Time to put on your poker face

poker bynOne of the most popular card games and casino games around the world is the game of poker. Reportedly developed in New Orleans in the early 1800s, the game was spread by along the Mississippi River by the riverboats which were popular for the gambling entertainments that they offered. From the Mississippi, the game of poker was spread west during the gold rush, becoming an integral part of the wild west frontier ethos that has helped to shape the United States that we know today.

Over time, the game of poker has evolved and a number of variations of the game have emerged. In this article we take a look at some of the most common variations that you may encounter in casinos around the world.


Straight Poker

In the classic version of the game, a complete hand of five cards is dealt to each player, and the players bet in one round. In casual play, players take turns to act as dealer, whereas in a casino the house dealer will always handle the cards, however the order of betting will rotate between the players.


Texas Hold ‘em

In this version of the game, two cards are dealt face down to each player and then five community cards are dealt face-up by the dealer – first as a series of three, then an additional single card, and then the fifth and final card. Players can make their bets after each deal. This version of the game of poker is believed to have originated in Texas in the early 1900s.


Stud Poker

In this variation, the cards are dealt in a combination of face-down and face-up rounds, with a round of betting following each deal. The most common form of this variation that you will encounter is the seven-card stud game in which the dealer deals two extra cards to each player (three face-down, four face-up) from which the player must make the best possible 5-card hand.


Draw Poker

If you are playing Draw Poker then a complete hand is dealt to each player, face down, and after betting, the players are allowed to try and improve the strength of their hand by discarding unwanted cards in exchange for new ones from the dealer. This is often referred to as five-card draw.


Community card poker

A derivation of stud poker, in this game the players are dealt an incomplete hand of face-down cards and then a number of face-up community cards are placed in the centre of the table. Players use the community cards to make up the best possible five-card poker hand.


Strip Poker

While this version of the game is not something that you are likely to see in a casino, it can be a lot of fun when played at home or at a party. Players that lose their bet are required to remove a piece of clothing.


A grasp of the essential principles of the game of poker will enable you to quickly learn any of the variations that you may come across. A great game that is a lot of fun, just try not to lose your clothes.


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