Match Play 21 is probably the most popular blackjack variation developed by RealTime Gaming (RTG) and it is available both in-browser and as part of RTG’s casino software for download. Also known as Spanish blackjack, this game is played with several 48-card decks, from which all 10s were removed. But that is not all – Match Play 21 gives bonus payouts for getting specific hands while playing. Moreover, the top payout of 40 times the stake can be won without making a side bet.
Rules and Gameplay
RTG’s Match Play 21 is an American-style version of blackjack with a hole card that typically uses 8 or 6 decks of cards, depending on the casino. But these are not the standard decks, comprising of 52 cards from 2s to Aces. The game uses the so-called Spanish decks – standard decks with all the 10s removed. The dealer checks for blackjack if his visible card is an Ace. He also Hits soft 17.
Players can Hit or Stand on their initial hand and Doubling the bet can be done at any time but only once per round. If their initial hand is a pair, they can also opt for a Split and up to 2 Splits are allowed. Doubling on split Aces is also permitted. There is another option in the game and it is available at any time – players can Surrender, which means that they can choose to lose half of their bet and not play out their cards if the dealer seems to be holding a better hand.
Last, but not least, players can purchase Insurance if the player’s visible card is an Ace. This side bet pays 2:1 if the dealer really gets blackjack. The other payouts are standard – a regular win pays 1:1 and blackjack pays 3:2.
The most distinctive and exciting feature in this game is the chance to win up to 40 times the original stake without having to place a side bet. In fact, RTG’s Match Play 21 has 10 different bonus payouts for holding one of several special hands. The highest payout, however, is for getting three suited 7s along with a dealer’s upcard that is a 7, too. This is the Match Play 21 payout. These are all bonus payouts in the game:
- Match Play 21 – 40:1
- 7+ card 21 – 3:1
- 7-7-7 Spades – 3:1
- 6-7-8 Spades – 3:1
- 7-7-7 Suited – 2:1
- 6-7-8 Suited – 2:1
- 6-card 21 – 2:1
- Any 7-7-7 – 3:2
- Any 6-7-8 – 3:2
- 5-card 21 – 3:2
This is a very interesting blackjack game and it offers more bonus payouts than any other version available online or in land-based casinos. It comes with a house edge of 0.76%, which is rather high for blackjack.