How To Play Poker For Beginners

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Poker is a pretty easy game for people to learn, however it is not so easy to master it. But do not worry, we will break it down for you. 

There are many variations of poker, but we will be looking into the most popular one of all today – Texas Hold ‘em. 

Do not forget, this does not just apply to playing face to face as well, with more and more happening in the world of online gaming, a huge amount of poker is now played online, and so, you can use what we teach you here to play online poker as well. 

The main thing you need to do is master the rules, and after that you can develop your own ways of playing a strategy that will benefit you, not everyone plays the same, and that is a good thing! 

Playing Texas Hold Em’ 

So, Texas hold ‘em, it is the most popular version of poker out there, it might not be quite as easy as some of the traditional beginner variations, but since it is the most popular one, it is likely the one you are most eager to learn how to play! 

So, let’s get you started! 

How To Play A Round

Now, instead of just telling you the rules, we will talk you through how the game is played, so you know every step you need to take in a game! 

Strategy & Rankings 

Starting off you need to learn the basic hands (5 cards) and each of their rankings. 

No matter what variation of poker you are playing, the hands stay the same, so it is best to get to know these, give yourself a cheat sheet, so you know where you stand in each hand. 

  • Royal flush – This is the highest ranking. It will have a 10, J, Q, K, and Ace all of one suit. 
  • Straight flush – This is the 2nd best, it is the same up of 5 cards consecutively of the same suit. 
  • Four-of-a-kind – This is when you have 4 cards that rank the same from the 4 different suits, as well as a fifth card of any rank. 
  • Full House – This has 3 cards of 1 rank and 2 of another. 
  • Flush – 5 cards of the same suit. 
  • Straight- 5 cards of rank consecutively but made of more than a single suit. 
  • 3 of a kind- 3 cards of the same rank, + 2 unmatched. 
  • 2 pairs- 2 cards of one rank and two of another. 
  • Pair – you have 2 cards of the same rank. 
  • High card – no cards have the same rank, and none from the same suit or are consecutive.

Make Your Starting Bets

How you need to start off by placing your bets. You can do this in 2 ways. The person who is beside the dealer will place a blind that is half of the minimum, and then the player to their left will place a big blind that is the minimum or more. 

The other option is to ‘ante up’ which is when a minimum starting bet is placed. 

Check Your Deck

The dealer will move the first card of the deck out of play and then each player will receive 2 cards. 

You should check what you have. 

The dealer will burn in each round, so it is harder to get an idea of what is coming. Note that all gameplay is carried out left to right. 

Make Your Choice

Now that you have your cards it is time to raise, call, or bet. You do this after each round. Once the dealer puts out new cards you will make a bet based on the cards you have. 

You can place a bet if no one else has, you could ‘check’ to avoid betting, ‘call’ to match another player’s bet, ‘raise’ to add more (however if you do this other players will choose to call your bet or will fold). 

You can fold if someone else bets, and you do not want to match this, your cards will be placed face down. 

Check The Flop

Now you need to check the flop. The dealer will burn the top card and 3 cards will be placed face-up for you to see. You can use these to build your hand. Compare these with what you have and then fold, call, or bet. 

There will be 5 cards in the flop in total. So you will have these plus your 2 to build your overall hand. 

Round 2

After the second round, the dealer will burn and then there will be another face card up next to the flop. Check this card and the other table cards to make your choice on what to do. 

Sometimes you can make a card exchange at this point. 

Consider what other players may have in their hands as well. If your hand doesn’t look good, do not be afraid to fold. 

The River

The river is the 5th and final card the dealer puts down, check this and decide on your best hand. 

The Final Showdown

Now each player will reveal their hand and the winner will be decided! 

It’s this simple. Once you learn strategy, you’re one step ahead!