uses a standard pack of playing cards, 52 cards (there are
some poker games that uses more or less depending on the variations
such as adding wild cards like jokers). The card ranking is
as follows Ace (the highest), King, Queen, Jack, 10, 9, 8,
7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2 (the lowest), Ace (this may also be the lowest
card depending on the variations you are using, but it is
usually the highest).
are four suits (spades, hearts, diamonds and clubs). No
suit is higher than another. All poker hands contain five
cards, the highest hand wins.
use of Wild Cards depends on the variations, wild cards
take on whatever rank or suit you want it to take. A wild
card can either be a seperate card added like a joker or
you may specifiy a certain card in the standard deck to
be wild like dueces, or whatever else.
number of cards dealt is dependant on what type of game
you are playing: 5 card stud, you are dealt five cards and
7 card stud, you are dealt seven. I know this is obvious,
but I don't want anyone to get confused. Five card draw
is the standard poker game where 5 cards are dealt to each
player face down.
of the hands -it wouldn't be a bad idea to print a copy
of this for use during your first poker game, but I would
recommend memorizing it to prevent uncontrolled laughter
from your opponents.
of a Kind -A five of a kind, only possible when using wild
cards, is the highest possible hand. If more than one hand
has five of a kind, the higher cards wins, five Aces will
beat five kings, which beats five queens, and continues
on by the ranking of the cards. Straight Flush-A straight
flush is the best natural hand. A straight flush is a straight
(5 cards in order, such as 7-8-9-10-J) that are all of the
same suit. As in a regular straight, you can have an ace
either high (A-K-Q-J-T) or low (A-2-3-4-5). You can not
use the Ace in a wraparound and example would be K-A-2-3-4,
which is not a straight. An Ace high straight-flush is called
a Royal Flush and is the highest natural hand. Four of a
Kind- Four cards of the same rank like four Aces or Four
Kings. If there are two or more hands that qualify, the
hand with the higher-rank four of a kind wins. Very rarely,
I mean really rarely, if you are playing a game with alot
of wild cards, you may have two four of a kinds with the
same rank. In this case you use the High Card rule (number
10 on this list).
House-A full house is a three of a kind and a pair, such
as K-K-K-2-2. When there are two full houses the tie is
broken by the three of a kind. An example would be J-J-J-5-5
would beat 9-9-9-A-A. If for some reason the three of a
kind cannot determine the victor then you go to the pair
to decide (this would only happen in a game with wild cards).
An example of this would be K-K-K-A-A would beat K-K-K-J-J.
flush is a hand where all of the cards are the same suit,
such as A-J-9-7-5, all of Diamonds. When flushes ties, follow
the rules for High Card.
cards in rank order, but not of the same suit (it can be
any combination of the four suits). An example of a straight
is 2-3-4-5-6. The Ace can either be high or low card, either
A-2-3-4-5 or 10-J-Q-K-A. Wraparounds are not allowed (an
example being K-A-2-3-4). When two straights tie, the highest
straight wins, K-Q-J-10-9 would beat 5-4-3-2-A. If two straights
have the same value, AKQJT vs AKQJT, the pot is split.
of a Kind-Three cards of any rank with the remaining cards
not being a pair (that would be a full house if it were).
Once again the highest ranking three of a kind would win.
K-K-K-2-4 would beat Q-Q-Q-2-3. If both are the same rank
(only in a wild card game), then the High Card rule come
into effect with the remaining two.
Pair-Two distinct pairs of card and a 5th card. The highest
ranking pair wins ties. If both hands have the same high
pair, the second pair wins. If both hands have the same
pairs, the high card wins.
Pair-One pair with three distinct cards. Highest ranking
pair wins. High card breaks ties. High Card- When a hand
has none of the above qualications of any of the ones listed
above, nobody hads even a pair or better, then it comes
down to who is holding the highest ranking card. If there
is a tie for the high card then the next high card determines
the pot, if that card is a tie than it continues down till
the third, fourth, and fifth card. The High card is also
used to break ties when the high hands both have the same
type of hand (pair, flush, straight, etc).
are the types and rankings of the different hands. Now lets
get down to betting.
most poker games you start the betting with an ante just
to get the cards dealt. The ante is dependent upon who you
are playing with, a friendly game would usually have an
ante of a penny, nickle, or dime, I personally like a nickle
ante when playing with friends. The money is put in the
center of the table and is called the pot. At the end of
a hand the highest hand, of the players that remain (some
may have folded), wins the pot.
have three choices when the betting gets to you (betting
is handled in a clockwise order) and here they are:
enough to match what has been bet since the lasttime you
bet. An example would be if you bet 25 cents and somebody
than bid 35 cents when to you you would owe 10 cents . If
you Call than you would put the amount that you owed into
the pot and you would stay in the hand.
you raise you first put enough in the pot to match what
has already been bet and then you would raise the pot by
putting an additional amount in (a friendly game would usually
have a limit to how much money you could raise). So lets
say the initial bet was 25 cents, you would have to put
in 25 cents and than say I'll raise you another 25 cents.
Now the other players will either Call, Raise, or fold.
out of the current hand and losing the possibility of winning
the pot. You don't have to put money in and you would only
lose the ante, if its on the first turn, or whatever you
put in the pot later. As the Kenny Rodgers song says, "you
gotta know when to fold them." Sometimes it is just
better to get out then waste good money on bad cards.
is always dependent on the people you are playing with and
the rules that they prescribe. Games beween friends should
always have low limits set on the ante, the amount you could
raise, and the top amount the pot could grow to. These rules
are best because winning a big pot is never worth losing
a friend over. So set the ante at a nickle, the raises at
a quater, and don't let the pot go over a few dollars. This
is the best way to handle a friendly game.
quick example of a game of Five Card Draw
puts in the ante and five cards are dealt face down to each
player. Then a round of betting occurs. Then the player
can discard up to three cards (4 if your last card is an
ace or a wild card, this rule is set by the players) and
get (from the deck) as many new cards as they disgarded.
Then there is another round of betting, and then hands are
revealed and the highest hand wins the pot.
are the basics, use them wisely, learn the stragedy of poker,
and have fun.