Novice Video Poker Tips

August 30th, 2010  |  Published in Gambling Games

There are a number of variants of video poker games found at both online and land-based casinos. For a new player, this can be a difficult choice. Also, beginners will need to find a game appropriate for their skill level.

Luckily, there are a few tips for novice video poker players. These pointers include:

  • Avoid multi-hand games
  • Choose the most basic variant
  • Research different online casinos

Online casinos make these tasks much easier for new players. The video poker games are usually divided into two categories; single hands and multi-hand games.  Single hand games are just that, one hand per session. Conversely multi-hand games can range from 4 to 100 simultaneous hands. An increased number of hands equates to faster-paced game play and a more interesting experience. Ideally, new players should begin with single hand games until they feel comfortable.

Since there are so many different types of video poker games available, it is important to choose the most basic variant which is Jacks or Better. This is because the play is simpler than other versions and the strategy is easier to learn. Other types add new elements that improve variety, but might be confusing to a new player. Additional variants include; the addition of wild cards, Deuces Wild and Aces and Faces.

Most online casinos offer video poker with the Jacks or Better variant. However, does one software provider have an easier Jacks or Better game than another? The rules and payout will be the same, there is a single feature found in some casinos that make the game play much easier; when a player has a winning hand combination the software automatically marks them as “Hold”. This feature prevents new players from throwing away a winning hand.

As a result, new players should conduct research to find online casinos that offer this feature. It can easily be found by perusing different casinos and even emailing the support desk so you do not have to sign up at multiple sites to find this beneficial feature.

New players to video poker should not be disheartened by finding the simplest version of video poker. Instead, look at it as making an informed choice as a customer and saving your hard earned money from placing wagers on complicated games. By practicing and following the previously mentioned tips, you will be able to advance to different versions quickly.

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The Fundamentals of American Pai Gow Poker

July 23rd, 2010  |  Published in Gambling Games

Traditionally Pai Gow poker is played with a set of domino-type tiles. To make the game easier to understand and play in casinos, an American version was developed using a standard deck of cards (and one joker) with hand rankings similar to regular poker. The extra joker card acts as an ace or wild card to complete a straight, flush or straight flush only.

An Overview

Pai Gow is played on a blackjack-sized table consisting of up to six players and a banker. All players are against the banker which is usually the dealer. In general, the house collects a five percent commission for each winning bet.

How to Play

To begin the game, each player places a bet equal to the table minimum. The dealer then shuffles and distributes seven stacks containing seven cards regardless of the number of players. The banker shakes a cup that holds three die; this resolves which player starts. The player evaluates the dealt cards and sets them into two hands; one containing two cards and one with five.

The two card hand is moved to the front and the five card hand to the back. If both hands beat the banker’s hands, you’re the winner. If only one wins, it’s a push and you’re money is returned. If either hand displays the exact same values, it’s referred to as a copy and the banker wins. Obviously if the banker has two better hands then you lose.

Your five card hand must be of higher value than your two card hand. If you set the two card hand higher, then a foul is committed which results in an automatic loss. The banker sets their cards according to the “house way” which are specific rules that must be followed. If you’re unsure how to set your hand, ask the dealer to set it the “house way” to avoid any costly mistakes.

Pai Gow Poker is generally a slower-paced game that has many pushes. The dealer does have a slight edge due to their automatic win during a copy. With the proper strategy the game can be mastered and won long term.

Most casinos offer Pai Gow poker at many of their regular gaming tables. In order to be successful, there are a few strategies that involve selecting specific cards depending on the nature of the hand. Following this general overview will help you familiarize yourself with the basics of the game.

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Four Card Poker: The Basics

July 15th, 2010  |  Published in Gambling Games

Four card poker is a poker game, similar to three card poker that was developed by Roger Snow. The game is played on a poker table and uses an automatic shuffling machine to shuffle the cards. While there are some similarities to three card poker, the strategies and game play are somewhat different.


Four card and three card poker share some similarities. For instance, each version is essentially two games mashed into one. The basic game is against the dealer in the ante-play competition, similar to three card poker. The other piece of the game is Aces Up in which the player receives automatic payment for any hand that contains aces or better.

Game play

Four card poker is played on a blackjack table with a 52 card deck. On the table, there are three circles in front of each player that indicates Aces Up, Ante and 1x to 3x Ante. Game play commences with each player placing betting chips into the Aces Up or Ante categories. If the player chooses both circles, they must place equal bets.

