Baccarat is a casino table game with a low house edge, big payouts, and James Bond-style glamour. But it takes more than good luck to win at the game. The key is to understand the rules and follow a strategy. Here are six tips to help you do just that.

Baccarat is played with eight decks of cards shuffled together. It has three possible outcomes: banker win, player win, or tie. The goal is to predict which hand will have the highest value. The game is simple to learn, but it can be challenging to master. The house has a slight edge over the game, but intelligent players can minimize this by following a few basic strategies.

Before you begin playing, familiarize yourself with the game’s rules and payouts. You can practice with free online baccarat games before wagering any money. This way, you can make mistakes without wasting any of your own money. It’s also a great way to get comfortable with the game before playing for real money.

To start, place an initial bet on either the Player or Banker bet using your chips. Once the game begins, the dealer will deal two hands of cards to the players and banker. The winner is determined by which hand totals closest to 9. If a hand contains a ten or nine, it’s called a natural and wins. The loser is the one whose hand has the lowest value. In the event of a tie, further cards are drawn to determine the winner.

As you play, keep track of your results on a score sheet. This will make it easier to follow patterns and identify winning streaks. You should also avoid making bets on the tie, which has a 14.1 percent house edge. This bet is typically made by people who don’t have much experience in the game.

While you play, look for zigzag patterns and double streaks in the results. These are signs of a good pattern system that can help you reduce the house edge in Baccarat. It’s recommended to use this strategy in conjunction with flat betting and filling out results on a baccarat score sheet.

The game of baccarat was created in the 15th century, but it didn’t become as popular until the 19th century. There’s no contemporary evidence of the game’s existence before this time, though many implausible legends have been circulated about its etymology. The word baccarat is derived from the Italian word baccara, meaning zero. Today, the game is a favorite in casinos all over the world.