The rise of online poker
Poker has been played for many years and has a sense of elegance that is difficult to explain. In the past players had to travel long distances to take part in games at land-based casinos but thanks to online casinos any player with any budget can take part in the exciting game.
Poker became incredibly popular in 2003 when Chris Moneymaker won the Main Event at the World Series of Poker (WSOP) after qualifying through a online poker site. He turned a small $40 investment into a massive $2.5 million which led to great excitement in the industry.
Players around the world realised that the game was easily accessible at online casinos and that millions could be made. From then on, the game’s popularity grew at the speed of light.
Basic poker rules
The most popular variation of online poker is without a doubt Texas Hold’em. Some might think that it is intricate but the rules are surprisingly easy to learn. Texas Hold’em is played in four rounds and the player need’s to make their best possible five-card hand, using 2 hole cards and 3 community cards. First of all you will need to get to know the different terms.
- Hole cards: These cards are used by players uniquely and is dealt face-down.
- Community cards: All players at the table can use them to make their best possible hand. They are dealt face-up.
- The Flop: The first three community cards dealt.
- The Turn: The fourth community card.
- The River: The last community card dealt.
- Check: When you choose not to place a bet.
- Bet: When you place a bet.
- Call: when you place a bet with the value of a other player to stay in the hand.
- Raise: Increase the bet that other players will need to place in the pot to stay in the hand.
How to win
You will also need to know which hands will give you the better advantage. Here they are from high to low.
The cards need to be in a specific sequence and they need to be the same suit: Ace, King, Queen, Jack, 10 (all diamonds for example).
It is like the royal flush so the cards need to be in sequence with the same suit but it does not necessarily need to be in a specific cards: 8, 7, 6, 5, 4 (all hearts, for example).
Four of a Kind
Here you will need four cards of the same rank and one random card, in any suit: J, J, J, J, 7.
Three cards with the same value and one pair: 10, 10, 10 and 9, 9 in any suit.
Suit is all you need here so all 5 cards need to have the same suit but it can be random ranks : 7, 9, 4, 8, J (all diamonds, for example).
Any five cards in sequence, suits don’t apply – 9, 8, 7, 6, 5.
Three of a Kind
Three cards with the same rank and two random cards, any suits – K, K, K, 9, 7.
Two sets of pairs and one random card, suits don’t apply – K, K, Q, Q, 8
One set of pairs and three random cards, suits are irrelevant – J, J, 8, 6, 3
When you have non of the above you will play your highest card.
How to play
Every player at the table is dealt two cards, face down. These cards are called the ‘hole’ cards. After this, a round of betting will occur where you will have the option to ‘check’, ‘bet’ or ‘fold’.
This initial round of betting is referred to as the pre-flop and determines your next move because you will need to use these two ‘hole’ cards in your final hand.
When the betting round is finished, three community cards will be dealt face-up. This is referred to as ‘the flop’. It is followed by another round of betting.
The fourth community card will then be dealt which is called ‘the turn’. After this there is another round of betting that is followed by the final community card being dealt. This final card is referred to as the ‘the river’.
The the final round of betting takes place. You then need to make you best hand using your two ‘hole’ cards and three of the ‘community’ cards that is on the table.
Let’s give you an example.
Your hole cards = 9, 9
The community cards = 9, 9, Ace, 5, 2,
You will have a four of a kind.
If the community cards were J, Q, K, 7, 2, your best hand would be the two nines referred to as one pair.
There are two ways to win in Texas Hold’em. The one is when the the player with the best cards win and the other is when all players fold because they can not keep up with the betting amount.