ONLINE POKER

Online Poker The Ultimate Guide

In real life, in movies, in songs and in books there are two things that are synonymous with gambling; slot machines – and poker!

Poker is one of the most popular card games on the planet thanks to its mix of chance, skill and tension. Poker tournaments attract big stars, big crowds and even bigger pots with its bad boy air of danger and mystery and edge-of-your-seat expectation.

Online poker rooms are normally set up so players can play against other players in a virtual environment where the house charges a fee for entry or a rake off the total funds gambled.

Online poker at an online casino follows the same rules as real life poker but instead of playing against a table full of opponents, you are playing against the machine, one-on-one, mano a mano.

Poker terms and jargon

Ante – the minimum bet amount at the beginning of a game. Everybody playing must match the ante to take part.

Small blind – an initial bet (amounting to half the ante) before the cards are dealt. The small blind player is the player to the dealer’s left. Also called a first blind.

Big blind – the next player to the small blind’s left then puts in the full ante amount. Also known as the second blind.

Hole cards – the two cards each player gets.

The flop – the first three (of five) community cards dealt face up onto the table.Online Poker Guide

The turn – the fourth community card dealt face up onto the table.

The river – the fifth and final community card dealt face up onto the table.

Fold – surrendering a game.

Raise – upping the bet (or raising the stakes).

Check – playing without raising the stakes.

Call ­– matching another player’s bet and challenging them to reveal their cards (usually only done when there are only two or three players left).

Pot – the combined bets from all the players.

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Types of poker

There are a lot of variants of poker around the world including Texas Hold’em, Stud and Draw. The most popular by far is Texas Hold’em so we will give you a quick breakdown of gameplay.

Texas Hold’em gameplay

Small blind and big blind place their bets.

Small blind puts in half the ante, while big blind responds with the full ante.

The cards are shuffled and each player is dealt two cards face down.

Players may look at their cards and then decide whether they want to continue or not.

Texas Hold’em Online Poker

If they think their cards are bad, they can choose to fold. If they think their cards are good or want to see what cards
are revealed in the community cards, they must place their bet to continue.

Three cards are dealt face up on the table. These cards (called the flop) are community cards that can be used by everybody to make up their best hand of five cards.

Players decide whether to fold or play. If they decide to play, they can choose to check (carry on without betting any more money) or raise (increase the size of their bet).

Note: If any player decides to raise then all the players must match the raise or fold.

A fourth card (the street) is place face up on the table.

Players decide whether to fold or play. If they decide to play, they can choose to check (carry on without betting any more money) or raise (increase the size of their bet).

Note: If any player decides to raise then all the players must match the raise or fold.

A fifth and final card (the river) is placed face up on the table.

Players decide whether to fold or play. If they decide to play, they can choose to check (carry on without betting any more money) or raise (increase the size of their bet).

Note: If any player decides to raise then all the players must match the raise or fold.

The remaining players reveal their hands. The highest combination hand wins the pot.

Differences between live poker and online poker

The only real difference between live poker (as explained in gameplay above) and online poker is that, in online poker, you play against a machine rather than a group of other players. The basics of gameplay remain essentially the same. Remember to always check the rules of the game you are about to play before making any bets.

Poker hand rankings

Each poker hand is made up of five cards. Players have two cards in their hand (hole cards) and five community cards. They can use any five of these seven cards to create a winning hand. Below is the ranking for every poker hand, from lowest to highest.

High card – a single card with the highest value (ace is the most valuable card in poker)

Pair – two cards of the same value, e.g. 2x Kings

Two pair – two pairs of two cards of the same value, e.g. 2x Kings and 2x sevens

Three of a kind – three cards of the same value, e.g. 3x fours

Straight – five consecutive cards of any suit, e.g. two, three, four, five, six of different suits

Flush – five cards of the same suit, e.g. three, six, seven, Jack, King of clubs

Full house – three cards of the same value plus two cards of another same value, e.g. 3x eights plus 2x Queens

Four of a kind – four cards of the same value, e.g. 4x nines

Straight flush – five consecutive cards of the same suit, e.g. eight, nine, ten, Jack, Queen of diamonds

Royal Flush – five consecutive cards from ten to Ace in the same suit, e.g. ten, Jack, Queen, King, Ace of spades

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