The player is then dealt five cards face down. The object is to make the best four card hand. Conversely, the dealer is dealt six cards to make the best four card hand, with one card facing up. After reviewing the cards, the player can fold or place an additional bet. The minimum bet is equal to the original bet the player placed. The maximum wager is up to three times the original bet.

Ante Bonus

One perk is the ante bonus which is paid alongside the ante and any other bets if won. It is based on the player’s final hand. Three of a kind pays 2-to-1, straight-flush pays 20-to-1 and four of a kind pays 25-to-1. This payment structure may vary between casinos.

Aces up Bet

The Aces Up bet is separate from the dealer’s hand. Any player that has a pair of aces or better will be paid for the Aces Up bet which is based on that particular casinos payment chart. Luckily, even if the player loses the Ante bet, they can still win the Aces Up bet.

Four card poker is another easy game to pick up; it’s simply learning the different types of bets that can be made and the various opportunities to win. If you are proficient at Texas Hold’em, Five Card Draw or Stud or any other type of poker, you should have no problem picking this game up quickly.

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What You Can Learn About Poker in an Online Casino

June 2nd, 2010  |  Published in Inrodution

The game of poker is complex, and good poker players spend a lot of their time studying the game, improving their skills, and developing their techniques. Online casinos are a great opportunity for poker player to raise their playing level. The simple ability to just get in more playing time alone is worth joining an online casino website. However, there are several things a player can learn about poker from an online casino that they may not learn anywhere else. The below are several coveted things to learn about Poker via an online casino.

How to Read a Player Even When You Cannot See Them

Knowing how to read your opponents is vital for success in poker. The better you understand other players and their style, the better chance you have at mastering their hand and winning more rounds. At a poker table, you have the opportunity to see the player face to face. This is the easiest way to learn to read a poker tell, as many people often give themselves away with their body language.

In an online casino, you cannot see the people you are playing against. This gives you a chance to learn to read people in other ways. For example, many poker sites offer chat rooms. It may not seem like it at first, but people give away just as many of their poker playing secrets in a chat room as they do at the poker table. Learn how to study these chat rooms.

How to Play a New Game of Poker

When you play in a brick and mortar casino you are often limited to playing only one or two types of poker as most casinos often only feature the most popular games, such as Texas Hold ‘Em. However, online casinos are famous for featuring dozens of poker games. They do this to draw in more players. You can use this to your advantage. If you want to learn a new style of poker game, try playing it online. Best of all, many of these sites offer free play so you can practice before you bet.

Lastly, many poker players who take advantage of free play engage in chat sessions. Often you can discuss the game as it unfolds in real-time during your free play. This has helped many players learn from those at their virtual table, as the sharing of knowledge and perfecting your strategy is critical to enhancing  future payouts.

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How to Learn Poker Inside a Casino

May 19th, 2010  |  Published in Casino Tips

Many people looking to learn the skills of poker, look towards resources outside the casino. They read books written by professional poker players, check out blogs written on their favorite poker game, or watch the many televised poker tournaments and poker shows. While these are great resources for improving your poker game, there is a lot you can learn inside the casino itself. The key to great poker playing is to learn everything you can from any resource you can get, so take advantage of what the casino has to teach you.

Poker Classes Hosted by the Casino

Several large casinos hosts classes on various games played at the casino. These classes are almost always free to join. The class is often taught by a dealer, a professional poker player, or a member of the casino staff. Many people shy away from these classes simply because they think the casino will only teach them in a way that causes them to loose. On the outside that makes sense, after all, why would a casino want to create people to take all of their money? However, casinos thrive much better on repeat business then they do on sore losers who never return. These classes have valuable information. Best of all, most of the classes offer promotional items, such as free play.

Learn from the Dealer

Many dealers are happy to share their knowledge of the game, especially during slow times. Dealers can be very insightful. After all, they had to know a great deal about the game to get the job in the first place and they spend the majority of their time watching it be played. The next time you are at the casino, look for a dealer with a small table. Chances are he or she will be happy to answer your questions. Some casinos even have poker tables specifically meant for beginners. Dealers at these tables help to teach the game while it is being played live.

Learn From the Other Players

Most people, especially new poker players, shy away from other players. In reality, there is a lot you can learn from your opponents. Most poker players love to talk, so why not ask someone you respected at the table a question or two after the game? Chances are they will be more then happy to give you some advice.

