Since the start of the Poker boom in 2003, triggered by the WSOP Champion Chris Moneymaker, Poker has become one of the most popular games in the live and online gaming scene. In order to best equip you for the next round of Poker with friends or at the Online Casino, we would like to not only explain the rules of Poker, but also a few strategies for beginners.
Like most other Casino games, Poker can also be learned in a relatively short time. But while Casino games like Blackjack, Roulette or Baccarat can be solved mathematically relatively easily, with Poker it is necessary to develop a strategy which is optimal at any time.
The most popular variant of Poker is Texas Holdem. In Texas Holdem, each player first receives two cards. There is then a first round of bets where the players can either call or fold. After this, three community cards are placed on the table, which all players have an equal claim to. These cards are also known in the jargon as the Flop. After the Flop comes the Turn. Here only one other card is placed on the table and there is a new round of betting. After the Turn comes lastly the River. This is the last community card. Now it is up to the players to make the best hand from these cards. In the betting round following the River, the players have the possibility to bet money a final time in order to increase their winnings or to bluff their opponents with their hand.
At the start of each round of betting, the player to the left of the dealer must bet the Small Blind. In our example, this is one chip. The Big Blind must bet double this amount, so two chips. If another player would like to join the hand, then he must bet at least the same amount as the Big Blind, so two chips. If a player would like to raise, he must raise by at least one Big Blind, so at least by two chips from a total of four chips.
There are many different strategies in Poker, which can all lead to success, depending on whether you play with real money or play online Poker for free. At this stage the different approaches should first be examined before any specific moves can be presented.
A tight player will only play relatively few hands. The hands which this player plays are above average in strength. Because he pursues an aggressive approach, he will usually be able to win a relatively large amount of money with his good hands or collect the pot without a showdown. If the tight aggressive player decides to bluff, then the other players will rather believe him because in the past he has only played a few strong hands.
The tight passive style of play does not differ with the selection of the starting cards, but in the way these are played. Unlike his aggressive counterpart, he will also play his strong hands conservatively. He profits above all from aggressive players who always bet again if he has a strong hand.
A loose aggressive player plays relatively many starting hands and is therefore forced to follow an aggressive approach. Since he often finds himself in situations in which he does not have a strong hand, he is often forced to bluff. Beginners have difficulties dealing with loose aggressive players, making the strategy very well suited to such an environment.
There are of course also loose passive players. There are no fixed Poker rules for this type of player. They play many hands and are very passive in doing so. It is however very difficult to speak of a tactic here because it is almost impossible to win money in the long-term with this approach.
There are many plays in Poker, with which opponents can be unsettled in order to force mistakes which can be exploited. At this point we would like to present the most important moves for live and online Poker.
The so-called Check-Raise is relatively well-known. Here a player will initially check, so will not place a bet. But should another player place a bet, the first player will raise his bet. Such a play gives the impression of a strong hand and is therefore used very well for bluffs. But this strategy can also be practical with strong hands, because if you win, the awaiting pot will be significantly higher.
If a player has already raised before the Flop, this already signals a certain strength. It is therefore often advisable to bet again directly on the Flop. The other players feel under pressure and will therefore often fold. The pot can therefore be won directly on the Flop without any showdown.
Below are the five most important basic concepts which open up all possible actions in a Poker game.
Bet: As already explained above, Bet means nothing else other than to bet something. You bet that you have the best hand. The "Bet” is nothing other than placing the bet.
Check: Move to the next player or to be next. If you do not want to raise the current bet then there is the possibility to check. If all players in the Poker game check, as a result of which the pot also does not increase, the next card will be shown or the next round will start. If however the next player does not raise his bet, you have the possibility to "call” the bet or even to "raise” or set down your cards ("fold”).
Call: By calling, you confirm that you will match a bet. If one of the players e.g. were to bet one chip, and the next player at the table were to bet the same, this will be deemed "called”.
Raise: You can "raise” a bet. If for instance 1 chip has been bet, you have three options. If you fold, you set your cards down, if you call you match the bet, and if you raise you increase the bet. A raise must always be double the initial bet, so at least 2 chips. Should this be the case, the next player must either call, set down his cards, or raise himself.
Fold: An additional option in Poker is to pass, or to "fold”. By throwing down the cards, the current game ends for the player. The player therefore also has no claims to the pot and must wait until the next round until he may play again. If you have the option between fold and check because the previous player did not raise, checking is the better option. In this way, you can also have a greater chance of winning the pot even without good cards.
Showdown: When comparing hands at the end of a Poker game, you talk of a "showdown”. The first player who made the bet must now show his cards. The other players have two options. The first option would be to also show their own cards, which only makes sense if their own cards are higher than the previously shown cards; the second option is to return the cards to the dealer without showing them.
If there are only checks before the showdown, then the player who opened the last round shows his cards first.
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