Trainer is extremely well done
Excellent graphics for cards, chips and table
Can be infinitely customized
Fast e-mail support
Company ships CD copy along with a printed instruction manual
Virtual dealer/helper is annoying (but this can be disabled)
Software can stop responding at times
Bug in the Add Casino feature that results it not being entered in database
Casino database no longer updated (although I believe the software can interact with a paid third-party casino database)
This is the most complete, ultra-realistic blackjack simulator ever developed and is an valuable training tool for blackjack players. It has no peer. Those looking to truly learn to play, whether it be basic strategy ("by the book") or advanced card counting techniques, will be well trained with Casino Verite. There are dozens of card-counting systems included, from the popular (such as Hi-Lo and Red Seven) to more proprietary Level 2 and Level 3 systems. All of these include full indexes of which you can specify for the software to enforce your play, or using only a subset of them (such as "Fab 4", "Sweet 16" or the "Illustrious 18"). The system will tell you if you've violated a play deviation for an index (such as hitting based on basic strategy and the normal logical play, when you should have stood according to the system because the count is high enough to warrant it). It is as close to perfect as you can get. The software has it's flaws but they're minor in the grand scheme, and do not effect the ability to learn and have fun from the software one bit. It's simulator and trainer are excellent and has helped me test my hypotheses.
The author, Norm Wattenberger, is an incredible source of knowledge on the game of blackjack. He has written a free book called "Modern Blackjack" that can be accessed via his website at qfit.com. I bought a printed copy of the book as there was just, quite frankly, TOO much information to digest on the computer screen. It was well worth it, and got me more interested in the technical side of blackjack.
To those complaining that the software is "not fun", or is "too complex", I must say that this software was not geared towards you. The software is meant to be used as a learning and simulation tool, not a casual blackjack game. You can use it as such, to be sure, but it's much much beyond that. It's a hardcore blackjack simulation and diagnosis tool, a learning tool, an experiment, a lab. It's whatever you want it to be. It's a simulator, and it lends itself to simulating almost any conditions in blackjack you can imagine. Want to simulate 5 other players along with you, some playing "by the book" and others acting like they're newbies, while one acting flat out drunk with his decision making? It will do it. Want to simulate the dealer making mistakes every now and then and either paying you out on a loss, or taking your money on a push or win? No problem. Want to simulate the pit bosses and casino security noticing your card counting, and watching you close? Sure thing.
To those that say it's too expensive, I'd counter that $90 (plus $5 shipping, as the author sends you an actual physical install disk along with a printed instruction manual) is well worth it, if not cheap. It's obvious he set his price point to be in line with the middle-of-the-road of casual novice gamers who are fine with Microsoft Solitaire, and those that make a lot of money playing blackjack professionally. The amount of time and effort that apparently went into this game is well worth it. The market is fairly small, and the price has to be appropriate in order to at least be compensated for time. As a programmer myself, it is obvious that this game was written primarily for fun and to write a simulator for himself (and friends I assume), and the author decided to market it to the public. It's main target is hardcore blackjack players, plain and simple. The author also offers similarly priced software that are straight-up simulators to test billions of hands using a given rule set, with the statistics on wins/losses presented at the end of the run. It is elite software for blackjack.
To those saying that the demo isn't fully functional, it is for the most part except that 5s are replaced with 6s (or something like that). Otherwise it is 100% functional. It's like that, because it must be crippled in SOME way, otherwise very few would buy it as it would be fully functional and as such, would be free ware at that point. If you spent thousands of hours programming a piece of software such as this, and intended to try and at least recoup some of your precious time in the form of money, would you offer the demo completely uninhibited and fully functional with no form of crippling such as time limitation or some software issue (like switching value of cards)?
I was on the fence about buying this software for some time, and had just seen it in the demo. I'm glad I did. Norm Wattenberger's book is excellent too -- if you want to read it for free you can on his site, or you can order the printed book like I did. It's more like a BIBLE than a book, in it's size and it's supernatural understanding and content. Definitely a great book, not as entertaining of course as many blackjack books (although it does have anecdotes and such), but extremely educational. Between the software and the book I was able to branch out and learn more, and now play a LOT of casino blackjack at the "green chip" level.
Thanks for all the hard work, Norm.
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