This invention relates generally to card or dice wagering games and more particularly to card games played on casino tables.
The present invention also concerns a table layout for playing said card game.
1. Prior Art
A number of games utilize the high-low wagering concept. Usually in those games the players play against the house and the object is to get either a higher or lower ranked hand than the rank of the cards in the dealers hand. In most high-low games the options are narrow, many utilize specially altered decks of cards and awards are generally predetermined.
U.S. Pat. No. 5,692,755, relates to a casino card game in which the player plays against a dealer. Only three cards are dealt and all are face up. Players can make three wagers: Whether the third card dealt is black or red, whether the third card is a high or low ranking card, or whether the third card dealt will match either the card in the first or second position. No wagers are made by the players against the dealers hand in this game and Jokers are wild.
U.S. Pat. No. 4,651,997 relates to a card game in which a player places a first wager and the dealer deals him two cards face up. If the cards are of equal rank the player wins an amount based upon predetermined odds posted on the playing surface, but loses if the cards are of consecutive rank. If the two cards are not the same or of consecutive rank the player can make an additional wager as to whether the third card dealt will be of a rank between the two cards. If the first two cards dealt are of equal rank and that rank is a face card or an ace the player automatically wins according to the predetermined odds and is dealt a third card which, if of equal rank to the first two cards increases the players winnings. The players cards are not compared to dealer cards and no wild cards are used.
U.S. Pat. No. 5,628,514 relates to an Asian game utilizing the high-low principal. This game involves 15 conventional decks and is similar to the instant invention in that it removes all cards 7-King. The primary difference, however is that the object of the Asian game is to make a hand totaling 12, or close to 12, if a high scheme is selected, or totaling 2 or close to 2 if a low scheme is selected. Separate high-low wagers are not made and no second level or wild card wagering is allowed.
Other examples of prior art using a high low principal or format reviewed by this writer include several which had similarities, but diverged at key points. KAUFMAN, U.S. Pat. No. 6,102,403. In that game there is a gaming table at least one player, a full deck of 52 cards plus jokers and the players play directly against the dealer. The player places his bet in either the high or low gaming area and the dealer then deals one card to each player and one to himself. The player's card is then measured against the dealer's card. If the player had a higher card than the dealer and had wagered in the high box, he wins. If he had wagered in the low box he loses. The converse is true if the player's card is lower ranked than the dealer's card.
This game is distinguishable from the instant invention in that every round of 2 cards dealt to each player represents an entire game. Further the KAUFMAN game is played against the house, the house must be beaten, either high or low depending on the wagering option the player has chosen. In the instant invention, the dealer is merely a facilitator and does not himself have cards upon which to wager. In the instant invention the dealer deals the cards to each of the players, but takes none for himself, though in effect the house owns the two options not chosen by the player. The player then wins or loses depending solely upon the total value of the two cards dealt him and whether or not he has predicted the correct total score and placed his wager in the appropriate wagering area, i.e. “LOW” (2-6), “7), or “HIGH” (8-12).
The EATON U.S. Pat. No. 6,079,712 represents prior art, which is somewhat similar to the instant invention, but is ultimately distinguishable. The EATON game also involves an initial draw of two cards, however, it is from a regulation deck of 52 cards and against a predetermined number, for instance 17 in blackjack. This game allows, indeed requires the player to take additional hits until the predetermined number is attained or the player busts. Additionally second and third bets may be made as the game progresses. The instant invention mandates only two cards be dealt each player and the total of the two determines whether or not the player predicted the correct option and he wins or loses accordingly.
Additional patents were searched for relevant prior art, including but not limited to: U.S. Pat. No. 5,154,429, 5,144,579, 5,257,810, 5,615,888, 5,707,287, and 5,904,353. These ranged from side bets to jackpots to Spanish 21, with none being close enough to warrant further comment.
Arguably the most popular casino, table game in the United States and possibly the world, is Blackjack, sometimes called “21”. In that game, the player plays against the dealer, or the house. The object of Blackjack is for the player to get a hand, which is greater than the dealer's without “busting”, or exceeding the point total 21. Despite its popularity however, there are a number of problems associated with Blackjack.
Beyond the fact that Blackjack or 21 requires at least a modicum of skill for a player to have any chance of being consistently successful, Blackjack is often quite slow paced as players ponder taking a “hit” (an additional card) from the dealer, or to “stand pat” with their hand. A player who is not conversant with the rules will rapidly lose his money and his interest in the game
Not only is it necessary for the player to know the basic rules and objectives of Blackjack, the odds are significantly improved if the player is knowledgeable of the general guidelines about taking a “hit”. This is an acquired skill and is particularly critical for the player last dealt cards (the player on the dealers immediate right.) It is believed that this player can alter the course of the whole game by taking an unnecessary hit and changing the composition of the dealer's hand. Finally there is the fact that in Blackjack the players play against the house as individuals thereby causing a loss of camaraderie, which can hold players at the table longer. All of these problems have the potential to adversely affect the bottom line earnings by the house.
While the game Blackjack, or 21 is referenced here as illustrative, it must be kept in mind that this invention is not Blackjack or a minor deviation thereof. The present invention is a totally new game and is no more Blackjack than Blackjack is Poker.
The present invention, which may be played as either a card or dice game, is based on high-low wagering using a modified deck of cards or a standard pair of six sided dice. The present invention, a wagering game, addresses the shortcomings of the prior art.
In response to the problems addressed in the afore mentioned section describing the prior art, an important object of the present invention is to provide a wagering game to players from novice to professional that is interesting, captivating, fast paced and most of all simple. It is also an important object of the present invention to provide a game that does not require a great deal of skill and can be grasped and understood quickly and completely. Another useful objective of this game is that it can introduce a novice player to wagering with a simple, uncomplicated game and lay the foundation to understanding the more complex games. Furthermore, an important objective of the present invention is to give the player the perception that he is controlling the flow of the game and the odds of winning, or at least that they have the ability to influence those odds.
Yet another object of the present invention is to provide an entertaining wagering game that provides a favorable advantage to the house.
An additional object of the present invention is to provide table layouts for use in playing a wagering game that provides the previously noted objects for both card and dice games.
Therefore, in accordance with these and other objects, evident from the following description of the preferred embodiment, the present invention concerns a method of playing a wagering game with a deck of 48 numerically valued cards, comprised of two suits each of Spades, Hearts, Clubs and Diamonds totaling eight suits of Ace-6 including the steps of having each player place an initial wager and dealing two cards to each player to form a corresponding number of hands. Each player is asked to select a winning option “7”, “High” or “Low”, based upon how the player expects the hand to be dealt. The game further involves an award to each winning player based upon predetermined odds.
The present invention also concerns a table layout for playing the above referenced wagering game. The table layout includes a dealer station from which cards are dealt. In addition a plurality of player stations are provided, with each player station having a wager location consisting of a set of three option locations having indicia thereon corresponding to the three different possible ways the hand may be dealt, “7”, “High” or “Low”. The game is also, as will be seen, adaptable to other table games, such as Roulette or Dice. Other aspects and advantages of the present invention will be apparent from the following detailed description of the preferred embodiments and the accompanying drawing figures