Teax holdem poker is always played against other players. You don’t play against the house. It is possible to win some incredible jackpots at this game and there are professional players who rake in millions of dollars per year.
If you love to gamble you’ll love holdem. Once you understand the rules it’s quite easy. This is a game which combines strategy with psychology in which even if you have a weak hand you stand a chance of winning if you know how to scare and bluff your opponents.
As a result of this level of control many people feel that whether or not they win at Texas Holdem is within their control. Learn about it and try it. You may feel the same way.
This is often called the ultimate game. The odds are in your favour. Once you’ve been playing for a while and learn the cards, combinations and best strategies you’ll be in the money!
How to Play Texas Holdem
Texas holdem rules are not as difficult as they first appear but it will take you a while and a few practice sessions to master the game. Everybody started out somewhere, even the pros. Keep this in mind and you’ll get it!
The game is played between a minimum of two and a maximum of ten players at a single table. The aim is to win as many chips as possible from others. He who ends with the most chips wins.
There are two ways to win chips from other players. You can have the best hand or you can bluff. You have the best hand by having the best combination of cards given what’s on the table and you bluff by scaring your opponents by raising bets and causing them to fold.
The game is broken into three distinct stages the first of which is the setup. The second stage is called the betting rounds. The final stage is called the showdown.
During the setup you first need to issue chips. Chips are worth a dollar value and you can buy them. Usually there is a minimum buy in and all players will agree to this before the game starts.
The next step in the setup is to nominate a player who will hold the dealer button. In this game the dealer rotates and changes with each hand. All players will at some point be the dealer.
There is a common way to decide who is going to act as dealer first. Everyone picks one card. The highest card is the dealer.
Once the round is over the dealer changes. The button always goes to the left. In some professional games it is possible to nominate a professional dealer who will deal for every round but someone will always have the button regardless and it must stay in rotation.
The final stage of the setup phase is to determine the blinds and in standard games of Holdem there are big blinds and small blinds. The big blind should be double the small blind. These determine the size of the game stakes.
For example, if you want the minimum buy in to be $50 you should set the blinds at 25c and 50c respectively. This means the buy in will be 100 times the big blind. All buy ins should be issued in poker chips.
The Betting Rounds
The dealer should issue one card to each player in a clockwise manner until all players have two cards. These are known as hole cards. They are a big part of the game.
One hand of holdem consists of a minimum of one and a maximum of four betting rounds. A hand ends when all but one player have folded. He who remains is the victorious.
If more than one person hasn’t folded by the end of the betting rounds this leads to a showdown. This is when players will reveal their cards to see who has won. This will be explained a little later.
Betting Round One: The Pre-Flop
The first betting round is called the pre-flop. Each player will look at their cards and decide on a course of action. They have three options.
The may fold, which means surrender. They may call, which means they match the big blind. They may also raise, which means they believe they can win with their hand or are bluffing, and raise the bet to higher stakes which is limited to double the big blind, except in no limit games.
Once a player has made his decision it is final. The person to the left then gets his or her turn. This continues in the same direction until all players have decided and placed their bets.
Betting Round Two: The Flop
The second betting round is known as the flop. This means the top card will be dealt face down. This is known as the burn card and the next step is to deal three cards face up on the table.
The rules of this round are similar but different. There are only minimal differences between this and the pre-flop. This time the player who still has a hand and who is closest to the dealer on the left plays first, and since no bet has been made and calling is therefore free, he can check or bet.
Betting Round 3: The Turn
By now the flop round is complete. The dealer deals two more cards on the table. One is dealt face down and the other is dealt face up and these are known as the “burn and turn”.
The betting in this round is the same as the flop. There is only one minor difference. The amount which has to be bet is double the size of the big blind.
Betting Round 4: The River
This is the fourth and final betting round. The river is dealt identically to the turn. One card is dealt face down on the table and one card is dealt face up.
The betting is done in the same way as the previous round. The player to the left of the dealer starts. This round only happens if more than one player remains.
Final Stage: The Showdown
If more than one player remains and has survived through the betting rounds without folding it is time for the showdown. The best hand wins the pot at this stage. It’s time to see who has been bluffing!
Players should show their hands according to a specific poker etiquette. You need to remember this. There are no exceptions.
The player who bet on the river shows first. If nobody bet the player on the left .
Texas Holdem Poker Hands
These Texas Holdem hands are ranked in order of strength. They are the same all over the world. There are no exceptions to these hands and they always, without exception, stand in this order.
The Royal Flush. This consists of five cards of the same suit. They are an ace, king, queen, jack and ten and it doesn’t matter which suit as long as they are all the same.
The Straight Flush. Similar to the royal flush without the high face cards. All the cards must be of the same suit but can be as low as two upwards, for example a two, three, four, five and six of the same suit.
Four of a kind. This involves having four cards of the same kind. For example you might have four kings or four aces and if two players have four of a kind each the higher cards win.
The Full House. Involves three cars of one kind and two of another. For example you might have three aces and two jacks or three eights and two sixes.
The Flush. This is five cards of the same suit. They don’t have to be in numerical order but all must be of the same kind, for examples five diamonds or five spades.
The Straight. This is a sequence of cards in order. They can be of any suit and a mixture of suits but must be in numerical order.
Three of a kind. You must have three of one suit like hearts. The other two cards don’t matter as long as you can play three of any kind you can use this hand.
Two Pair. This means you have two separate pairs to play. These can be of any suit but the kids must be the same, for example two aces and two kings, or two eights and two threes.
One pair. This is simply a pair in your hand. They can be of any suit but must be of the same kind, for example two threes or two aces.
High Card. Where none of the above are present a high card wins. An ace will always win a high card battle after which they descend through the face cards and then into numerical order to one.
Free Texas Holdem Online
There are many local sites offering free holdem games. Even Facebook have live practice tournaments You should always play for free until you master the texas holdem poker rules and develop a few strategies.
Some sites will ask you to download. You can do this or play live game. Many of the full version download programs have built in league tables and tournament records so you can mark your progress over time and compete against regular players.
After you get an instinctual feel for the game you’ll want to sign up for a real online casino and bet for real money so you can win big. This involves real players from around the world.
A Few Final Tips
- Some people use a calculator to check their odds. You can do this in online games. Some of the math involved in calculating poker odds is complex and it’s worth double checking.
- Always practice first. Join a practice tournament or league. As you climb the rankings you’ll know you’re getting good and stand a chance of playing for real money.
- When you want to play for real money select carefully. Pick a site which offers a welcome bonus. This is gratis play and money for you so why wouldn’t you take advantage of it?
Best of luck! We hope you win big. Maybe someday you’ll be a holdem master, too!
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