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Las Vegas Inventor Introduces 2 New Card Table Games.

Why Jailhouse Poker and Rock and Roll 21?

There are a lot of books on casino games. Many are subtitled How to Play or How to Win and describe the rules and offer playing strategy. American Mensa Guide to Casino Gambling by Andrew Brisman is an excellent choice because it delves into the math in easy to understand detail. After reading the chapter on roulette, the idea for both Jailhouse Poker and Rock and Roll 21 had its inception. Inclusive in that chapter is a description of the en prison rule. By offering this rule on European roulette tables the house advantage is cut in half on all even-money wagers. It works like this: if you make an even-money bet and the ball lands on zero, your bet does not lose. Instead it is considered in prison and its fate is to be determined on the next spin. If the en prison bet comes in on the next spin, your original wager is returned to you, without winnings; if it does not come in, you lose your original wager; and if zero should be rolled again the bet remains in prison. With a little European alteration, roulette goes from one of the poorer bets in the casino to one of the most reasonable. The question was put forward: can this rule be adapted to a casino poker game and/or a casino twenty-one game? Furthermore can these games succeed in attracting new players and therefore add to the casinos bottom line? A roll-playing abstract can help to provide the answers. This roll-playing will follow the outline found in several published articles especially The Elements of a Successful Carnival Game, by Elliot Jacobson, Ph.D. The goal is see if there is a fit, i.e. if the games meet the parameters needed to be successful. So, what do you say, do you want to read the plays and then judge for yourself?

Jailhouse Poker
The Play
Dealer: Friendly Fred
Player: Mr. Lucky (Mr. L)
Floor Supervisor:Smiley Sol

Winners Casino has put Jailhouse poker on their floor, agreeing to a ninety day trial. On the first day the game is opened at 10 am. The dealer is standing behind the table anxious to start the game when a player walks up and surveys the layout.

Mr. Lucky:How do you play this game; is it like poker?
Friendly:Yes, it is poker; a five-card version. Two cards are dealt, face down, to you, two cards are dealt, face down, to the dealers hand and three community cards, called the Flip, complete the hand.
Mr. Lucky:How do I win?
Friendly:You beat the dealers hand.
Mr. Lucky:Well, it sounds easy; is their more to it?
FriendlyBefore I deal, make an arrest bet. Look at your two cards and decide to play or fold. To play, make a bail bet either one or up to two times your arrest bet. Fold by placing your cards, face down, in front and forfeit your arrest bet.
Mr. Lucky:Just two bets, arrest and bail?
Friendly:There is an optional bonus bet. The payouts are for a pair of sixes or higher; if you fold, the bonus bet stays in action. Ok, now here is the thing that makes it different, before the Flip cards are dealt there is a reward/penalty part. It goes like this after you make the bail bet our cards are turned face up and compared. If your hand outranks my hand the arrest bet stays, if I have the higher ranking, I move the arrest bet to your courtand its a tie, I return your arrest bet. The court is an in prison area. You have not lost, the fate of your arrest bet is determined at the completion of the hand; if you win, it is returned to you. Now I turn the Flip cards. All winning bets are paid according to the Jailhouse pay table.
Mr. Lucky:What are betting limits?
Friendly:The arrest bet is $5 to $300 and the bonus bet is $1 to $25. Oh, and by the way
there is a bad beat bonus a full house beaten by four of a kind pays 100 to 1 on
the bail bet.
Mr. Lucky:Lets get out of jail!!
Friendly:Change five hundred.
Smiley: Change it – good luck Mr. L – win a bundle.

Rock and Roll 21
The Play
Dealer: Amicable Amy
Player: Mrs. Lucky (Mrs. L)
Floor Supervisor:Gregarious Ginger

The Skies The Limit Casino has put Rock and Roll 21 on their floor, agreeing to a ninety day trial. On the first day the game is opened at 10 am and the dealer is standing behind the table anxious for players to sit down. A player walks up and surveys the layout.

Mrs. Lucky:I love rock and roll. How do you play this game? Is it like blackjack?
Amicable:Yes, it is very similar to blackjack. Two cards are dealt face up to you and two cards to the dealers hand, the first face up and the second face down. The hitting and standing rule is same for the player and the dealer; there is only one hit card and it is dealt to seventeen or less so there are no decisions on hitting or standing. There is no doubling or splitting and no blackjacks.
Mrs. Lucky:Well, that sounds easy. How do I win?
Amicable:Like blackjack, you beat the dealers hand the closest to twenty-one wins. One thing that is different is there are no busted hands, the closest to twenty-one, either less than or more than, wins.
Mrs. Lucky:Is there anything else I need to know?