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What You Should be Doing to Improve Your Poker Game

April 21st, 2010  |  Published in Gambling Games

Most poker players, even the occasional weekly home game player, wants to improve his or her poker game. After all, the more you know, the better you play, and the better you play, the more hands you win. It is a simple formula, play better, win more hands, and walk away with more money. The problem is, there is so much information about every poker game out there that is can be hard to know where to start. What advice should you listen too? What should you ignore? The best way to improve your poker game is to develop a learning strategy you can use for years to come.

How to Master a Poker Game

Step One: Learn the Rules of the Game

The first thing you should always do is to learn the rules of the game, and not just the basics. You really need to know the game inside and out to play it well. One way you can do this is to take an instructional class at a casino. Most casinos offer these courses for free for their patrons. However, another option is to read. Hundreds of books have been printing on every poker game. Most of these books were written by big time winning professional poker players. Read several of these books to get an understanding of the game from every angle.

Step Two: Practice

The saying “practice makes perfect” holds true with most things, and with poker. To fully understand the game, you have to play it. Play as often as you can. Visit the casino, play online, start a weekly game with your friends. However you do it, just make sure you do. The more you play, the better you will become.

Step Three: Read Some More

Even if you have the poker game down, you should still give yourself a refresher from time to time. There are several ways of doing this. Subscribe to one of the many poker blogs. These blogs provide a constant source of poker news. Join Twitter and start following some of the many professional poker players that use the social networking site. They frequently offer tips. You can also go the old fashioned route and keep up with those books. New books are constantly coming on the market, get your hands on them when they come out. Keeping on top of the poker scene will keep you in the game.

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How to Play Deuces Wild Video Poker

April 13th, 2010  |  Published in Gambling Games

Deuces Wild is a poker game developed for video poker. Video poker is a modern twist on traditional poker games. Video poker uses computerized machines that allow individual players to compete against the computer, rather then a table full of players. Many players prefer the solitude of the video poker machine over the sometimes nerve-racking poker tables

Deuces Wild video poker is a traditional five card game. Deuces Wild uses the standard rules for the suits with face cards being higher then number cards. However, Deuces Wild has the added thrill of a wild card. Every two dealt to a player is considered “wild,” and can be used to represent any card in the deck.

How Do I Play Deuces Wild Video Poker?

A player sitting in front of a Deuces Wild video poker machine can start a round by placing an Ante bet. The player can place their Ante bet by following the prompts on the screen. A player is required to place an Ante bet before each round of Deuces Wild, and the casino often places a minimum bet requirement for the game.

The Ante bet signifies the start of the round. Once the bet is placed, the dealer, (video poker machines use computers to automatically generate cards and act as the dealer,) will deal out five cards on to the screen. From here the player has two choices, he can raise his bet and continue with the hand or fold and loose his Ante. If the player chooses to ride out the hand, they must raise their Ante bet.

Once the player has raised his Ante bet he has the option of discarding up to four cards from his hand. The dealer will deal another set of cards to replace the unwanted set. The player is only given one chance to discard in Deuces Wild video poker. After the second round of cards has been dealt, the player will enter the final stretch of the game and must make a high card hand from what he was dealt, or loose his bet.

In order to win a hand of Deuces Wild, the player must be holding a pair of Jacks or better in their hand. However, if a player is holding a two number card from any suit, he can use that card to better his hand.

The player is paid out according to a pay structure determined by the casino based on the hand he is holding and the amount of his bet. If the player does not have a high card hand, he looses his entire Ante bet and any raise made.

How Does Betting Work in Deuces Wild Video Poker?

Video Poker uses a payout scale to determine the amount won for each hand of video poker. These structures are paid using a ratio. Typically that ratio falls in the 1:1 or 3:1 categories, but since the actual amount is up to the casino, it may vary.

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Learning the Basics of Omaha Poker

April 8th, 2010  |  Published in Gambling Games

Omaha poker is a popular poker game. Most casinos, online and land based, host Omaha poker. There are also several Omaha poker tournaments you can participate in throughout the year. Omaha poker is similar to Texas Hold ‘Em, expect the player is dealt more cards and therefore has more chances to develop a high hand. Omaha poker is a simple game to master once you know the basics.

Know the Omaha Poker Language

Omaha uses a lingo identical to the lingo of Texas Hold ‘Em. The only difference is the number of cards that are dealt to the player.

1. Hole Cards: The Hole Cards refer to the first four cards that are dealt to the player.

These cards are dealt face down.

2. The Flop: The flop refers to the first three of five community cards that are dealt on the table. The community cards can be used in any player’s hand. These cards are dealt face up.

