Poker is played
with a standard pack of 52 cards. (Some variant games use multiple packs
or add a few cards called jokers.) The cards are ranked (from high to low)
Ace, King, Queen, Jack, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, Ace. (Ace can be high
or low). There are four suits, spades, hearts, diamonds and clubs.
Poker is can be
played with 2 to 10 players, but five players are said to make the best
game. The best combination of five cards wins the game. In the case of a
tie, the pot is split equally among the winning hands.
Each player places an ante or
"token bet" into the pot before the cards are dealt. The ante is set
before the game and guarantees a winner on each hand. In all poker games
there are betting rounds during which each player in the game must fold
(stop playing the hand), call (equal the bet made), or raise (increase the
bet made). All bets are placed together to form a pot.
Once the ante has been made, the cards
are dealt face down around the table, starting at the player to
the dealers left and continuing clockwise. The dealer deals everyone their first card
and then deals the second, and so on. As soon as
everyone has five cards, the remainder of the deck is placed in the
middle of the table, and play begins.
Players first round betting
options. If no one makes a bet, you have two choices: (OPEN or CHECK)
OPEN: If no
betting has been done when your turn comes, you may "open" the kitty. This
allows you to make the first bet (any amount up to the betting limit).
opportunity to "check" only occurs if no one has opened the betting round
and then it is time for you to decide what to do. When a player checks, it
means that they do not want to open the betting, but at the same time they
don't want to quit either. If someone opens the betting you now have three
choices: (SEE, RAISE, and FOLD)
SEE: When you
"see" another player it means that you match their bet. So whatever the
other player bets and you still want to stay in the game, however you have
to "see" their bet by placing the same amount into the kitty.
RAISE: When you
"raise" it requires you to first "see" the previous bet, and then increase
the bet. If the previous person bet a R1 and you want to bet more than
that, you must then say "I see (match) your $, and raise you (increase
the bet) another $".
someone else opens, you can cut your losses and fold your cards. When you
"fold" you "give up" and place your cards face down on the table, and
loose whatever you have bet so far. You only "fold" when you think your
hand is too weak to compete against the other players.
The two basic forms
are draw poker and stud poker, in both of which a deck of 52 cards is used
and sometimes a joker added.
In draw poker five cards are dealt singly,
face down and in rotation, to each player who has paid an ante to the pot
before play began. Once a player has opened the betting, the others must
call the opening player's bet to stay in the game. In jackpots, perhaps
the commonest variety of draw poker, a player must have at least a pair of
jacks to open. At the conclusion of the first round of betting, a player
may now stand pat (hold his or her five original cards) or draw from one
to four cards from the stack (after discarding the same number from the
hand). Another betting interval follows, beginning with the opener. If a
bet is not met, the winner is not required to show his or her hand. When a
bet is called, all hands are shown and the best hand wins.
In stud poker, sometimes called open poker,
each player is dealt singly one card down (the hole card) and one card
face up. Each player looks at the card he or she has in the hole, but lets
it remain face down. The player with the highest card showing starts a
betting interval, and when all players have completed their betting,
another card is dealt face up. This goes on until each player has four
cards showing and one face down. After the final betting interval, the
hole cards are exposed and the best hand wins. The many other variations
of poker, such as high-low poker, and seven-card stud.
The art of good poker is
learning and understanding your opponent's play and body language.
- No cheating.
- No swearing.
- No abuse.
- No defacing of property.
- No drugs.
- No weapons.
- No excessive noise.