Texas Hold-Em poker is the version of poker played in livecasinos and television shows. Poker rules allow many players to participate but whoever is the dealer does not play; in a livecasino on the pokertable a round disc known as the dealer button rotates in a clockwise motion with the hand pointing at the player who is to act as the dealer for each round. Once the players submit their contributions to the pot, they are dealt each two cards face down. The contribution ensures that there is something to play for on each hand.
A round of betting occurs at the beginning of the round, starting with the left player amongst the two who made contributions. When it is your turn to bet, you have the option to fold, call or raise. Once the players place their bets the dealer discards the top card. This done to reduce any chances of cheating in case anyone saw the top card. The dealer then lays out the next three cards face up; this set of three is known as the flop. After the flop, players are expected to place a second round of bets, again players are allowed to check, call, raise or fold whenever it is their turn to bet.
Once more the dealer has to burn the card, discard the top card, and place the next one card face up. This card is commonly known as the fourth street which consequently leads to another round of betting, and as usual the pokerplayer to the left of the dealer goes first. The dealer repeats the same procedure, discards the top card and places the next face up; this fifth card is known as the fifth street or river. The players can now use the five community cards and the original two, also known as hole cards, to create the best combination. The fourth and final round of betting is done and the players that choose to remain in the game reveal their cards. The player with the best hand wins.
Poker is a game riddled with fascinating legends. You hear tales of gold prospects being decided on a pair of bullets in the days of the wild wild West. Or how a newcomer by the name of Chris Moneymaker took down the WSOP against names that are infamous around poker circles. There’s a lure to this game that attracts people of all walks for a chance to strike it rich. The game is often believed to be more of a skill reading tells or betting patterns than it is catching high pairs or straights. But before we go big and get sent home, it’s important to learn some of the basics of this trade when playing live poker.
To understand how the game is played, we need to understand which poker hands rank where. Here is a list in order from top to bottom of the highest to lowest hands dealt on the table:
- Royal Flush - 10 through Ace all suited and an extremely rare find
- Straight Flush - any run of all five cards suited
- Four of a Kind - 4 cards that are all alike
- Full House – three cards alike and two cards alike
- Flush - all five cards suited
- Straight - a run of all five cards of varying suits
- Three of a Kind – three cards that are alike
- 2 Pair - two pairs of cards that are like
- 1 Pair - any pair of cards that are alike
- High Card - this is the highest card in the hand starting from Ace down.
Cards are dealt in a clockwise manner by the dealer. The players then begin a series of betting rounds, each claiming to have the best hand. When the player knows the cards aren’t in his favor, he’ll either fold or bluff. A good bluff will have the others players giving up on their hands and forfeiting the pot. Otherwise, after all bets are final, the best hand wins.
Now many variations of this game have been designed. The biggest craze is the Texas Hold-em version of poker. This poker game has grown wildly popular since the before mentioned Chris Moneymaker proved to the world that even an underdog can win it all on any given night. Whichever style of poker the parties wish to play is open for them to decide. But most variations do spin from this style of poker.