Poker Basics Refresher

Poker is one of the most popular card games at casinos across the world, and now with the explosion in popularity of online casinos even more players are finding the game and learning to play.

However, as a beginner it can seem like people explaining the game are talking a language you don’t understand, and sometimes it is helpful to go back to basics and start from the beginning, so has put together a refresher course in poker basics.

Generally, poker games take one of two forms, either Draw Poker or Stud Poker, and there are a lot of similarities between the two versions, but as you might expect some subtle differences. So let’s have a look.

Draw Poker: Each of the players gets five cards dealt to them. Once all players have their cards the betting begins, which either sees players staying in or dropping out depending on what cards they have, and using the element of reading other players to decide who might genuinely have a stronger hand and who might be bluffing. After betting determines who is remaining then, those players are able to trade up to three of their cards for new ones. If someone holds an ace, the remaining four cards may be traded.

Stud Poker: Again there are five cards dealt to each player although in some casinos this maybe seven. Once more players check their own cards to see whether they have a strong hand and place bets accordingly. In this game of bluff the player with the most chips wins, however, if they are challenged by other players, all must show their cards, and the strongest hand wins.

Key Terms:

Raise: If you believe you have a good hand, or are playing a game of bluff and want others to think you have a good hand you can increase your wager and remain in the game.

Fold: Conversely if you believe that you have a hand that is going to lose, or that you cannot bluff your way through you can fold your hand. This limits your loss to chips already wagered.

Call: With each raise in stake the next player must take one of the actions above, or in this case call which is where you equal the amount that was raised by the other player.

Check: If there is no player increases the wager that is needed to continue you can check, which means you pass on the option of betting.

Royal Flush: This is the best hand and cannot be beaten. To get this, you would have to have A, K, Q, J and 10 of the same suit.

Straight Flush: The next best hand, to get this you need K, Q, J, 10 and 9 all of the same suit.

Four of a Kind: Another strong hand. From your five cards you would have four of the same number from each suit, so all four 9’s or all four 6’s. The remaining card is irrelevant in this case.