How to Play Andar Bahar
Andar Bahar is one of the most popular casino card games played in India. The game is easy to learn with a simple set of rules. As one of the traditional casino card games from Southern India, Andar Bahar has grown rapidly in popularity over the years.
Andar Bahar features 50/50 odds of winning – making it an instant hit with players at online casinos around the world.
Origins of Andar Bahar
Andar Bahar is said to have originated in Bangalore, India centuries ago. This popular casino card game is also known by other names including Mangatha, and Katti. In India, the game can be played with or without money, and its popularity is greatest in the southern part of India, and the northern regions of the subcontinent too. Like baccarat, players are not personally dealt any cards in the game. Players simply have to watch the dealer to disseminate cards to Andar and Bahar, and wait for the winner to be crowned.
This casino card game is religiously played by a large and growing base of players, extending well beyond India's borders into surrounding countries. Besides for its widespread appeal among the people, Andar Bahar is readily available to players at online casinos too. Various software providers offer this rudimentary casino card game to legal-age players at fully licensed online casinos in both Hindi and English.
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Rules of Andar Bahar
Andar Bahar is effectively a 50/50 game of chance. Much like a coin toss, players have an opportunity to pick Andar or Bahar. The translation of these Hindi words (Andar Bahar) simply means ‘In Out’. When the words are separated, Andar refers to the dealer’s right side, which is effectively the player’s left side when they are sitting directly opposite from the dealer. Bahar refers to dealer’s left side, which is the player's right side when they are sitting directly opposite from the dealer.
Andar Bahar is unique among the casino card games in that it is played with a single deck of cards. These 52 cards include 4 suits (hearts, spades, clubs, and diamonds), with the following cards 2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10-Jack-Queen-King-Ace of every suit. What is interesting about this casino game is that players have 50/50 chances of winning or losing the game. An Andar Bahar casino dealer is present to manage the game for players. Mangatha or Katti are the other names used to describe Andar Bahar.
How to Play Andar Bahar
This Andar Bahar casino card game guide is designed to provide players with in-depth insights into the rules of play for the game. The action begins in earnest when the dealer deals a face-up card on the table to initiate proceedings. This first card is referred to as the Joker card, but it’s not a Joker – it’s any card that is dealt. The first bet of the game is whether the next ‘Joker’ to be dealt will be on the Andar or Bahar side of the table. Recall that the Andar side is to the right of the dealer (left of the player), and the Bahar side is left of the dealer (right of the player). The Joker is the Middle card in the deck.
The next step involves dealing the cards. The Andar Bahar card dealer will deal cards, one at a time, face up to the Bahar and Andar site for the first card that is dealt. The first card dealt is right of the player – the Bahar side or ‘Out’ side. After the card has been dealt on either side of the ‘Joker Card’, players are allowed to make a final bet, or forego betting entirely. It is possible to place a bet on the same side as the previous bet, or even on the opposite side of the previous bet.
The Joker should not be confused with the traditional Joker in a deck of cards. Rather, the Joker is simply the placeholder card for any-value card which is dealt by the dealer, and which must be mimicked, or duplicated by the player on either the Andar or Bahar side of the betting selections. Many Andar Bahar players simply refer to the Joker card as the Middle card. The Joker card is not a wild card, and it doesn't substitute for other cards to help players form winning combinations. There are multiple other types of bets available in Andar Bahar, known as side bets. Similar bets are also available in games like baccarat, Cyberstud poker, blackjack (21+3), and others.
Dealer Controls the Action from Joker Card to Matching Card
Once all the bets have been finalized, the dealer’s work begins in earnest. Face-up cards are dealt to each of the Andar and Bahar sides until such time as a match has been made. The Joker card, or Middle card is the rank that players must match with their bet selection. It doesn't much matter whether the dealer begins with Andar or Bahar, and this routinely varies from one online casino to another. The rules of play state that if an odd number of cards is dealt after the Joker card, the winning bet will be the Andar bet. In this case, payouts can range between 0.9:1 and 0.95:1. If the total number of cards dealt after the Joker card is even, then the winning bet will be the Bahar bet. In this case, payouts can range between 0.95:1 and 1:1 a.k.a. even money.
