What is a ‘Setup’?
In the casino, a ‘setup’ most often refers to one or more decks of cards used in a game. It usually appears in the context of ‘replacing the setup’ or ‘bringing a new setup’, meaning that the deck or decks are switched. This is usually a security measure to prevent tampering, but it can also occur when a card becomes damaged. ‘Setup’ can also refer to the game equipment in a casino – a ‘roulette setup’ is a table with a wheel, ball and grid, for example.
In poker, ‘setup’ usually means a deck, or sometimes several decks, which are brought into the game as fresh cards. ‘Setup’ can be defined as two decks of differing design which are combined to make a 104-card stack, or even the eight-deck ‘shoe’ which is used in blackjack and some other games. It can also mean a single deck.
Dealers might call for a new ‘setup’ when there is some suspicion that cards have been tampered with, or because there is damage noted on one or more of the cards. In many casinos, it is standard practice to replace the setup for security reasons at timed intervals throughout the evening. New games will almost always open with a fresh setup, and players can request a fresh deck or an interjectory shuffle at any point during the game.
‘Setup’ can also refer to the equipment used in a casino – the tables, chairs, betting grids, chips and other accessories which are needed to play the games. A card room might say that it has a ‘poker setup’ and a ‘blackjack setup’, meaning that there are active tables available offering these games. Some game setups are more complicated than others – for example, Casino War simply needs a table and a deck of cards, while poker needs all the associated buttons and markers along with the table and cards.