Poker is easily the most popular casino gambling game in the world. Now, eve online casinos feature it.
It looks like a basic card game, but don’t get too excited, especially as a beginner. The complexities will blow your mind!
Poker is a “winner takes all” game. So, when you win, you really win big!
Below, you will learn how to play poker, including basic rules you should master.
Basic Terms In Poker
Small Blind – A small starting bet which is half of the whole bet. The player to the left of the dealer places this one in each round.
Big Blind – A big starting bet which is the full bet. The player to the left of the small blind better places this per round as well.
Call – This is betting on the value of the big blind.
Raise – This is betting more money than the big blind.
Fold – Withdraw your cards and forfeit the current game and hand them to the dealer.
How To Play Poker
The dealer will pass out 2 cards to each player. These are your secret cards; the other players are not supposed to see the values on them. This is what is called your hand.
Your hand is only displayed in the final showdown when all players declare cards to see if one has the right combination to win.
The game flows clockwise. So, you’ll notice the cards are passed out starting from the left of the dealer.
The Four Betting Rounds in Poker
1. Preflop Round
The player next to the big blind begins, and they can call, raise or fold. All the other players follow in that order and have the same options.
Once all the players have participated, the dealer collects the chips from that round and moves them to a pool in the middle of the table.
Then the second round begins.
2. Flop Round
The dealer deals 3 cards (community cards) face up on the poker table. This is what is known as the flop.
Every player can use their 2 secret cards and the 3 community cards to form a 5-card poker hand.
For this round, the small blind player begins. He can either check, bet or fold. The player to his left follows until all the players have participated.
The chips from that round are then also collected and moved to the pool in the middle of the table.
Then the third round begins.
3. Turn Round
The dealer adds one more card on the table to make 4 community cards. This also means that for all the players in the game, there are 6 cards available to them, counting their 2 secret cards as well.
The 3rd betting round is played exactly the same as the 2nd round. Once all the players have participated, they move all the chips from that round to the pool in the middle.
Then the final round begins.
4. River Round
The dealer adds one more card to the table to make the community cards 5. The players now have 7 cards available to them, the 5 on the table and their 2 secret cards.
This round also works the same way as the 2nd and 3rd rounds, with chips collected and added to the pool.
All the remaining players must now show their cards (the showdown), and whoever has the best 5 card poker hand wins the pot.
If there is a tie, the two players split the pot.
Poker Hand Rankings
- Royal Flush – Here, your hand has a straight flush containing an A, K, Q, J, and 10, all of the same suit. It is the highest possible value in a game of Poker.
- Straight Flush – Here, your hand has a straight and a flush, all of the same suit. E.g., all 5 cards are spades and follow a sequence.
- Four of a Kind – Here, your hand has 5 cards containing 4 cards of the same number or letter, e.g., 7,7,7,7, and 3.
- Full House – This is where your hand has 5 cards containing 3 of a kind and a pair—e.g., 4,4,4 and 8,8.
- Flush – Here, your hand has 5 cards of the same suit, e.g., all cards are diamonds.
- Straight – When you have cards that can be arranged in sequential order. For example, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8.
- Three of a Kind – Your hand has 3 cards of the same number or letter.
- Two Pairs – Your hand has 2 pairs.
- One Pair – Your hand has at least one pair.
- High Cards – Your hand doesn’t form any pair.
Pro Poker Tips For Beginners
- Learn to read other players when you play poker
Since you cannot see their cards, you should learn to read their body language and reactions.
It enables you to plan your moves accordingly. It also helps you to classify the players and quickly identify who the real competition. Then you can tell whether to play mind games to counter them.
- Only bet what you are willing to lose
Since it’s a winner takes all type of game, there are high temptations to risk it all in the hope of gaining the pot. Stay calm and manage your money well.
As you can see from the guide, there is a lot to learn before you play poker. So, take your time and understand it so you don’t end up in repeated losses.
Poker remains one of those casino games that runs on pure luck.