by Norm Wattenberger

Shuffle Tracker's Effect

How does a shuffle tracker affect others?

A shuffle tracker will also have an effect on other players, but that effect is more complex than the effects on other players by backcounting. This page contains a series of Blackjack shuffle tracking simulations to get a sense of the effect a shuffle tracker has on the results of a card counter unaware that the shuffle tracker is present. Six sims were performed. In each of the sims there are two players: a card counter and a shuffle tracker. The card counter always plays in the same manner. The shuffle tracker varies his play and the counter's SCOREs are plotted as follows:

  • I. Standard card counting, no tracking.
  • II. Bad slugs are cut to the end of the shoe. Good slugs are ignored.
  • III. Good slugs are cut to the top.
  • IV. Good slugs are cut to the second deck.
  • V. Good cards are cut to the third deck.
  • VI. Good cards are cut to the second deck and bad cards are cut to the end.


Remember, the SCOREs plotted in the chart are for the card counter — not the shuffle tracker.

  • In only one case did the tracker negatively impact the results of the counter. Sim III is slightly worse than sim I indicating that cutting good slugs to the top has a very slight negative impact on the unaware counter.
  • Cutting good cards further into the shoe or bad slugs out can have a dramatic positive effect on the unaware counter. Up to 64% SCORE improvement is seen in this particular set of sims.
  • Get a tracker as a friend. :)
  • This is hardly a comprehensive study. There are a huge number of variables in standard Blackjack card counting simulations. This is multiplied considerably in shuffle tracking sims. For the purposes of this sim, only one shuffle and one method of attacking the shuffle were used. Further, only one fairly tight dealer was used.

Sim details

  • Six decks, 4.5/6 penetration, S17, DAS, 2 players, Hi-Lo, Catch 20 indexes, Spread 1-15
  • Additional sims from the previous two pages
  • Two hundred million rounds each
  • Simple one pass rifle & restack with four grabs from each stack.


copyright © 2007, 2024, Norm Wattenberger, All rights reserved