Amicable:First make a rock bet and then decide to play or fold. Play by matching your rock bet with a roll bet. Fold by a reverse scratch on the layout and you forfeit the rock bet. There is an optional bonus bet; any two or three card twenty-one wins. A folded hand, with a bonus bet, stays in action for a possible bonus payout. After the roll bet, I turn my hole card face up and compare our two card hands. If we both have pat hands, eighteen to twenty-two, the rock and roll bets are settled. For all other combinations there is a reward/penalty part. If your hand is closer to twenty-one the rock bet stays, if it is further, the rock bet is moved to your bandstand and if it is a tie, the rock bet is returned to you. The bandstand is an in prison area and the fate of your rock bet is determined at the completion of the hand; if you win it is returned to you. Now I deal the required hit cards. All winning bets are paid even money, except a winning two card twenty-one is paid 3 to 2 and a winning three card twenty-one is paid 2 to 1.
Mrs. Lucky:What are the betting limits?
Amicable:The rock bet is $5 to $500 and the bonus bet is $1 to $25.
Mrs. Lucky:Lets rock and roll!!
Amicable:Change one thousand.
Gregarious:Change it good luck Mrs. L win a bundle.

Now to see if Jailhouse Poker and Rock and Roll 21 fit the parameters:

1)The idea should be explainable in less than one minute. Keep it simple.
Both explanations are under one minute.
2)There should be one side bet. Do not complicate the game with multiple bets.
To play the hand, each game requires two bets and there is one optional bonus bet. The low limit customer will be content with this structure.
3)The layout should be simple and natural to use.
The layouts are designed to readily accommodate six players and provide a substantial level of game protection. The betting areas for the basic bets are square and placed side by side and the bonus bet area is circular and offset. The court and bandstand areas are configured with enough space for the players cards to be easily read.
4)The game should have a reasonable house advantage.
Jailhouse Poker: 2.06%; Rock and Roll 21: .90%. These percentages are the foundation for plenty of action. The Rock and Roll HA is a little low, but nearly double that of blackjack and the number of hands per hour will clearly exceed blackjack.
5)The name of the game and actual play should involve an idea that has popular interest in culture.
The names tell the player you are playing poker and you are playing 21. Also the names suggest the use of the in prison feature.

6)The game should be easy for the staff, management and surveillance to learn.
Jailhouse Poker is five cards and there is only one hit card in Rock and Roll 21. This alone makes learning uncomplicated. The in prison feature is obvious; it involves comparing the players initial hand to the dealers; for Jailhouse Poker the rankings are Pair and High Card and for Rock and Roll 21 it is the closest to twenty-one.
7)The game should not use new physical elements.
Both games use a blackjack size layout and table. A single deck using an electronic shuffler works for Jailhouse Poker and a six deck shoe using a shuffler is suitable for Rock and Roll 21.
8)Dont mix elements or ideas.
Its straight forward, you are playing poker and only poker and you are playing 21 (not blackjack) and only 21.
9)Game Protection; can defects in design be exploited for profit?
The math analysis for each game, using optimal strategy, was based on 1,000,000,000 iterations. A Card Counting analysis for Rock and Roll 21 was completed and it was found much less vulnerable than blackjack. Layout designs were primarily affected by game protection.
10)The single most important person who has to like your game is the dealer. The dealer is the person responsible for selling your game to the customers.
This means the dealer, after just a few training sessions, should be completely skilled. The dealer must also be confident in the potential for earning tips. The dealing procedures for each game are easy to master: determine the court/bandstand, act on the hands by turning the Flip cards/dealing the hit cards and starting on the dealers right, pay or take. The payout table for Jailhouse Poker is structured in a logical format. The bonus payout odds are basic. The layouts are designed with a significant space in front of the players betting area for dealers bets and typically the player will make both bets for the dealer and/or the bonus bet.
11)Dont try to make your money back right away. You may have to offer your game for free.
The way I look at it, I am in it for the long haul. I have a lot of confidence, having worked in the gaming industry, in various positions including management, for over 30 years. I know both games, after a fair trial, will to be winners. With the right conditions, a 60 to 90 day trial will work. Then once approved, the game(s) can be licensed free for up to three months with a reasonable fee afterwards.

Do Jailhouse Poker and Rock and Roll 21 meet the parameters to be successful? What is your conclusion?
What do you say lets shuffle up and play! For further confirmation go to my website, www.bandstandgaming.com where interactive demos are available and you will find the documentation to support Jailhouse Poker and Rock and Roll 21.

David Moss
Inventor and Casino Consultant

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