Which is your favorite poker variation in Nigeria? Poker is a game of skill and knowing how to play is the difference between beginners and pros. In this guide, you could learn how to increase your chances of winning.

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Furthermore, you will find some winning tips and strategies and will learn everything about the history of this popular card game.

Poker And Its Origins

The exact origin of poker might be vague. However, researches indicate that it originated from the French game ‘poque.’ In America, it started in riverboats along the Mississippi river and they used about 20 cards. It is hilarious that in America, poker was also known as ‘The Lying Game’. Modern version as we know it must have been first discovered in 1377, but not much was recorded about it until the 1800s.

The Four Main Families Of Poker

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Straight

Straight hand poker comes with five consecutive hands. In every 52-card deck, you could encounter 10,200 possible hand combinations, with 10 different ranks of straight. Every straight will be ranked according to its highest card. All you need to understand is that the highest Straight card is determined by the highest one in your hand and not the suit. Also, keep in mind that in Straight Poker, the suits are not important and that all that matters is the hand rank.

Note that there are 10 different ranks of straight you could form and every hand is determined by the highest-ranking card. Then, it is determined by the second-highest ranking one until the fifth.

As the game starts, you will receive 5 cards and your goal is to turn them into the best 5-card combo to beat the other players. For example:

The highest possible Straight hand you could land is the Broadway, (A-K-Q-J-10). Other straights include :

K-Q-J-10-9

J-10-9-8-7

Q-J-10-9-8

Note that Aces can either be high or low but you cannot wrap around them. For instance:

You could be having A-2-3-4-5 or A-K-Q-J-10 in your hand but you can not have a K-A-2-3-4 combination.

Stud Poker

In Stud poker, you receive a fixed number of cards (some facing-down and others facing-up). This version stands out in different ways, for instance, the positions are not constant. This means that the first player to bet changes his place from one round to the other. He is also the one to decide whether they’ll make a full bet or a smaller bet before everybody else follows with their bets. The face-down cards are called hole cards.

Since its inception, Stud poker has evolved into many variants including Five-, Six- and Seven-card-stud, High-low Stud, and Razz. However, 7-card stud is the most popular.

Since 7 card stud is highly favored among online casino and tournament players, it is advisable to know the basics. The dealer deals two cards face-down and one face-up to every player. When using a limit-betting structure, the bets will come with fixed increments.

For example:

If the game is a €4/€8, the bets will increase by €4 on the two initial betting rounds and €4 on the consecutive three rounds.

The best 5 – card hand out of the seven will win the pot. Note that increasing the large amount you wager by the opening forced bet is considered a ‘completion’ and not a raise.

For example:

If the game is a €30-€60 one, the low card opens for €10. If the next player increases the stake to €30, he completes the bet. Only three more raises will be allowed if you decide to use the three-raise limit.

Draw poker

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Draw poker is quite an interesting variant. Here, you are dealt a complete hand before the game begins. Your goal is to develop and improve the hand for later rounds by replacing or ‘drawing’ your cards.

You simply trade them in trying to receive better ones. Of all variants, the 5-card one is the most popular among online casinos.

You can play draw poker as no-limit, pot-limit or fixed-limit. Using these structures requires a change in strategy. For instance: Some hands that you would not use in fixed-limit 5-card become winning in the no-limit version. This is mainly because, in draw poker, you can use no-limit to force others to fold.

The bottom card in the deck can never be used as a replacement. If the deck is finished during the draw before all players on the table have replaced their cards, the final player selects randomly from the discarded ones. For example: If you are the last player and you want 2 replacements but there is only 1 on the deck the dealer will shuffle all cards and deal you the 2 ones you want.

Community Card Poker

This is any poker variant that allows you to use community cards with Omaha poker and Texas Hold em being the most famous variants.

The community cards are dealt on the table face up and you get to pick one. You will also receive a private incomplete hand which you will combine with the community one to form a complete hand. The rules will determine how the community cards will be combined with other cards to form a winning hand.

Some games don’t use community cards. For example, Stud poker. However, the seventh street will occasionally be used as one if there are not enough cards in the deck and the competition is still on.

The number of community cards you can use depends on the variant. For example, in Texas Hold’em, you are allowed to form the highest hand using any combo of the 5 community cards at the center of the table and your two hole ones.

Poker Cash Games vs Poker Tournament Games

You can either play poker as a cash game or in a tournament like the World Series of Poker. Both formats are fun. Nevertheless, they still need some form of skill if you want to increase your chances of winning and minimize your losses. Here are the main differences between the two types.

The number of tables – While cash games are conducted on only one table, tournaments can consist of multiple tables.

Buy-In amount – Cash games usually come with a minimum & maximum buy-in amount. However, in tournaments, all players must adhere to the same buy-in amount and chips.

Quitting options- Cash versions allow you to quit whenever you want while tournaments end when the winner takes all the chips.

Blinds – While the blinds remain the same for every hand in cash poker, the cost of blinds increases in the tournaments.

Losing all your chips – In cash games, you are allowed to buy-in again if you lose all your chips. Unfortunately, in tournaments, you are expected to leave the table if you lose all your chips.

Poker Games – Betting Variants

Poker comes with different betting options. Here are the different betting variants and how they work.

No Limit

As the name describes it, there is no limit, except for the blinds. The main difference between this and other betting variants is that you can raise a minimum of the size of the huge blind. However, the maximum bet allowed depends on the large chips the players have at the table.

Fixed Limit

In this case, how much you bet is fixed by the stakes. The betting amount can change depending on the betting round during a hand.

Pot Limit

The maximum bet limit depends on the size of the pot. The more the pot grows, the higher the betting limits get.

Conclusion – Why Play Online Poker?

Poker is a fun and thrilling option for casino enthusiasts. Playing online means you can enjoy this classic from a location of your choice without having to commute. There are many variants to choose from, depending on your taste and skills. In live versions, you get to meet charming and friendly dealers who you can also chat with.

You can find a wide range of active versions online around the clock, meaning you can play whenever you want. Online poker comes with more hand options, which add to the thrill. There are side-bets like bet-behinds which allow you to bet even if a table is already full.

FAQs

Here are the most common poker questions with answers.

Can I Play Poker For Free?

Yes, in demo versions. You can also use different bonuses.

What are Sit N Go events?

These are events involving 6 to 10 players which take up to 60 minutes.

Can I Play From My Mobile?

Yes. The best online casinos offer rooms that are compatible with mobile devices.

What Is The Easiest Version

Straight poker is considered the easiest one.

How Do I Win Big?
  • Only play at licensed poker sites.
  • Have a budget for your bets.
  • Don’t play with emotions.
  • Practise poker offline before playing online poker real money.
  • All variants require a strategy. From three-card poker to razz. Learn more about video poker and poker strategy by reading and watching others compete.
  • Avoid tilt poker (making aggressive moves) as this could cost you the win.