Once the Joker card has been matched, players will be able to collect on winning side bets. In terms of probability analysis, the greater the number of cards dealt, the higher the probability of a player matching the Joker within a set number of cards increases. When 49 cards are dealt, there is a 100% probability of the Middle Card being matched. When just 1 card has been dealt, there is a 5.8824% probability of matching the Middle Card. It is interesting to note that the probabilities reach the 90 percentile mark around 27 cards dealt, at which point the probability is 90.2809% with a single deck of cards in use. When 40 cards have been dealt, the probability of failure is 99.2077%
Payout Potential of Andar Bahar
Recall that the objective of the game is to bet on which side of the ‘Joker Card’ the next duplicate will be – either the ‘Andar’ side or the ‘Bahar’ side. The duplicate card can be any identical card of any suit. For example, if a 7 of spades is the Joker card and is placed on the betting felt between Andar and Bahar, the player’s goal is to pick a bet for Andar or Bahar for the next 7 card to be dealt. Bahar bets pay at 1:1, while the Andar bets pay at 1.9:1. In a sense, the different payouts on each of these positions are similar to the Banker Bet or the Player Bet in baccarat. The differential between the payouts can be regarded as the vigorish, or the commission paid to the house.
Given the odds of the game, and just 2 types of bets for winning, the following probabilities exist in Andar Bahar:
Andar Bets at 51.5006% probability, with a house edge of 4.72% for payout odds of 0.85:1, and a house edge of 2.15% with payout odds of 0.9:1.
Bahar Bets at 48.4994% probability, with a house edge of 5.43%, for payout odds of 0.95:1 and a house edge of 3.00% for payout odds of 1:1.
There are several side bets on Joker cards (Middle cards) available to players in Andar Bahar, including the following:
- A specific card rank pays 11.45 with a probability of 0.076923
- Red or Black color cards with a payout of 0.9, and a probability of 0.50
- Cards between 2 and 10 with a payout of 0.35, and a probability of 0.692308
- Below 8 or Above 8 with a payout of 1.05, or 1, with a probability of 0.461538
- Hearts, Diamonds, Clubs, or Spades, with a payout of 2.8 and a probability of 0.25
- Probability of the Middle card being precisely 8 at a payout of 11 or 11.45, with a probability of 0.076923
Statistics tend to indicate that 51.5% of winning game outcomes are associated with the side that gets the first card – either Andar or Bahar. With the Middle card (Joker card) excluded, games are typically completed within 13 cards, and the median number of cards to complete a game is 11. It is worth pointing out that all of the side bets available in the game relate to the number of cards that must be dealt in order for a match to be made. Typically, players don't need to play both the Main game and the Side Bets simultaneously. You can usually play one or the other, or both.
Players opting for the side bets will note that the payout odds increase substantially when the number of cards to be dealt for a match of the ‘Middle Card’ increases. When 41+ cards are dealt, the payouts are greatest, and when 1-5 cards are dealt, the payouts are smallest. After each result, the casino dealer will remove the cards from the felt and have them automatically shuffled in preparation for the next game.
Is there an Element of Skill or Strategy in Andar Bahar?
This casino card game is predicated on matching the Middle card on either the Andar or Bahar bet selection. This is the primary bet of the game. The secondary bet is known as the side bet, and this bet – like the primary bet – is a pure guess regarding how many cards must be dealt before a match is found.
While statistics can certainly provide a degree of insight (51.5% of winning game outcomes are associated with the side that gets the first card), with randomly shuffled cards it is impossible to know where the matches will be found, or how many cards it will take before a match will be found. In this vein, Andar Bahar is based purely on chance. You have a 50/50 probability of correctly calling it, but your payout is not 1:1 – that's where the house edge kicks in.
The game is played for different stakes at different online casinos. It is typically regarded as a casual player game with low minimum wagers, but it certainly has high roller potential with bigger bets allowed too. The winning potential of Andar Bahar and the attendant payouts that result, are based upon which ‘side’ hits.
If the winning card is on the same side as the first drawn card that was dealt, the payout is 90%, but if the card appears on the other side (the opposite side of the first drawn card), the payout is 100%. The inside box is known as Andar, and the outside box is known as Bahar.
Best Reasons to Play Andar Bahar
Players with a penchant for playing coin toss-style games will enjoy Andar Bahar, since the odds of calling it correctly are the same. There is no skill or strategy that can be employed, save for effective bankroll management. As with other casino card games, bets must be made for any of the cards have been dealt. The dealer will not allow players to start betting after the action gets underway – since this dramatically changes the odds and reduces the house edge.
With most games resolved within a few cards being dealt, and new games beginning soon thereafter, Andar Bahar ranks as one of the most-loved card games in India. Its popularity has spread online, where it enjoys growing player numbers at regulated online casinos. Similar to the rudimentary game of Casino War, players are simply required to bet on ‘In or Out’ to score a win.
This casino card game is available in different variants, including Multiplayer Andar Bahar, Live Andar Bahar, Video Andar Bahar, and Online Andar Bahar. The online casino versions of the game feature realistic game mechanics, with sophisticated software, RNGs, and the option for live dealers too. The online casino versions have only recently been introduced to the gaming scene, but the game itself has been around for many centuries.