3. The Turn: The Turn refers to the fourth community card that is dealt to the table. This card is dealt face up.

4. The River: The River refers to the fifth card that is dealt to the table. This card is dealt face up.

The Basic Rules of Omaha Poker

1. The dealer will deal the Hole Cards. Players must then place a bet on their Hole Cards.

2. The dealer will deal the Flop. Players will compare their Hole Cards to the Flop to see what five card hand they can make at this point. All players will place a bet on the Flop.

3. The dealer will deal the Turn. Players will compare their Hole Cards to the Flop and the Turn to see if the Turn improved their hand. All players will place a bet on the Turn.

4. The dealer will deal the River. At this point, the players must determine their best five-card hand using their Hole Cards and the community cards on the table dealt during the Flop, the Turn, and the River. If the player has a high hand, they will up their bet. If the player does not have a high hand, they will fold.

If you can learn to play Omaha poker, you can learn to play Texas Hold ‘Em, and vice versa. Some players prefer Omaha poker to Texas Hold ‘Em because the two additional cards dealt during the Hole Cards gives players an added chance of developing a hand higher then their opponents.

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Three Tools You Should Utilize at the Poker Table

April 1st, 2010  |  Published in Casino Tips

Poker players often look for ways to improve their skills and get the edge on their opponents. Reading about your poker game, developing new techniques, and practicing are all important maneuvers to mastering the craft. However, poker players often overlook the three most important, and simplest, tools at their disposal. A great poker player knows that to win, you must use every tool at your disposal. Make sure you are using everything you can, especially the most common weapons.

The Deck of Cards

While it may seem simple, the cards are the most important aspect to any game of poker. How the cards are dealt, and how you choose to play those cards, is what determines if you win or loose the hand. Learn everything you can about the different hands you may be dealt. Study rankings and odds for every type of poker game you play, and remember that without that high hand, you wont likely win the pot.

The Chips

Not only are chips vital to betting in poker, they can be used as an intimidation tool against your poker opponents. For example, if you are sitting at the table with a high stack of chips, throwing in more then the minimum ante for every hand you play the other players are going to think one of three things. One, you may be a high roller. Two you may be doing very well in the game and are an experienced player they should take notice of, or three, you are serious about your game and they should keep an eye on you. The reverse is also true, if you are playing too modestly with your chips, then your opponents are likely to see you as a tight player and an easy target.

Your Position at the Poker Table

Where you sit at the poker table plays an important role in the game, especially in Texas Hold ‘Em. If you are the first position in the table, you have the disadvantage of having to make the first move in every round before you see your opponents moves. If you are in the middle position, you have the advantage of seeing the players before you move, and the disadvantage of not knowing what the players after you will do. Every position at the table plays a different role in the game, and it is important that you learn how to play the strengths, and deal with the weaknesses, of each.

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How to Look Like a Pro on Your First Trip to the Casino

March 24th, 2010  |  Published in Casino Tips

Everyone was a beginner at some point in his or her poker career, but hardly anyone wants to look like a beginner. The first time you walk in to a casino can be daunting- even if you have played casino games online for years. However, you can ease your nerves and give the appearance of a seasoned professional by following a few simple steps, starting from the moment you walk in to the casino.

Get a Rewards Card

Most casinos offer a rewards card for players. These rewards cards monitor how much you are spending and playing, and turn that in to different rewards from the casino. These rewards can come in the form of free play or comps for buffets or hotel room stays. Reward cards are free and no one should go without one. The first thing you should do when you get to the casino is to head to the front desk and sign up for your rewards card.

Find out what Poker Games are being played

Some casinos feature large screens that scroll down to tell you all of the poker games being played at the casino. Other casinos have a list kept at the front desk or with the Brush (the person you will register for a poker table with.) Locate this list of games and decide what you want to play.

Get in Line for a Poker Game

Most casinos require poker players to sign in before they can join a poker game. Find the Brush- the person responsible for keeping track of the poker table waiting list- and sign up. If the poker game you want to play is full, the Brush will put you on a waiting list. When there is an open spot at the table, your name will be called, and you can join in.

Practice Good Etiquette at the Poker Table

Once you are at the poker table, it is important that you practice good etiquette. Follow the betting rules set by the table. Keep your emotions in check and do not disturb the dealer or the other players, and be sure to tip the dealer through out the game. Not following poker etiquette is the easiest way to look like an amateur.

Your first trip to the casino should be an exciting time. By following a few simple guidelines, you have nothing to worry about and can relax and enjoy your poker.

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