The Crown Casino in Melbourne, Australia is one that is known far and wide amongst professional poker players and poker tournament followers. That’s because it’s the home of the largest poker tournament in the southern hemisphere, the Aussie Millions. This is one of the best card games to be found in the world, let alone the country of Australia. However, the casino is also notorious for having one of the worst card games available, as well: a card game known as BlackJack Plus.
With the combined notoriety of BlackJack Plus, the popularity of the Aussie Millions, and the fact that the Crown Casino is the only land-based (non-coastal) premiere gambling facility in the country, there’s a lot of intrigue surrounding the venue. It’s the largest venue in the southern hemisphere (making it a prime candidate to host the largest tournament), and that, too, draws a lot of attention. Business seems to go about as normal for the business, without too much adversity being seen from their terrible blackjack variant.
But what makes their BlackJack Plus game so bad? For starters, the structure of the game leaves the house edge incredibly high. While many good blackjack house edges in Australia can be as low as 0.5%, the edge on Plus is nearly ten times that, maxing out at roughly 5%. Their payouts are also lower, with a 6/5 versus a 3/2 payout. With these two factors combined, it’s a cash cow for the casino and a potential black hole for those who get sucked into playing the game.
While the BlackJack Plus tables are a great way to lose cash fast, the Aussie Millions (for those who have the money and choose to participate) is a way that astute players can make millions in the blink of an eye. This past year the total prize pool for the tournament was over $6.5 million, with the top two competitors each receiving payouts of $1 million or more. So, it seems that as with all casinos, temptation at the Crown Casino in Australia lurks around every table, and players will win some, lose some, and draw on occasion. But it’s up to them to choose which games to play and how much to pay!