The different variations of the game of baccarat generally come from different places in the world. American baccarat is named punto banco, European baccarat is named Baccarat Banque and the French and Spanish game is known as Chemin de Fer. Another variations of the game that exists are mini baccarat and Super 6
The name punto banco is derived from the participants of the game – punto for the players and banco for the bank. The game was developed in South America and then made its way to North America in the 1950s. Up to 14 players can play this version of the game at one time and six to eight decks are used to play. The dealer does all the shuffling and dealing, with the players not involved in this aspect of the game at all. Players do not have a choice with the third card – it is dealt anyway. Once the third card is dealt, the winner is announced by the dealer.
Baccarat Banque is the European variation of the game. The game offers big bet options making it popular with high rollers. In this variation of the game, one player plays the role of dealer for the entire game, as opposed to moving between the players.
Chemin de Fer
Chemin de Fer is the French variation of the game of baccarat and this is the most similar to the original game that was played. Chemin de Fer is played with six decks of cards. Each player has a chance to be the banker in the game, while the dealer’s only purpose is to shuffle the cards. The cards are dealt to each player face down and not face up. Players are able to decide whether to draw a third card or not. The player who places the largest bet plays first.
Mini baccarat is a variation of the game that is most similar to the American punto banco version. The table of the game is smaller than a regular baccarat table and is similar to the size of a blackjack table. The table limits for mini baccarat are generally lower than other baccarat games with limits commonly ranging from $2/$5 to $500, making the game accessible to players with small bankrolls. The game involves less formality than other variations of the game and the more relaxed atmosphere appeals to beginners. The dealer in the game is responsible for dealing all cards. The shoe is not passed around like in other variations and the players are not involved in the dealing at all. The smaller table size is ideal for this aspect of the game as the dealer is able to reach all areas of the table. When you are playing online baccarat, you are most likely playing the mini baccarat variation.
The first live dealer baccarat games were launched in 2003 by Playtech and CWC Gaming. These games are played in land-based studios with the game play captured on webcam in real time and streamed on the player’s computer. Players are able to interact with the dealers like in a land-based game. These games are becoming more popular and are available in the live dealer suite of online casinos that offer the games.