Andar Bahar is a game that originated in India. Still, thanks to the advent of live-action online casino games, available through some software providers, Live Andar Bahar is enjoyed by people around the globe.
Much of its appeal is the simplicity and speed of the game. It can be learned in just a few short minutes, without any complicated gameplay or rules that the player must follow.
Playtech, Ezugi, Pragmatic Play, and BetGames all offer a live dealer version of Andar Bahar. With so many fans on the Indian subcontinent, there will undoubtedly be others. The top live casino sites in the UK will have Andar Bahar in their live casino lobby.
You can find Live Andar Bahar in the Baccarat and Sic Bo section of a live casino games lobby.
How to Play Live Andar Bahar
Andar Bahar is played with one standard 52 card deck. The main objective is to bet which side will the first card that matches the middle card be dealt. So the game begins with the deck shuffled and the dealer placing one card face up to the right of the table. This is called the middle or, sometimes confusingly, the joker card.
Betting then begins. Once betting is closed, the dealer will deal one card to Andar, then alternatingly to Bahar, until a card that matches the rank of the middle card is dealt. Whichever side is dealt the matching card is the winner.
Andar is dealt first and is more likely to win, so it pays £9 on a £10 bet. Bahar is slightly less likely to win and gets even money so a £10 bet wins £10.
Please note that the BetGames version is dealt with slightly differently. If the Joker is a spade or club, the first card goes to Andar, but if the Joker is a Heart or Diamond, the first card goes to Bahar. In this case, a £10 bet on EITHER side pays £9.
Stats and Analysis
All software providers present a detailed analysis of past hands, though some are a little more detailed than others.
Playtech provides the percentage of which hands fell in which Number of Cards section, along with the percentage of Anhar vs. Bahar winners over the past 1000 hands. They also clearly list what joker cards were dealt and how many cards were dealt before a match for each past hand.
Side Bets on Andar Bahar
Andar Bahar comes with a number of side bets with good payouts. Let’s have a look at these.
Andar/ Bahar on First Card
You can bet separately on whether Andar or Bahar will match with the Joker on the first card dealt. This is a very popular bet because of its relatively high payout of 15 to 1.
This unique bet uses the Joker or Middle card, the first card dealt to Andar, and the first dealt to Bahar to make a three-card poker hand. If it contains a straight flush, flush, or straight it wins.
Payouts can differ depending on the software provider, but Playtech offers 120 to 1 on a Straight Flush, 8 to 1 on Straight, and 5 to 1 on a flush.
Number of Cards
Due to very high payout odds, the most popular bet in all of Live Andar Bahar is the number of cards dealt. The count does NOT include the Joker card. There are 8 different bets offered. Starting with 1 to 5, then 6 to 10, and 11 to 15. Then 16 to 25, a ten number grouping, and then 26 to 30 and so on, increasing by 5 again till you get to the last bet, which includes nine numbers, 41 to 49, but pays out the most at 119 to 1.
Payoffs range from 2.5 to 1 on the Joker being matched in the first five cards, up to that monster payout of 119 to1 if it takes more than 40 cards.
Due to the vagaries of math, the best bet is the relatively decent 3.5 to 1 payout on the 16 to 25 cards dealt. It has less than a 2% house advantage.
Poker Card Bets
In some versions of Live Andar Bahar, you can place bets before the middle or joker card is dealt. You may be allowed to bet on the colour of the Joker card, or its suit, or even whether it is above or below 8.
Most of these will come with a 10% commission, so if you bet £10 on red, you will win £9. Currently, these Joker side bets are only offered on BetGames live-dealer version.
Andar Bahar is a fast-paced game, with some very large payouts available. You can bet the side bets without betting the primary wager if those big payouts are what appeals to you. This game is clearly aimed at the South West Asian market, but it is fun and easy to play.
It can often be found with minimum wagers of just £1, which is very good for a live dealer game. Some software providers have slightly different bets and rules. Make sure to look over bets and payouts before beginning wagering, and try a few different versions to find the one you like best.