Poker Based Online Casino GamesBy: Mark Freedman, Thursday August 6th 2009
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Poker is by far the most popular gambling card game. However in the traditional format of the game players compete against each other and not against the house. Hence that format does not work at online casinos where each individual plays against the house. Therefore online casinos have developed their own games based on poker hand rankings in which players can compete against the house and at the same time experience some of the elements of regular poker.
Poker based online casino games are of two types. In one type the player is dealt a hand, which is compared against a pay table. In the second type the player and dealer are both dealt hands and the player has to beat the dealer's hand in order to win. Of the first type the most common games are the video poker games, which are based on draw poker. These games are so popular that they are classified in an independent group. The player is dealt five cards. He can discard whichever cards he wants and draw fresh ones. His final hand is compared with a payout table and if his hand ranking figures in the payout table he receives the corresponding payout.
The other poker based casino games are found under Table Games in online casinos. Hold'em Poker and Let It Ride are casino games in which the player's hands are matched against a payout table. They simulate Texas Hold'em to a fair degree. Players first place the ante bet and are then dealt their two pocket cards. Then the community cards are dealt with intermediate betting rounds. The final hand is compared with a payout table and payouts accordingly made. In Hold'em Poker the usual procedure of calling or raising is followed. The players increase their wagers if successively revealed cards are suitable. In Let It Ride players place the maximum wager upfront and can reduce the bets if the successive cards revealed are not suitable.
3 Card Poker is an unusual poker based casino game. It is played with three cards instead of five and therefore a truncated poker hand ranking system applies. What is more intriguing is that it offers two independent bets. In one bet the player's hand is compared against a pay table and the dealer's hand becomes irrelevant. In the other bet the player has to beat the dealer's hand to receive a payout. The best part about 3 Card Poker is that the player can place either of the two bets or even both the bets.
The most popular poker based casino table game is Caribbean Stud Poker. Its structure is more complicated and therefore it is more interesting. In Caribbean Stud Poker the player's hand has to be higher ranked than the dealer's hand in order for the player to win. However when this happens, the payout is based on the player's hand ranking as indicated in the payout table. Therefore Caribbean Stud Poker combines both types of games. Caribbean Stud Poker also has a voluntary side bet that contributes to a progressive jackpot. If the player draws a royal flush then the amount in the progressive jackpot is his.
Only the brief features of the poker based casino games have been described in the article. The exact rules could vary from one online gaming software provider to another, as could the exact names of the games. For example Microgaming refers to Caribbean Stud Poker as Cyberstud Poker.
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