Different Ways to Utilize Boris
for Your Practice Regimen
Boris for Blackjack provides you a number of different ways to utilize the software. For example, some Boris software users like to let Boris play automatically, while they watch and study the game; and as pointed out below, they can also jump-in anytime they feel the game is worth playing.
Boris 4.44 we have 2 sets of files that allow us to play against
virtually any casino venue we care to set up with Boris.
As you may recall, when you first started Boris, the Casino Database was "unpacked", creating a series of Folders for each major casino category/area, containing a bunch of .CDF (Casino Descriptor) Files. Each of these .CDF Files describes one specific casino game offering. Using "Casino Selection" on Boris' File-menu allows you to select whichever Casino Descriptor you choose.
(Note: In one of Boris 4.44 2006 updates (4.44a or 4.44b), we will be phasing out the .CDF files and complex folder structure; instead giving Boris direct-access to the Casino Database (.CDB and .DBX) Files by way of a new and friendlier screen.)
The other file
type in Boris that is useful, we call a Casino Environment (or .ENV)
File. You can create your own .ENV files by using the Save
Environment and Save Environment AS options on Boris' File-menu.
Additionally, all Editions of Boris for Blackjack come with a dozen
or so "canned" (i.e. pre-made) .ENV files giving you
a wide-selection of Blackjack game variations to choose from, without
having to make your own. You can also using these canned files as a
basis to make up your own custom casino environments.
Once you have a Casino Environment setup to your liking, you click Blackjack Table (on the Menu Bar) to begin play.
In general, there are 3 main approaches to utilizing Boris' Blackjack Software as a part of your Blackjack practice regimen:
Playing against one of the "Canned" .ENV (Environment) Files that come Free with Boris, and can also be D/L'd from Boris' Download Center.
Loading a specific Casino by way of a Casino Descriptor (.CDF) File and then making custom changes.
Loading a NEW Default (i.e. "generic") casino (such as a 6-deck or 8-deck game, based on a Random Shuffle) and then customizing the settings to suit your needs.
As of Release 4.44, you can now access .CDF and .ENV files from Boris' Container Screen (essentially the lobby outside the casino) as well as the Blackjack table. The Casino Management (Ctrl-R) Screen and the Casino Information (F8) Screen are now accessible from the Container Screen, making it easier to create your own custom Casino Environment (.ENV) Files.
against a canned .ENV file
The easiest way to get started with Boris is to play against one of the .ENV Files that come Free with the software. You can also customize the settings in this Casino Environment and save them as another .ENV file. The ability to play against saved casino environments using different GAME-#'s gives you the flexibility of playing against a unique, yet recreatable sequence of cards, players, shuffles and washes.
Boris' "canned" .ENV Files all have one trait in common: a Manual Player (You) has been assigned to Seat #4 - the center of the table and given a $10,000 Bankroll. If you wish to begin with an "empty" table, use the .CDF File for this casino. Then during play when you wish to sit down, click the [SITDOWN] Button next to the ChipTray and add yourself in.
you to save your own .ENV Files, before, during and after
play. Note: For data-security reasons, during play, Boris allows you
to save a .ENV File only during the betting period (i.e. with
no cards on the table). If you enable Auto-Save, Boris will save play
after each round.
You are welcome to share your .ENV Files with other Boris users, giving them the benefit of the casinos you have created. .ENV Files can also be sent to Blackjack Consultants who are also Boris Users, allowing them to critique/mentor your play, based on Boris' Stat Screens alone; rather than on your clouded-recollection of what happened. (Note: in 2006/2007 look for a Record/Playback Facility in the PRO PRO+ and EDU Versions of Boris.)
In years past, Boris has been running on several laptops at off-the-strip Blackjack training seminars in Vegas. This allowed the players to get a quick, free "checkup" (i.e. evaluation) on their play.
As another "freebie", I gave them their .ENV File from their practice play on a diskette to keep - of course that required them to purchase one of Boris' Editions to utilize the file; but by then they had been hooked on Boris anyway.
Once you've had a taste of Boris' color-Stats Screens, you will wonder how you practiced without them.
Remember: I originally designed Boris' Stat Screens to improve MY play. To my knowledge, I am the ONLY Blackjack software developer who plays Blackjack on any kind of regular Basis, and the thorough nature of Boris' Stat Screens reflect this fact.
If I am not playing in the casino, I am dealing live cards at home, or putting in my volume-play with Boris. I have literally dozens of customized .ENV files on my 2 practice laptops; from my own practice play, as well as the Blind-Simulations that I run for many of the web-articles on the Boris on Blackjack Website.
In a future Boris 4.44 update for 2006, for PRO+ Edition Users, the .ENV Files will be expanded to become.ENV2 Files, which are actually mini-database files, giving us new stat screens to peruse and graph the round-to-round data. To all other Boris Software Editions, the .ENV2 Files will seem/act-like .ENV Files; only the last Environment Saved will be accessible. This way, non-PRO+ users can benefit from Environment Files created by PRO+ Users.
against a customized .CDF File
Although there are a limited number of .ENV files, Boris' Casino Database gives you nearly 100 different Blackjack casino/game variations (.CDF Files), with new casinos added all the time; either from Boris' casino scouting trips, or from casino reports submitted by players.
After loading a Casino Descriptor, you can then make changes to the casino by way of the Casino Management (Ctrl-R) Screen, the Casino Information (F8) Screen, and the Player Setup (Ctrl-P) Screen (or, you can click the [SITDOWN] Button later).
against a customized "Default" casino
Default Casinos are actually generic .ENV Files using Boris' Boardwalk for each number of decks: 1, 2, 4, 6, 8.
These Casino Environments all utilize Random Shuffle (R1) and a random card-wash, along with a typical rule set for that number of decks (Ex: 6-Deck = Vegas, 8-Deck = A.C., 1&2-Decks = Riffle-shuffles).
Like other .ENV Files, these default files can be customized to suit your needs.
However, be warned: default .ENV Files are bare-bone casinos requiring customization by way of the Casino Management (Ctrl-R) Screen. Incorrect Shuffle/Wash settings can lead to "corrupted" cards during play.
To assist you in how to set the proper combination of shuffle parameters, look for a series of 2006 web-articles on Boris' Website in the (For Boris Users Only section) detailing shuffles and washes and how they work.
From Boris' "Container Screen" click Blackjack Table (on the Menu Bar) to move from the casino lobby to the Blackjack table to begin play.
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