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Basic Poker Rules and How to Play

Poker Rules and StrategyThe rules of poker are different for each game. However, the goal for all of them remains the same – that is winning the pot. Each online poker variation needs to be treated according to its own unique rules for a greater gambling experience. And, this is where we come in.

In this quick guide, we provide you with simple online poker rules for the most popular variations – all-in-one. Read on to get started.

Practice Poker Rules Online

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What are the Rules of Poker?

The rules of poker are fairly easy to understand. Generally, your goal is to win by creating the best five-card combination as shown on the poker hand rankings chart. Poker is a game of skill and to win, you also have to bring some strategies into play.

Texas Hold’Em Poker Rules

Texas Hold’em is the most popular variation of the game around the world, including South Africa. This could be because it is very simple to learn or because every casino offers it, or both. With that being said, players should not be misled by the simplicity of the game as it can be very complex at some levels.

As a beginner player, it is important to familiarise yourself with Texas Hold’em rules before you can play the game for real money.

The gameplay in Texas Hold’em is similar to five-card draw, with the only difference being how players construct their hands on the former.

Poker Rules Basic

Here’s a summary Texas Hold’em poker rules:

  • In Texas Hold’em poker, each player is dealt two-hole cards.
  • There are several betting rounds where five community cards are dealt face up.
  • Players use the community cards in combination with their two-hole cards to form the best five-card hand.
  • The community cards are dealt as: The Flop: first three community cards, 2. The Turn: The fourth card, 3. The River: The fifth and last community card.
  • The other way to win the pot is through ‘bluffing’ and getting the other players to fold. That way you can win the pot without having to show any cards.

Omaha Poker Rules

Omaha Poker is also another popular poker game with the two hyped variations being Omaha Hi/Lo and Pot-Limit Omaha. The gameplay is not that different from Hold’em as it also consists of several betting rounds; the pre-flop, flop, turn, the river and the showdown.

Poker Rules and Hand Rankings
  • The game is played using the standard 52-card deck and by two to ten players.
  • For the action to start, the Big Blind (BB) and the Small Blind (SB) need to place their bets on the table, then the dealer will deal four cards to each player. This is how Omaha differs from Hold’em poker.
  • The first betting round then begins as soon as after the cards are dealt, and the first player to act is the one at the left of the BB and clockwise.
  • All players on the Omaha table have the options to either; call (place a bet equal to the size of the BB), raise (increase their bet) or fold (give back the card and leave the hand).
  • The players can only use two of their four cards in combination with three of the community cards to form a winning five-card combination. Unlike in Hold’em where they can choose to use either both two of their hole cards and three community cards, or one whole card and four community cards or no hole cards.

Seven Card Stud Poker Rules

Seven Card Stud poker used to be a hit way before Texas Hold’em was discovered. In this variation, there is no flop and usually does not have community cards.

Poker Rules in Summary
  • To begin, players are dealt two (hole) cards face down, followed by a third card facing up. The betting stage is known as the third street and the card a door card.
  • Players then get to choose whether they want to continue with the hand based on the three cards.
  • The starting hands in Seven Card Stud are as important as any other poker variation.
  • In total, each player will get dealt seven cards with three face down and four face up and from those cards you need to choose your best five-card combination.

Poker Rules Summary

Poker rules are almost the same for every poker variation. But it is important to choose a variation you think works the best for you. Games such as Seven Card Stud require you pay close attention to the cards your opponents have.

Another important thing to look at is what variation of the poker game you are playing because others demand forced bets and other additional rules you may not be aware of.

For instance, in Fixed-Limit Hold’em, a raise is twice the big blind, while Pot-Limit Hold’em allows players to bet anywhere from the amount of the big blind up to the total amount of the pot.

Poker rules may also vary in tournament games, or depending on the poker rooms or software used by the online poker sites.

Other variations worthy of mention are; Caribbean Stud Poker, Razz poker, 2-7 Triple Draw, Short Deck, Chinese Poker, Seven Card Stud 8 or Better.

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